The term fallacies refers to those statements or ideas that appear to be true, but which are not. Sometimes they are personal constructions, but on other occasions they become arguments that are collectively invoked and that everyone takes as true. The fallacies are not easy to identify, because they are not absurd or trivial thoughts, but they follow a logic even if they are not true.
A good example of a fallacy is when prejudice is triggered. Suppose a person was caught telling a lie. Then, when she says something else, someone won’t believe her because she knows her lying nature. From a particular situation, therefore, a general conclusion is extrapolated and applied indiscriminately. Even if the fact that happened is true, the reasoning we arrive at is false.
Fallacies are not only activated in relation to other people, they are also built for themselves. These erroneous reasoning end up ruining our well-being and causing misunderstandings. There are three fallacies that have become very common and that represent an obstacle to personal well-being. Below we will talk about it in detail.
There are two major fallacies related to controlling situations and other people. The first could be called “fallacies of impotence”. It refers to all those particular examples that we elaborate to try to support the hypothesis that we cannot do anything in the face of a situation, when this hypothesis is not certain.
This leads us to justify the total lack of action on our part with the assumption that we have no control over anything. This fallacy occurs in all circumstances where we say “I can’t” and attribute this helplessness to something external to us. For example: “I could not answer, otherwise that person would have become furious.”
The other control fallacy is just the opposite: when we believe that everything and everyone depends on us. May everything and everyone be our responsibility. In this case, we try not to miss any details, to get involved in anything, to have everything under control. And, of course, since we can’t make it, then we blame ourselves.
Fallacies of justice
“Justice” is one of the most inaccurate concepts that exist. What is right and what is not depends on various cultures and people. Situations in which “universal justice” could be applied are very rare. There are always considerations that force us to clarify the concept.
However, there are people who reserve the right to define what is right and what is not. The problem is that they take into account only their perspective, their needs, their fears and desires, but not those of others or of the people in their environment. Because of this, they constantly repeat that everything that happens to them is unfair.
These people think that everyone should have a scale to accurately measure what they deserve and should have it accordingly. This is a fantasy that only ends up haunting them because no one spends all their time calculating rewards and punishments for others. In the world, not all right behavior is rewarded, nor is bad behavior punished.
Fallacies of change
People who trigger change fallacies do this kind of reasoning: everything has to change in order for them to be okay. If they are not comfortable at work, the working conditions should change. If they have no money, then the economic system should change. If their social relationships aren’t the best, then others should change and pay more attention to them, be more understanding or, in any case, different.
They never think that perhaps it is they who have to change, that perhaps it is their inability to adapt that makes work an uninviting space and difficult to bear; that it is the way they manage their finances that leads them to run out of money; that if they were more affable, nice and understanding, maybe they could get the same treatment from others.
An Indian proverb says: “it is easier to protect your feet with sandals than to cover the whole earth with carpets”. However, for people who are victims of this kind of fallacy, the exact opposite happens: it is the world that has to adapt to them and not vice versa.