Conforming To Social Pressures by Catherine Dodart

Oftentimes we may be placed in situations where we find ourselves acting or responding differently than we normally would have. We let social influences change the way we may think or act because of pressure. This is known as Conformity. One way or another we all conform. Whether that’s agreeing with someone on an issue you might have disagreed on, worn a certain brand because everybody else has it, or participated in an event you otherwise wouldn’t have if there wasn’t any social influence.

In this clip Robin Williams gives a good example of conforming with one of his classes.

An example that I had with conforming was one that involved a movie a group of friends and I saw. At the end of the movie we all talked about whether or not we had enjoyed the movie and what we liked. There was a girl there that we knew wasn’t particularly fond of the movie but because the rest of us said that we liked it, she changed her answer and claimed that she had liked the movie as well.

In conclusion, conforming can be contagious! We have all been guilty of this at one time or another.  How do we avoid giving in to social pressures and being able to stand alone when others opinions differ from our own? Only time will tell if we one day will be comfortable and confident enough to avoid the influences and opinions of others.

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  1. #1 by kgoff3 on June 2, 2012 - 5:16 PM

    This clip is a great example of conformity. Do you think that it could also demonstrate self-serving bias? After the boys finish marching. Robin Williams says that they were all probably thinking that they would have walked differently or that they would have stood apart from the crowd. I think that this demonstrates self-serving bias. We all want to perceive ourselves favorably. We don’t like to think that we would follow the crowd. While we might think this, we often do follow the crowd, just as the boys in this video did. -Kendra Goff

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