Is there a word for this?


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The experience when someone doesn’t want something until they see it.

My children experience this when they see each other playing with a toy. They were as happy as they could be until they saw their sibling playing with a toy. They all of a sudden become angry until they get that toy.

Im trying to find a word for this because it helps me overcome weaknesses if I can label it. I find myself doing this extremely often. I am as happy as can be until I see an interesting video, forum post, or article. I then can no longer function until I watch or read the thing I saw.

Is there a word or concept that explains this?

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45 minutes ago, scottyg said:

covetousness

In the scenario of wanting a siblings toy, yes… but not so much in How it applies to me.
 

It’s not about wanting something that isn’t yours, but rather being content until you see something and you can no longer function until you have it. This is an experience that happens regardless of whether it is something you have or don’t have.

a simple example. I am content playing with my children. Then my wife yells “I have ice cream for everyone!”. All of a sudden I am no longer content with my children, I am now craving ice cream and don’t want to play with my kids. Had my wife not told me there was ice cream, I would have been content continue playing with my children.

Its this experience I am talking about. We don’t want something till we know it is there and all of a sudden we demand it.

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  • 5 weeks later...

Are you talking about the difference between "want" and "need"?

For most... somewhere in the back of their mind, ice cream is there, and they want it, they always want it... but it's a latent desire. They know about it, they've had it before, they will eventually have it again. Then someone says it's available, or they're about to go to the ice cream store... you no longer "want" ice cream... instantly you "need" ice cream. There's a mysterious part of the brain, which using algorithms that are only understood by the adversary, which subtly change the wiring in our "desire" matrix, (his favored tool was evidently many years of mind numbingly innocuous cereal commercials), but I digress... In short, he has managed to supplant a simple "want", with the much more demanding, yea even irresistible "need". Although many have managed to resist this "update" to their brain, in most it has taken hold, and in it's insidious way, has spread through out the brain taking over other functions as well. Thus, this newly created and mostly irresistible compulsion, is simply the joining of a "want" and a "need"... or as referred to by the adversary, a "weed". This is only one of the adversary's many masterpieces... the ability to have a latent desire, or "want", that upon hearing a select word or phrase, is instantly changed to a "need". Unfortunately, once the "weed" algorithm is introduced to the fertile soil of the mind, it's virtually impossible to be rid of.

Best of luck to you Fether. 😎

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 3/2/2022 at 3:31 PM, Fether said:

Maybe I’ll just call it “abrupt cognitive latching”. That sounds good

I'm not sure if you even saw my post.  So, I'm going to try again.  Not because I "need" to be heard.  But because I think you are troubled by it and I'm trying to help.

The term you're looking for is FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out).  Look it up.

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16 hours ago, Carborendum said:

I'm not sure if you even saw my post.  So, I'm going to try again.  Not because I "need" to be heard.  But because I think you are troubled by it and I'm trying to help.

The term you're looking for is FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out).  Look it up.

I did see it, sorry I didn’t respond. I am familiar with the term and it’s probably the closest thing to what I am thinking of. However, FOMO is often used to describe something like a party, movie release, new meme, or anything else that provides some social credit for a group of people. A fear of missing out on something that everyone else is going to experience. You don’t want to be left out.

What I am talking about fits into that, but elsewhere. It’s something that happens regardless of whether there is social pressure or social credit gained. 
 

Some examples:

- I go to YouTube to watch a video showing me how to cook empanadas. On my way there, I see a video of Neil Degrasse Tyson explaining black holes from 6 years ago. All of a sudden I NEED to watch that video because it interests me so much. This is the moment. The seemingly primordial  instinct that kicks in. 20 seconds ago I was happily making my empanadas and had no reason to to get sucked into a 10 minute lecture by Mr Tyson. Yet simply seeing it triggered my brain to start screaming at me to go watch this video. Again, 20 seconds ago I was perfectly happy without it, now I cannot imagine ending the day without watching this video.

- You are writing in your journal and the thought comes to mind that you want to order catering for your job in a few weeks. You don’t need to do it now… but your mind won’t leave it alone and now you need to look up catering places and see what is in budget. You can no longer focus on your journaling until you figure out what the catering options are. 20 seconds ago you were happily focused on the task at hand and knew nothing of this need to find catering. You could have happily gone to bed and not dealt with it… yet here you are, searching the web trying to find a good catering company.

- You about to go to bed when you notice someone has texted you an interesting question. You are no longer interested in going to bed and spend the next hour crafting thoughts on how to respond. 20 seconds ago, you were about to go to bed, now your mind won’t leave this alone and you go to bed an hour late trying to craft a response. 

It’s really just that little experience I am intrigued by. That point where you go from content to hopelessly obsessed simply due to a little stimuli and becoming aware of it. 

If you strip away the socially contrived meaning of FOMO, I think there is an argument there for it fitting what I am describing. However, it has a deeply embedded addendum that it is about social events, and what I am trying to describe is something that can happen completely by yourself with zero social influence.

it’s an unbridled curiosity. An easily distracted mind. A mind that quickly grabs on to the newest thing and won’t let it go till it is satisfied. Maybe just ADD/ADHD??? Just plain addiction? A bad Habit?

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Hi Fether, I don't believe the term is used largely by others, but I've come across the concept in studies of environment and behavior that may match what you're looking for. I call it the proximity impulse. Basically, when something we desire is close and easy to access we are more likely to engage in the desire. A classic example is a study called the Office Candy Dish, where visible, open, candy dishes in close proximity to workers leads to more candy consumption than closed off opaque candy dishes or those that are further away.

Thus, just as the candy was not needed before seeing it and being able to grab it, The black hole video wasn't needed until it showed up and became available. I do believe some of these are compounded by an aspect of the fear of missing out as well though, because unless you write down the video name and allot a time to come back later part of you realizes that by not watching it now you may never do so. I think the same can be said of obsessing over responding to a question, except in this case it's an added level of instant gratification as well. By going to sleep and responding in the morning there is delayed gratification in being the one with the answer and the supposed prestige it may bring. There may also be an element of challenge in responding to a text that may be perceived at some level as creating an unsafe environment that needs to be resolved before sleep.

Anyways, hopefully there's something helpful in there for you.

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On 4/23/2022 at 5:43 PM, SpiritDragon said:

Hi Fether, I don't believe the term is used largely by others, but I've come across the concept in studies of environment and behavior that may match what you're looking for. I call it the proximity impulse. Basically, when something we desire is close and easy to access we are more likely to engage in the desire. A classic example is a study called the Office Candy Dish, where visible, open, candy dishes in close proximity to workers leads to more candy consumption than closed off opaque candy dishes or those that are further away.

Thus, just as the candy was not needed before seeing it and being able to grab it, The black hole video wasn't needed until it showed up and became available. I do believe some of these are compounded by an aspect of the fear of missing out as well though, because unless you write down the video name and allot a time to come back later part of you realizes that by not watching it now you may never do so. I think the same can be said of obsessing over responding to a question, except in this case it's an added level of instant gratification as well. By going to sleep and responding in the morning there is delayed gratification in being the one with the answer and the supposed prestige it may bring. There may also be an element of challenge in responding to a text that may be perceived at some level as creating an unsafe environment that needs to be resolved before sleep.

Anyways, hopefully there's something helpful in there for you.

I love this 👍 this is probably the closest thing, if not exactly, what I was describing

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  • 3 weeks later...

It reminds me of an episode of Frasier, where Frasier and Niles are unhappy to discover that a new club has opened in town, and they're not members of it. They don't even know what sort of club it is, but they are determined to join it. After a bit of wangling and string-pulling they manage to become members, and discover it's actually a health and fitness club. For a little while they are happy, until they discover that there's a door they're not allowed to go through because it leads to the "Gold Member" area, whereas they're only "Silver Members". So it's back to the wangling and string-pulling until they finally manage to become Gold Members. They're happy again for a while until they discover yet another mysterious door in the Gold area. Furious, Frasier believes that some deeper paradise is being withheld from him (Platinum membership maybe?) so he storms through the door and finds himself out in the alleyway amongst the trash bins. End of episode.

Edited by Jamie123
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1 hour ago, Jamie123 said:

It reminds me of an episode of Frasier, where Frasier and Niles are unhappy to discover that a new club has opened in town, and they're not members of it. They don't even know what sort of club it is, but they are determined to join it. After a bit of wangling and string-pulling they manage to become members, and discover it's actually a health and fitness club. For a little while they are happy, until they discover that there's a door they're not allowed to go through because it leads to the "Gold Member" area, whereas they're only "Silver Members". So it's back to the wangling and string-pulling until they finally manage to become Gold Members. They're happy again for a while until they discover yet another mysterious door in the Gold area. Furious, Frasier believes that some deeper paradise is being withheld from him (Platinum membership maybe?) so he storms through the door and finds himself out in the alleyway amongst the trash bins. End of episode.

What would you call that phenomenon Frasier experienced?

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