Would you rather be covered in fur or covered in scales?

Either you are a winner or you are a loser.

If I don't pass the test, I am stupid.

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These are all examples of either/or thinking.

Only Two Choices?

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Either or thinking is a logical fallacy that creates a false dilemma.

It presents only two choices, often two extremes.

Yet there are almost always more options.

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Which of the following is NOT an example of either-or thinking?

You are with us or against us

If you don't play you are a loser

She is partly right and partly wrong

America - love it or leave it!

Both/And Thinking

Change either/or to both/and to expand the possibilities!

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Both/and thinking opens your mind to additional questions and options.

What if you just forgot to study for the test?

What if you don't get married because you are not ready to settle down?

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The Perils Of Either/Or Thinking

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Oblivious self-interest

EITHER she gets her way OR I do.

No room for alternatives

EITHER you’re with me OR you’re against me.

Negative self-talk

If I don't LOSE 10 pounds, no one will LIKE me.

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Which characteristic can contribute to either/or thinking?






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Next time you think you only have two choices ask yourself:

Can you use and or both instead of either/or?

What if there are many options?

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This Byte has been authored by


Janet Hoffman

Learner and Designer