How Self-Perceptions and Perceptions of the Environment Shape Our Perceptions of Others – Attributing Behavior to Persons or Situations (PSY)

by Tarry Ahuja, PhD

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    00:00 Now, let’s take a look at how self-perceptions can actually shape your perceptions of others.

    00:06 Social perception involves the understanding of others in our social world.

    00:11 And what do they thinking of me? So again, you project a certain persona. Are you in a suit or in jogging pants? And then you think, what are people perceiving of me? Now, cognition refers to the ability of the brain to store process and information regarding the social perception.

    00:25 So why is this even important? Well, you want to kind of remember what you thought about that person.

    00:31 And what you think people are thinking of you.

    00:33 It helps define the situation, it helps guide that how the interactions is going to go.

    00:37 And it actually influences your behavior.

    00:39 Let’s take a look at a couple of things that influences that.

    00:44 Assessment of verbal and non-verbal cue shape our social perception.

    00:48 And we have a section reaction. We will go through this from even more detail.

    00:51 But for here really quickly, what is your tone? How are you talking to me? Are you talking in a very aggressive overly confident way? Are you being in a more subdued and quiet? That will influence our perception that were projecting and the perception that we have on others.

    01:07 How are you showing it on your face? What’s your physical stance? Those are the combination of verbal and nonverbal cues.

    01:13 Now, something called false consensus is when we assume that everyone else agrees with us.

    01:21 Again, I think you may have all have been in the situation before probably with friends were you are trying every sort of the side, “Hey, what do we want to eat tonight?” And you think that, “Yeah, pizza, we all love pizza right? Let’s get pizza.” And not everybody wants pizza. Somebody like, “Pizza again. Why does Terry always wants pizza? I just want to have a sandwich.” And so, they don’t actually perceive that audience correctly.

    01:50 And they are thinking, that person screaming pizza thinks that everybody is on the same page as them.

    01:55 Projection bias happens when we assume others have the same beliefs we do.

    01:59 So this might happen in scenarios where let’s say you are there to vote or you are there saying, “So based on what the group thinks, I believe that this is what we should do.” And the group is, “Actually, that’s not what we think.” And that happens a lot of times saying jury duty or in the political arena, where there is a difference in terms of what people assume others how the same beliefs as you.

    02:21 And the last sort of section of what we can get into is Self-Perceptions.

    02:26 How do you see yourself? Self-perception theory is when people develop their own perception of observing themselves interacting with others and then behaving in different circumstances.

    02:35 So how do you see yourself? Do you look in the mirror and say, “You know what I think I’m a pretty nice guy. I think I’m pretty considerate.

    02:44 I think I’m pretty smart. I think I’m so on and so on. And you have this perception of yourself.

    02:48 Now, basing that, that might influence how you actually interact with others.

    02:54 So if you think that you are a nice person that means you might actually start acting like a nice person.

    03:00 If you have said yourself in the mirror, “You are a really nice guy, Tarry.” And then, you leave your bedroom, you go outside and you are walking to work.

    03:09 On the way, you see an old lady and she is trying to pick up a bag. And you go and you help her.

    03:15 “Let me get that for you ma’am.” And you get that bag and you put in the car for her.

    03:18 You see, you know what, you are saying to yourself I’m a nice guy.

    03:20 I said, I was a nice guy. And look at me, I help that lady with the bag.

    03:23 And she is thinking, “Oh, what a nice guy.” So again, how you are thinking, how you perceive yourself will influence your behavior.

    03:29 And depends on the different circumstance.

    03:31 But at the end of the day it’s all-around of your self-perception.

    03:35 Now, the way you perceive yourselves impacts how others perceive us as well.

    03:38 And how we perceive others.

    03:39 Say for example, you say, I am not that successful because I don’t get paid a lot at work.

    03:46 You might be doing fantastic work; you might actually doing a great job at your work.

    03:50 But you don’t deem yourself successful.

    03:53 So you are perceiving yourself as not successful.

    03:55 And then, you might perceive others who have way more money at work as being way more successful.

    04:02 So your perception of yourself is changing the way you perceive others.

    04:07 The reality might be, “Yeah, you are not getting paid top tier.

    04:11 You are not making a million dollars. But you are doing amazing work.

    04:14 You are not doing an awesome job. You are having impact it should be enough.

    04:18 You should be very very happy with that.

    04:19 And the guy who is making a million bucks might hate his job.

    04:22 He is working a long hours. He hate what he actually he has to do.

    04:26 He never sees his kids.

    04:27 So in that equation really who is the more successful? It’s all on perception.

    04:31 Now, let’s take a look, How the Environment Shapes Our Perceptions.

    04:37 This typically is a little bit more convoluted than the scenarios that we have talked about before.

    04:42 We say, it involves more complex, large scales assessments of our setting.

    04:45 Perception of the environment impacts how we perceive others and can include things like: When you are at Work, when you are taking, looking at the different Time involvement and sort of what time it is.

    04:57 And also even in the Social setting.

    04:58 So look at some examples of each.

    05:00 When you are at work, your perception of others might be different versus a different setting.

    05:06 I’m looking couple of things here even time.

    05:10 Let’s take a look at during the work place, you might think, “You know, that girl Rita, she is pretty up tight. She is always so prim and proper.

    05:19 And I can’t read her. She is never joking with me, she never really chats.

    05:23 She goes from her cube to the lunch right back to her cubicle and does her work and that’s what I know.” So you have a certain perception of her.

    05:30 Now, all of a sudden, you go out for drinks and she decides to join the team.

    05:36 And she has a couple of drinks, and you see her in a different setting.

    05:39 So now, I am doing kind of work and social setting together here.

    05:42 But all of a sudden, now she is fun Rita. She is dancing, she is joking and she is having a blast like, “Wow, I like this Rita. This is a fun Rita.” So there is a difference there.

    05:54 Now, look at these scenarios.

    05:55 Say you are in the grocery store, and you’re going up and down the aisles you are getting your favorite coco pops.

    06:03 And you look over, and you see a beautiful woman but she is wearing kind of like club clothes.

    06:10 ‘Cause it’s kind of sexy dress. She is wearing heels. She got her lipstick and makeup on.

    06:14 And you kind of look at her and you are like its 10 AM and you are at the grocery store.

    06:19 And you kind of wondering this kind of does not make any sense.

    06:22 All of a sudden, you have a perception.

    06:23 Is she an high-end escort? Is she just coming home from the night club now? And you have this perception versus later that night or it’s a Saturday night and you are actually at the nightclub, you are with your friends, and you see this beautiful woman like. “Wow, that’s a beautiful woman.” right.

    06:40 And you can apply this to anybody. I am not just trying to pick on beautiful women in dresses.

    06:45 It could be a guy wearing very tight leather club pants.

    06:48 He is at the day care picking up his kid and you are like, “Why he is this guy wearing these clothes?” But then, you see him, I don’t know at the night club or wearing leather pants.

    06:55 you might say the same thing. But you might say, “Oh, what a sexy guy in leather pants.” The social setting, the time can all impact your perception of that person's personality.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture How Self-Perceptions and Perceptions of the Environment Shape Our Perceptions of Others – Attributing Behavior to Persons or Situations (PSY) by Tarry Ahuja, PhD is from the course Social Thinking.

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. False consensus
    2. Groupthink
    3. Group polarization
    4. Self-confirmation bias
    5. Self-perception bias
    1. Social perception
    2. Emotional intelligence
    3. Social identity
    4. Looking-glass self
    5. Imitation
    1. Projection bias
    2. Self-reference bias
    3. Group conformity
    4. Social norms
    5. Deindividuation
    1. Frowning and grimacing
    2. Smiling
    3. Dressing well
    4. Wearing a volunteer badge
    5. Having a strong handshake

    Author of lecture How Self-Perceptions and Perceptions of the Environment Shape Our Perceptions of Others – Attributing Behavior to Persons or Situations (PSY)

     Tarry Ahuja, PhD

    Tarry Ahuja, PhD

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