Why Do We Try so Hard to Be Like Other People and Conform?
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Many factors influence conformity in individuals, like the difficulty of a certain task, the motivation to achieve or the size of a group.
People are socially influenced by others, and change their behaviours in order to get along or fit in with the people around them. This involves agreeing with the majority, acting like everyone in a group, or behaving in a certain way to appear normal or ‘with it’ by the peers.
Conformity is basically yielding to group pressure, like when you go to watch a movie with office colleagues and do not like it at all, but may conform to the group by pretending to like it.
Many group experiments highlight that simple questions involving dots and lines are answered correctly when asked individually, but when asked in a group, the answer moves towards a median, as many people simply conform to the answer of other people (who may be wrong).
Most of us conform to the expectations of the group to avoid being the ‘odd one out’ or just to not appear foolish.
In many cases we don’t even know what the expectation is, so conforming to what everyone else is doing appears a safe bet.
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