When I look around at other people, it strikes me more and more that people will do anything for peace of mind. If you can figure out what their mental illness is, if you can find their drive, if you can find what gives them peace of mind, you understand them.
Sadly, this is too often used as a tool for manipulation. If you know somebody is prone to anxiety, you make them anxious and because they will do anything for peace of mind, you can maneuver their behaviors and limit their perception of their choices in an attempt to use them to achieve your goals. This is used daily in sales but also in relationships. Much of it is codified in how institutions such as schools and businesses function.
It’s so common in marketing that we hardly give it a thought. “Raise your hands if you’re Sure” was a classic marketing ploy to get people nervous about wet armpits – and it worked.