83. Overestimate of own possibilities in general and survival rate in particular

Quoting Nick Bostrom's article on existential risks59:

The empirical data on risk-estimation biases is ambiguous. It has been argued that we suffer from various systematic biases when estimating our own prospects or risks in general. Some data suggest that humans tend to overestimate their own personal abilities and prospects. About three quarters of all motorists think they are safer drivers than the typical driver. Bias seems to be present even among highly educated people. According to one survey, almost half of all sociologists believed that they would become one of the top ten in their field, and 94% of sociologists thought they were better at their jobs than their average colleagues. It has also been shown that depressives have a more accurate self-perception than normals except regarding the hopelessness of their situation. Most people seem to think that they themselves are less likely to fall victims to common risks than other people. It is widely believed that the public tends to overestimate the probability of highly publicized risks (such as plane crashes, murders, food poisonings etc.), and a recent study shows the public overestimating a large range of commonplace health risks to themselves. Another recent study, however, suggests that available data are consistent with the assumption that the public rationally estimates risk (although with a slight truncation bias due to cognitive costs of keeping in mind exact information).