Psychology Is The Study Of Human Behavior!

The definition of behavior, on this page, is limited to human behavior. I will discuss the following behaviors: aggressive, addictive, political, sexual, eating and more.

This is a fascinating topic. As a psychology major in college, I studied human behavior. I was so intrigued by the topic that I planned to become a clinical psychologist.

The definition of behavior can be loosely described as our manner of conducting ourselves. Or one might describe it as the way a person acts or behaves. But, it is much more than that. It is the way we think about things and how we respond to stimuli.

Some behavior is innate and some is learned. Innate behavior is instinctive and is usually inflexible. Our reply to a stimulus triggers a certain response in innate behavior. Whereas, learned behavior is the result of our experiences. Parents and teachers play a large role in learned behavior.

The study of human behavior (psychology) includes the study of the mind. It tries to explain and understand how we think, act, feel and communicate. As a result, psychologists play a role in various performance enhancements or motivational endeavors. They may be requested to address a team or an individual prior to a sporting event.

Another interesting way of thinking (or behavior) is our country's political views. Interestingly, the United States alters it position every 8 years or so as it elects a Democrat president, then a Republican, then a Democrat, then a Republican. Are we changing our behavior or just getting disgusted with the sitting president. 

Children and Behavior!   (Part of the Definition of Behavior)

Children may not know how to communicate. They may get the attention that they desire through bad behavior. Or they may feel unsafe or could have been mistreated by another child. There can be many reasons for their behavior.

If their needs are met and they feel respected, however, there is much less need to "act out". Punishing a child for bad behavior may stop the behavior momentarily, but it may not get at the cause of the problem. It is wise to talk to the child and try to determine why they misbehave.

Children who habitually misbehave have a higher risk for mental health issues and school failure. Parents and teachers must be aware of behavioral problems such as lying, cheating, destruction of property, skipping school, tantrums, and so on. It is wise to watch for any of these "warning signs". 

According to the U.S. Department of Education, high school students who have behavioral disorders or emotional disorders are over ten times more likely to be arrested. They may be internalizing their depression, or are being teased or bullied, or have phobias and fears.

When I was a child, life was simpler. Bad behavior was punished and good behavior was rewarded. Yes, I got spankings as a punishment. I think they were more effective than today's choice of "time outs". I quickly learned that throughout life, there will be consequences for my behavior. 

Serious Behaviors That Can Affect One's Health!

Anorexia, a psychiatric eating disorder, is characterized by the self image or perception of being overweight. This occurs even though the person is extremely underweight. The behavior results in an aversion to food or a refusal to eat.

A person who suffers with anger management may display aggressive behavior or yell or even resort to physical violence. They feel anger that is out of proportion to the situation. This can be harmful to one's mental health.

Schizophrenia, which is a form of psychosis, can have tragic consequences. It can involve bizarre delusions and hallucinations as well as incoherence.

Any behavior that results in extreme mood changes should be a warning sign that something is wrong with that individual. It may be accompanied other signs such as weight gain, secretiveness, or changes in social interactions.

A person who displays anger, as described above, is said to externalize their behavior. It is also possible to internalize behavior. These individuals may show signs of depression of be rather withdrawn. They may have low self-esteem and tend to be suicidal.

Addictive behavior can be anything that interferes with daily living. Of course, the first things that come to mind are alcohol, nicotine and drug addiction. But, there are more forms of addictive behavior. It can be any activity such as gambling, shopping or even work. All of these things can lead to a psychological dependence or a physical addiction. 


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