Comfort Zone Bias



Comfort Zone Bias

Psychologists have found that when people make important decisions, they often choose to stay in their "comfort zones"; that is, they prefer remaining in comfortable, familiar situations, rather than entering into new, unfamiliar ones. This tendency is often referred to as the comfort zone bias. When people are reasonably content, they often decide not to pursue a new opportunity, even if it attracts them and offers more advantages. Psychologists believe that the comfort zone bias exists not only because we have a natural preference for what we already know, but also because we want to avoid taking risks.

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    <-NARRATOR:-> Now listen to part of a lecture in a psychology class.
    <-MALE PROFESSOR:-> Ok.So this comes up a lot when people make career decisions.
    A friend of mine from college always wanted to be a film reviewer.
    He was a film major and he loved movies.
    Most of all, he loved to write about movies.
    So when he graduated, he looked for a job as a film reviewer for a newspaper, because as a film reviewer, he'd get to see films for free and would be paid to write about them.
    That's what he loved.
    But he couldn't find a job as a film reviewer.
    So he took a position as a news reporter instead.
    For a newspaper, investigating stories, writing about events-what news reporters do.
    Now, at first, my friend wasn't sure he'd be any good at this.
    He'd never been a news reporter before.
    But eventually he adjusted and gained confidents and he got used to the job.
    And he realized he was actually a pretty good reporter.
    Anyway, here is the thing.
    After a few years, the film reviewer of the newspaper where he worked quit and my friend was offered her job.
    This was his dream, right?
    His opportunity to be a film reviewer had finally come and the new job would actually pay more, too.
    But did he take the job?
    Nope, he turned it down.
    He told me he'd gotten used to being a reporter.
    And the just didn't want to try something else.
    It seems like too big of a change, since, well, there was a chance that the new job might not work out.


Using the example from the lecture, explain the comfort zone bias.


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