In spite of the randomness of terrorist attacks, natural disasters, fire emergencies, or other sudden outbreaks of danger, there are common traits among those who survive these emergencies and those who do not. In most crises, only ten percent will take affirmative steps to assure their survival. When conducting security training, it is critical to educate about the deadly psychological phenomenon called normalcy bias, which is the common human phenomenon of disbelieving one’s situation when faced with grave and imminent danger.
Normalcy bias is a cognitive shortcut that helps our brain process normal stimuli; in an emergency it can be harmful. All people use past experiences to guide their understanding of the present and to anticipate the future; this bias toward “the normal” causes people to underestimate the possibility of crisis and be slow to grasp one when it occurs. This thought process prevents the mind from accepting and adapting to the cataclysmic paradigm shift brought on by an attack or disaster.
Want to learn more? Click here to request our white paper: We Will Survive or to get more information about Insite's security training program that teaches employees and families how to overcome normalcy bias and effectively act in a full range of crisis situations.