scarcity principle in economics and human relations

Scarcity Principle in Economics and Human Relations

Scarcity principle

is an economic theory which states that limited supply, combined with high demand, equals a lack of pricing equilibrium. Typically, demand and supply will gravitate prices to a stable balance; however, scarcity of a good or service changes the way buyers will value the purchase, thus leading to new market conditions.

And you ask why I bring this up in a website for kinky people?

Because it fuels our social relations as well as the economic world we live in. That is according to Dr Robert Cialdini any way.

When we think that there isn’t enough good stuff like attention or affection, we think we have to fight to gain it. This idea leads to things like sibling rivalry, jealousy, envy, bigotry, hatred… It leads to violence because some people are willing to take what they don’t think they’ll be given.

It affects our friendships, familial relationships, and yes even our dating life.
Is playing hard to get a good thing when you date?

It affects how we deal with our coworkers and our neighbours. If we think there aren’t enough resources to go around, we act badly toward each other. We act based on greed, rather than our best social skills. We don’t use the sandbox lessons we learned in kindergarden. If you want an example of that, consider how often there are riots when people think food is scarce and they won’t be on the receiving end of the scraps.

How we allow others to persuade us impacts how we look at our place or role in relationships as well. One persuades, one listens. One gives, one receives. One leads, one follows. With most people, that is flexible. But not everyone has the same adaptability. They didn’t learn to share with siblings for eg. And they didn’t learn how to negotiate things like turn taking and sharing.

Dr Robert Cialdini came up with principles of persuasion
that he thinks define our social dynamics.


The first universal Principle of Influence is Reciprocity.
Simply put, people are obliged to give back to others the form of a behavior, gift, or service that they have received first.


The second universal Principle of Persuasion is Scarcity.
Simply put, people want more of those things they can have less of.


The third Principle of Influence is the Principle of Authority.
This is the idea that people follow the lead of credible, knowledgeable experts.


The fourth principle is Consistency.
People like to be consistent with the things they have previously said or done.


The fifth principle is the Principle of Liking.
People prefer to say yes to those that they like.


And the sixth principle is Consensus.
Especially when they are uncertain, people will look to the actions and behaviors of others to determine their own.


Between two or three people or a small group, we look at ideals such as trust, respect, and loyalty.

But in a larger group we look at contagion factors. Rage and fear, sadness and greed swell until the group acts as a mob. Which are whole other discussions. Basically we become a herd of wild beasts when we act as a mob.. We revert to our primitive state. And we are so easily influenced in that state. In that state, extremes like rape, suicide and homicide happen. So don’t underestimate the impact of social influence.

How mature we are and how sincere/strong in our beliefs we are determines how easily we fall into group behaviours. How steady we are as a person, how healthy our self esteem is, determine how reactionary we are when someone tries to persuade us. And how suggestible we are determines whether we allow the crowd to influence our actions.

It sounds so simple when you discuss it as theory. And you think that you could never be influenced against your will by others… Yet maybe you aren’t that able, when your identity or the life of someone you love depends on the people who are trying to influence you. Or if you have often been thru this and develop learned helplessness. Nobody knows how they’ll react till they experience that moment, do they?

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s