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I don’t know if you’ve ever changed car, moved house or been pregnant (or known someone close to you who is). But if you have then you’ll probably be aware of a strange phenomenon. Psychologists call it “attention awareness.”

Let me explain.

When I was thinking of buying another car I suddenly started spotting that particular type of car everywhere. When I put my house up for sale, I then couldn’t drive down a road without noticing “For Sale” signs. Neither could I read a newspaper without stumbling across an article about houses. And when my wife was pregnant in the 1990s (not the whole decade I hasten to add – just two nine month periods) she ...

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