Monday, January 4, 2021

Conformity Complexity

Conformance is a mixed blessing. Conforming to traffic laws has saved many lives. Nonconforming (e.g., drink alcohol and then drive) have taken many lives. It is amazing to read some of the studies and realize just what people will sometimes do in the name of conformity. Sometimes it is better to think for oneself rather than relying on what others do. Have you ever looked at your tendency to conform or not conform? Have you ever wondered if your life would be improved in a specific area if you conformed or better if you did not conform, if you avoided the herd mentality? Some find it extremely uncomfortable to choose to do their own thing instead of doing what everyone else is doing. For others, it is just the opposite. They are quite comfortable choosing to do their own thing. Psychologist Solomon Asch did an interesting experiment about conformity. Fascinating, really. He found that people evaluating which line in one figure matched one of three in a second figure, sometimes voted with the group when they knew that the answer was incorrect. You might want to check this out and ask yourself what you might have chosen to do in a similar situation.

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