Self & Identity, Prejudice and Friendship & Attraction

Topic: Psychology and Personality
Words: 1495 Pages: 5

Self and Identity

Genetic factors mainly influence the formation of self-perception, but social factors also do not lose their significance. These factors include a public role, comparing oneself with other people; our successes and failures; other people’s judgments of us, and the surrounding culture (Myers & Haslam, 2016, 78). Self-perception forms our thinking and also shapes our social behavior. Self-determination influences our life goals and affects all social aspects of life.

What Interested Me about this Sub-topic?

The topic of self-esteem interests me because determining your place in the world is perhaps the essential point, the understanding of which becomes the key to the successful organization of life. The most important part of us is the feeling of being a part of the world. We know who we are, our gender, feelings, and memories. Our self-image is an attribution to ourselves certain qualities that are very much inherent in how we evaluate other people and ourselves.

What are the Main Concepts Related to this Sub-topic?

The emergence of the concept of narcissism is related to self-determination is the emergence of the idea of narcissism. People tend to look at the world from a selfish point of view. In this vein, people tend to overestimate their importance to others, called the spotlight effect. The spotlight phenomenon can sometimes trigger a reaction to overestimating ourselves. If this phenomenon begins to be obsessive, it can develop into narcissism.

Narcissists discover from inadequate self-esteem that such people overestimate themselves and their susceptibility to other people. Cultural narcissism is prevalent in TV shows, song lyrics, and the tendency to vanity and materialistic values (Campbell & Twenge, 2013). From one point of view, the trend towards narcissism has increased dramatically in recent years, thanks to the cultivation of a culture of material wealth. From another point of view, this deviation is a part of people’s desire for healthy selfishness (Quenqua, 2013).

How is this Sub-topic Relevant to My Social World?

Understanding the formation of self-image has had a significant impact on my life. Self-confidence helps to feel free and comfortable in any social environment. I do not incline to narcissism, but, in my opinion, the pursuit of healthy egoism, if it does not affect the framework of adequacy, is fundamental. The influence of media culture and the imposition of unhealthy views can interfere with the normal perception of oneself. Building adequate self-esteem, despite social prejudices, is necessary for the formation of a healthy personality.

Working to Reduce Prejudice

Prejudice comes in many forms; it can form against our social group or other communities. Prejudice can be caused by religion, overweight, sexual orientation, age, or ethnicity. Discrimination is a preconceived negative judgment about the group and its members (Myers & Haslam, 2016, 195). A prejudiced person may dislike those different from him and behave in a discriminatory manner, regarding them as ignorant and dangerous. The negative evaluations that mark prejudice are often supported by negative beliefs called stereotypes.

What Interested Me about this Sub-topic?

Interest in the topic of prejudice is related to the everyday nature of this phenomenon. Measures to fight biases that reinforce class inequality need to be worked out and discussed since their widespread application will make life easier for many people. This topic is significant since there has not been a strong trend toward improving the situation with social prejudice in recent years. It is also essential to trace the causes of this phenomenon because only an understanding of the causes can lead to a competent study of the consequences.

What are the Main Concepts Related to this Sub-topic?

Prejudices are generated by the unequal social status of people in society. Sometimes prejudice can justify the economic and social superiority of the minority over the majority. One form of fighting prejudice, such as racism, is the practice of the bystander. It is a unique form of action that primarily targets behaviors or practices that change social norms (Nelson, Dunn & Paradies, 2011, 264). A more active form of decreasing prejudice includes changing educational strategies and increasing the role of the media in the fight against inequality.

Short-term exercises with students from different educational institutions can help. An example of such an exercise is a practice in which students are given 10 cards containing biased commentaries and play 1 of 3 roles (speaker, responder, or social observer) in a simulated interaction (Plous, 2000, 198). The role of social media is also significant: they can inform people on the problem of prejudice, increase awareness, and teach people how important it is to fight discrimination. All these strategies aim to teach the value of diversity, respond to situations of discrimination, and raise the general level of awareness of the problem of inequality.

How is this Sub-topic Relevant to My Social World?

Unfortunately, social prejudice is a negative part of many people’s lives, and I am no exception. In my opinion, the fight against social prejudice should be a personal matter for everyone. Prejudices lead to increased class inequality, which must be eradicated in modern society. Humanity can finally defeat social prejudices thanks to an integrated approach to this problem, involving the media and conducting special training for children from an early age.

What Leads to Friendship and Attraction?

When social psychologists talk about someone’s attitude, they refer to the beliefs and feelings associated with a person or event and the resulting behavioral tendency. Taken together, favorable or unfavorable evaluative reactions to something, often rooted in beliefs and manifested in feelings and propensities for action, determine a person’s attitude (Myers & Haslam, 2016, 74). Social factors also shape the possibility of friendship or affection.

What Interested Me about this Sub-topic?

I am interested in the theme of the emergence of friendship and affection because understanding the social causes of sympathy between people is essential for forming all social relationships. Not only does ‘chemistry’ influence the formation of attachments, but they are mainly formed due to reasons people may not even be aware of. Understanding these reasons can help develop stronger relationships and be successful socially.

What are the Main Concepts Related to this Sub-topic?

According to Twenge & Myers (2016), five factors can motivate people to build friendships and attraction toward others. They include closeness, physical attractiveness, similarities or complements, finding positive aspects, and rewarding relationships. Most often, people get along because they live next to each other. Most people marry someone who lives in the same area, works for the same company, or goes to the same school. Appearance is also important in the formation of friendship and affection. Physical attractiveness depends on how a person dresses and treats other people.

Most often, people like those who are similar to them. On the other hand, complementarity makes people feel ‘complete’ in relationships. Some complementarity may appear as the relationship develops, but people seem to be slightly more inclined to love and marry whose needs and personalities are similar. When people like us, they tend to see us positively, which sometimes causes prejudice against us. In most cases, we are attracted to those with whom we find satisfaction and pleasure. Relationships always come down to reward attraction theory; if the relationship brings us more reward than cost, we will like it and wish it continued.

How is this Sub-topic Relevant to My Social World?

Understanding the principles of forming friendships and attachments in my social picture occupies an important place: it is much easier for me to establish social interaction. Improvement in appearance and communication with people nearby helps me make contacts and feel involved in various touch with people. Of course, I do not fully trust the schemes outlined above; however, these schemes proved their effectiveness in my case.

How Has this Learning Journal Contributed to My Understanding of Social Psychology and Scholarly Writing?

The learning journal helped me deepen my understanding of sociology and became excellent support for scholarly writing. Firstly, the systematization of information helped to conduct research consistently, going from cause to consequence. For example, to describe the methods of combating social prejudices, it was essential to understand their occurrence’s psychological and social causes. Without this understanding, it would be impossible to form a diverse opinion on this issue. The abundance and clarity of the information presented made it possible to study all the issues I disclosed in work competently.

In addition, the information helped to realize the importance of some phenomena and understand the need to study them. Possible deviations from the norm associated with inadequate self-esteem, described in the chapter, led to the need to study the formation of the principles of a competent assessment of oneself in the world and normal communication with others. Finally, the work made it possible to form my own opinion and develop correct behavioral principles, for example, when building social relations. Studying the principles that influence our relationships with other people has helped me realize the importance of following certain social norms that will help me reach good social status.


Campbell, W. K. & Twenge, J. M. (2013). Narcissism is unleased. Observer, 26(10). Web.

Myers, D. G. & Haslam, N. (2016). The self in a social world. In T. Griffin (ed.), 101557: Behaviour and attitudes (3rd ed. Pp. 73-114) North Ryde: McGraw-Hill Australia

Myers, D. G. & Haslam, N. (2016). The self in a social world. In T. Griffin (ed.), 101557: Prejudice: Disliking others (3rd ed. Pp. 190-233) North Ryde: McGraw-Hill Australia

Myers, D. G. & Haslam, N. (2016). The self in a social world. In T. Griffin (ed.), 101557: The individual in society (3rd ed. Pp. 116-145) North Ryde: McGraw-Hill Australia.

Nelson, J. K., Dunn, K. M. & Paradies, Y. (2011). Bystander anti-racism: A review of the literature. Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy, 11(1), 263-284.

Plous, S. (2000). Responding to overt displays of prejudice: A role-playing exercise. Teaching Psychology, 27(3), 198-200.

Quenqua, D. (2013). Seeing narcissists everywhere. The New York Times: Science. Web.

Twenge, J. M. & Myers, D. G. (2016). Social Psychology. McGraw-Hill Education.

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