Are we as fond of sharing as we think we are? apparently not ..
Our unwillingness to share starts when we are very young
Many of us will have witnessed just how much toddlers don’t like to share. Not only is there a single prize toy that everyone wants to get their hands on, but try to wrestle that prize toy out the hands of a toddler and the meltdown that ensues can be as gripping for a spectator as it is mortifying for the parent.
The science behind sharing
Toddlers and young children have it particularly tough because even when they have understood the concept of mine versus yours, their under-developed prefrontal cortex means that they know that they should share but struggle to control their impulses to follow through. As we mature, the argument goes, it’s easier for us to act selflessly rather than display selfish behaviour. We’re cajoled into sharing more and persuaded that life really is much better when you can enjoy playing with your choo-choo train together with your little best friend.
As adults we are led to believe that humans are uniquely caring and compassionate, and willingly sacrificing time and effort to better others’ lives. We do so not only because it is the “right” thing to do, but also because of the emotional satisfaction it provides.
“Joey doesn’t share food!”
On the flip side, we have all seen plenty of selfish adults and this is displayed in full colour in the corporate race to the top of the organisation. So where does the truth lie? After getting lost in conflicting studies proving that we are in fact altruistic at heart and others showing the opposite – we liked the latter conclusion of the research done: we are motivated to share because we feel good about it; gain acceptance into a group – or quite simply we just do not like feeling guilty about going against social expectations. But when the chips are down this altruism tends to cease and we revert to protecting ourselves or the defined group we are part of.
My own altruism stops dad when I am down to by last bite of chocolate. When my own kids ask for that last bite I do not respond well even though they form part of my tribe.
So for the Joey’s of the world – you are not alone!
We understand that you might be reluctant to share your binary. The science supports you. And we know that the launch of the 660ml sharing packs initiated an internal dialogue. So as we see it you have a few options to ponder while you drink a binary:
- Put on a brave face and share – you don’t really want to – and we understand– but having a toddler meltdown is unlikely to be well received. So, suck it up, sista!
- Make your circle of sharing a little larger – the toddler-sized circle of sharing comprises of one – perhaps as adults we can extend this a little further
- Pick a day (grudgingly of course) to selflessly share. Valentine’s Day or World Kindness Day would be a pretty good ones to pick
- Embrace the inner toddler – take your binary, enjoy in alone and send those eyeing your stash to our website to order their own.
Whilst we know that sharing the same beverage from a bottle isn’t exactly COVID-friendly (please don’t do that), we do encourage you to reach for an extra glass with your nearest and dearest and share the love a little this February
And if you are reading this – Happy Easter!!