Week 1 Question 1: Social Motive, The Art of Choosing (Coursework Sample)
Which of the five core social motives (belonging, understanding, controlling, enhancing self, trusting others) do you think best explains people's perceptions of choice as discussed in Dr. Sheena Iyengar's talk?
In her talk, Dr. Sheena Iyengar argues that it is not necessarily the case that it is better to have more choices. One of her most influential studies, known as the jam study, demonstrates the choice overload effect: That when given too many choices, people tend to feel overwhelmed and as a result end up not making a choice, or feeling dissatisfied with the choice they made. How does this concept relate to the last time you were faced with a decision that involved many options?
Of the five core social motives described in the text (belonging, understanding, controlling, enhancing self, trusting others), which do you think is the primary motivator in your life currently? Explain.
Question 1: Social Motive
Controlling is the core social motive that best explains people's perception of choice as discussed in Dr. Sheena Iyengar's talk. Controlling is a social motive which argues that individuals are usually motivated by factors that make them feel effective and competitive when they deal with both the animate and inanimate environments. According to Dr. Sheena Iyengar, people's perception of choice depends on the reasons why an individual wants choice, the factors that impact on what and how he chooses, and the way an individual can improve his decision-making outcomes. Evidence suggests that a social motive plays an instrumental role when it comes to the kind of choice that a person will make, especially when he is faced with numerous factors from which to choose from.
In the talk that is entitled “The Art of Choosing,” Sheena argues that there are numerous factors that affect the decision-making processes of human beings. She examines the reasons that affect the way people make choices, the impact of these choices on the individual, and ways in which people can adapt the different circumstances in order to make decisions that are more appropriate in the future. This is where control becomes one of the most important social motives that stimulates people to make particular decisions when they are faced with diverse issues in their environment. To better understand the social motive behind controlling, it is important to analyze the basic factors that tend to drive human behavior. The abilities to make appropriate decisions depend on the actual power of making a choice and it is very important in the life of every individual.
Controlling is a crucial social motive that defines the way people perceive and make choices. The ability of an individual to control enables them to feel effective while the absence of control makes people look for information that will be essential in restoring control. A person who feels that he is in control of issues that he is facing is in a better position of making effective and more efficient choices. Furthermore, control gives people the power to become healthier, happier, and live a better life. This is because being in a position of making certain choices usually give an individual the powers to be in control and thus attain certain objectives. This can either be the capacity to make important decisions at the office, control the working hours to be more flexible, and attain support that is needed at work. Scholars are of the opinion that mutual control takes place when individuals who have formed
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