Welcome to a new week. This week we're going to start to get into this idea of the frameworks that our brains use to really kind of make sense of the world all right? So I'm going to introduce mental models, which we're going to talk about today, schemas as well. Then we'll talk about cognitive biases, and then also worldview, those will be in the following lessons. But let's talk about mental models and schema. All of these are going to be very closely related. You're going to see as we go through the next few lessons, you're going to see a lot of overlap between mental model schema, cognitive biases and worldview. They all kind of play off each other again to help us interpret the world the way that we do very unique to each of us. There are some similarities because we're all human beings, but much of this is unique to some things that we'll talk about in world view. So, let's start with mental models. So, mental models again, this is an explanation of someone's thought processes about how something works in the real world, right? Whatever it is, you can think of so many things in the world that usually when we're young, we get a mental model of what that is. Maybe it's a dog or a cat or a car, these are mental models. We see them when we're young and we understand what they are and then as we go out throughout life, we understand whenever we see a car, okay, that's a car, I get it, a dog, same thing. Imagine if you were transported into an alien world and they had all these things that were in that world that you'd never seen before. That you never had a mental model for you would be working really hard to understand what that is. Maybe something is walking around, it kind of looks like a dog but it really is not a dog and maybe it's kind of like a horse but it's not a horse. And so your brain is going to try to use the mental models, it has to interpret the world. They may be faulty and we'll talk about that a little bit later but, that's what it's going to do. And if you have no mental models, you're really going to be working hard to interpret your world. But here's the deal, once we get those mental models in place, they become kind of an easier way more efficient way to process the world. Closely related to mental models is something called schema. And I'm going to say before I dive into what is schema and what is the difference between schema and mental models, I would say that don't get too wrapped up in this. If you are studying cognitive psychology, you're certainly going to want to be able to pick these apart. But for this course and getting to know yourself because that's what we're doing here. The subtle differences between mental models and schema are probably beyond what we need to do. But I like to introduce this stuff because if you're like me, I'm curious, I like to know and so I'm going to present this as well. But again, if you are that person that says what Ron they seem like almost the same thing. They are almost the same thing, but let's take a look. A schema is a cognitive framework for or concept that helps organize and interpret information. Again, much like a mental model, notice that they in this definition, they talk about the idea of taking shortcuts, right? And why does our brain want to take shortcuts? Think about that and we'll touch on that as we move forward. But there's a lot of things going on and those shortcuts help. So what's the difference between a schema and a mental model? This is what I would offer, the fundamental basis for the construction of mental models is schema. All right, so you can kind of look at schema as being at the foundation and then mental models kind of come out of that. Mental models can be seen as tools of accommodation according to this definition. And they would say that in contrast to schema, as mental models are not permanent. So, again, those mental models, we can tweak those as we get new information right? And so that's important. I'll circle back to that in a little bit here. So why do we have these, I mean, the idea is these are shortcuts. These help us, if you go do maybe a google search and say, how many thoughts do we have in a day? Quite honestly, it's all across the board because it's really hard to say what is the thought? How does it rise to consciousness, how do we measure that? So, it's a very complex thing to measure. But I've seen figures from anywhere from 7000 thoughts in a day to 20 or 30,000 thoughts in a day. How is it possible that we could have 20 or 30,000 thoughts in the day? I don't know about you, but I have no idea what I'm thinking about 20 or 30,000 times in a day. All right, so, here's the deal, most of those thoughts never rise from our subconscious level. So, they're just kind of working in the background. Think of a supercomputer working in the background and a lot of things are being processed that we never become conscious of throughout the day. All right, so, mental models help us take those shortcuts. Mental models and schema help us take those shortcuts. If I had to raise all those 30,000 thoughts or whatever it is to consciousness that would make my brain melt. Imagine walking across the room, let's say I'm walking across the room, do I have to think about how to move my muscles, my ligaments, my joints every little minute thing that it takes to walk across the room. Of course not, I learned that when I was just a little kid, right? And that is a mental model that I have, I know how to do that and so I don't have to think about it with conscious thought. So the more things that our brain can keep in the subconscious the better. So mental models help us do that, and so why what is the point? As I said I think my brain would melt, I don't know about yours, but that's a lot of things to be doing in a day. And so I want to focus on the things that I really need to be conscious about, the things that are important. And so the mental models can help us do that. All right, so it makes us more efficient, makes us faster. Now again sometimes this leads to faulty decision making and jumping to conclusions so that sort of thing. So mental models can get us in trouble, we'll talk more about that when we talk about cognitive biases all right? But here's the deal this thing here, especially the prefrontal cortex is a calorie hog. All right, the brain is roughly 2 to £3, and it uses about 1/5 of the calories in our body. All right, so as we go through the day, that little chunk, that little chunk of flesh between your ears is using a lot of calories. All right, especially when we're thinking about again, when we're rising things of consciousness. For you engineers out there, think about doing a calculus test, a very hard calculus test and how exhausted you are when you get done with that. That is because we're learning a new thing that's very complex, we don't have any mental models for it yet. And so it's a lot of hard work and you may walk out of an hour or an hour and a half long exam and be exhausted because that brain was working so hard and using so many calories to figure that all out. Later, when you learn how to do all that, it becomes easy, right? You're not going to have that same calorie expenditure, you think about riding a bike. How hard was it the first time you to think about every little thing you did later, you don't even think about it, right? Same thing with driving a car. Imagine, remember when you were first learning to drive a car and how hard that was, go to a driver's head maybe a lesson and you'd be exhausted at the end. Now we drive and we drive for an hour or two hours or four hours and don't even think about it. So that's the idea behind mental models, the brain is going to use a lot of calories, It's going to use a lot of energy and so anything we can do to reduce that energy. And again remember we're talking about this idea that energy is the most important thing that we covered in a previous lesson. So if we can use that energy the right way, we're going to be in better shape all right? So that's why we have mental models and schema. Let me leave you with this, I've done a lot of research in the idea of survival. We'll learn the survival after like plane crashes, those sort of things. It's fascinating to me to understand how people work in a crisis situation where lives are on the line. So, I study this and one of the things that comes out of that and hang with me here because you're going to say, hey Ron it's a leadership class, not a survival class all right? There's some lessons here, I've seen and read reports of people that have died lost in the woods, essentially just walking in circles and this is a real thing. This is not just something you you hear as story, people very routinely will walk in circles when they're lost all right, because they have a faulty mental model. All right, they have a mental model that they're desperately clinging to, they won't let go of it and that mental model actually kills them. All right, and so I would offer this to you is understand when you might have a faulty mental model all right? Without good self awareness, we will not even see it. You'll just walk around until you die, all right? But with good self awareness, we'll see when we have a faulty mental model and then check your ego at the door, be flexible and adaptable to change that mental model to fit the new situation. That is not only important in a survival situation, but also in a business context and also in your individual relationships. So many of us are rigid with our mental models and we don't want to look at maybe a new way of seeing things. To do that, we have to discard beliefs that we've maybe had for our lifetime. This is not an easy thing, I'm not here to say it is, but don't let those faulty mental models get you in trouble. I'll see you in the next video.