Episode 178- Are you thinking clearly? With Matt Warren

Matt Warren is a keen pilot and has been a long-time journalist for Cross Country Magazine and is also a veteran science writer. He and his co-author Miriam Frankel have just released their incredible book “Are you Thinking Clearly, 29 reasons you aren’t, and what to do about it.” In a line, it explores the science behind why you might not be in the driver’s seat of your own brain – and everything you can do to change that… It investigates everything from genetics, personality and intuition to habits, what you eat, social media, attention and bias – and how these factors influence and manipulate the way we think. We learn in the podcast that all KINDS of things get in the way of thinking clearly, which obviously isn’t very good when we’re in the air. Matt paints a pretty clear picture that nearly all humans have psychological traits which in the flying environment can be deadly, but there’s good news- we can improve how we think. Matt articulates what’s going on upstairs incredibly well and we had a blast with this talk. Get the book and start making better decisions in life, and in the air!

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Transcript

Speaker 1 (0s): Hi there everybody. Welcome to another episode of Cloudbase Mayhem. A great show for you today with my friend, Matt Warren, Matt is a journalist with XY mag, who those of you who read the magazine and seen his stuff a lot. He covered the ex outs in a couple races, including 2019. He and ed were jacked up with my wife and my daughter in near Salsburg and Paul Goel Bower's house. And that's where we got to know each other a little bit, but I've worked with him on some articles over the years.

And he and his friend Miriam Frankel had just put out his first book about behavioral science called, Are you thinking clearly 29 reasons you aren't and what to do about it. And Matt reached out a few weeks back and said, I think, you know, this isn't specific to flying, but Matt's pilot. And a lot of this stuff is very specific to the decisions we make and why we often make very poor decisions. So those of you who are familiar with thinking fast and slow with Daniel conman will recognize a lot of this, but whereas that's really heavy on science and really just one side of kind of behavioral science.

He's obviously the kind of founding father on all this Matt and Miriam's book is much more wide ranging and covers a lot more topic. Obviously these 29 reasons we don't very well. We're not really necessarily in the driving seat when we think we are, but it's just, we got into some really cool terrain here and obviously just touched on a lot of different things, but, and he ties it in really well with piloting and, and how it all ties together. So I'm gonna read you a little bit here from the summary of the book, do emotions really cloud your thinking, our habits, holding you back is AI manipulating your mind?

Does IQ help you think better? Every one of our thoughts, actions, moods, and decisions is shaped by a whole array of factors. Most of which we don't pay any attention to culture, time and language to genetics technology and the microorganisms living inside us, even our own unconscious routines and habits. It's clear that we are always in the driving seat. So we start there and get into the book. And I, I know you're gonna love it. This was a lot of fun and we dove into some fun things to talk about and some interesting things to think about.

Enjoy Matt. Good to see you here, bud. It's it's been a while. It's been a minute and I didn't know you were, I know you were a journalist, but I didn't know you were working on a book. So I'm excited to talk about your book and behavioral psychology. And it's not a book about paragliding, but it all definitely kind of fits and why we make bad decisions, but welcome to the Mayhem. And it's good to shoot it with for a little bit.

Speaker 2 (3m 4s): Great to see you, Gavin. Obviously we, I was there reporting on the Xs in following you along the way and good to see you still alive and kicking after that.

Speaker 1 (3m 14s): Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Well, you know, it's, it's, it is a little dicey from time to time, but made it through for those who aren't aware. Let's, let's just, let's start this off by, you know, who are you and, and what, why did you write this book and, and how long have you been in, in journalism, but what, what, how do you define yourself?

Speaker 2 (3m 36s): Well, I left university in, you know, the late nineties didn't really know what I wanted to do other than travel and do things. The do things was a bit kind of ill defined, but I figured that journalism was a good way to do things, to try different things, to go to different places. So I started traveling around the world seven or eight lonely guidebooks to Indonesia, South Africa, Thailand settled into a couple of newspaper jobs in my thirties.

And for the past six or seven years, I've been writing for cross country magazine and also a site called the conversation.com. And we specialize in turning academic research into content for the general public. And that content gets read by about 150 million people every quarter. So, yeah, it was big news during the COVID crisis. A lot of our content got sent out to the other media and you probably read it even if you weren't where you were reading it.

And outta that with loads of different researchers, lots of different fields, psychologists, neuroscience, scientists, I thought write a book about this. I wanna to people and delve inside the human mind and how it works and how we think. And so with my co-author Mary and Frankel, we came up with, Are you thinking clearly 29 reasons why not and what to do about it?

Speaker 1 (5m 14s): Yeah. And I'm looking at the cover right now. I love it. Just a bunch of squiggly lines. And that's how my brain thinks most of the time, all, all over the map. You know, I mean, I, I, I rely on Sam Harris and his, you know, his waking up podcast and his waking up, you know, meditation app to try to get that straightened out. But yeah, when I, when I looked through, you know, the, and I'll, I'll just read for the listener here a little bit just about the book, the summary on where you can, where you can buy it and find out more about it.

And it's on, you know, all the platforms, Amazon and everything else, but it looks terrific, but it's this, the motherhood complex causes it an eyeopening and engaging richness of information that gives us a detailed insight into the strengths and weaknesses of human behavior. I read that and thought conmen, I mean, this is all behavioral science, correct? Is, is it, you know, why our brains, why we think we're making good decisions? And we aren't.

Speaker 2 (6m 12s): Yeah. I guess to summarize the book, we perhaps often assume that where the captains of our ship, that we control all our thinking and we, our thinking goes in the direction we, so what we did was look at the many reasons external or the many factors, external and internal that manipulate and influence the way you think. So starting at the bottom that's genetics, but then it's also things like habit it's intuition, it's S and bias it's digital technology.

It's whether you're in love, it's whether you are it's, whether you're feeling emotion it's even whether you believe in things like good and evil. So it's the full GA things. Really. We even did a chapter on your gut microbiome, all the little organisms living in your gut, they out number your own cells. 1.3 to one on a ratio. And it's, it seems it's a growing area of research that they're actually through your nerve, potentially influencing, hijacking your thinking, almost making you do what they want to do.

So yeah, that, bit's probably not so relevant to paragliding, but just to give,

Speaker 1 (7m 24s): But it might be, it sounds like listening to your gut.

Speaker 2 (7m 27s): Yeah. Yeah. Listening to your gut in both ways intuitively and what you put in your gut affects what goes on in your brain. Absolutely. Did,

Speaker 1 (7m 36s): Did doing all this research really help your own thinking? Or is it just, is it still just it's overwhelming? This is just too much.

Speaker 2 (7m 46s): We did. We did actually do a, an epilogue. The last chapter of the book is how we applied it to our own thinking. So what we wanted to do with the book was not to go down the standard path of, you need to think this way, you know, like there's one solution for everyone. There isn't, everyone thinks differently. Everyone's vulnerable to different biases. Everyone has different think conflicting factors sort of jostling for their attention.

But yeah, so we applied it ourselves. And, you know, I, I found that I was, I was probably too optimistic. I need to be a bit more pessimistic. Something perhaps we can talk about a bit later, I think is a big defensive pessimist and cross country magazine. Well, but also the degree to which we can manage our emotions, how habitual we are, how many, how much you rely on routine, what you're eating and what that might be doing to your mind, how, how much you, how much credibility you give your own memories, how intuitive you are, how good you are at paying attention.

So, yeah, I went through everything afterwards and gave myself a good going over.

Speaker 1 (9m 6s): Is there, is there a kind a test at the back of the book where you can, you can go through and kind find out where you sit on this spectrum of madness.

Speaker 2 (9m 16s): We include, we reference a whole bunch of tests the whole way through. So things like the creature of habit scale is a 27 point test to establish how habitually there's a Des test, which on the rather note establishes whether you may have psychopathic Mave traits in your character, these are psychological traits rather than like a condition. So yeah, there's all sort of, you can do you go to test your own test?

Speaker 1 (9m 51s): How, how, as a percentage, just as an example, how people would have dark, psychological traits, you know, there are there, like you said, is it 50%? Is it 80? Are most of us a little bit dark,

Speaker 2 (10m 7s): The dark traits? That's an interesting one, which obviously ISN, like there is, there are diagnosable psychiatric clinical conditions, particularly that you might antisocial behavior disorder for. So we're not about those. We're talking about psychological traits. You know, that would be how psychopathic you might be. I, how, you know, for example, how, how much you care about what happens to other people, how much you can feel, what they feel, Machiavellianism how much you wanna get ahead and narcissism, how much you rate yourself, probably unreal.

And all of us are somewhere on a spectrum with all of those three.

Speaker 1 (10m 55s): My matter are these, are these things are traits more genetic or are they more learned? Are they, how, how does the nature nurture side of this really affect things?

Speaker 2 (11m 7s): Yeah. So the genetics plays a big part of it. It's about 40%. And then the rest of it is your environment. What's around you

Speaker 1 (11m 18s): A lot.

Speaker 2 (11m 20s): So yeah, both, it's always a combination of the two. So you're not liked by your genetics. You can change things, your environment, well, turn the volume up or down. If you like,

Speaker 1 (11m 34s): When, before we started recording you, you've started tapping into the 20, some of the 29 things. Could we do that? And, but yeah, take a little deeper dive. You know, you were talking about optimism versus pessimism, for example, but the, I know you've got the list in front of you there, but the, they were fascinating.

Speaker 2 (11m 53s): So I guess yeah. Optimism so about, of have an optimism bias. And that essentially that we're likely are more likely, Well's obviously of a cult around optimism. You know, we have the yellow smiley face on everything. We all talk about how we need to be happy and upbeat and stoked, you know, and we have to look on the bride side and the pessimism pessimist are kind of a downer or a bit of an, and you don't really want them around, but in something like paragliding or adventure sports, you do need to be a bit pessimistic as well.

In fact, pessimism is probably a really good way of staying alive.

Speaker 1 (12m 45s): Yeah, we will. Will GAD. Is he he's he defines this so well, I mean, I remember going to the, our first launch on that Rockies traverse and, and he talked about, you know, that he, he already recognized that I was way too optimistic for his liking. Yeah. It drove nuts. And, and he said, Gavin, not only am I not optimistic, I'm looking for, you know, I'm not, look, I'm not a glass half full guy. I'm looking for the rock. That's gonna break the glass. Yeah. And, but, and yet to participate in what he has participated in, you know, he kind of, one of the original, you know, the OGs for red bull, he has to be optimistic.

Yeah. You know, but he's constantly just what can go wrong with this situation, which I, in my mind is what exactly what you want. Yeah. To be an adventure athlete, you know, you, you want, you know, how, how is this environment gonna kill me?

Speaker 2 (13m 42s): Yeah. But you don't stop there. Do you? It's not. Yeah. I think people maybe go, well, if I'm pessimistic, I'll never fly. And as, as well told me, you know, we're all optimist because we're going up under a better fabric to Cloudbase, you know, getting smashed the pieces on, you know, in meter up thermals. So we need a degree of optimism, but the pessimism comes into play where you go exactly. As you just said, where do I identify the rock? That's gonna me and crucially, what am I gonna do about avoiding it?

You know, it's about mapping the terrain in a slightly negative way, you know, and couldn't, how am I gonna, could I get stuck in that valley breeze and how will I not doing so, got that really to, if I get stuck in it, what am I, and how am I being there at all in the first place it's about looking for the potential dangers and then actually coming up with a really positive plan for dealing with them.

You know, if you go down that

Speaker 1 (14m 47s): Routes, is it, is that, is that something that can be learned, Matt? I mean, the, one of the things that I feel I'm not bragging at all in this, but one of the things that I feel has kept me alive for my 50 years on the planet, doing all the stuff that I do is that when I get in those situations, you know, I'm not a freeze, you know, that freeze flight or fight, you know, I'm really a fighter and, and things get very clear for me.

And one of the things that I know is not conscious, but is my heart rate plummets, you know? So it goes the opposite of what most people do. My mind goes down to almost resting heart rate. Yeah. And, and I just see the world incredibly clearly. Yeah. This is what I need to do. This is how I'm gonna survive this situation. And, and it's, but it's, it's instinct how, I don't know where that came from. That's crazy.

I mean, how do I mean, how can I control my whole heart rate? I'm not, you know, I haven't practiced this at all. It's just what happens.

Speaker 2 (15m 54s): Yeah. I guess you, you use the words, there were a couple of interesting things there used the word instinct, you know, that's intuition, if you like. Yeah. So we, our brains don't have time to work like computers and take all, all the inputs and then sort of rationalize them into, you know, a carefully competed answer bandwidth for that be there all day, working out, just whether to turn left or right. You guesses guesses.

When you first doing something, your intuitions may be really quite bad. You know, you make bad calls and you do, you really need to, and those situations engage more of your rational mind and actually think through a little more slowly, what's going on in your case though, you are an expert para glider, outdoorsman, cetera, your intuition, your instincts in these situations have been honed by years of experience.

So you can trust those intuition much more.

Speaker 1 (17m 5s): So it is learned.

Speaker 2 (17m 6s): It is learned. Intuition are learned. Yeah. There are subtle patterns that you have spotted that you probably weren't even aware you spotted and over time, some of those the same. So they've reinforced themselves and your instincts, whether you turn left or right, in a certain situation, you probably why you're doing that. There will be bits of your brain that have through experience that it, you should do one or the other make the choice.

So intuition, I think, you know, when you're a beginner in anything, you have to be quite careful with your intuition and then you can probably learn to trust them more as you go on. I mean, I think Kal talks quite a lot about this, and he now describes him as a himself as a much more intuitive pilot. And that allows him to be a lot more creative as well. Yeah. And you know, if you, if you can trust those intuition and follow them, then you've got some mental bandwidth up to think about what your next move might be as well.

Speaker 1 (18m 12s): I do find that really interesting, you know, talking to

Speaker 2 (18m 15s): Mike Thomas.

Speaker 1 (18m 16s): Yeah. Thomas, you know, talking to him about, you know, back early on, remember when he would take his night pass really early in the race. And, and he said, it was just because Kal doesn't like to be around other people. Yeah. He would. And he wouldn't even typically use it cuz he'd already be ahead. But they, it was just enough. It was enough to just get him a little bit more ahead. So he could just do his thing and not be influenced by other people, even in the air with him or on the ground. He just did. He didn't want, he wanted to be out in front and do his thing and you know, let his intuition rule the game.

Yeah,

Speaker 2 (18m 54s): Yeah, exactly.

Speaker 1 (18m 55s): Which is, which is interesting because you know, you know, we learn as pilots that were faster and better when we're with other pilots, you know that that's not how you'd win a comp. Certainly you wouldn't do that. And race a goal. You wouldn't wanna lead out all the time. You're gonna bomb out all the time. It's not gonna work, but it works for him really well. Yeah. In, in an environment like ex

Speaker 2 (19m 20s): Worlds, greatest chess, I chess, of course, humans can't play chess like computers because they don't have the bandwidth to run through every single possible move. So you just have to have a degree of intuition and instinct. Now for someone like him, who's a very intuitive world champion chess player. Intuition works because he's played so many games of chess and he's already a super talent.

He knows that probably if he feels he should do this, move in a very high paced, high stress environment, it'll probably be the right one. If I suddenly move into chess and try and do the same thing, I'm check mate two moves if that, you

Speaker 1 (20m 5s): Know. Right, right, right.

Speaker 2 (20m 7s): You know, you just, you, you just have to be aware of it. Be aware of what your intuition are and learn to trust them over time, you know, without giving them too much stock too early.

Speaker 1 (20m 22s): So optimism bias. That's what you call that.

Speaker 2 (20m 25s): Well, no, that's so no we're talking about intuition, but yeah, your optimism bias will be, most of us, most of us will expect things to go better than they are likely to.

Speaker 1 (20m 39s): Interesting. You said about 80% are like that.

Speaker 2 (20m 41s): Yeah. Yeah. Percent of people have an optimism bias look. So you'll also, we're also quite likely to update our beliefs or understanding of things based on good news rather than bad news. So for example, and you can apply this toing, but the example won't be power guiding. But for example, if I, if I ask you, what are the chances of you getting cancer, for example, and you say 50%, and I tell you, it's actually about 30% and then I leave it for a while.

And then I come back to you and ask what your risk is. You'll probably move it pretty much towards the more optimistic result you've been given towards if was cancer was nudge slightly give you good news. You're much likely to be more likely to update your beliefs based on it than not.

And that, you know, that could pose a problem in paragliding. Couldn't it. And how you, how you approach risk and things like,

Speaker 1 (22m 2s): Yeah. You

Speaker 2 (22m 3s): Know, I,

Speaker 1 (22m 3s): I, I'm curious, you know, you're a paraglider and you've written this book and done all this research. Do you think the 80 20 rule applies to pilots? Or is it more like 95? I mean, why in the world would we do what we do given what we know? I mean, we all think it's not gonna happen to us, but it happens to almost everybody. Yeah. You know what I mean? It's kind absurd.

Speaker 2 (22m 26s): I, I totally agree with you. And a lot of pilots, a lot of pilots, I know a lot of pilots I've spoken with say that we constantly con ourselves lie to ourselves about how dangerous this sport is. And I think, I think that means that we have an optimism bias about it. And in a way we have to, because it spoils the thumb when they're constantly thinking about the danger. But of course, if we apply that will Gian defensive pessimism, we can go, yeah, it's a dangerous sport.

How am I gonna make it? What's my strategy. And in a more systematic way,

Speaker 1 (23m 9s): When you did your research with Miriam, was it, did you break people down into different, you know, our adventure athletes, our adventure people, do they really skew the data in a, in a certain way over just your people that live in the city that don't do anything, you know, that watch sport.

Speaker 2 (23m 31s): No, I guess the data is the data in psychology is skewed towards university students. Those

Speaker 1 (23m 44s): Tend, yeah. Those, those are the ones who are doing the samples on.

Speaker 2 (23m 46s): Yeah, yeah, exactly. They tend to be the participants in the study and you know, and they do tend to be Western as well. You know, Western educated, intelligent, they, you know,

Speaker 1 (23m 58s): So there's probably some social stuff. There's probably all kinds of things that are gonna, it's already very,

Speaker 2 (24m 4s): It's all very bias already.

Speaker 1 (24m 6s): Got it.

Speaker 2 (24m 8s): You could probably guess that. Yes. Paragliding you question

Speaker 1 (24m 17s): Bias.

Speaker 2 (24m 20s): Well, well, a lot of, but you, but you know, even when he is talking about defensive pessimism being pessimistic, that's a good thing. We all have to be so optimistic just to do this thing.

Speaker 1 (24m 34s): Yeah. Right. Let let's, let's dive into some of the other 29 things cuz you, your list is fascinating. What what's we could talk about optimism all day. But

Speaker 2 (24m 49s): Of the studies we at was by this Hanson's Sweden and research, this paragliding as well. He, he applied some techniques. He learned from magicians and it was a bit of slight of hand involved here. So for example, I would show you Gavin two cards and it's two different faces. And I would ask you, which is most attractive and you would go the one on the right.

I would then place the cards down and use a bit of slight of hand. I would hand you the other card, the card you hadn't chosen and tell you, it was the one you had chosen and you would go, yeah, that's the one. And even start justifying the choice that you hadn't made. So it would be things like, and then he'd ask, why did you make that choice? And they'd say something like, I really like their earrings when the initial choice, the one that actually made, they hadn't even been wearing earings.

So this is a really phenomenon. And you know, maybe in that one, which maybe people have seen is that on YouTube, you'll find it about all the basketball players are passing a basketball between them. And you're asked to count how many passes they make. And at the end of it, they say, but did you spot the gorilla? And when you replay it, a gorilla walks through the players

Speaker 1 (26m 26s): And you totally don't see it.

Speaker 2 (26m 27s): You've been asked to look for the passing ball. God,

Speaker 1 (26m 30s): That shit blows my mind. It's just so bizarre.

Speaker 2 (26m 40s): Don't decisions. We even, we justify decisions. We didn't after the fact potentially, you know, so we make a really bad decision and we land and then we say, we come up on the fly with our reason for making that decision.

Speaker 1 (26m 58s): No. Yeah. You justify everything.

Speaker 2 (26m 60s): Our learning does it. Yeah. We justify it after the fact and the gorilla one, I think suggests that in as indeed the card one might, how much are we really paying attention?

Speaker 1 (27m 12s): Yeah.

Speaker 2 (27m 13s): Flying. What are you paying attention to if

Speaker 1 (27m 16s): You are they, if they, if they, you know, from the picture one, you know, the two cards and then here, here's the one that you didn't choose. Is that just peer pressure? Is that just clear? Is that just, oh, this person who's giving me this test. I don't wanna, it

Speaker 2 (27m 30s): Comes from that's. It's a really good question. In, in actual fact they kinda allowed for that. So it's not kind the white coat effect. It's not, I just don't want to offend the researcher. In fact, I think they used pupil dilation test at the same time to check for

Speaker 1 (27m 47s): That. Oh. So it's honestly what your brain is telling you. It

Speaker 2 (27m 50s): Seemed to be, it seemed to be really rigorous research

Speaker 1 (27m 55s): Happened

Speaker 2 (27m 55s): With, with beliefs, certain beliefs as well. If I made you a statement about what do you think about, you know, Donald Trump, for example, it's probably wouldn't, that would probably be too emotive, but you know, a, some kind of softer political idea, you know, I could literally swap the questionnaires around and it, and the same effects seem to stay. Even when you, with a partner you were with someone else. So even in a group, you can be just as, you know, inverted commas, dumb.

Speaker 1 (28m 28s): Wow. I mean, so that, does that come back to bias as well?

Speaker 2 (28m 34s): Yeah, yeah, absolutely. We're obviously, I mean, you know, and again, to go to this research, we can't say categorically, this is what is going on here. But I think all these little studies we looked at in the book, just point to the same sort of lesson, which is you do need to be aware that your brain works in these weird ways. It can rely on shortcuts or does rely on shortcuts and biases that your attention is very on and off and malleable and swings around, you know, all over the, and that we attention and bias again, you know, this is a big is, is yeah.

You know, we, we can't compute think through carefully, every single decision and belief, we don't have time. Our brain doesn't have a computing power. We have to make shortcuts, you know, and those result in a whole range of biases, some of them on a are, you know, are helpful. They save us time. They make us allow, allow us to make snap decisions. Other obviously are hugely damaging and involve all kinds of discrimination and bigotry and so prejudice and so on and so forth, you know?

So we have to be aware of, you know, our brain's tendency to, to, or vulnerability to it.

Speaker 1 (30m 9s): Did you find after you read or sorry, after you wrote this book and did all this research, has it really helped you process the world? Has it helped you, has it, has it, has it helped guide guiding you through the, through this myriad of, you know, the gorilla thing that, that to me is that would help me to reaffirm the fact that I know I can't multitask. Yeah. You know, we know we're bad at it. Everything proves we're bad at it.

We can't do email and talk and run the business and we can't do this. It just doesn't work doesn't mean, you know, and obviously it feels like women are much better at it because they can, they can deal with a child and they've just got more going on. But I mean, I know that I wouldn't see the gorilla. Yeah. I just know that about myself. If I gotta count those balls, I gotta count counts those ball. Count the balls, count the balls, count the balls rocks right in front of me. I'm not gonna see it.

Speaker 2 (31m 2s): I, I mean, I I'd seen the video before a couple of years back. And did the test again for the, or watched it again for the book and still miss gorilla. It's interesting. There were two of us. So we had two bias authors instead of one. So bias you've bias, bias them all around there.

Speaker 1 (31m 43s): Yeah. They're all Venn diagramming together. And oh

Speaker 2 (31m 47s): My God bias. You've this bias that bias. I, I think it just us a, a better framework for exploring our own minds where our might be. And of course, a lot of these things have a positive side. Pessimism has a positive side, you know, when it's within manageable reason, obviously it can spiral out control and you can just sit there, you know, unable to do anything because you feel that you are too pessimistic about everything, but you know, a degree of anxiety when you're flying fear has and adaptive side, obviously it keeps you alive.

But if you think about it, your brain isn't designed, isn't programmed, isn't hardwired to be happy and content. It is hardwired to be alert. It is hardwired to keep you alive, to make S so it's got enough processing power to wing it. Basically. It doesn't really you. And it just that you go, you know, was this massive? That's

Speaker 1 (32m 59s): Helpful.

Speaker 2 (32m 59s): Yeah. There's a massive cult out there going, Gavin, you need to be, you need to optimistic. There's only one way of doing things, but you're a completely human being with all these various things going on your head, but certainly you haven't been hardwired to be and optimistic, hardwired to be alive. And I think we can get told all the time that we're a failure of all these things. In fact, all these things are just part of who we,

Speaker 1 (33m 27s): Yeah. Right. What are more of the list? That's, I'm play with that one for a bit. That good

Speaker 2 (33m 36s): Memory. So memory's a big one. We, a lot of us use GoPros. Don't we, the way of looking at way of looking, my memory is like GoPro. And I rewind a memory and it's like a video library in my head and I can go through it. And that's frankly, complete bullshit. You know, your memories are hugely fallible.

And you know, a of people when told by someone that something happened in their childhood will have a about memories are often in remembering our memories, our memories actually disintegrate a bit or evolve or change. So every, our favorite memories are often the ones Xerox. So many times are actually quite different from, we're more likely remember things that are identity, who we are, who we wanna be.

Speaker 1 (34m 46s): So our memory is more positive than they were.

Speaker 2 (34m 50s): Yeah. The reality you'll often not in every case. No, not at all, but you, you will, depending on what you believe yourself to be, what you want to be, you'll remember things in a certain light. So its perfectly, it's highly likely that if you make a stupid decision paragliding, you'll remember in such a way that, that I think we need to remember that when we land, did we just to what degree can we rely on our memories for this?

Have we walked it? We need to listen to other people's yeah. Of it as well. While also acknowledging that their memories are just as fallible.

Speaker 1 (35m 41s): But yeah, Matt, I just, I just had this totally front and center recently. I did a podcast. I, I needed to put something up and I've been working on this house so hard. I haven't been recording much lately. And so I went back to, I just told a story of my sailing days in 2009, sailed from Bali up to lane Cowie by myself. And it was just incredibly eventful, you know, really, really gnarly trip and really properly life threatening a few points.

But you know, I wrote a story about this as soon as I got there. So, you know, my, my, my, I was still pretty fresh, you know? So back in 2009, when I did it, I wrote a story about it. And I've been up through that, you know, the Java sea and the MOCA straits since then two more times. And they've been very eventful as well. One was after rescuing the boat from a drunk skipper a couple years ago and, and went up to Thailand up to Pouquette. And when I went, when I read the story, I mean, I basically read it for the podcast.

It was rather different than how I remember this. So probably when I wrote it, it was not as, as it actually happened, even though that was immediately after the trip, but certainly 12 years later, whatever it is. And 11 years later, you know, the, the, the major pieces were, had all happened. But you know, for example, at one point off of Singapore, I have to rescue these two guys. And the story I had always told was their boat was on fire. Yeah. And they were, they were, they were signaling with fire, which they were, and, and I went and I just thought, and I was so scrambled and so exhausted and so tired.

I went over and got, and I thought, are you kidding me? I have to rescue people in addition to what's already going on here. And, you know, but when I read the story, they were just having engine trouble, you know, but in my mind for the last 12 years, their boat was sinking and on fire, you know, that just, I totally made that up. That wasn't happening at all. Yeah. It's amazing. I mean, that's a big difference from an engine prob they, they were signaling with fire, you know, but their boat wasn't sink. I mean, not according to my story, but in my mind, still talking to you right now, their boat was sinking.

I saved these people from certain death and that's not at all what happened, their, they had engine trouble and they were, they were just going, Hey, can you give us some help? You know,

Speaker 2 (38m 2s): You know, as you, that is radically different,

Speaker 1 (38m 5s): You know, radically different. That's a huge difference, you know,

Speaker 2 (38m 9s): In a line, it, the whole situation in different light, it makes you more of a, you know, maybe that's it's interest. They were signaling with fire because that's probably enough of a, a lot of these memories are basically little networks of almost micro memories. So one bit of it will be fire. One bit of it will be one bit of it at me. And so little bits of those may actually expand to become, well, it's not just fire it's them on fire.

That's a better story. And then, yeah, maybe you told it like that once in the pub and that's enough for it to evolve.

Speaker 1 (38m 47s): And I mean, and fascinating, we had this grizzly bear thing with my dad when I was nine years old, we were up in glacier bay, Alaska, we on this boat, we go to, we go to shore or I went to shore first and there's so many fish going up the stream. You could walk across 'em and I'm so excited. I went back and, and I got a net. I thought I could just hang the net off the front of the dinghy, just catch salmon. And that didn't work. And so we went back in with a fishing pole and my dad literally, I mean, there was wasn't any bait on it. He just threw it in the river and hooked the fish.

You know, it was there, there, it was solid with fish. And we were so, you know, enraptured by this that we didn't see, there was a grizzly bear fishing just up the stream from us. And, and, you know, brown bears in that part of the world are the biggest in the world cuz they eat so well. And they're massive and I'm nine years old and I'm yanking on my dad's pants going grizzly, grizzly, grizzly, grizzly, grizzly. And he looks up and he doesn't have his glasses on and he goes, be dad or son, that's just a log. And then the, and the grizzly stands up, right? So this is all I remember all this I'm nine.

And then he just hucks the pole into the, into the river, cuz it's got this huge fish on it. And we run down the river and get in the, getting the dinghy. And we, when we get to the dinghy, the tide's gone out. So there's no water and there's lots of pushing and there's lots of panicking and there's lots of when the bear comes, I'll let him meet me. And you, you go back to the boat, you know, there's all this heroism, you know, but when he tells the story, the, the bear chases us, the bear didn't chase us. The bear was fishing. The bear had plenty to eat. He didn't care that we were even there. He just looked at us and I don't even remember him standing up, but you know, as the years go by, he tells this story all the time and it got more and more and more radical.

And I, now I wonder talking to you, does his brain really remember that the, that bear chased us or did that, you know, or he told the story once and it that's how he does. He really remember it that way or because I remember that the bear never chased it. We never saw the bear again. And I know, I, I think I know that that's a fact. I don't, I don't remember ever seeing that bear again. We ran down the river, got in the boat.

Speaker 2 (40m 50s): Yeah. I, I think we have to be aware that we probably go cool, bullshit. He's lying. You know, he's just telling it's all tailed, but you know what I think having done this, there's a lot of people really believing memories of things that never happened.

Speaker 1 (41m 9s): Yeah. You know, like the fire of guys, like, honestly that shocked me when I read the story, I went, wait, what? That doesn't sound like what happened. But obviously it is, I would've written it down that I'd save people from a burning ship if that's what had happened, you know, that sounds way better, but

Speaker 2 (41m 26s): It's not the way I'm write it down slightly lame where I'm just,

Speaker 1 (41m 34s): Yeah, no, that's not what I would've done. No, exactly. I mean, it just blows my mind, you know?

Speaker 2 (41m 40s): Yeah.

Speaker 1 (41m 41s): And then also there was a lot of crossover, you know, I did this trip twice more in the, in the ensuing years. And there were things from the other trips that, that in my mind had happened on the first, you know, it just, it all got it all got messed up. Yeah. Yeah. Pretty

Speaker 2 (41m 56s): Be like just putting a bit of a, of blood in a glass of water and then bleed the added that pessimistic people are slightly less vulnerable to these false memories. Interesting optimistic ones probably because they're more critical.

Speaker 1 (42m 22s): Yep.

Speaker 2 (42m 23s): But also when you're in a good mood, you're more likely to believe false memory. Its

Speaker 1 (42m 29s): Yeah. So mood really affects it.

Speaker 2 (42m 31s): Mood mood is all part of it as well. You know, and yeah. We about, you'd added a few bits to pref and one was like really on feelings before, you know, it's just harness, what's going on in your head and what's going on in your body as well. Are you hungry? If you're hungry, you can become, if you're you become, if you're you make decisions, you know, consequences, we have to be kind aware of them on the fly don't they?

Speaker 1 (43m 15s): Yeah, we really do. I, the, I like this idea of, of kind of pre-flight checks in that you have something that is a signal for, I'm not in it today. This isn't right. A buddy of mine has a three thing. You know, if, if I have messed up three things and these can be super minor, you know, your Velcro isn't stuck on. Right. You know, or you don't have your, you don't have your charger plugged in before you take off whatever. Just three things.

That's boom. That's okay, wait a minute. Something is wrong. Something's wrong with my head. And, and I'm not in the right frame of mind and maybe it's not in the problem is then is okay, is that enough to not fly? Or is that just a, a real check in, I'm gonna sit down for five minutes, 20 minutes, whatever. And you know, assess cuz you know, in the, in the, in the X outs, something like that, there have been so many times where, you know, I feel fine and I'm doing the air quotes for those of you listening.

Can't see Matt and I right now. But you know, and, and yet you're massively dehydrated or massively tired or massively hangry or whatever, all these things that are compounding things that, you know, you don't really often recognize until the race is over and you go, wow, that was a close call. That one, you know, that we had up there, the coal,

Speaker 2 (44m 42s): Well it's like, it is just like slices of Swiss cheese. Isn't it with the holes in them. And if you get enough holes lining up with one another, you go through the big gap and that's where you have the bad accent, isn't it? You know, that's kinda Swiss cheese model. So I think, you know, you don't wanna go, if I don't meet these exact conditions, I'm not gonna fly. That's not really gonna be viable. But I think the key thing is that you get there and you have, you give yourself the time to really think through, you know, not only that are the conditions, but head in the right space.

You real, the rather just my biggest problem is I tend to race out the car, throw my kit on the ground. Think I'm gonna miss something on clam, into my harness, few cursory checks and go, I know that's, that can be one of my vulnerabilities.

Speaker 1 (45m 46s): Yeah.

Speaker 2 (45m 47s): Just a bit of FOMO drives me to rush things and then off I go and then I'll learn that straps around the wrong way. You know, you know, it's gonna happen in advance. It's ridiculous, but you do it anyway. So you have to go when you just give yourself those 10 minutes to run through everything, you know, what's my telling as well.

Speaker 1 (46m 8s): How does confidence differ from optimism in your, in your models? Is that, is that one of the 29 things?

Speaker 2 (46m 17s): Well over overconfidence, there is an overconfidence bias. An overconfidence bias would mean that you are, you are likely to blame bad things on external factors and good things on your describe good things to yourself over some people was, was it's fault, went here and you need to check that don't you.

But I think also as you, you know, in a more colloquial way, as you, as your skills develop you before you become more confident to put yourself in more challenging situations, but you have to make sure that those situations all always roughly align with your level of confidence and ability, don't you.

Speaker 1 (47m 23s): Yeah. And that's, that's the whole flow concept isn't coming.

Speaker 2 (47m 26s): It's really good as well. I think, I think that's really useful. Do you use that flow? Do you think about,

Speaker 1 (47m 32s): Yeah, I, I, I think about it a lot and I, you know, my, most of my best things have happened in a very nice flow state yeah. That I haven't consciously, you know, enabled, you know, it's something I've studied and I work on and we talk a lot about on the podcast, but it's, you know, it definitely, there are, I mean, one of, one of many reasons, but I think the biggest reason the X outs is so addictive and, and things like that are so addictive is just the, the amount of flow you get, which of course has all the other side benefits, the endorphins and the dopamine and all the things cuz you're, you're basically in that state, even when it's bad for an extended period of time, it could, you know, just 12 days of being a lot, you know, having a lot of flow.

And one of the things that I'm maybe your book even talks about, but it's, you know, the something I've brought up a lot on the show is coming down from that is for me, has been brutal. I just awful, you know, and I have been fortunate. I don't suffer from any kind of clinical depression or at least that I know of that kind of thing, but boy, it's close. I mean the, the days after the race, you know, there's the high of the achievement and the whole thing. But you know, there, there was not much harder in my life than getting to Monaco in 2015 and the next day, you know, well now what do I do?

Yeah, this sucks. It's hot, it's concrete and it's over. And my whole, everything, the team breaks up and everybody goes home. And now what I mean, it's just, and you know, when you can see even Kreel, who's talked about it as well and the same thing, you know, what most of these guys are doing to cover and girls to cover for that is just the next race.

Speaker 2 (49m 21s): Yeah.

Speaker 1 (49m 21s): They're not really dealing with it. They're just getting back into training and going to the next one, you know, the next distraction.

Speaker 2 (49m 29s): Absolutely. Yeah. I mean, I, to be clear, you know, what would put you in a flow state would basically scare the complete shit outta me. So we're obviously very different flying standard, you know? And so everyone, someone might go into flow, I guess, you know, if they're a beginner doing a top to

Speaker 1 (49m 48s): You,

Speaker 2 (49m 50s): Everyone will find that you In a line between, you know, skills and the level of a task different. Right. But I totally really familiar with what you're talking about there, the come down afterwards, you know?

Speaker 1 (50m 6s): Yeah. I mean, it's, you know, I've never been an abuser either, but it's gotta be very similar to coming off, you know, a really good drug. Yeah. And, and the down is, is it's a very, it's very intense.

Speaker 2 (50m 19s): Yeah. Just even just an hour up a Cloudbase or something and all your memory, all your, all your worries. Just seem to evaporate when you're in that kinda state then. And then when you land, there's a little bit, you get some euphoria and then you can fail the real world to rushing in, to fill the void again

Speaker 1 (50m 37s): Very quickly. Yes. Very quickly. It all comes rushing back. I mean, I asked you about confidence too, because it's, it's an interesting one in that we really rely on it. You know, you wouldn't wanna, I wouldn't wanna go flying on a day where I wasn't feeling pretty confident. Yeah. You know, that would be a red flag. And I guess one of the other reasons these hike and flag things are so addictive and I'm sure comps are the same for a lot of people is that the, you know, you get in a level of confidence in the exces that is completely insane.

I mean, I can handle anything and I'm not bragging. Everybody's like that in that race, you get to this point where it doesn't matter what the weather throws at you, you got it. And you just, you do the craziest shit over and over and over and over again where, you know, in the nine months of hard training for it, I would never do fly in those conditions. Yeah. And that's why so good. Cuz he does, he trains in that stuff, but I don't have that move. You know, I don't have that confidence level when I'm just training. I can't get there, you know, and if it's just nasty and awful and over the back and cross and overdeveloping, I'm not gonna go fly.

That's just, that's taking your life into your hand. You're gonna, you could possibly die. Well, what's the difference. It's weird. But then you do it in the race over and over and over and over again. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (52m 2s): So when you do that in the race, so you actually making, do you think you're actually making decisions or are you just competing and that's it, do you just go

Speaker 1 (52m 11s): Into really good question? Yeah. A really good, I mean there have definitely been, you know, times where, okay, this is, I'm scared, you know, but, but boy, it's a, it's a, it's a, it's a head space that is really outrageous. And, and, and I'm sure very addictive and, and very powerful is that you just get in this mode where, you know, when Paul GAU landed in the river, I was right behind him and chatted with him.

It just didn't throw him off a bit. You know, you, you know, his, his eyes, you know, it was in him, it was in his face. It was in his thing, but just no big deal. Yeah. But when, but at any other time, I think it would've been pretty big deal. I think it would've gotten the car and gone home and sat down with his wife and gone. Hm. Yeah. Oh little too much. You know?

Speaker 2 (53m 4s): Yeah. No, that's, that's really interesting, isn't it? Yeah. Whether in the race, you just competitiveness you and the people around you really, you know, really important. They really, probably more than anything else, they influence who you are and how you think, you know, your friends, family, your peers, and it's quite difficult to out from that, you know, that other group it's quite hard to make a stand to say, I don't wanna do what everyone else is doing.

Speaker 1 (53m 51s): Yeah.

Speaker 2 (53m 51s): I think that's relevant for paragliding as well. Isn't it? Cause you know, you're saying in the race, you start behaving in a completely different way. You do stuff you wouldn't dream of doing. If you were just at home, similarly on, you might stand there and going, well, I don't like the look of that. It looks really gnarly, but everyone else is flying or you may be on launch going looks totally fine to me. I have flown the site before and it's like that. I do have the, I have looked the, and everyone else just seems to be doing that kind of car park talk, you

Speaker 1 (54m 25s): Know? Yeah, yeah, yeah. The whole crown suck game. Yeah. And I mean, and that's, and that's where the confidence comes into play that, you know, in, in a, on the good side, you know, you don't wanna be overconfident, but it's also, you know, when you show up and it's really crossed quite nasty and, and it's, you know, but when you, you can show up and go, yeah, I've trained for that. Yeah. I know I'm gonna pull, I'm not gonna get plucked and I know I'm gonna nail this and I'm gonna take a little bit more time with my gear and make sure I don't have anything screwed up, but you know what, where, where you can just, I got it.

You know, and you look like Kal launching and, and you know, you've done it a million times and that's the confidence you want versus I'm not sure if I got that move. Yeah. That's a, that's a really scary place to be. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (55m 10s): I guess this comes back to the kind of the, you know, that having, being a little bit pessimistic running through the potential problems, like getting plucked, like if I launch an cross, am I gonna end up in the tree or, you know, dragged like idiot that times and then I'm hole rotor practice.

You know, if you come up with a plan and go, let's be a bit pessimistic, where are my weak points? Wow. It's launching cross it's landing in small spaces and then you go, okay, well now being honest about that, I can start training for, to make those things better and relieve some anxiety and risk in the process. Cause we tend to be most afraid of the things we don't understand.

Speaker 1 (56m 14s): Sure.

Speaker 2 (56m 15s): You know?

Speaker 1 (56m 16s): Yeah. So memory, so memories are really foul. Overconfidence is, is can, can play a bad role,

Speaker 2 (56m 24s): What, or we're decisions

Speaker 1 (56m 30s): You intuition

Speaker 2 (56m 34s): Changing bias. We prioritize information that reinforces the, our preexisting beliefs.

Speaker 1 (56m 50s): Okay.

Speaker 2 (56m 51s): So be aware of that one, you know? Yeah. If everyone tells you that, no, you know, if you believe that or you really want to fly the east of a certain, you know, and someone tells you that it's okay, then you're probably more likely to you'll give advice more. Maybe telling that you shouldn't.

Speaker 1 (57m 25s): Yeah.

Speaker 2 (57m 26s): You believe it. You did it before. One guy said it's okay. Two said, but you know, I'm more likely to go with the one that reinforces my preexisting belief.

Speaker 1 (57m 38s): So that, that one, that one got me in a heap of trouble. My first big offshore passage, this was 1999. I was up in Vancouver getting the boat ready. And there was a guy on the docks that had done a whole bunch of offshore racing kit. I still remember his name. And he had done, he had helped us with wind generators and some solar panels and stuff. And everyone, I mean, everybody there, a lot of really seasoned sailors said, there's one way to go down the west coast of north America at this time of year, cuz it was October.

It was getting into the storm season and you know, storms come across pretty regularly from Japan that time of year. And they said, you go, you hug the coast and you go into port, you know, every, you know, between the storms and you know, there's, there's all, all the ports along the Oregon and in Washington and Northern California are all really bad sandbar. You know? So the, if the waves are big, they can get pretty hairy. And, and the charts are pretty unreliable cuz the, the, the, the there's so much swell and so much activity, they're moving the sandbar all over the place.

So you can't really rely on 'em, it's a really easy place to get hung up. And, but you call the coast guard if it's big and, and they come out and they guide you in, you know, so you're not really getting their, he they're not towing you in or something, but they that's what they're there for. And, and especially at that time of years, everybody said that, I mean, dozens of people, cuz we, this was our first big blue water passage. I was asking everybody, I didn't know what, I didn't know what we were doing. And this one guy kit said, not clear the straight to one, if you could go 200 miles off shore and just deal with whatever comes and just battle it out, you know?

And, and, and that's what we did, cuz that sounded so cool. Yeah. It was just, you know, and before, you know, when you go to sea for a long time, you get more and more and more humble all the time. You get more and more and more scared because the ocean is big and there's nothing you can do against it. But back then, I just like, ah, I'm gonna have a battle and that'll be great. And we got our asses kicked and it was just, and we had all the information we needed. Yeah. You know, all we needed to do was do what everybody said, but this one guy said, and that just sounded more sexy to me.

And I've paid the price for that one. Didn't I wanted to hear that. No, let's battle it out, you know, deal with whatever comes

Speaker 2 (59m 54s): And you know, we exactly, we do that. I think we're probably aware we do that with our politics or whatever. You know, I read the paper most naturally, most enthusiastically that reflects my political views. You know, of course, you know, I deliberate attempt to the other side as well, as much as possible. You knowing there it is. Isn't it's it's

Speaker 1 (1h 0m 41s): You

Speaker 2 (1h 0m 41s): Have, brain's a weird thing, isn't it?

Speaker 1 (1h 0m 47s): Yeah. I think

Speaker 2 (1h 0m 49s): We probably just, you know, we kinda, we fetishize intelligence, we fetishize the rational mind, you know, but actually there's a lot of other things at play and intelligence doesn't always lead you to make the right decisions. Rationale. Doesn't always, we constantly go into, you know, intuitions, you know, it's not, it's not wrong. It's not right. We just should be aware of it.

Speaker 1 (1h 1m 16s): Does IQ have anything to do with it?

Speaker 2 (1h 1m 19s): It comes in, it comes into play in, I obviously IQ intelligence helps us to make it can help us to make good decisions, but you know, it's not everything. And I think, you know, sometimes we can give it a bit to, there are plenty, for example, there are plenty, you can imagine there be plenty of people with a really high IQ who'd make absolutely blundering decisions, paragliding or doing anything else in guarantee.

Doesn't guarantee that you decision by any stretch,

Speaker 1 (1h 1m 58s): You guys approach this at all in a sense. So I've been thrown around this kind unscientific life. You know, when I, when I talk to people, but it seems to me, you know, and I've been on the planet now 50 years. It seems to me that leading a pretty good life. If you have all kinds of luck, massive amount of luck where you're born, who you're born to. And there's all these things that have nothing to do with our character or who we are or how good we are at navigating.

You know, this thing we we're trying to do called life, but it does seem like making good decisions. I would put up there in the really high priority part of it. Because, you know, when you look at folks who are really struggling, you can often trace that back to a bad decision. Not always, you know, there's, there's all kinds of suffering that has nothing to do with, with decision making. But it does seem like who you partner with having children where you live.

There's a lot of things where you work. There's a lot of things that decisions are a big part of coming back to happiness, joyfulness. However we wanna define it, you know, and there seem to be people who just constantly make bad decisions. Yeah. Versus more good than bad. I'm wondering if, if, if the approach at the book would, you know, did, did it help you understand that? Do, do you even agree with that?

Or is it way

Speaker 2 (1h 3m 39s): I would, I'd probably just, I'm slightly of a believer in the good versus bad decision decision, be a bad decision, actively make decisions, good or bad

Speaker 1 (1h 4m 5s): Make 'em.

Speaker 2 (1h 4m 6s): Yeah. You actually make them, you sit there and you decide I'm gonna make a decision and I'm gonna own it. It might be a bad one, but if you keep making decisions and you, you know, you think you are actively thinking about those decisions, then that, that for me is a positive thing rather than just sort of blundering through without considering it at all.

Speaker 1 (1h 4m 34s): I like that you said that there, I maybe just timing wise, but I I'm listening to this, this whole thing on time management that Sam Harris had on his, on his waking up app and the, the guy, I can't remember his name now, but he is a wonderful series. And that was his thing. He said, he said, you know, make the decision. That's one way to get a whole bunch of time back is just to not stew on stuff, because we're, we're given so many different, there's 30 kinds of mustard in the store these days.

You know, if you, if you worry about the mustards, you're never gonna make the, and you're gonna be disappointed with the decision you make,

Speaker 2 (1h 5m 19s): You know, your partner, do you move to the states rather than stay in the UK, whatever it is. Do I do the exs again? Yeah. I think you just need to, don't get, don't get into a situation where you are kind of flush down that metaphorical hanging valley in your own option is to end up in a tree, you know, but before you get to that point in life, go, I'm actively gonna make a decision. I'm gonna listen to my intuition, my gut feelings on it, but I'm also gonna engage my rational mind a bit on this big decision.

It's a biggie. Yeah. Then once you, the decision it's like, well, it could go bad or it could go good. But at least it's my decision. You know,

Speaker 1 (1h 6m 3s): I was just gonna ask how, how does,

Speaker 2 (1h 6m 5s): I'm not a leaf? Just, you know, getting flow in the wind. Yeah, exactly.

Speaker 1 (1h 6m 10s): So given that we're so fallible and we make such bad decisions all the time. How about getting help from other people who have all the same biases and all these, you know, is should, or is that just confusing?

Speaker 2 (1h 6m 25s): No, I think more to of like cer you know, solution here, I suppose the big one is be pay attention to what you're thinking. You know, be aware that your mind is fallible in all these extraordinary and listen and engage with other people who are different to you have different perspectives who exist outside your immediate bubble, you know, and, and I don't mean your family bubble.

I mean that, you know, that echo chamber that we can all fall into is like, listen to other people think broadly, engage, challenge yourself. Even if that I'm gonna a thriller. When I normally only read, you know, a history book, it can be that simple, you know, question your routines and habits. You know, we, we have, we fall into routines because again, we can't make decisions constantly all day, you know, do we really need by falling into a routine?

Like I eat me for breakfast every morning. I don't, I often don't have anything. Cause I'm lazy even to why don't think about what have for breakfast every morning. Cuz they think about something else. You making sense. But when you fall into bad habits, whether, you know, it's that paragliding or the rest of you habits as well by giving yourself little cues and rewards for the type of behavior that you want to see in yourself, you know, it's often about a reward.

Speaker 1 (1h 8m 29s): Yeah. Ask a tough one here. I think maybe I think a lot of people fly for the escape. Right. We kind of touched on this earlier a little bit that it's, it's one of the few things I've done in my adventure towards activity that you can't really do anything else. You know? I mean, when you're, when you're flying, you're flying, you're engaged even if you're just Ridge soaring, you know, it's pretty hard to think about other stuff. How does that tie into what you're talking about right now? And it's just kind of, to me, it's being mindful and being conscious of, you know, the, the, the holes in our thinking and what we're trying to accomplish and you know, just making decisions.

I don't know if that, those tie together very well. And, and on the one hand, you know, you're trying to be UN mindful because you're just Jesus. I gotta get away from this, whatever the stress at work that you know, and, and I'm reading from you that that could be quite dangerous, you know, you're, you're, you're, you're, you're escaping by doing something that is pretty risky.

Speaker 2 (1h 9m 33s): Yeah. Are you saying, are you, if you go, are you just lazy running away from life's problems by going flying? I think we all deserve a holiday when we're in a privileged enough situation to have one aren't we, you know, so sometimes we just need that, whatever it is, some people it'll be, it certainly wouldn't be flying. It'll be picking up a book or going fly fishing or whatever it is they can do, but for us, yeah.

I think it's okay that we take a break from our problems and go hell ourselves, you know, mindfully off a mountain. But I think all of these lessons as well can be applied to our life and to, you know, so beforehand, whether it's what are my bad habits when I fly, how sharp are my intuitions when I fly and how much should I listen to them? When I look back over my flights, did I just make up the reasoning for the decisions I made?

Can I trust my memory of them afterwards? Did I just do it? Because I feel I wanted to keep up with the James or because I'm too optimistic. If I was more pessimistic, would I think more about risk and how to mitigate it, you know? So you can kinda apply these things to your flying and probably be a bit safer and better at it while you do it. And it can still, it's obviously still fun. I hope.

Speaker 1 (1h 10m 58s): Yeah. Yeah. And that, that's a, that's a pretty good reason to just do it right there. Yeah. Just for the fun. So Matt, yeah. Fascinating. The, the book you all is is, Are you thinking clearly 29 reasons you aren't and what to do about it by Miriam Frankel and our guests, Matt Warren, check it out. It's out in hard cover and it's, this is fascinating, buddy. I, I really appreciate your time. And I know we've just touched the bear surfaces of this stuff. So looking forward to reading your book, it wasn't able to do it before we did this podcast, but can't wait to read it and can't wait to explore more of this stuff with you in the future.

But thanks very much. I appreciate your time.

Speaker 2 (1h 11m 38s): Always a pleasure, Gavin, lovely to see you and speak with you. No one else can see you.

Speaker 1 (1h 11m 44s): Congratulations on the book. As you know, I just went through that with the XC mag team. And it's a big, that's a, it's a big chore.

Speaker 2 (1h 11m 51s): Yeah. I mean it gets writing a book definitely gets in the way of flying.

Speaker 1 (1h 11m 55s): Yes, absolutely. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (1h 11m 57s): Anyone, anyone who wants to do more flying should do less writing of a book. That's less

Speaker 1 (1h 12m 5s): Before we sign off here. Is there anything you wanna say about where to get it? Where to find out more, that kind of thing. You, you sent me a website, but it looks like it's on Amazon. It looks like it's on

Speaker 2 (1h 12m 14s): One. Yeah. And it's, it's very probably, if you are wherever you are in the world, search it up on your own channels. The UK is the easiest place to buy it at the moment. And now it's spreading its way around the world. But Amazon us has it in Kindle form audiobook. And you can get it wherever you are from cook sellers as well.

Speaker 1 (1h 12m 36s): Matt, thank you very much. Appreciate it, man. And it's good to see you.

Speaker 2 (1h 12m 39s): Yeah. Good to see you too. Take care.

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