Why do people like the number 72

You should know these psychological phenomena

After you have already become acquainted with a whole series of psychoeffects with partly unknown names, these are the ones today Psychology phenomena on it. So classic everyday phenomena or surprising regularities from psychology and sociology that you should know - in order to use them for yourself if necessary ...

Everyday psychology phenomena

  • The 72-hour rule states: Everything you plan to do, you have to start within 72 hours, otherwise the chance that you will ever implement the project drops to one percent.
  • The Abilene Paradox believes that some decisions just look like they are based on consensus. The phenomenon was discovered by Jerry Harvey, a professor at George Washington University, in 1974 after a trip with his wife and parents to his hometown of Abilene. He started the trip because a family member suggested the trip on the assumption that the others needed a little variety. Everyone agreed because everyone believed the others were for it too. On return, however, it turned out that everyone would have preferred to stay at home.
  • The Andorra Phenomenon alludes to the drama of the same name by Max Frisch. There, the illegitimate child of a teacher is supposedly referred to as a "Jew", to whom the residents attribute qualities such as greed, laziness or cowardice. At first, the boy resists these expectations until he gives up and finally complies with them. This is exactly what the Andorra phenomenon is all about: people pursue goals that others have set for them.
  • The blue seven phenomenon describes the fact that most people love the color blue and seven is a global favorite number.
  • The catch-22 phenomenon (or Catch 22 problem) is named after Joseph Heller's novel of the same name and describes a problem that makes his own solution impossible. Users of the Windows operating system may be familiar with the prompt: "If your keyboard stops responding, press the Escape key."
  • The Cocktail Party Study (also Wall paint effect) showed that people prefer bars with red rooms, but stay longer in blue ones. The two psychologists Ravi Mehta and Rui Zhu from the University of British Columbia therefore believe that wall colors or screen backgrounds make a decisive contribution to the type of results.
  • Confirmation bias is called the cognitive trap in which we tend to hold on to opinions until they solidify - in short: pigeonhole thinking. The way to get there is selective perception: We only take in information that fits into our worldview. The rest is hidden. Success also becomes a trap: Because we see ourselves confirmed in our thinking, we reduce our mental flexibility, eliminate every lateral thinker impulse and become unable to change strategies - even if the circumstances have long since changed.
  • Edward's Law states that the effort invested in something increases in inverse proportion to the time remaining. Easier: the closer the deadline gets, the harder you go for it. Also a way of getting things sorted out.
  • Decision paralysis is called this when we prefer not to decide at all or when we stick to the first decision. With the corresponding experiment (so-called Mug attempt) you give people a coffee mug and ask if they'd be willing to swap the mug for a chocolate bar. 90 percent prefer to keep the cup. The number works the other way around as well.
  • The excellence formula It is an iron rule and recurring observation in the professional environment that first-class bosses also gather first-class people around them; second-rate bosses but only third-rate employees. Or in short: A-people draw A-people, B-people draw C-people. The explanation for this: Those who are excellent need not fear competition, but look for inspiration of equal quality in order to become even better. For mediocre managers, on the other hand, every first-class employee represents a latent threat that either passes them by (and thus relatively outclasses them) or even succeeds them. Incidentally, the vernacular knows the formula in a modified form: Show me your friends and I'll tell you who you are.
  • The feel-good-do-good phenomenon states that motivated employees are more helpful than normal or even bad-tempered colleagues. Background: The more someone is satisfied with their life, the more empathetic they are and the more it rubs off on their surroundings.
  • At the helper syndrome People who constantly strive for the feeling of being needed and therefore constantly offer their help to others may suffer. Sometimes people are also affected who are difficult to say “no”. Dangerous: Many easements reduce the quality of one's own work, which in turn damages the reputation and thus the recognition in the job. Often those affected try to compensate for this with even more favors. The helper syndrome leads to even more stress and often leads to total exhaustion and one Burnout syndrome.
  • Hindsight bias Scientists call the phenomenon that we often learn much less from our mistakes than we think. Rather, we believe afterwards that we have foreseen the event for a long time anyway. This can be observed particularly on the stock market: If the share crashes unexpectedly, many say that they had been expecting it for a long time - despite this, they had not previously sold or even eagerly bought.
  • The Holiday Blues (also Relief Depression occurs on vacation or on weekends. Because most people try to relax quickly after a busy and stressful week and hope for a lightning recovery effect, the immune system breaks down and they get sick all the more. Studies show: If you shut down too quickly, you risk headaches, fatigue attacks and nausea.
  • The small world phenomenon (also known as Six degrees of separation) was discovered by Harvard professor Stanley Milgram and said: Everyone knows each other over six corners. According to a more recent O2 study, these six corners have allegedly been reduced to three thanks to social media.
  • The principle of contrast is a form of manipulation. Our perception reacts anything but objectively when two stimuli are presented to us in direct succession. If you first dip your hand in cold water and then in hot water, you will only find it lukewarm - and you may get scalded. Anyone who presents bad news with good news to the boss is smart. Because the bad one is now only half as bad. The good one, however, isn't that good anymore. This is called collateral damage.
  • The smile mask syndrome you have to imagine a convulsive perm grin (see also Surface acting). Smiling per se puts you in a good mood - even if it is unreasonable and forced. The smile mask syndrome, on the other hand, can lead to depression, says psychologist Makoto Natsume from Osaka University. As a member of the land of smiles, she is an expert in this field.
  • Mona Lisa Syndrome is the name of the phenomenon that primarily affects women at work: the nice colleague is valued, but is often ignored. The only way out: attract more attention. Constantly putting your strengths in the right light and perfecting your PR on your own account is an important rule for success - no matter how uncomfortable it is.
  • The Monday blues is a downright mass phenomenon. Three quarters of 885 employees questioned describe themselves as grumpy on Monday in a survey by the Hamburg market research institute Ears and Eyes. Every eighth admitted to categorically avoiding conversations with colleagues or customers on Monday mornings because it just annoys them. Other studies also certify Mondays to be a state of emergency: At the beginning of the week, less work is done than Tuesdays or Wednesdays, researchers at the London School of Economics found. On no other day of the week is the risk of injury in the job greater. Even when it comes to the number of sick leave days, Monday is the best. The Manic Mondayas it is also called, is said to lead to more misspellings in emails.
  • The Monty Hall Dilemma (or Goat problem) comes from a classic quiz show situation: The moderator shows three doors: A, B and C. A brand new sports convertible is waiting behind one. Behind the other two rivets. You should now choose a door - and choose A. "Very good," says the moderator and opens gate B, "because this door would have been wrong." Your chances of winning have just increased. The brand new runabout lurks behind Luke A or C. Now the moderator asks you again: "Do you want to change your choice or do you stick with A?" Stupid question, you think. After all, the odds are fifty-fifty. Not correct! Mathematicians have shown that you should switch to C, this increases the probability of winning the runabout to around 67 percent.
  • Murphys Law is probably one of the best known and therefore does not need long explanations. It says: Anything that can go wrong will go wrong. Perhaps less known, the development of Murphy's Law was awarded the Ig Nobel Prize in 2003.
  • Parkinson's Law goes back to the British historian and publicist Cyril Northcote Parkinson. After that, work expands to the extent that there is time available to do it - and not how much time you actually need to do it. That's why you should always set a deadline.
  • Commuter amnesia The British stress researcher David Lewis calls the phenomenon that particularly stressed drivers can no longer remember the sections of the route that have been driven. To this end, Lewis measured 800 drivers, or their blood pressure and heart rate, over a period of five years. He then compared the values ​​with those of jet pilots and police officers in emergency exercises. Result: The stress level of the commuters was comparable to that of the fighter pilots.
  • The Peter Principle states: In every hierarchy employees are promoted until they reach a position in which they are incompetent. It was formulated in 1969 by US authors Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull. Accordingly, they concluded that in every company, after a certain period of time, every position is filled with an employee who is overwhelmed with his tasks.
  • The Phi phenomenon (also Strobe effect) is actually a perception error: You see a movement that does not exist. The phenomenon was described by Max Wertheimer in 1912. The Phi phenomenon can be seen well on ticker displays. Although only individual lamps go on and off, it seems as if the writing is moving.
  • Procrastination (or procrastination) is the behavior when someone chronically postpones tasks that need to be done. Studies by psychologists from Germany and the USA showed that almost one in five people worldwide is affected by this phenomenon. The US psychologist Joe Ferrari of DePaul University in Chicago is one of the leading researchers in this field and believes that the only way to cure chronic procrastinators is through behavioral therapy.
  • The phenomenon of resonance describes in psychology the effect that strong emotions immediately find an unconscious echo. Specifically: If you smile at someone spontaneously, they usually smile back. This can also be used: if you learn to recognize the needs and feelings of your fellow human beings, to take them seriously and to respond to them, you will generate more and more intense resonance.
  • The reciprocity principle (or Courtesy trap) explains the bad gut feeling or bad conscience that one has after receiving a gift. Many feel strangely obliged afterwards. And that is exactly what is sometimes intended: Free samples in supermarkets work according to this principle. Sellers who offer to take “another bite” force unsuspecting customers into a courtesy trap so that they can buy the whole sausage afterwards. The American War Disabled Organization once reported that the response rate to standard appeals for donations was 18 percent. But if a small present - like hand-painted postcards - were added to the letters, the success rate would rise to over 35 percent.
  • Schnitzel coma (or Feeding anesthesia or Post lunch dip) is the name of the phenomenon that makes most people suddenly tired after lunch. Blood pressure and body temperature then simply drop, and even the brain needs a break. But it is completely normal.
  • The seven phenomenon was discovered by John Locke around 300 years ago: test subjects who were asked to look at and memorize a large number of objects for a brief moment achieved a hit rate of almost 100 percent with up to seven objects. After that, the memory decreased rapidly. The cult TV show “Am Laufenden Band” with Rudi Carrell built its finale exactly on this.
  • Stockholm Syndrome Scientists call the psychological phenomenon in which victims of kidnappings find their tormentors more and more sympathetic or even fall in love with them. This can even lead to the victim cooperating with the perpetrator (s).
  • Warnock’s dilemma is the misjudgment of many (online) authors who believe: because nobody reacts to their text, nobody cares. A fallacy. The readers may be interested - but they only consume the information.
  • The 10,000 hour rule originally comes from the US neurologist Daniel Levitin from McGill University in Montreal. He found that everyone had to deal with something for at least 10,000 hours before they had the necessary knowledge to be among the best in the world in their field. But not true. Recent studies show: Exercise has a maximum of 12 percent influence on success.

Other readers will find these articles interesting:

In turn, many more detailed articles are linked to the individual thought traps and perceptual errors. Ultimately, the bestseller emerged from these lists: “I think, so I'm crazy” (DTV, July 2011). The book has sold more than 50,000 copies and has been translated into several languages ​​(including Russian and Turkish).

[Photo credit: Roman Samborskyi by Shutterstock.com]

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January 12, 2021Author: Jochen Mai

Jochen Mai is the founder and editor-in-chief of the career bible. The author of several books lectures at the TH Köln and is a sought-after keynote speaker, coach and consultant.

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