The Danger of Emotional Reasoning and the Importance of Product Personality



Jul 02, 20234 min read


The Danger of Emotional Reasoning and the Importance of Product Personality

In today's world, where emotions often dictate our actions and decisions, it is crucial to understand the dangers of emotional reasoning. Emotional reasoning refers to the tendency of individuals to use their emotions as proof or evidence, even when those emotions may not be based on the reality of the situation. This can lead to inaccurate perceptions of the world around us and can hinder our ability to make objective judgments.

The concept of emotional reasoning was first introduced by American psychiatrist Aaron Beck in the 1970s. Beck referred to the thought responses triggered by emotions as "automatic thinking," which can have a profound impact on our mental well-being. Even if you do not specifically struggle with your mental health, studies have shown that isolated automatic thoughts can result in negative thought cycles.

One of the key issues that arise from emotional reasoning is the negative impact it can have on our performance. When we allow our emotions to dictate our thoughts and actions, we may experience increased anxiety, which can hinder our ability to focus and perform at our best. This can create a self-fulfilling prophecy, where our negative thoughts become a reality, leading to a decline in our output.

So, what can we do to combat emotional reasoning and its detrimental effects?

  • 1. Practice Validity Testing: Validity testing is a crucial step in determining whether we are experiencing emotional reasoning. It involves actively seeking objective evidence to support or refute our beliefs or emotions. By questioning the validity of our emotional responses, we can gain a more accurate perspective on the situation at hand. This practice allows us to challenge our negative thoughts before they take hold and influence our actions.
  • 2. Write in a Journal: Journaling is a powerful tool that can help us pay attention to our thought patterns and emotions. By recording the difficult situations we face and the emotions or thoughts they provoke, we can gain insight into our natural thought processes. This self-reflection enables us to identify when emotional reasoning is affecting us and provides an opportunity to reject negative thoughts before they have a lasting impact.
  • 3. Discuss Your Emotions: Sometimes, we may struggle to accurately assess our own performance or situation due to anxiety or self-doubt. In such cases, talking to a trusted colleague or friend about our concerns can provide us with an objective view. By sharing our emotions and seeking external perspectives, we can gain valuable insights and challenge our emotional reasoning.

Now, let's shift our focus to another important aspect of product development - the personality of the product itself. When building social products, it is crucial to consider the personality that your customers associate with your app or service. One fundamental aspect of this personality is the notion of "fun." Your product must be perceived as fun to be successful.

The personality of a product is not defined by its physical location or features but rather by the leader of the product team. When developing a product, it is essential to consider what personality traits you want your product to embody. Take a moment to think about the words that come to mind when you envision your product's personality. Then, ask your teammates for their input. This exercise can help you align your team's vision and ensure that the personality of your product resonates with your target audience.

In conclusion, emotional reasoning can be a dangerous trap that leads us to rely on our emotions as proof, even when they may not accurately reflect reality. By practicing validity testing, journaling, and seeking external perspectives, we can combat the negative effects of emotional reasoning and make more objective judgments.

Additionally, when building a product, it is crucial to consider the personality that your customers associate with your app or service. Fun is a fundamental feeling that your product must evoke. By defining the personality of your product and aligning it with your target audience's expectations, you can create a more engaging and successful product.

Remember, emotional reasoning and product personality are two distinct concepts, but they both emphasize the importance of understanding human emotions and perceptions. By incorporating these insights into your decision-making processes, you can navigate the complex landscape of emotions and create products that resonate with your audience.


  1. "The danger of emotional reasoning and using our emotions as proof", (Glasp)
  2. "What Is The Personality of Your Product?", (Glasp)

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