Unconscious bias is something we may have done, or continue to do, unless of course we understand what it is and choose to correct it.
It happens when the brain makes incredibly quick judgments and assessments of situations and people without us consciously thinking about it. Those biases are influenced by our upbringing, cultural environment and personal experiences. Unfortunately, unconscious bias if left will affect all areas of our life.
We’d like to think we’re completely open-minded about things, but I believe and research now shows that our values and beliefs, which come from culture, our family and experiences, will influence how we view and evaluate other people, ourselves and our lives.
It is true that these assumptions, interpretations, thought patterns and unconscious bias we have built up over time, help us to process information efficiently and quickly, but that’s probably not the point. From a survival point of view of course, it’s positive and in some cases necessary, particularly if we’re dealing with things like abuse.
Unconscious bias in a way protects us and helps us make decisions we wouldn’t come to make, but in business can cost us lost opportunities and is costly, particularly when we fail to see situations objectively. Unconscious bias can hold us back from reaching our true potential, because we’re too quick to form opinions about ourselves negatively.
Assumptions are internal. They come from within us, but before any external changes can be made, those assumptions need to be understood. To change it, we must unlearn our current beliefs and relearn new ones.
Ultimately, we need to be our own advocate and start to create new unlimited thoughts, which allow us to take away our prejudices.