Essay The Significant Role of Money in Everyday Life

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Money is a major driving force in our lives, and people will often act in immoral and exploitative ways to acquire it. This money-immorality association is well established in psychological research, with results consistently showing that subjects who are primed to think about money are later more likely to lie, cheat and steal than the subjects who were thinking about other factors. However, the study performed by Francesca Gino and Cassie Mogilner suggests that it is not necessarily money – or the love of it – that is the root of unethical behaviour; but instead it is the way the thought of money suppresses reflection. The researchers suggested that the tendency to cheat could be reversed by prompting people toward self-reflection.…show more content…
Consequently, these studies together show that implicitly activating the concept of time may reduce cheating behaviour by encouraging people to engage in self-reflection and “reduces their ability to engage in this creative explanation for why what they are doing is okay”. The extent to which people behave in ways consistent with their moral convictions impacts their moral self-image. People are generally motivated to maintain a positive moral self-image (Monin & Jordan, 2009) and while this motivation can lead people to rationalise and justify their immoral acts, it also leads people to behave in value consistent ways (Aquino & Reed, 2002; Blasi, 1983; Damon & Hart, 1992; Monin, Pizarro, & Beer, 2007). Individuals build and maintain a positive moral self-image through behaviour they view as ethical, upholding this self-image by avoiding immoral acts. The desire to maintain a positive moral identity may motivate individuals to avoid contact with objects possessing negative moral associations for fear of moral contagion (Nemeroff & Rozin, 1994). Contamination is associated with a strong emotional response and the motivation to distance oneself from tainted objects or people (Haidt, Rozin, McCauley, & Imada, 1997; Rozin & Fallon, 1987). Thus, it appears that moral contamination can affect perceptions of desirability and value,and alter perceptions of something highly desirable, such as money. Therefore the need to maintain a positive moral self-image reduces
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