You’re taking a pleasantly hot afternoon stroll with a little time on your hands, and you come across a table with a couple of people offering you a free beverage if you’re willing to help them out with a small survey. You see the survey is only a few questions and is anonymous, the juice looks good, so you agree. After completing the survey, they offer you one of two beverage choices: a mint-ginger-acai juice, or a strawberry lemonade. Both are in glasses that are sweating from the cold and look delicious, which one do you choose?
A similar activity was performed as part of a behavioral economics study to try to understand people’s openness to new experiences compared with the amount of change they were experiencing in their lives. Those that had recently moved, changed jobs, or experienced other large changes more often chose the mint-ginger-acai instead of the strawberry lemonade. Those with more constancy chose the opposite.
This surprised me. Why would those with so much uncertainty gravitate toward something more uncertain? When we’ve attained some sense of comfort, it’s easy to simply try to maintain that and not to explore something new and uncertain. Without a doubt, change is stressful, but with it, we open ourselves to entirely new experiences in life.
(Photo Courtesy of Len Wick)