Confirmation bias

Life Skills Class: Confirmation Bias

How can understanding confirmation bias be useful?

Confirmation bias is the tendency to interpret new evidence as supportive of one’s existing beliefs or opinions.

Most of us do not go around trying to prove ourselves wrong.

It feels terrible to be proven wrong.

If feels great to be right.

We get to feel… smart, confirmed and in control.

Facts don’t necessarily change our brain’s confirmation bias.

The only thing that changes confirmation bias is something so glaring that we are willing to believe it and feel terrible about it, long enough to change our beliefs or opinions.

Most of the time our brains would rather be efficient and keep believing the same beliefs.

Even if those beliefs themselves feel terrible.

Confirmation bias is great when prior conclusions are terrific.

If we believe we’re awesome our brains find evidence for why we’re so awesome.

Confirmation bias is not great when prior conclusions are terrible.

If we believe we’re a failure, then our brains find evidence and even make-up stories about what we do or don’t do to prove why we’re a failure.

The process of changing our belief systems to support us in being more successful takes effort.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t feel good, but new focused thoughts over time can become our new belief systems.

Then confirmation bias works in our favor to confirm our new helpful beliefs.

Cleaning the animals cemetary

Weekend Trip to Cabin & Volunteering at Animals Sanctuary

During the first weekend in May, TFL had the opportunity to volunteer at an animal shelter called Best Friends Animal Sanctuary.

This is a place that has a no kill policy and is responsible for over a thousand animals, including horses, pigs, birds, rabbits, dogs and cats.

We got to help in the sanctuary’s animal graveyard, called Angels Rest, and even got to participate in the burial of a rooster that had passed on from old age.

It was an interesting ceremony.

  

Afterwards, we helped in the dog section of the sanctuary.

There at Dog Town, we weeded a few sections of the place where the dogs live and then we got to play with a couple of them.

The next day we got to clean the cat houses and then more weeding of Dog Town.

I really enjoyed the experience but a couple of the students weren’t so enthusiastic about it. Eh, maybe next time, right?

—Lee, TFL Student

  volunteering at animals shelter

This is a shout out to our students.

This past week I had the opportunity to go with Jason and the students to volunteer at Best Friends sanctuary in Kanab.

While there we were asked to weed and level off some of the dog runs.

Everyone was working hard in the hot sun and it wasn’t long before we called it and the care takers brought out some dogs for us to interact with.

It was then I noticed that Eric and Joseph weren’t with the group yet.

It turns out they were bound and determined to finish off all the weeds in their run, which they did!

Instead of stopping then and there they continued to work and give, which I thought was amazing.

And this was but one specific moment.

There are many times and moments like these with our students day in and day out that make our jobs as mentors worth it.

—Josh, TFL Mentor

While volunteering at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, the students stayed at Jason’s family cabin.

Some went mountain biking, many participated in target and skeet shooting, ziplining, swinging and of course everyone ate well.

We have a couple grill masters in our presence at TFL.

-Kristen, TFL Program Director

     

  

Enjoying Relationships

Relationships…One Of The Most Rewarding Parts Of Working In The Environment Here At TFL

One of the most rewarding parts of working in this environment is being able to build real, meaningful relationships with our students.

We are all “equals but with different responsibilities” (and age as they remind me often).

We get to interact like a real family to practice relationship skills.

That means butting heads a little, getting our feelings hurt and having real conflicts.

But those things are balanced by the growth, connection and enjoyment that comes from attachment in our relationships.

Success and appreciation from resolving conflicts and seeing the hard times through to the good times makes it all worth it.

I want to share some of my favorite times lately:

  • Dave cracking a really dry joke
  • Teasing Dylan so strait faced that it takes him a minute to smile.
  • Amber’s proud face as she presents a finished design.
  • Eric walking slowly by my door hoping I’ll call him in to chat.
  • Lee calling to say he got his first job ever.
  • Watching Dallin coming back from college tired and looking accomplished.
  • Seeing Carlos sitting with feedback and saying, “I want to get better at that”.
  • Joseph half-trying to act cold and indifferent as he supports another student who struggles.
  • Kyler sharing something on the web to make everyone laugh.

These show some of their best sides, their redeeming qualities.

We get to experience these along with the hard stuff.

We know that parents and grandparents are missing out on it, but only temporarily.

To our student’s families and sponsors I would say that these young adults are at TFL to become who they are meant to be so that they can come back to you better.

But while they are here they will be cherished as long as we have the privilege to do so.

-Jason, TFL Executive Director

New student Reid wants to gain tech certifications

Welcome To Reid Our New Student From Texas Looking To Gain Tech Certifications

Reid comes to us from Texas.

He also enjoys playing video games and working out in his spare time.

All of us here at TFL can tell a difference already in his body physique, he is taking it quite seriously.

Reid’s favorite food is Thai and if he had a super power, he would want to be able to fly.

Reid’s goals while at TFL is to gain all the certifications he can earn and to find a job to help support his lifestyle.

We have already taken note of how serious Reid is taking his coding classes and we look forward to see what he is capable of doing this summer in the intensive coding classes.

New student Reid

Amazing Recipes Like Chicken Tiki Masala

Amazing Recipes Are Finding Their Way Onto Our Student’s Dinner Plates…

As the mentor in charge of our student food and cooking committee I often get the opportunity to observe first hand the talent had by our students.

Each week they are responsible to prepare, shop for, and cook a meal for everyone and they do a wonderful job.

They find amazing recipes (not always the easiest ones either!) and they taste good to boot.

Whether it’s jalapeno poppers, beef enchiladas, or some Korean dish no one can properly pronounce, you know we won’t be going hungry any time soon here at TFL. 

-Josh, TFL Mentor

Good evening technicians, I’m pleased to announce dinner will ready, piping hot, in 30-40 minutes.
Tonight’s dish is a Mexican Torte.
Fluffy flour tortillas with layers of sumptuous ground turkey, onion, and green peppers, buried under a hearty serving of refried beans and a field of jalapeno buttons.
All this covered by a cozy blanket of tortillas, and crowned with an alabaster helm of pepper jack and queso fresco.
Also: I’m making guacamole!
-TFL Student, Grady
Hiking at Snow Canyon Lava Tubes

Hiking in Snow Canyon’s Lava Tubes With Flashlights

In a place called Snow Canyon, near St George, there is a really cool hike that takes you to some lava
tubes.

This is the hike we went on at some point in March.

The tubes are set into the ground(of course) and go pretty deep into the earth.

If you want to explore them, you do need a flashlight and a good sense of where you are because,

according to some people, they go in all sorts of directions.

I don’t really  if that is true, but it keeps me from hiking too deep into the caves formed by the tubes.

–Lee, TFL student