Deindividuation and its Potential Dangers

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17 January 2019

Society

Deindividuation

Did you ever come across what is called the ‘mob mentality’? Well, most of us have heard about this, but you’ve probably never heard the actual term that is used to describe this: Deindividuation. Whenever several people are put inside a group, they might tend to lose their identity and behave in ways that are not normal to them. Most often, it is innocent behavior to which people participate but this is not always true. Deindividuation is a rather serious and grave issue for several reasons.

What are self-awareness and individual identity?

Before you get to know what deindividuation is, we first need to understand what it is not. In the easiest form, you are what your identity is and this is what makes you who you are. Your thoughts, beliefs, self-awareness, and behaviors all are results of your identity. As long as self-awareness is concerned, it deals with knowing who you are in accordance with the standards that you’ve set for yourself. You get to know your desires, morals, and character. These are things that make you who you are.

Deindividuation – What is it?

Deindividuation occurs when a person is made a part of the crowd and when he starts losing his individual identity. They gradually tend to lose their own self and forget how they are as an individual. The more the person gets involved within a group, the less awareness he has about his own self. He forgets his characters, morals, and beliefs. These things begin to get replaced through the identity of the group.

The best examples of groups that people think for such type of behavior might include cult, gang and even large mobs. The military is also a great example. You need to remember that all deindividuation is not a bad thing. In the case of military training, people tend to push themselves harder to meet the goals if they weren’t a part of a group. They have incorporated the identity of the group which has made an impact on what they believe they’re capable of.

The potential dangers

What are the negative things that happen to people when they go through deindividuation? Here are a few things:

  • People lose their self-restraint. They tend to get caught in the mentality of the crowd and act in a similar way the crowd is acting.
  • He/she imbibes a sense of anonymity. When a person acts in a way that is similar to the crowd, they feel they can’t be found.
  • There is shared responsibility. When people act in a group, they feel that the responsibility is shared.

So, if you’re someone who is going through deindividuation, you should try your best to get back your lost identity so that you can act according to your own self. Check out for more details on the dangers of deindividuation.

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