AI Tooling for Psychological Retrospectives

How long before we have tools for helping us to know more about our unconscious self and give us insight into ourselves either in real-time or during a daily personal retrospective?

What don’t I know that I didn’t know?

Know Thyself

I’ve been learning a lot about cognitive biases recently. There is a lot of information to assimilate and then creating action around that information requires new habit-forming. And I need to do all that while still doing everything else in my life? Sheesh. I could do with some help here.

I want applications, tools, sensors that can tell me:

  • What cognitive biases did I fall into today?
  • Was my language showing bias (of any kind) at any point?
  • Which conversations triggered me, when and why?
  • How did I handle being triggered?
  • When, by whom, and how was I being manipulated today?
  • How were others reacting to me during conversations and meetings?
  • What was the balance of who spoke in the meetings I was in?
  • What was the tone of the meeting and each individual?
  • Analyze my language pattern to tell me if and how I was using persuasion and how effective or inappropriate it was.

Moral and Practical Implications

We are told that leaders use persuasion over coercion. But when does persuasion become a type of coercion? If I get so good at understanding powerful language and reading people, am I not moving into coercion? E.g. I start using framing on purpose to elicit the responses I want.

If the tech is just listening and watching me I can see no issues. But, if it starts to listen to and watch others as well, then we hit privacy issues and the need for permission.

If the tech is keeping actual conversations in storage and not just meta-information, then the content of those conversations and even just who they were with becomes an issue of security that would need thinking about.

Apparently, there are visual and linguistic cues that reveal attraction or even arousal e.g. pupil dilation. Arousal and attraction are also mental (and physical) states. A tool could tell me who showed attraction to me and vice versa. But should it? Knowing that stuff could get you into trouble — were you to act on it.


Are we ready to be exposed to our unconscious self? Will we be facing our shadow? Is that a good thing?

Hmm. There are some serious moral and ethical questions that need to be answered before this tech should be created. It certainly is an interesting new world that our tech is opening up to us.

Image attribution: See page for author, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Software Crafter, Disruptor, Pioneer and Intrapreneuer. On a mission to unleash the human spirit in the workplace. Founder of FAST Agile.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store