Thin-Slicing Thin-slicing is the process by which our unconscious minds find patterns in situations based on thin slices of experience.
Gottman took a lot of time to draw conclusions from his research, but nevertheless, he drew impressive conclusions about the fate of a marriage from a very small amount of evidence fifteen minutes of conversation. Sometimes, we make superficial snap judgments. Here, the unconscious mind has the advantage over the conscious one.
As such, experience and expertise are preconditions to effective thin-slicing. Prime yourself and change your experiences: Once you understand what your unconscious biases are, seek out images and stories that oppose these biases.
But stress, time pressures, and biases can interrupt the usually efficient and deep process of thin-slicing, leaving us with snap judgments made on irrelevant surface details.
During the videotaping, both Bill and Susan were hooked up to machines that measured their perspiration and heart rate. Ekman claims that the face is a rich source of what is going on inside our mind and although many facial expressions can be made voluntarily, our faces are also dictated by an involuntary system that automatically expresses our emotions.