Adjustment Strategies Unit 6 “Resisting Persuasion and Compliance Tactics”

Adjustment Strategies Unit 6 “Resisting Persuasion and Compliance Tactics” Recognize and Resist the Influence of Commitment and Consistency Pressures by Jody Curtis Abstract “Recognize and resist the influence of commitment and consistency pressures”. Be alert to tactics that pressure you to do what you do not want to do. If someone is urging you to follow up on an earlier commitment, ask yourself a key question, “Knowing what I know now, if I could go back in time, would I make the same commitment? (Santrock, 2006, Page 185)

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The reason I chose this strategy is because I think that many of us could benefit from this subject. There are times when we all make a choice based on something we find out later was too good to be true. Then we are left with the fallout of that decision. This can create a hardship on others around us simply because of the consequences of our own poor judgment. People tend to copy the things they see others doing. For example one or more people may look in a particular direction because people are staring at something.

So others around them will look to see what they are staring at. This is a form of Social proof. Which is otherwise known as the bystander effect. They all look out of simple curiosity, it was never the intention to look that way but the need to do so out of simple curiosity was merely overwhelming, therefore they did. Everyday we are confronted by persuasion. Food makers want us to buy their newest products, while movie studios want us to go see the latest blockbusters. Because persuasion is such a pervasive component of our lives, t is easy to overlook how we are influenced by outside sources. (Cherry, 2009) How many videos have you bought because the advertisement was just so convincing that you had to have it? Many movies come out for a rental and you can watch it and return it at a much lower dollar amount. Yet for some reason you needed to own this piece of film. So you bought it and now it is collecting dust on the shelf and your money is gone. Have you ever thought before you bought these videos that you may only watch it once or twice and renting it might be cheaper?

Another very effective persuasive method appeals to the need to be popular, prestigious, or similar to others. Television commercials provide many example of this type of persuasion, where viewers are encouraged to purchase items so they can be like everyone else or be like a well-known or well-respected person. Television advertisements are a huge source of exposure to persuasion considering that some estimates claim that the average American watches between 1,500 to 2,000 hours of television every year. (Cherry, 2009)

How many diets are on the market today that are simply gimmicks that cost people billions of dollars every year due to the fact that they are looking for that quick fix to the obesity problem many face today. Diets fail because the person trying to loose weight is looking for the perfect pill to solve all of their problems. That is why infomercials make so much money. They all promise great rewards. In the end the buyer is left feeling worse than they would have if they simply saved their money and started an exercise routine that they were comfortable with.

Conformity, compliance, persuasion, dissonance, reactance, guilt and fear arousal, modeling and identification are some of the staple social influence ingredients well studied in psychological experiments and field studies. In some combinations, they create a powerful crucible of extreme mental and behavioral manipulation when synthesized with several other real-world factors, such as charismatic, authoritarian leaders, dominant ideologies, ocial isolation, physical debilitation, induced phobias, and extreme threats or promised rewards that are typically deceptively orchestrated, over an extended time period in settings where they are applied intensively. (Zimbardo, 2002) If we were to evaluate a situation and make an informed decision before committing to something, that we have no real knowledge on, then we all would be better off. There is no real threat to saying no to something. We all should take a stand back and access the situation for what it truly is. Outside influences are part of our everyday life.

As long as you do not allow others to take control over your own insecurities, then they cannot convince you to do something you were uncomfortable with in the first place. References Santrock, J. W. (2006, Page 185). Human Adjustment. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Cherry, K, (2009), Article titled “The Psychology of Persuasion” Retrieved from: http://psychology. about. com/od/socialpsychology/a/persuasiontech. htm Zimbardo, P, M. D. , (2002), Article titled “Mind Control: psychological reality or mindless rhetoric? ” Retrieved from: http://www. apa. org/monitor/nov02/pc. aspx


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