Originally posted on Dan Ariely:
Runners run, teachers teach, and cheaters cheat. It’s all there in the name, right? Despite the obvious logic, one could argue that even those who aren’t “runners” per se do, on occasion, run (even if it’s just across a busy street), and that we all occasionally teach our kids or friends something they didn’t know before. So what about cheaters?
I’ve written at (book) length about how all of us lie and cheat a little. Sometimes we’re unaware of it, as is the case when we have a conflict of interest or begin believing exaggerated versions of our own stories, and sometimes we’re not. Raise your hand if you’ve ever kept extra change after buying something or told someone you were busy when you weren’t. Exactly. So how does identity (whether it’s “liars” who do these kinds of things or just people who occasionally lie) play into cheating? If someone insinuated that you were a cheater before you even had the chance to bend the rules, would it make you cheat more, less, or the same?