What makes people turn away?

I remember talking to a colleague when I worked in Melbourne back in 1999 – who told me about their walk to work. They told me how they passed a homeless person begging and said; “Come on, I’ll buy you something from McDonalds”. The homeless guys declined, asking for the money instead. In this example, my colleague didn’t turn away – they were turned away.

This resonates with what other people have said about why they themselves resist giving money to the homeless, in case it supports their potential substance abuse habit. In other cases some of the beggars make a lot of money from their “day job” – more than the average wage. Is it selfishness, self righteousness, wisdom, or some version of the bystander effect that has the majority of people ignore the homeless – who seem to be people in need.

My last story on this involves coming home late (one morning!) in Melbourne and witnessing a beggar take up his position. He removed his brand new Nikes, hide them in his bag, then twist one foot around underneath and secured it – to make him look like a one legged beggar. I wouldn’t have believed it had I not seen it myself…

And then there are those who society has truly missed…

About Stu Dunn

With a background in sales and behavioural science, I enjoy learning more about people, behaviour, psychology - which led into motivation - and more recently - sales again. Having started my own real estate company with my wife, it's time to merge interests.
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1 Response to What makes people turn away?

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