Group Psychology Helps Millions of People

The term peer pressure is a common one most of us have come across at some point in our lives. It’s usually a term associated with kids in school and/or college. The peer pressure to succeed in their studies is relevant enough, but the more negative aspects of this are found when there is pressure to fit into a group – to be an accepted member of your peers. It is not uncommon to find instances of school and college kids indulging in underage drinking or partaking in the use of drugs. All of these behavior patterns are frequently studied subjects in group psychology.

Group psychology or social therapy is that field of science which deals with the behavior of an individual in a group and how that behavior affects the group and vice. It overlaps the disciplines of sociology as well as psychiatry and is studies by both psychologists and sociologists. Despite their similarities, group psychology and sociology have increasing becoming isolated with each other as the goals, methods and approaches of both groups differ vastly. But there still remains enough overlap and influence between the two fields of study.

People tend to act differently when they are alone versus when they are in a group. If you were to ask an individual about whether he gives into to peer pressure, they will most likely deny it. But the truth of the matter is people don’t want to jump off the band wagon. Group psychology studies suggest that people care about what their peers think of them and tend to conform to the ideals shared by the majority of the group. In significant number of instances, when the individual has denied behaving like the majority, he probably believes it. In these cases,情緒輔導服務 the act of conforming to group ideals plays at the sub-conscious level. Let’s look at some theories of group behavior.

The simplest example of group psychology is the theory of social facilitation. When a person is alone, he is not concerned with the way he looks or behaves. On adding just one more person to the equation means that the first person’s behavior will change and it’s not always for the better. Social facilitation defines the effect of one’s performance in the presence of others. It says that simpler or learned tasks will be performed much better in the presence of others than difficult or new challenges.

Another theory is that of social loafing. This theory states that as a group grows bigger the contribution of the individuals will change in proportion. This doesn’t mean it will necessarily go lower.

Another unfortunate phenomenon we see is the Bystander Effect. Often one hears in the news of people having been assaulted or robbed in broad daylight where there people around but no stepped in to help the victim. People shy away from being the first to help but they will lend a hand when they see others doing something to help. In fact it has been seen that when there is no one else around, a person is more likely to help the victim.