A person who chooses to eat meat in a vegetarian community is behaving abnormally. Abnormal behavior goes against or is opposite to the behavior of the average individual. This definition is problematic, as it does not account for scenarios where pathological behaviors are in the majority. An alternate definition is behavior that is socio-culturally deviant, such as public nudity or swearing in front of children.Continue Reading
Other definitions give importance to the experience of the individual in comparison to his peers. Behaviors that result from a reaction to distress when others feel none are considered abnormal. These are called deviations from ideal mental health, and they include panic attacks and phobias. Behaviors that impede or directly threaten functioning are also considered abnormal and are referred to as maladaptive behaviors, such as eating disorders. Opposing sides argue that some behaviors threaten survival and functioning for a greater good, as in the case of a firefighter risking his life to save others. By definition, a firefighter's behavior is abnormal.
Because of these exceptions, a multi-criteria approach is frequently used to gauge a behavior's abnormality. Depressed behavior, for example, can be statistically abnormal, a violation of societal norms, deviate from ideal mental health standards and impede functioning.Learn more about Psychology
Psychology is a broad field that studies phenomena such as sensation, perception, mental health, social behavior, cognition, behavior, psychological development, emotions, memory and other mental functions and their manifestations. The physiological processes underlying the psyche are studied in the fields of physiological psychology, neurology and neuropsychology.Full Answer >
Examples of mental traits include mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, behavioral disorders like Narcissistic personality disorder, and behavior patterns in general which can function as complete or incomplete descriptions of a human personality. These traits are prevalent in human beings and inform much of daily behavior.Full Answer >
An instinct is a hard-wired, inborn behavior that enables a human or animal to cope with its environment. An infant grasping an object placed in the palm of his hand, breathing, a spider spinning a web and a bird building a nest are all examples of instinctive behavior. Learned responses are not instincts. Instincts help humans and animals avoid danger, form groups and even choose mates.Full Answer >
The nature versus nurture debate seeks to determine to what extent inherited and learned aspects impact the behavior of a person. Different approaches in the field of psychology focus on one side, or both, to a varying degree. The biological approach and behaviorism occupy the two ends of the spectrum.Full Answer >