Experts say that ‘voter psychology’ has long been an area of interest in psychology and aims to understand the psychological factors that shape individuals’ political attitudes. Dr. Serdar Nurmedov, a Psychiatrist, who emphasizes that voter behaviors are formed through a combination of rational and psychological factors, draws attention to the concepts of ‘supporter, partisan, and fanatic psychology.’ Nurmedov also highlights that elections are not the end of life and adds, “Elections are important and require serious consideration to make the right decisions. However, the impact of election results on other areas of life is limited, contrary to what is believed.” He further states, “It should not be forgotten that individuals who behave sensibly in their decisions are considered more respectable and trustworthy by society. Making and implementing sensible decisions is of utmost importance for the preservation of peace and security.”
Associate Professor Dr. Serdar Nurmedov, a psychiatrist at Üsküdar University NPİSTANBUL Hospital Feneryolu Medical Center, made explanations about voter psychology and voting behaviors based on psychological orientations.
Voter psychology provides clues on how campaigns should be organized
Dr. Serdar Nurmedov, a Psychiatrist, stated that ‘voter psychology’ is a research branch of psychology that examines voter behaviors and aims to understand the psychological reasons underlying individuals’ political preferences. He stated, “In general terms, voter psychology investigates the psychological factors behind individuals’ political choices and how these preferences are formed.” Nurmedov noted that voter psychology has long been an area of interest in psychology and aims to help understand the psychological factors that shape individuals’ political attitudes. He said, “These factors include personality traits, ideological tendencies, social pressure, campaign messages, perception of leaders, and event interpretation. Voter psychology provides important clues on how election campaigns should be organized. It can also help predict election results.”
Voter behaviors are examined under ‘rational evaluation’ and ‘psychological factors’
Nurmedov, who states that voter behavior is roughly analyzed under two main headings, explained these headings as “dependent on rational evaluation” and “dependent on psychological factors.”
Nurmedov noted that voters’ preferences are often assumed to originate from rational thinking processes. He said, “Factors influencing preferences based on rational evaluation include economic situation, party ideology, candidate’s personality, campaign promises, and media influence.”
Psychological state plays a role in voting preferences
Nurmedov reminded that voter behavior is not solely based on rational thinking processes. He stated, “Voters’ psychological states, values, attitudes, and emotions also play a role in voting preferences. These psychological factors can be listed as group identity, emotional reactions, first impressions, attitudes, and personal experiences. Ultimately, voter behavior is formed by a combination of rational and psychological factors.”
Supporters can feel stressed or anxious because they want to win
Psychiatry Specialist Assoc. Dr. Serdar Nurmedov also addressed the concepts of “supporter, partisan, and fanatic psychology” and explained the concept of “supporter psychology” as follows:
“Supporter essentially means a supporter of an artist, sports club, political party, or ideology. Supporter refers to the attitude displayed to contribute to the success of the group they support and to support them. A supporter’s psychology involves intense emotional reactions related to the success of their team. Supporters can feel stressed or anxious because they want their teams to win and they feel great enthusiasm when they do. Similarly, when their team loses, they can experience disappointment and even negative emotions such as sadness or anger. However, supporter psychology generally does not involve destructive extremes.”
Supporters criticize, oppose, and question among themselves.
Nurmedov, who states that the concept of “yandaş” (partisan) has a similar meaning to the concept of “taraftar” (supporter), emphasizes that it is mostly used in a political context. He explains, “A partisan is strongly committed to a specific political party or leader and defends their policies. In other words, while the concept of supporter is broader, the concept of partisan is a narrower definition used in a political context. Partisanship psychology generally entails a closed attitude towards different perspectives of others. This situation can sometimes lead partisans to believe in misleading information and ignore facts. However, partisanship does not involve blind attachment, idolization of their leaders or the groups they belong to, or perceiving them as the absolute truth. At times, they criticize, oppose, and question them internally.”
Describing the psychology of fanatics, Nurmedov also explains the definition of “fanatic.” He states that the term “fanatic” is generally used for individuals who passionately show devotion to an idea, sports team, leader, or any other subject. Nurmedov points out that individuals consider the person they are fanatical about as an infallible being. He says, “Fanatic psychology generally arises from an individual’s excessive attachment to a specific belief or ideology, and this attachment is seen as part of the person’s identity or a characteristic of themselves. They cannot criticize the person or ideology they are fanatical about. When criticized by others, they never accept opposing views and blindly defend them. When they feel inadequate, they can go to extremes and exhibit destructive behavior.”
Nurmedov emphasizes that considering elections as the end of life is not accurate. He says, “Elections only constitute a part of our lives, and they are not the end of our lives. Elections are important and require serious consideration to make the right decisions. However, the impact of election results on other areas of life is limited, contrary to what is believed. Losing can be a step towards creating new opportunities and can help us achieve success in other areas of our lives. In summary, elections are important but not the end of life.”
Sensible individuals are considered more respectable and trustworthy.
Nurmedov, who also emphasizes the importance of common sense, stated, “Common sense is one of the most important characteristics that helps people approach events in a rational, realistic, and balanced manner, distinguishing them from other living beings. Individuals with common sense tend to make the right decisions by relying on information and logic rather than acting based on emotions.”
Drawing attention to the fact that common sense will enable us to make rational and composed decisions, especially in stressful or difficult situations like the election process, Nurmedov concluded his statement as follows:
“It should be noted that individuals who act with common sense in their decisions are regarded as more respectable and trustworthy by society. Making and implementing sensible decisions in society is crucial for the preservation of peace and security. Therefore, the concept of common sense plays a critical role in maintaining and enhancing social life.”
Source: (BYZHA) Beyaz Haber Ajansı