Being a part of a squad is exciting and yet comforting at the same time. This is why people gravitate to a particular squad. In most cases, People are more inclined to associate themselves with a squad that is either of equal social status to them or above them. This can be detrimental to members of the squad because it encourages members to compare themselves to each other but also can serve as a tool to motivate and inspire group members to achieve the same goals.
Negative Social Comparison
In many cases, this can have a negative influence on the squad members. Sociologist, Lijun Song, shares her findings with Yahoo Health regarding the “comparative reference group theory.” She found that often times people flock to groups of people with a higher status, which may result in comparing themselves to these people in a negative way, which is referred to as “negative social comparison.” Each member sees the ability and potential of the others members of the squad, which can lead to a feeling of self doubt or failure. It can be hard for a group member to see their own self worth when he/she is constantly comparing himself/herself to the people they identify with.
Effective Social Climbing
However, being surrounded by successful people or people a group member aspires to be like, can have certain benefits also. According to Song, association with people of higher status can inspire “effective social climbing.” While some squad dynamics can influence depression and low self esteem, some may influence a sense of determination.
Regardless of the effect it has, a squad is a powerful term that can have a negative or positive effect on people. Being a member of a squad does not exclude you from the effects it may have. Squad members still feel the pressure to compare themselves to the standards of the group and may find themselves trying to achieve this standard even though they are technically in-group members.