The desire to choose and manage from birth

Original author: Susan Weinschenk
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This translation is 31 articles from the series “100 Things You Should Know About People”. In it, we will talk about the innocent human desire to control and have the opportunity to choose.

I was just starting to read the new book by Tire Ingar, The Art of Choice . And she became a fan of her work. She is the author of the famous “jam study” (I will write about him below - the translator) .

The Paradox of Choice
In his book “The Paradox of Choice. Why more is less. ” Barry Schwartz spoke about how much we want to have so many options. The paradox is that when we have too many choices, we usually don’t choose at all. In his book Neuro Web Design: What Makes They ClickI devoted a whole chapter of our need to have a choice and, as a result, the inability to choose.

The innate desire to control.
The desire to control the environment lives within us, we were born with it. This makes sense because by controlling the environment, we are likely to increase our chances of survival. After reading Tire’s reasoning about choice, I thought about management and the relationship between the ability to choose and manage. The desire to control is connected with the desire to have a choice.

The need to drive starts young
Studying infants, researchers attached children's hands to a thread. Children could move their hands, pulling the thread, which made them play music. And then the researchers disconnected the thread from the music control. They began to play the melody at about the same interval, but the children could no longer control it. And as a result, they became sad and angry, despite the fact that the music continued to play with the same frequency. The children wanted to control the moment when the music began to play.

We think that choice is control
. We have conducted an experiment on rats. They were shown a direct path to food and a path with branches. Rats preferred the branch path, where there was a need to choose. Monkeys and pigeons were taught to press buttons to get food. And they preferred to have more than one button, although this did not give them more food.

Even if this is not always true, we equate the ability to choose and the ability to manage. We must feel that our actions are affecting something. Sometimes having a lot of choices makes it difficult to get what we want, but we still want to have a choice, thus feeling that we are managing our decision.

And now the jam experiment


In 2000, they conducted an experiment on shoppers. They were offered to choose and buy jam from a small or large assortment (6 or 24 types of jam, respectively). In the first case, 40% of people stopped and tried jam from several cans, and in the second case there were already 60% of them.

However! In the first case, of all the people who tried it, 30% made a total of 12 purchases, and in the second 3% made 2 purchases. These are the pies))

Author - @thebrainlady , translator - @lexxscorp .

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