Mental traps

This article is a brief summary of the book " Andre Kukla: Mental Traps "
Mental traps - this is the so-called rake, which we step on again and again. Of course, every normal person wants this “unsuccessful step” in his activity to be the last and no longer repeated.

The "rake" or mental traps can be easily dealt with if they lie in front of you in all its glory, without any disguise. But this happens far from always, and often we do not see and do not understand what our mistakes are. The purpose of this article is to introduce you to the most “popular” mental traps that Andre Doll described in his book.

Mental traps

1. Perseverance

The first of mental traps. Its essence lies in the fact that we continue the business, which is obviously doomed to failure or does not give us former pleasure. The most typical example, we watch the tedious movie, only because of obstinacy and the fact that we were taught from childhood to finish what we started. In the end, it's just a waste of your time and a spoiled mood.

2. Amplification

This is a trap and we fall into it when we put more effort into achieving the goal than necessary. The so-called endless pursuit of excellence or perfectionism. Here it is also worth recalling the notorious “Pareto principle”, the essence of which is that 20% of the work brings 80% of the result and vice versa: 80% of the work brings the 20% result.

3. Commit

When fixing, our progress towards the goal is blocked. We cannot start a business until we get a call, permission, inspiration, etc.

4. Reverse

We lost, time is up. But if at this stage we are still worried about the same problem, then we are trapped in reversion.
Reversion is the temporary opposite of fixation. During fixation, we work furiously to accelerate the onset of a frozen future. In reversion, we strive to change the irreversible past. Here you only need to come to terms and take it for granted.

5. Advance

The trap we fall into starting too early. We recycle when the same result can be achieved with greater ease a little later. A typical example is a study session, when a student, in a couple of weeks of preparation, performs everything necessary according to the curriculum, which was extended for the whole semester.

6. Resistance

Resistance is the disease "a little bit more." Reluctance to change the course of action, under the influence of external circumstances (a doorbell, when watching a movie or an alarm clock and we don’t feel like getting up, but still have to, so there’s no point in delaying it).

7. Tightening

We definitely decided on some matter, but it is difficult for us to start it. Postponing until later, inventing minor matters in order to postpone the performance of unpleasant duties.

8. Separation

Attention is indivisible in principle. Work means work, rest means rest. When we think about work on vacation and when we think about rest at work, we will not be able to perform any of these in a quality manner.

9. Acceleration

Acceleration is a trap that we fall into when we do something with more than necessary speed. (acceleration is a mirror image of pulling). As they say, life will not be enough to complete everything, so you should not be killed on this score. Infinity minus one is also infinity, so it makes no sense to rush. Acceleration will only root the habit of fuss.

10. Regulation

When our thought marks the fact that the door is open, we think descriptively. When we decide that the door needs to be closed, we think prescriptively. Regulation is the trap of useless prescriptions. We fall into the trap of regulation when we prescribe some kind of behavior in a situation where the impulse would be the best conductor.

11. Formulation

The trap of unceasingly speaking your thoughts about what seems to us true.
The most obvious damage caused by the formulation is that it leads to separation. Whenever we describe or evaluate an event or experience before they are over, we do two things at the same time. On the one hand, we admire the sunset, on the other, we talk or think about it. Separation destroys pleasure. In fact, we cannot really admire the sunset and at the same time evaluate it, because when doing the assessment, we are distracted from sensory experience. As soon as we say, “Ah, how wonderful it is, isn't it?” the miracle disappears.


We constantly rely on prescriptions because we do not believe in the ability of an impulse.
The habit of constantly “controlling the situation” —and each situation — forces us to work without rest, without giving any benefits. In other words, she leads us into a trap and whose name is stress.