Why do people sometimes struggle to say “no” to persuasion attempts? Research suggests that individual self-control use can deplete people, reducing those individuals' resistance to persuasion attempts. The current investigation instead tests whether the experience of mental connection between self-control users and observers can make observers more agreeable and compliant. Greater connection led observers to exhibit more positive attitudes and decisions toward persuasive messages and advertisements containing centrally processed arguments. This research identifies an important and commonly overlooked factor in self-regulatory contexts and helps to advance our mechanistic understanding of vicarious self-control processes. Thus, in social settings marked by high mental connection, as in many group meals or shopping trips, people may suffer the depleting consequences of others' decisions.
Social Cognition – Guilford Press
Published: Jun 1, 2018
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