In the first of a multi-part topic, Dr. Steve Wood and Dr. Bill Kanasky, Jr. discuss irrational thinking patterns. Steve and Bill describe how the brain makes connections that may or may not be connected in reality and how that type of irrational thinking can impact witness performance, requiring cognitive reframing to correct these irrational thinking patterns. Bill and Steve have identified 13 cognitive distortions that are crippling your witnesses and cover four of these distortions in this episode:
1) Polarized thinking - this type of thinking occurs when your witness feels they have to be perfect as a witness;
2) Mental filtering - when a witness magnifies negative aspects of the case and ignores or discounts positive facts;
3) Overgeneralization - this happens when your witness focuses on a single negative event from the past and makes an extreme conclusion that all other events in the future will be negative;
4) Jumping to conclusions - your witness is convinced that there is no chance at obtaining a favorable trial verdict or settlement.