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Day 14: Give $5 to Five Random People

I have been asking people to do things for me for my rejection therapy. Now I want to turn the table and give something to others. Following my graduate school professor Dan Ariely‘s suggestion, I went on the street and offered $5 to five random people. Will they take the easy money or just walk away?

Learning: when you ask people for something, even to offer them money, they might not take it if you don’t offer them a good reason. Next time when you make a request, make sure you use the word ‘because’, no matter how generous your offers are.

By the way, here are Dan’s bestselling books:

  • Carla Willis

    Hi Jai, Can you please create a Facebook page so that those of us who don’t use Twitter and/or don’t want any more e-mail can follow you? Love your vlog — and the vid of your marriage proposal to Tracy!

  • Alysha

    Jai, your blog is so interesting! Thank you for taking the time to do this. I also think it would be interesting to see one of your 100 days involving your wife (maybe when you get your button camera!) I think it would be cool to see if she would say no to you. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Erin Gulick

    I have to say…I am very impressed that you follow through with this daily even when things don’t go right (the camera facing the wrong way, people seeing the camera, etc.) I have been thinking if this was me I probably would have scrapped this project or would have felt like I had to start all over. It makes me realize that fear of rejection may hold me back at times, but there is also a perfectionistic quality about me that makes it hard for me to just accept myself making errors and prevents me from moving forward on things and just letting it be what it is!

    By the way…this is the FIRST blog I have ever followed and I am enjoying it very much. I cry every time I watch the video with Jackie (the first one or the most recent)…she is awesome–but the comments you make both in text and in your commantary on the videos are also very touching.

    • Erin Gulick

      commentary not commantary!

      • Philip

        So true Erin. I have felt the same way when I see the “mistakes” during the recordings. I wonder if the thought of scrapping the project in those cases is a result of losing sight of the “big picture”? In any case, I’m so glad Jai pressed on. I think we’re all learning a lot about ourselves during this journey of his.

  • Rachel

    I can honestly say I am jealous that you know Dan Ariely personally. I am doing my bachelors in Economics and I find the behavior side of economics very interesting.

  • Tara

    Hi Jia, I love what you are doing. I’ve been trying to step outside my own comfort zone by doing small social experiments. Cialdini’s book Influence: The Power of Persuasion might give you some excellent ideas for your project. In this particular case you nailed it that “because” is the magic word. Even if you don’t give a real reason, such as “Can I give you $5, because I want to give it to you” would likely yield a lot more yesses. My partner used this technique to cut to the front of a very long line at a busy Starbucks and it worked! He just said “Can I cut in front of you because I want some coffee.”

    Love it, can’t wait to see more!

  • Qianna

    You’re amazing! Your blog takes courage to make I think. Please continue! I’d love to see more! And I never expected people would turn down money. XD

  • Joanna

    thanks for turning me on to Professor Ariely’s books. I am not a student but I have had a long term fascination with sociology and wish I had pursued that as a career. I just bought Dan’s books through Amazon.

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  • Louise

    Hey Jia,
    Thanks for posting this!
    I just tried it today and it was honestly a lot more scary than I thought.
    I think its the thought that I might be deemed as weird or strange that made me scared I do it.
    But I’m glad I did ๐Ÿ™‚

    I went around my university campus to ask if I can give them $5.
    The guy said no and asked if there were any hidden cameras around xD