Your story doesn’t matter

​Stop whatever you’re doing and repeat these words.

Anecdote isn’t evidence.

So someone broke your heart that one time? It doesn’t mean you should avoid relationships with the fairer sex for the rest of your life.

So your friend lost some weight on a diet program? It doesn’t mean it’s gonna work for you.

So you read a book and it changed your life? It doesn’t mean it will have that impact on others.

Or take another issue that divides; higher education. More specifically, is it worth it?

I didn’t go to university and I’m doing just fine. I have friends that didn’t go that are doing well. But I also know people who did go to university and are killing it.

When you’re trying to justify or attack a position, it’s easy to recall stories of people you know that support what you’re trying to say. It’s also dumb. One story doesn’t signify anything. A single example is as flimsy as supporting material gets.

Whenever you’re considering your options, deciding between this and that, remember:

Anecdote isn’t evidence.


Originally published at www.phronetic.co.uk.