Ben Franklin famously said that, “He that has once done you a kindness will be more ready to do you another, than he whom you yourself have obliged.” This statement reflects the Ben Franklin effect – the idea that you are more likely to do a favor in the future for someone who you have done a favor for in the past, even more so than if they had done a favor for you.
When boiled down, the result is that we tend to like people more when we do them a favor. This also means that if people do a favor for us, they like us better than if we had done a favor for them. It might sound counter-intuitive, but research suggests that this is an example of cognitive dissonance at work.
For a cute video explaining the Ben Franklin effect and how to put it to good use in your romantic relationships, check out this Soul Pancake Science of Love video.
And, if you are sitting down to Thanksgiving dinner this week, give it a try with someone around the table!