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Your answer suggests that, like most people, you’re influenced by social norms. Present Bias: If you ask most people if they would rather start a new diet today or next week, they’ll choose next week.

Social Norms: Humans are socially programmed to “follow the herd,” so if the majority of people around us are doing something, our natural response is to join in for two key reasons: no one wants to face social ostracism for being different, and there’s crucial information in crowd actions. The problem is, when next week becomes today, they’ll put it off again. The 2017 Nobel Prize for economics was awarded to economist Richard Thaler in part for his work on present bias and self-control failures**.

Like most people, your answer suggests you’re somewhat loss-averse.

You have a “rational” response to the BYOB incentive. Loss Aversion refers to our tendency to be roughly twice as motivated by the prospect of losing something as we are by gaining something of equal value*. doi:10.1111/1467-8721.01242Your answer suggests that, like most people, you sometimes over-weight present rewards relative to future ones.

Your answer suggests that you’re atypical, and in the face of social norms you follow the beat of your own drummer. We often generate an estimate by thinking of an anchor (e.g., a reasonable house price) and adjust from there but typically fail to adjust sufficiently.

Most people shift their behavior toward social norms. We also tend to spontaneously generate information consistent with an anchor.

Research dating back to the 1950s by Solomon Asch demonstrated the power of social norms*. Economists and psychologists refer to this tendency to cave in to our impulses and delay that which is in our long-term best interest as “present bias*.” Present bias is aptly named, since we’re biased in favor of what will be most rewarding in the here-and-now, thus assigning less weight delayed rewards. Learn how decision biases may affect you at Schwab. Frederick, Shane, George Loewenstein, and Ted O’donoghue, “Time dis- counting and time preference: A critical review,” Journal of economic literature, 2002, 40 (2), 351–401.

Social Norms: Humans are socially programmed to “follow the herd,” so if the majority of people around us are doing something, our natural response is to join in for two key reasons: no one wants to face social ostracism for being different, and there’s crucial information in crowd actions. This is true of all behavior that is beneficial in the long term, but requires immediate self-control: saving vs. We also tend to spontaneously generate information consistent with an anchor.We don’t suspect that these biases could be working against our own best interests, as we consider deals, discounts, penalties, suggested prices, and bandwagon offers.That’s why we collaborated with Charles Schwab and the Wharton School’s Katherine Milkman — a noted professor, behavioral economist, and the new host of Charles Schwab’s “Choiceology” podcast — to create a quick assessment test.And Robert Cialdini** (an expert in persuasion, compliance, and negotiation) undertook pioneering studies to show how we follow the crowd in various ways and settings, ranging from hotel towel re-use, to energy conservation, to littering. We often generate an estimate by thinking of an anchor (e.g., a reasonable house price) and adjust from there but typically fail to adjust sufficiently.Our innate tendency to follow social norms can be a bias, or it can be a useful tool of influence, depending on how it’s harnessed. We also tend to spontaneously generate information consistent with an anchor.

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