"Rectus" is the Latin word meaning "straight" and is used in English to refer to multiple topics in the sciences.

In the classification of the animal kingdom it is the systematic taxonomic name of several species, e.g. campylobacter rectus & syllitus rectus.

In anatomy it is used to refer to a rectus muscle, primarily e.g. the "rectus abdominis muscle"; in anatomy it can also refer to:

  • Inferior rectus muscle
  • Superior rectus muscle
  • Lateral rectus muscle
  • Medial rectus muscle
  • Musculus rectus thoracis
  • Rectus capitis lateralis muscle
  • Rectus femoris muscle


Rectus, in the psychology context, refers to a cognitive bias where individuals tend to focus on only the most straightforward or obvious answer to a problem. This bias can lead to narrow-minded thinking and an inability to consider alternative perspectives. It can also result in a lack of creativity and innovation in problem-solving processes. The term "Rectus" is derived from the Latin word for "straight," highlighting the tendency for individuals exhibiting this bias to stick to a linear and simplistic approach to addressing challenges. Rectus can hinder cognitive flexibility and adaptability, limiting the individual's ability to think critically and explore multiple possibilities.

Application Areas

  • Decision-making processes
  • Problem-solving strategies
  • Creative thinking exercises
  • Conflict resolution techniques

Treatment and Risks

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy to challenge and reframe rigid thought patterns
  • Mindfulness practices to increase awareness of cognitive biases
  • Risks include stagnation in personal and professional growth


  • An individual consistently choosing the most straightforward solution without considering other possibilities
  • A team leader dismissing innovative ideas in favor of traditional approaches
  • A student struggling to think creatively on a project due to a rigid mindset

Similar Concepts and Synonyms

  • Linear thinking
  • One-track mind
  • Cognitive rigidity



Rectus is a cognitive bias characterized by a focus on the most direct and uncomplicated solutions to problems, leading to narrow-minded thinking and reduced creativity. It can hinder cognitive flexibility and limit the ability to consider alternative perspectives. Treatment options include cognitive-behavioral therapy and mindfulness practices to challenge and reframe rigid thought patterns. Risks of Rectus include a lack of personal and professional growth due to an inability to think critically and explore diverse solutions.