YANSS 195 – Tools for creating positive habits, making better decisions, and understanding your thoughts, feelings, emotions, and self

In this episode, mathematician Spencer Greenberg takes us through a tour of ClearerThinking.org, the website and company he created to answer the question, “Why do people make choices that they later come to regret?”

From the ClearerThinking.org Mission Statement:

“Fields like psychology, neuroscience, and economics have produced fascinating insights into this question in the last few decades through the scientific study of decision-making, habit formation, motivation, and cognitive biases.

Shortcomings of the human mind in these areas inflict significant costs on just about every individual, organization, and government. For example, cognitive biases – ingrained thought patterns that systematically distort our understanding of the world – harm our ability to make good, rational decisions about the things we care about.

Meanwhile, positive habits are vital for sustained progress towards long-term goals, but they can be difficult to form, and the best practices for permanently instilling them remain a matter of guesswork for most people.

Scientists have developed effective tactics for countering many of the problems identified by this research, but very few of us have integrated these insights and techniques into our personal and professional lives in a consistent way.

Our work is focused on closing this “last mile problem” by using high-quality research and evidence to build fun, interactive tools that help you understand yourself more deeply, form new positive habits, and make better decisions.”

Some Tests You Can Take:

Spencer Greenberg

Spencer Greenberg is a mathematician who specializes in machine learning. In 2005, at the age of 22, he co-founded a quantitative money management firm, Rebellion Research, which applies machine learning to long term investing. Spencer also co-founded AskAMathematician.com, a mathematics question and answer site with about 50,000 monthly page views.

Spencer has lectured extensively on a wide range of subjects, including artificial intelligence, investing, entrepreneurship, rationality, psychology, and mathematics. He has spoken at Columbia Business School, the Stern School of Business, and the Trinity School, as well as conferences such as TradeTech, QuantInvest, Skepticon, Strata Ignite, TEDxBlackRockCity, and Predictive Analytics World. Spencer has appeared on CNBC, Bloomberg TV, Canada’s BNN and Hong Kong’s Phoenix television, and has been interviewed by the Wall Street Journal, the New York Post, and Germany’s GEO magazine.


Support the show directly by becoming a patron! Get episodes one-day-early and ad-free. Head over to the YANSS Patreon Page for more details.

Links and Sources

Download – iTunes – Stitcher – RSS – Spotify – Patreon –  SoundcloudOmny

Previous Episodes

Clearer Thinking Website

Clearer Thinking Podcast

Spencer Greenberg’s Website