What is built into our systems naturally and what has influence us based off our experiences and surroundings? Nature vs Nurture!
This is such a beautiful, educational, and moving piece of art. In this piece, there are two individuals. One is made entirely of “Nature” (standing up) covered in trees, grass, leaves, and moss, while the other is Nurture, (bent on one knee) made of city life and everyday surroundings such as buildings and roadway. In the left hand of Nature, is a car. I would assume the car is representation of the human who is being molded by life. My interpretation of this piece of art, is that Nature is carefully holding the growing individual in one hand, while holding back Nurture, with the other, as much as possible.
Nature vs. Nurture is one of the biggest psychological debates. “Do our human traits develop through experience, or are we born with them?” (Myers, 2016, p 5). To what extent are we shaped by our culture, circumstances, upbringing, differing genes, and maternal nutrition? “Can we assume that our personality is merely a product of our genes? No, because genes and environment-nature and nurture-work together like two hands clapping.” (Myers, 2016, p 111). There are so many factors of why someone ends up being intelligent or not, pretty or ugly, happy or depressed, good or evil, etc. that we are unable to clearly define whether its due to nature or nurture. This is one debate that will go on for a long time because there is not a clear way to define why individuals will take on certain trait whether inheritable or not. My favorite example of this is adoptive children or children with absentee parents. If you have a child that doesn’t know one or more of their parents, can they still have similar traits? Yes they can! This is the part where nature comes into play. There are certain genes and genetic traits that will pass along to a child no matter if you are involved in their life or not. There could also be experiences that molded you for better or for worse. I have had certain experiences in my life that caused me to be compassionate. I used my compassion to go into the medical field so I could best utilize this trait. Much like the artwork, nature tries to take control and hold back experiences from molding each individual. While nurture is there fighting its way to make an impact of each persons’ life.
There is so much you can take away from this class. When it comes to understanding psychology and how you can use it in everyday life, you need to have an open mind. We have just began to understand how the mind works and why we do things. Why people are the way they are? Why certain influences are stronger than others? Why do some show aggression and others do not? These are just a few examples of why psychology is so important. It helps us understand the reasoning behind all of these concepts. Through research methods such as descriptive, correlational, and experimental scientists are able to slowly crack the surface and find answers to some of the questions we have been asking.
I personally will take observational learning more serious and start paying better attention to what my nieces, nephews, and future children are observing. Whether its television shows, video games, or music, I will be more mindful of violence, sexual content, and unchristian like materials. I was aware that children are impressionable but wasn’t aware of how violence and sexuality effected them so much. With that being said I will also be mindful that all the children in my life are actually paying more attention to us then we think. I will take this into consideration next time I am upset and venting or telling a story that is adult ears only. This concept will make me want to be a better role model for them and teach them more Christian beliefs and how a Christian should act. I want them to observe me and imitate the good qualities not the bad.
Another concept that has changed my thinking would have to be Operant Conditioning. Our Behavioral Modification projects really opened my way of thinking about how I should condition myself. I will be able to use this with all aspects of life. I started to use it to get myself healthier but I could also use it to stay more organized at work, studying more for school, increasing exercise , and many other areas that need to be tweaked. I was amazed how a variety of responses could be achieved with different reinforcement measures. Positive reinforcement and negative reinforcement could both be used to help me achieve my goals. I usually tend to respond better with positive reinforcement but there are times I know that negative reinforcement would be pertinent to me completing my goal.
Finally, stress is another concept we discussed throughout this class. It amazes me how big of a role stress can play on effecting the body. I will now be able to implement specific actions such as refraining from harping on things out of my control, I will be able to alleviate some levels of stress. Now that I know stress can cause sickness and other ailments in the body, I will pay more attention to things that cause stress to me personally. I will be able to combine experimentations and research to keep track of my “stress triggers.” Yoga and meditation are going to be my new favorite activities, along with exercise, to release endorphins and cause me to feel happy instead of stressed out. There is so much more that I have not mentioned about what I have learned in this class. I love psychology because no matter how many versions of this class you take, you will always learn something new and intriguing.
Myers, D.G. (2016). Exploring psychology. New York: Worth.
Sexual Behavior: What Kids Learn From Media. (1998-2017). Retrieved from http://www.greatschools.org/gk/articles/sexual-behavior-teens-learn-from-media/
Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. (2017). Retrieved from https://www.callofduty.com/infinitewarfare
Why Endorphins (and Exercise) Make You Happy. (2016). Retrieved from http://www.cnn.com/2016/01/13/health/endorphins-exercise-cause-happiness/
Teen Mom 2. (2017) Retrieved from http://www.mtv.com/shows/teen-mom-2