The Importance Of A Social Norm

Decent Essays

When I was trying to decide which social norm to break, I had a difficult time choosing one that wouldn’t break any law, or get me into trouble, as well as one I was actually comfortable doing. I realized that the feelings I was having when trying to decide go along with why this circumstance is a norm, and going against it is incredibly uncomfortable, even as the one doing it, because of the fear for how the individuals are going to perceive me doing this. I decided upon going to Liberty Center, a shopping center in West Chester, and simply introducing myself to random strangers. I was very nervous to do this, because obviously this norm is a very solidified one in our almost disconnected society. I felt like this would be the most comfortable …show more content…

After speaking to the older gentleman, I had so much hope of how this experiment would happen, but he was the only person that I spoke to that was older, because I did want to gage the reactions of the younger people I attempted speaking to. The older gentleman was really the only positive reaction I got from anyone, while everyone else, as I said before resulted in negative sanctions. I really enjoyed doing this activity, once I got over having to step out of my comfort zone, stepping out of our societal norm, and become the weird person who is invading personal space. Granted, had someone done this to me before this project, I do not know how I would have reacted. Each time someone walked away, or laughed at me, I felt embarrassed and sad, but at the same time intrigued at how little interest people had in a small conversation with strangers. I was thrilled when I spoke to the older gentleman, I enjoyed the conversations, and loved his perspective on this topic. After doing the experiment, I felt content. I realized how hard it is to intentionally break a social norm. I realized that more time than not, those individuals who break them are seen negatively, and that saddened me. I also realized the concern parents have with a stranger introducing themselves, and then to their kid,

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