Illogical Reasoning: Meaning, Types & Solution

Have you been called unreasonable or do you sometimes feel a disconnect in the way you see things from others? Illogical reasoning might be a reason for this disconnect and entails that you have a flawed thought process. 

Understanding how to identify these flaws in your reasoning will help you become a more logical thinker. 

This article explores what illogical reasoning is, the types of illogical reasoning, and how to control this flawed reasoning. 

What is illogical reasoning? 

Illogical reasoning entails logic that is either flawed or unreasonable, lacking in the proper relationship of reason

The majority of illogical reasoning involves flawed reasoning or is a result of it. The absence of sound judgment or rational or sensible thought processes can also be used to define illogical reasoning.


Illogical reasoning is thinking based on fallacious logical premises. Usually, examples from a field completely unrelated to the topic at hand might be used to illustrate the reasoning problem.

It can also result from the use of pretended patterns and concepts that are easily refuted and that the person doing the reasoning should be aware are untrue.

Types of illogical reasoning

1. Fairness fallacy

This mental error entails evaluating the fairness of every scenario and behavior. When you discover that other people don’t think the incident was equally fair, you get resentful.

To put it another way, you become offended when other people don’t agree with your opinion of what is and isn’t fair.

Due to your desire for everything to be “fair” by your standards, this illogical thinking will drive you to clash with some individuals and circumstances.

However, fairness isn’t always absolute and frequently has self-serving motives.

2. Jumping to conclusions

Jumping to conclusions is interpreting an incident or circumstance negatively without providing any supporting data. You then respond to your presumption. 

For instance, when you phone your partner after finding them online, they don’t answer. You assume they were lying without even trying to find out why they didn’t answer your calls.

“Mind-reading” or jumping to conclusions is frequently a reaction to an ongoing worry or notion in your head.

3. Filtering

By mentally filtering a situation, one removes all of its favorable aspects and focuses only on its flaws.

You only pay attention to the negatives, even when there are more positive features of a situation or person than negative ones.

4. Polarization or all-or-nothing thinking

Thinking in an “all-or-nothing” manner is referred to as polarized thinking. This kind of cognitive distortion leads you when you think in terms of black or white, with no grey areas.

5. Personalization

Personalization makes you think you’re in charge of things that, in truth, are either entirely or partially outside your control.

This illogical reasoning frequently causes you to feel guilty or to place blame without taking into account all of the pertinent circumstances.

6. Overgeneralization

When anything is overgeneralized, it transforms a single unfortunate incident into a never-ending cycle of failure and defeat.

Words like “always,” “never,” “everything,” and “nothing” are frequently used in your stream of thought when you overgeneralize.

7. Never being wrong

When it overrides all other considerations, such as facts and other people’s feelings, this desire develops into a mental distortion.

Your own opinions are perceived as reality in this illogical mindset. To demonstrate that you are correct, you will go to tremendous lengths.

8. Discounting the positive

Mental filtering is akin to discounting positives. The fundamental distinction is that, when you do consider favorable features, you disregard them as being unimportant.

For example, you may assume that if you perform well in a job interview, it’s because the potential employer is unaware of your deficiencies.

What is an example of illogical reasoning?

When a yacht buyer can only afford $500,000, it would be absurd to choose to purchase a $1,000,000 yacht just because the pricing has recently dropped.

The straw man argument is one of the most prevalent instances of illogical reasoning. It frequently involves either separating out a specific point of an argument and then presenting it as a stand-alone or distinct position

It also involves using a very early version of a theory to support a claim while ignoring the fully developed theory itself.

What is the difference between logical and illogical reasoning? 

Thinkers who use logic are composed and methodical. Illogical thinkers become overly enthusiastic and idealistic with their concepts.

The distinction between illogical and logical adjectives is that the former is opposed to logic; it is devoid of common sense or sound thinking, whilst the latter is in accordance with the rules of logic.

By utilizing the information at hand to arrive at a conclusion, logic involves moving from one position to another. This information frequently fits into pre-existing patterns rather than attempting to create new ones. 

You also do not accept everything that is presented to you because you think independently and critically. To determine whether something is true, you must evaluate the underlying reasoning.

In contrast, thinking that comes to a conclusion without examining the grounds for the idea is illogical thinking.

When thinking without questioning or contemplation, practically all decisions and judgments are made on the basis of presumptions.

What are the disadvantages of illogical reasoning? 

Lack of a critical mindset or illogical reasoning has the drawback of making you accept other people’s arguments without question. Additionally, you believe TV advertisements or political propaganda.

You might also not question the authenticity of news reports and information found in publications like newspapers, books, and the internet without considering the motivations behind the message.

How do you control or stop illogical reasoning? 

Once you become aware of them, the majority of illogical thought habits are reversible. This also holds true for pessimistic thinking.

Even if you might not be able to alter the course of events, you can try to correct your illogical thinking.

The following tips may be helpful in fixing your illogical reasonings:

  • Your thoughts should be backed up by evidence: Consider inquiring, looking into, and interrogating people and yourself before coming to a conclusion to make sure you have as many facts as you can. Make a special effort, if you can, to accept these things as fact.
  • Evaluate your thoughts: When something is troubling you, try to move away from it if you can and concentrate on the thoughts you’re constructing for yourself about it.
  • Seek positivity: Try to approach every circumstance you encounter with positivity rather than pessimism, even if it’s difficult at first. Even though it may not feel natural at first, it could gradually turn into an unplanned habit.
  • Eliminate absolutes: Consider substituting words like “always” and “all” with “sometimes” and “some” once you have focused on your thoughts and noticed a pattern of using absolutes.
  • Label your actions properly: Consider giving your actions a proper label. Consider saying, “I just didn’t tidy today,” rather than calling yourself lazy.”  You should not be defined by your inability to do something.


What is illogical reasoning in research? 

When conducting research and drawing conclusions too quickly or making arguments based on false premises, you are applying illogical thinking.

What causes illogical thinking?

It is typically brought on by anxiousness. Specific mental health illnesses, particularly anxiety disorders or psychotic disorders, can also cause illogical reasoning.

What is flawed reasoning? 

A reasoning fault or flaw is an aspect of an argument’s logic that prevents it from providing the level of support it promises for its conclusion.


Illogical reasoning is the complete opposite of logical reasoning which makes use of critical thinking before coming to conclusions. 

Illogical thinkers are mostly irrational and have a flawed means of processing information. Learning critical thinking or logical reasoning will not only limit fallacious logical premises but will also help you control illogical thoughts.

I hope you found this article helpful. Learn more about critical thinking and why it is important in the workplace. 

Thanks for reading.