Magazine article Psychology Today

Don't Get Fooled Again

Magazine article Psychology Today

Don't Get Fooled Again

Article excerpt

EVER BEEN RIPPED off or tricked? Did you ask yourself. "How could I have been so stupid?" It happens to all of us, and there are reasons why we are so easily fooled.


Humans are a social species: We have long needed to cooperate to survive. As a result, we are programmed to trust others unless we have specific reasons to be suspicious. In studies where people ere asked to guess whether someone is lying ortelling the truth, participants tend to see more truths than lies-even when they are told beforehand that half of the statements are untrue.

If something doesn't sound right, investigate.


If someone does us a favor or gives us a gift, we want to pay them back. Psychologist Robert Cialdini has described how salespeople give "gifts," or free samples, in order to trigger this desire for payback. …

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