A psychological experiment. In theory, the less people available to help, the better your chances of actually getting help. It's amazing how this plays out in real life.
A similar experient is "The Smoke Filled Room" where, if you are alone you might get up and run, but if there are other people there ignoring the smoke, you might also ignore it. (In the video the others were in on the experiment)
So here is how to combat this in your own life, according to chuck..
Anytime you see someone struggling or needing some sort of help. Like. "old lady drops her loaf of bread at the store, or woman trying to get a stroller through a door.." Simple, non dangerous everyday moments..
- Turn towards the problem.
- Always, always. Take immediate action. Don't look to see if someone else will help. That someone is you and the time is right now. If it helps imagine R. Lee Ermy *gently* asking you if you are waiting for an invitation to get your ass moving.
If you do this every time you have a chance you will be surprised how quickly "immediate action" becomes part of your life. It doesn't hurt that you also are a better person for it and your wife and neighbors will think of you as a darn nice guy. "Always the first one to step up and help."
All that goodwill is just a bonus..
Just like every cat is a lion in their heart, Only you will know that you are really a hard core bad ass practicing immediate action drills for emergency situations.
The old lady is just a training aid