‘They have already taken my money. Should I give them my time, too?’

The psychologist Amos Tversky was known to do exactly what he wished to and little else.

If he went to a movie with his family and didn’t like it in the first 20 minutes, he would promptly drive back home and do whatever he liked instead. After the movie was over, he would drive over to pick up his wife and kids.

When asked about this peculiar habit, Tversky replied, ‘They have taken my money. Should I give them my time, too?’

Tversky’s behaviour seems peculiar because we are prone to sunk costs. Once we have invested in a movie ticket, we feel like we have to tolerate the movie no matter how bad it is. But that is only leading us to amplify our losses.

When something we pay for doesn’t deliver what we expected, it has already taken our money. Why give it our time or our peace of mind as well?

Inspiration: The Undoing Project

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