Human behavior is a vast and complex area of study and research. Social psychology focuses on how interactions in social groups affect individual behavior. Plato called it the “crowd mind.” He observed that humans derive ideas of how to conduct themselves from what wider society thinks. Social psychologists seek answers about behaviors that shape human perceptions, thoughts, and moods. These behaviors not only impact our attitudes and actions but overall health and well-being, too.
Many underlying psychological mechanisms occur in social interactions. Social psychologists examine themes like stereotyping, persuasion, the need for approval, and impression formation. They also research the features of healthy, stable relationships and ways that others can either undermine or promote an individual’s motivation to perform a task.
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