There's too much information to process, and we have limited attention to give, so we filter lots of things out.
Noise becomes signal.
The downside: we don’t see everything. Some of the information we filter out is actually useful and important..
Lack of meaning is confusing, and we have limited capacity to understand how things fit together, so we create stories to make sense of everything.
Signal becomes a story.
The downside: our search for meaning can conjure illusions. We sometimes imagine details that were filled in by our assumptions, and construct meaning and stories that aren’t really there.
We never have enough time, resources, or attention at our disposal to get everything that needs doing done, so we jump to conclusions with what we have and move ahead.
Stories become decisions.
The downside: quick decisions can be seriously flawed. Some of the quick reactions and decisions we jump to are unfair, self-serving, and counter-productive.
There's way too much to remember, given our limited capacity to keep track of things, so we save take-aways that seem the most important.
Decisions get recorded.
The downside: our memory reinforces errors. Some of the stuff we remember for later just makes all of the above systems more biased, and more damaging to our thought processes.