Understanding Psychology of Politics

How our internal beliefs affect politics and vice-versa

Understanding the psychology of politics can seem futile. 

Politics are constantly changing and adapting to fit current events and in some instances the latest trends.

But how does psychology fit into politics? 

What does the phrase mean?

We’ll take a look at this and more. 

Psychology and Politics

Understanding the psychology of politics starts with a basic definition. 

The psychology of politics or political psychology strives to understand the relationship between individuals and their beliefs. These beliefs are often influenced by how certain events or actions are perceived. 

These beliefs and/or actions can be influenced by society or the individual. 

For example, a current and common conservative belief is the value of a traditional family unit. This belief may be influenced by an individual’s personal religious convictions, marriage is only between a man and a woman. 

Since this is a widely held belief by conservatives, it is also being influenced and reinforced by certain segments of society. 

To adapt to this belief, politicians are using traditional family values as a part of their political platform. 

The same can also be true for liberals as they push for greater equality. 

By using the psychology of politics, candidates can influence voters’ opinions. 

You are more likely to vote for a candidate that shares your values and beliefs. 

The Role of Psychology in Dirty Politics

What is the psychology of dirty politics?

To understand the phrase, you need to know the difference between clean and dirty politics. 

Clean politics is simply being transparent and following the law. The law is both defined by the courts and a candidate’s actions on the trail and in office. 

The term “dirty politics” can have different meanings depending on the situation. 

A candidate can run a smear campaign. This typically involves painting their opponent in an unfavorable light. Dirty politics often includes running misleading ads about an opponent’s beliefs, values, and voting record.

Instead of relying on proven facts, a dirty campaign uses half-truths and innuendos.

Dirty politics can also occur when a candidate is in office. 

President Richard Nixon and the Watergate scandal is an example of dirty politics. 

Using dirty political tricks to remain in office, push your agenda through, or remove detractors isn’t new. 

President Andrew Jackson used dirty political maneuvering to remove some of his most vocal detractors. 

So, what is the psychology of dirty politics?

Candidates and office-holding politicians using less than honest tactics often use psychology to explain their actions and retain voter support. 

Former president Donald Trump is an example. From his unproven rhetoric to current legal troubles, the former president is convincing a large group of voters to support his actions. 

By using psychology, he is currently maintaining the support and even trust of his base. 

Psychology can convince voters bad behavior is actually okay. 

Office Politics and Psychology

Countless sitcoms combine office politics and comedy. 

One actor works diligently to discredit another. On sitcoms, office politics are humorous and that’s the point. These shows are poking fun at what occurs in the majority of workplaces. 

However, in the real world office politics careers can be permanently destroyed. 

So what are examples of office politics?

Office politics can take several forms from mild to severe actions. 

One co-worker may not like another and start a campaign to encourage others to view the team member in a negative light. This typically includes spreading rumors and lies that are difficult to prove or disprove. 

Another example of office politics is when one person tries convincing others their values and beliefs are the only ones that are right. 

They may push to reject policies dealing with hiring equality. 

Office politics can often mirror what is occurring on the campaign trail. The beliefs that are shaping the political system can carry over into the office. 

How does the psychology of office politics fit into the workplace?

The psychology of office politics is similar to what you find on the campaign trail. 

Even the tactics being used are similar. The ultimate goal is to convince everyone to share the same beliefs and values. 

Using Psychology to Promote Beliefs, Values, and Ideas

Psychology is a powerful tool. When used correctly, it can bring people together. However, it can always draw people apart. 

Even the best psychologist cannot convince everyone to share the same beliefs and values. 

While psychology and politics will continue to be tied together, it is up to individuals to ensure they are following their beliefs and values. 

This article has been created and published on behalf of the Real Clear Marketing Team.