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Related Words, Beliefs, Background for Choice #26

Worldview Theme #41:Struggling With a Basic Need: Self-Esteem 

Worldview Theme #52:Physically Challenged ==> Independent Living

for a summary read these 5 entries in order: self concept, self esteem raising it, self actualization, emotional intelligence,
neurotic needs

for a summary read these 5 entries in order: independent living for people with disabilities,assisted living, attitudes toward disabled people, disability--different ways of looking at, disability rights

accessibility--while in general the term connects with the extent to which some thing or service can be used by everyone, it obviously means different things to different people. To those with disabilities, it refers to the extent to which disabled people have access --whether it be an issue of those in wheelchairs being able to enter a building via a ramp, blind people being able to read something in Braille, the hearing impaired being able to "listen" to an oral presentation in sign language, etc.

adaptive technology--technology which allows disabled people to perform tasks that otherwise would be impossible and / or function more effectively.

alienated--estranged, feeling separated from some group, not belonging, indifferent even hostile 

anxiety--the state of being greatly concerned, worried and agitated regarding something, perhaps a problem, in the future one is expecting, perhaps dreading

apathy -- characterized by a person’s lack of feeling, indifference, lack of interest, or general unresponsiveness to a situation where a much greater response would normally be expected.

assertive coping mechanisms--strategies that psychologically healthy individuals use to constructively deal with anxiety and stress. They include: 1) changing the environment or situation, 2) changing one's behavior, and 3) when 1) and 2) fail or are impossible, learning to mentally manage the stress and minimize its internal effects.

assisted living for the sick, disabled, handicapped and elderly -- generally comes in the form of supportive housing with services and represents a middle ground between long term care in one’s home and institutionalized care. Ideally those opting for this would 1) receive care and supervision in a “home like setting”, and 2) have some degree of control over key aspects of the environment and to direct services -- which typically are designed to provide flexibility

assisted suicide—killing oneself accomplished with the help of another person. If the other person is a doctor then we refer to  physician assisted suicide. A doctor might agree to help with this if the person making the request is terminally ill; the help might come in the form of prescribing lethal drugs. In some jurisdictions physician assisted suicide is a crime.

attitude--a characteristic evaluative orientation and / or response tendency toward something previously experienced or encountered.  The associated evaluation can be positive (like), negative (dislike), or neutral  (no opinion.)  Beyond this evaluation--which may or may not be directly communicated--observing the particular response allows more about the underlying attitude to be inferred. Attitudes form based on inputs from three domains: 1) cognitive (thoughts, beliefs), 2) affective (emotions, feelings), and 3) conative (volition, action tendency or disposition).

attitude change, factors in--generally people's attitudes change for various reasons, including 1) as a result of  learning, 2) in response to reasoned persuasion directed at them, 3) in response to an emotional appeal directed at them, and 4) to relieve tension by reducing or eliminating a perceived inconsistency or cognitive dissonance.  A corollary of this is that attitude change is less likely to occur when such consistency is already present.

attitudes toward disabled people and old people--what follows is excerpted from essay on disability and aging by Judith E. Heumann. "As many of us who have been disabled for many years begin to acknowledge that we too will become old, we have started to look at the elders in our communities.  We have begun to join such groups as the Grey Panthers and have sought to actively participate in the discussions concerning long term planning.  We see that the prejudicial attitudes that non-disabled people have historically held towards disabled people take a large toll on older people as they acquire disabilities and lose some functional capabilities.  As the younger, non-disabled become the older disabled, they become increasingly isolated from friends because of transportation problems, architectural barriers and prejudice.  We see they are plagued by an attitude which has taught them to think that to be disabled is a tragedy. Younger people fail to recognize that the likelihood of their becoming disabled is significant and that they must be adequately prepared. "

bullying—aggressively dominating or intimidating a person perceived as weaker by forcing, coercing, or hostilely threatening in an effort to get the target of this to submit. The immediate goal may be to gain (through demonstration) power over this person in the expectation this can later lead to some material, experiential or other advantages for the bully. Or it can be done out of hate or a need to simply be mean to someone else—perhaps in response to, or memory of, something previously done to the bully. If this occurs in a school or workplace setting it is sometimes referred to as “peer abuse”.  Once the target submits, the bullying will likely be repeated, and become part of a habitual pattern of bullying behavior.  Targets can fight back by demonstrating that the imbalance of power the bully feels exists is not as great as thought.  The power in question can be physical, social, or “legal”—where the latter refers to potential appeals to any rules / guidelines associated with the setting involved-- or combinations of these. Efforts the target makes to turn the power thing around to the bully’s disadvantage--and put a stop to the aggression--work best early before a pattern of  abuse sets up.

central conflict -- the conflict between one’s real self and one’s idealized self (according to one theory of personality)

character disorder -- a general label for people who continually engage in maladaptive, inflexible behavior that suggests the self image of a powerless individual who feels up against external forces beyond his or her control. Such people restrict their opportunities for personal growth, often fail to take personal responsibility, and sometimes manage to alienate or provoke those they come in contact with.

civil rights--a term whose meaning is very similar to civil liberties, but with different connotations and focus on discrimination.  In the United States, in the last 140 years, it has often referred to the rights granted African Americans (by the 13th and 14th Amendments) and somewhat negated by Jim Crow laws in the south. A highlight of the so-called civil rights movement of the 1950s and 60s was the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  Other minorities have faced similar battles with mixed results. Women (hardly a minority in numbers!) saw efforts to enact the Equal Rights Amendment fail, while activity on behalf of the handicapped bore fruit in 1990 with passage of the Americans With Disabilities Act.  Efforts on behalf of gays and lesbians recognizing same sex marriages continue.

closure, psychological—refers to the emotional conclusion to a difficult, emotionally scaring or wrenching period in one’s life. In metaphorical terms this can be characterized as “putting it behind you.” “moving on, ” “leaving emotional baggage behind,” etc.

cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) --seeks to improve mental health by challenging and changing thoughts, beliefs, attitudes--especially negative ones or those interfering with personal growth--foster emotional stability, and develop personal coping skills. In contrast to older Freudian therapy, which looked for damaging unconscious factors, CBT looks to evidence-based strategies

cognitive dissonance--refers to the inner tension or perceived incompatibility that one feels from holding conflicting beliefs or behaving in a way that compromises one's deeply held beliefs or values

conscience--a sense of 1) what is morally / ethically right or wrong, and 2) which actions a) will produce more pleasure and happiness vs. more pain and suffering, b) will be praised vs. blamed, c)  potentially promise benefits vs. involve risks and potential liabilities.  When conscientious behavior and actual behavior diverge, guilt and feelings of remorse can result. H.L. Mencken referred to it as "the inner voice that tells us that somebody might be watching." Some connect conscience with religion: it has been termed "God's voice."  Others make no such connection.

defense mechanisms--protective psychological coping strategies by which a person maintains that anxiety producing frustrations or conflicts either don't exist or are not important. Rationalization--convincing oneself that a once desired, but unattainable goal is actually undesirable-- is a particularly common one. Unlike the effective assertive coping mechanisms that psychologically healthy individuals use to deal with stress and anxiety, many defense mechanisms happen unconsciously and are less effective--often serving as "stopgaps" in emergencies. Their frequent use signals mental problems. Thus an adult who often fantasizes, regresses or projects (their own unpleasant thoughts / motives onto others) may be emotionally immature; one who often represses unpleasant thoughts or redirects strong feelings to a safer target (displacement) may be neurotic.

depression -- a psychological mood state characterized by a decrease in activity and involvement along with feeling sad, inadequate, despondent, and pessimistic.

disability--defined in the Americans With Disabilities Act as "a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity."  

Disabilities Act, the Americans with—(ADA) --refers to key USA 1990 government law which has a fourfold purpose as stated in the act itself: “(1) to provide a clear and comprehensive national mandate for the elimination of discrimination against individuals with disabilities; (2) to provide clear, strong, consistent, enforceable standards addressing discrimination against individuals with disabilities; (3) to ensure that the Federal Government plays a central role in enforcing the standards established in this chapter on behalf of individuals with disabilities; and (4) to invoke the sweep of congressional authority, including the power to enforce the fourteenth amendment and to regulate.”

disability, different ways of looking at --While definitions of disability typically begin with identifying it as an individual condition or function which is defective, deficient or impaired with respect to some larger group's norm, often the perspective of whomever is writing the definition then enters and completes the definition in a particular way.  Thus medical professionals might add that such a defect can be rectified through medical intervention, whereas rehabilitation professionals would emphasize that it is to be treated through physical therapy.  Similarly, religious moralists might identify its cause with sin and its cure with seeking redemption, whereas secular humanists concerned about human rights might point the finger at society, even to the extent of connecting the disability's origin with labeling practices and its cure with the need for a change in societal attitudes and the manmade environment.

disability rights movement–seeks to improve the quality of life for disabled people. It seeks to secure equal opportunities for them and works to insure that they have the same access to participating in society that other people have.  From its beginnings on the UC Berkeley campus in the early 1960s, the movement's hard work culminated in passage of the Americans With Disabilities Act in 1990.  The independent living movement–based on the belief that even the most severely disabled people should be able to live in the community, rather than an institution, if they so choose–operates within the broader movement.

discrimination– prejudicial treatment of people based on their being different (in race, religion, appearance, ability, etc.)  In some jurisdictions certain forms of discrimination are outlawed; elsewhere they can lead to policies and practices that harm particular groups

disease -- involves breakdown in normal functioning of body systems, in humans, animals, or plants. If the disease extends over a long period of time, typically with symptoms that are long-lasting and progress slowly, it is said to be a chronic disease.

dreams--a series of thoughts, images or feelings --particularly of anxiety or aggression--that one experiences during sleep. While dreams have a long history--the Bible provides accounts of  several seemingly prophetic ones--researchers are unsure as to how to explain them.  Various scientific explanations have been offered: that dreams allow the brain to consolidate memories, consider thoughts / memories / feelings  that would otherwise be repressed, aid creative thinking, anticipate future contingencies, etc. Vitalists postulate that dreams are one way spirits communicate. 

dysfunctional family--a family characterized by chronic turmoil, inappropriate behavior, conflict and frequent failure of parents to meet their parental responsibilities in a healthy fashion--resulting in children not knowing what to expect, their needs often going unmet, and, in some cases, being abused (verbally, emotionally, physically, or sexually). Family dysfunction can typically be traced to parental alcoholism / substance abuse, their emotional / mental problems, or inappropriate parenting style (too dogmatic, authoritarian, controlling, distant, etc.). While the problem behavior originates with parents, children growing up in such unhealthy environments typically develop their own emotional problems, which increasingly affect family dynamics.

elderly care--refers to services designed to meet the special needs of senior citizens. These can include assisted living, in home care, nursing homes, adult day care centers, hospice care, etc.

egotistical--a person caught up in thinking / talking about him or herself to the exclusion of others, and generally possessing too much self esteem

emotional intelligence--a term first described by Mayer and Salovey in 1990, and popularized by Daniel Goleman in a 1995 book. Of interest to both psychological researchers, and the general public, its meaning is still evolving. According to Mayer, etal in a 2008 Annual Review of Psychology article, emotional intelligence concerns the ability to carry out accurate reasoning about emotions and the ability to use emotions and emotional knowledge to enhance thought."  Goleman's latest conception of emotional intelligence sees four abilities as contributing to it: the ability to 1) be aware of one's own emotions, 2) control those emotions, 3) sense, comprehend, and respond to other's emotions, and 4) help other's emotions develop in the context of a relationship.  Some feel that EQ (emotional intelligence quotient) is as important as IQ in predicting a student's future success.  The last decade has seen many schools mount efforts to help students build emotional intelligence. 

emotions -- another one of those difficult to define terms. Here are three definitions: 1) a catch all term for subjectively experienced states dominated by feelings; 2) the affective or feeling aspect of human consciousness; 3) ancient survival mechanisms to protect us from danger that have evolved to also include (as Steven Pinker puts it) "mechanisms that set the brain’s highest level goals."  

envy -- painful or resentful awareness of someone who is more fortunate or enjoys some advantage

fear--a strong, primary emotion associated with unpleasant anticipation of danger and pain.

gene therapy–by replacing defective genes with normal genes genetic disease can be cured.  This relatively new field  of medicine dates from the completion of sequencing of the entire human genome in 2001. By 2020, according to USA National Health Institutes Director Frances Collins, specific genetic defects  that cause over 7000 diseases had been identified. Treatments—some increasingly being thought of as “cures”—have been developed for many of them including sickle cell disease.  Gene therapy holds great promise for the future treatment of once thought to be incurable diseases with a genetic basis

geriatric --- refers to medicine pertaining to the elderly and disease processes of aging.

goal oriented behavior—refers to the clear envisioning of some outcome, objective, or purpose, and then diligently working toward making this a reality.  Debate centers on whether certain individuals make such repeated use / are so preoccupied  with this behavior that it constitutes a character trait, or whether people occasionally go through states where they have an extreme focus on just one particular goal but are otherwise not so inclined.

guilt -- an emotional state produced by knowing that one has committed a breach of conduct or violated moral standards. If one accepts society’ s version of acceptable behavior, the punishment guilt produces is self administered. From a different (equation based) perspective, guilt can be considered to be: guilt = conscientious behavior — actual behavior                                              

happiness and suffering -- Dostoevsky wrote, “Without suffering, happiness cannot be understood”. In equating Hell with “the suffering of being unable to love”, he again links these two concepts in an extreme sense, with love representing some extreme state of happiness, Hell a place of extreme suffering.

harm avoidance -- cautious anticipation of difficulty in certain situations results in people characterized by this to plan carefully, pessimistically worry, be shy, socially inhibited and sometimes avoid strangers. At times, such people lack energy to cope with situations that produce anxiety, so they passively retreat or hide from them altogether.

health care costs--in the United States topped $2 trillion in 2006, or over $7000 per resident per year--altogether representing 16% of the GDP. This latter figure is the highest of any nation in the world; for comparison Canada, which has a publicly funded health care system, spends 9% of its GDP on health costs.

health insurance-- protection against hospital and medical care expenses (and sometimes lost income) due to an illness, injury, or accident.  In countries with publicly funded health care systems or related social welfare programs, it is provided free or inex-pensively by the government. Elsewhere it can be obtained from private insurance companies. In 2006, private health insurance premiums cost the average U.S. family $12,106; 47 million people (16% of its population) were uninsured.

human rights struggles--what a particular minority or group discriminated against has to go through to finally win rights or be granted concessions / accommodations by the majority. In this regard in American history we can note struggles for 1) an end to slavery, 2) native American tribal survival, 3) immigrants' rights, 4) women's rights, 5) worker's rights, 6) child labor laws, 7) rights for the mentally ill, 8) an end to segregation, 9) civil rights, 10) affirmative action, 11) farm worker rights, 12) rights for handicapped people, 13) gay and lesbian rights, etc.

impairment--a state of being weakened, injured, or functionally negatively effected in some way


independent living for people with disabilities -- typically this means that affected people 1) have the opportunity and responsibility to make decisions and 2) can exercise their right to control their own lives. See adaptive technology

inferiority complex-- originally the term referred to a physical deformity, difference or inadequacy that led to more general feelings of inferiority. In common usage today, the term refers to any sense of difference or inadequacy that has become magnified or generalized to assume a significant place in a person’s mind

insecurity -- lacking confidence and assuredness, feeling uncertain and unsure -- perhaps even unprotected and unsafe. Feelings of anxiety often accompany feelings of insecurity.

introspection -- the process of looking inside one’s mind, recalling events, memories, sensory experiences, etc, and after this mental examination, perhaps reflecting on the experience, and formulating action. This only gives an illusion of free will, behaviorists and determinists would argue.

masochistic personality—refers to a person whose exhibited behavior seems self defeating or self hurtful.  Some have suggested expanding the characterization and recognizing it as a personality disorder. 

mind / body connection --Wholistic health practitioners have long recognized this important connection, now increasingly traditional, reductionist practitioners of western medicine are realizing it as well. If the contents of one’s mind are unhealthy (anxiety-ridden, negative, full of blame, etc) it can literally make the body sick, or get in the way of its getting well. Similarly, psychological health, reducing stress, being upbeat, feeling loved, etc. can be linked to maintaining or regaining physical health. To underscore the importance of feeling loved / not being lonely, Dr. Dean Ornish writes, "I'm not aware of any other factor in medicine -- not diet, not smoking, not exercise, not genetics, not drugs, not surgery -- that has a greater impact on our quality of life, incidence of illness and premature death."

moribund--a person, place, institution, system, etc in a state of dying or near death

narcissism -- an exaggerated sense of self love or heightened emotional investment in one’s self , detracting from one’s appreciation of or emotional investment in others . It has been suggested that this masks deep feelings of unworthiness and emptiness -- unacknowledged, but unconsciously lurking. Critics of individual excess in the consumer culture have linked the psychology behind it to narcissism.

needs, Maslow's hierarchy of--American psychologist Abraham Maslow (1908-1970) ranked needs from most basic to highest as follows: 1) physiological: air, water, food, shelter, sleep, sex; 2) safety: security / not feeling threatened; 3) belongingness and love; 4) self esteem and esteem by others  5) growth needs: both cognitive and  esthetic leading to self actualization. Maslow stressed lower needs had to be satisfied first (e.g. a starving person isn't concerned with esthetics), and that higher needs are more uniquely human. The scheme can be represented using a pyramid.

needs vs. wants--the former are something that you have to have, the latter are something you would like to have.  If you haven't guessed, needs are more basic, things like air to breathe, food to eat, water to drink, shelter, and other things-- including other people and non-material things they can provide, and other intangibles.  As an example of what might be in this last category are needs that involve feelings such as  "the need to feel valued".  How do you decide if something is really a need or merely a want?  One way is to ask yourself the question, "Can I survive without this?" 

negative thoughts, replacing them with positive ones-- You can work on changing your negative thoughts to positive ones by,  every time you realize you are thinking the negative thought. replacing the negative thought with a positive one  For example: replace “I can’t possibly do that.” with “I can do that if I really try hard”; replace “I have never accomplished anything.” with “I have accomplished many things.”; replace I always make mistakes.” with “I do many things well.”; replace “I am a jerk.” with “I am a great person”; replace “I don't deserve a good life.” with “I deserve to be happy and healthy.”; replace “ I am stupid.” with “I am smart.”

neurosis –according to C. George Boeree, this can be thought of as “poor ability to adapt to one’s environment, an inability to change one’s life patterns, and the inability to develop a richer, more complex, more satisfying personality.” Severe cases are linked to emotional disturbance characterized by high levels of stress and anxiety, depression, low self-confidence, and/or emotional instability.  While all humans at some time may exhibit symptoms of neurosis, and it can take different forms, those chronically plagued with such symptoms whose suffering interferes with their normal functioning are such to have a neurotic disorder and are labeled neurotic.  Many neurotics are emotionally needy (see neurotic needs).  German / American psychologist Karen Horney (1885-1952), who developed a theory of neurosis that is still highly regarded, felt that its origin could be traced to parental indifference.    

neurotic disorder vs. character disorder--in dealing with problems, many neurotics often assume they are at fault -- an orientation based on a self image plagued with feelings of inferiority and guilt over past (believed to be) wrong choices. Unlike those suffering from character disorders, who accept little or no responsibility for problems (preferring to blame them on external factors beyond their control), neurotics tend to accept too much responsibility (or blame themselves).

neurotic needs--according to Abraham Maslow these are needs that do not promote health or growth if they are satisfied; to Karen Horney  they represent overused, often irrational or inappropriate strategies used to cope with the problem of basic anxiety caused by interpersonal relationships. From her clinical experience, Horney identified ten such needs, including needs for affection and approval, power, prestige, personal admiration and achievement, perfection and unassailability, etc.  While these are based on things that all humans need, in neurotics the need is distorted and too intense. If the need is unmet or it appears that it will not be met in the future, this can be the source of great anxiety.  

non-verbal communication--communication that occurs without words where messages (both intended and unintended) are sent using eye contact, facial expressions, voice quality or emotional content, gestures, body language, posture, dress, hairstyle, body adornment, etc. While such communication can (either intentionally or unintentionally) transmit information, more importantly it can transmit feelings and attitudes.

pain, physical-- an unpleasant or distressing sensory experience due to bodily injury, disease or disorder that ultimately can be traced to stimulation of nerve endings found on the skin or internally. It can be mild and localized, or agony affecting the whole body.  Pain lasting longer than three to six months is referred to as chronic pain.  

palliative vs. hospice care--the former refers to medical care / treatment that aims to reduce the pain and suffering associated with disease symptoms, the latter to such care provided to the terminally ill or those at the end of their lives.  Unlike palliative treatment, hospice care requires a doctor's prognosis. Neither is seeking to cure the underlying disease.

paternalism -- a system in which adults are treated in a fatherly way like children, with their conduct regulated and their needs met. Typically in exchange for this care, the authority expects loyalty and that those receiving the care will accept their relinquishing of personal control.

personal responsibility, accepting -- Before an individual can overcome some personal difficulty or solve a personal problem, he or she needs to acknowledge that the difficulty or problem exists, by saying something like, “This problem is mine and I must solve it”. In this context, taking personal responsibility means that you don’t ignore difficulties or problems, expect others to solve them for you, or shift the blame to others. In a family or social context, taking personal responsibility can mean voluntarily limiting your choices or restraining yourself for the good of the family, tribe, village, community or whatever. Richard Critchfield refers to this as “the freedom to choose self responsibility”.

personality—following Carver and Connor-Smith writing in the 2010 Annual Review of Psychology, we define personality as “the dynamic organization within the person of the psychological and physical systems that underlie that person’s patterns of actions, thoughts, and feelings.” And note that increasingly the academic psychology community uses a five factor model to facilitate discussion of individual personality differences. These factors are:   1) openness to experience, 2) conscientiousness, 3) neuroticism,                       4) agreeableness, and 5) extraversion.

physical therapy -- is administered to  help people move better. It includes several types of exercise, training and techniques that make walking and / or  movement safer or easier. It aims to increase endurance, make joints less stiff, treat muscle strains, strengthen muscles, reduce pain, and improve balance and coordination  . Techniques to treat pain and inflammation are also employed.  The four most common specialty areas of physical therapy are: 1) orthopedic, 2) geriatric, 3)  neurological, and 4) cardiovascular / pulmonary rehabilitation

positive thinking, the power of -- This phrase is the title of a 1952 best-selling book by Christian preacher and author Norman Vincent Peale. The basic idea behind his book--and behind similar routes to empowerment advocated by various New Age enthusiasts-- is that repeating good thoughts brings good things, while continually dwelling on negative thoughts can bring bad things. In short, people create their own reality by their thoughts.  Many, Peale included, consider thoughts to be things.  Some New Agers don't stop there, but connect whatever they are promoting with the mysteries of quantum physics in claiming that all matter is condensed thought.  For others, similar positive thinking / visualization techniques--and belief that God wants you to have abundant wealth--serve as the basis for teaching others how to get rich.  Coupling such "ask, believe, and receive" recipes with the idea that "you can control the world by what you think" methods provides the essence of numerous books about how to obtain wealth and power.  

powerlessness, feeling of --   a combination of various feelings including  feeling:  small and unable to exert any social influence; being swept up in a tide of powerful events; inability to do anything other than conform or obey a distasteful command;  lacking in having any personal control over the world; for parents  inability to protect / nurture their children, etc.   

practice what you preach -- a proverbial admonition that urges you to do yourself what you advise others to do, or more generally to behave according to your otherwise enunciated beliefs and values.  If the gulf between the reality of your behavior and your ideals is great then you may be criticized (by yourself or others) for being a hypocrite, and  your self esteem and / or effectiveness at motivating others may suffer. 

prayer, therapeutic effect of -- while accounts of faith healers' successes go back to ancient times, many modern investigators have cited evidence for a positive therapeutic effect on the health of people who pray or are prayed for. Skeptics have dismissed this suggestion or attributed an improvement to a placebo effect. In an attempt to use scientific methods to measure the effect of people praying for the well being of individuals undergoing heart bypass surgery, a three year study involving church groups praying for 1800 patients was conducted. The results, reported in the April 4, 2006 issue of the American Heart Journal, found no statistically significant difference in the survival or complication rates of heart patients who were prayed for versus those who were not.

psychopath—a bold person who has high self esteem yet engages in extreme anti-social behavior--often totally self serving, manipulative,  lacking in any real caring about others’ feelings. Given this person’s strong inclination toward violence, his or her physically harming another would not be unexpected, but dishing out verbal or other abuse is more common. It’s believed roughly one in a hundred people fit this description. Both genetic and environmental factors are believed responsible—a history of parental neglect or absence provides one example of the latter.

psychosis--an extreme mental state in which a person has lost touch with reality /suffers from insanity and is incapable of independently functioning in society  

psychotherapy--the treatment (typically by a trained professional therapist) of an individual's mental illness, behavior disorder or other psychological condition typically involving establishment of a trusting, personal relationship between therapist and patient, and employing various techniques. In this way the therapist can help the patient more realistically see his or her problems and provide insight / instruction that enables better coping with them.

resilient--able to recover from trauma and setbacks without breaking down

self actualization -- the ultimate personal development state as studied by Maslow and other psychologists. Self actualized people, according to Maslow have achieved, “the full use and exploitation of talent, capacities, potentialities, etc.” They are self confident but also possess humility that allows them to listen carefully to others and admit their ignorance. They see life more clearly than others partly due to a better understanding of themselves. With this superior perception comes a better sense of right and wrong. Among their attributes, Maslow includes “honesty and naturalness, the transcendence of selfish and personal motivations, the giving up of lower desires in favor of higher ones.” Such people feel a strong bond or kinship with the rest of humanity. They typically seek important and meaningful work.

self concept-- the part of one's worldview that includes an organized mental framework of conceptual schemes--each consisting of concepts a person needs to understand himself or herself. It provides a structure of knowledge upon which explanations of one's behavior can be based along with future behavioral plans and expectations. This personal conception is a synthesized whole (incorporating physical, mental, and social elements) that includes an appreciative sense of one's unique existence. It is based on the totality of one's experience and typically incorporates conceiving of self in both passive (as an inner witness to events) and active (as an inner agent or force) ways.

self esteem --the degree to which a person values himself or herself: one's self appraisal. It provides a measure of personal worth or worthiness. 

self esteem, raising itin this regard, here is a list of  things to do everyday: 1) Pay attention to your own needs and wants;  2) Take very good care of yourself;  3) Take time to do things you enjoy; 4) Get something done that you have been putting off;  5) Do things that make use of your own special talents and abilities; 6) Dress in clothes that make you feel good about yourself;  7) Give yourself rewards;  8) Spend time with people who treat you well; 9) Make your living space a place that honors the person you are; 10) Display items that you find attractive; 11) Make your meals a special time;  12) Learn something new or improve your skills; 13) Do something nice for another person.  (adapted from the booklet Building Self Esteem—A Self Help Guide from the USA National Mental Health Information Center (NMHIC)). 

serenity prayer—from Reinhold Niebuhr: “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.”

shame -- a state of mind characterized by belief that one has acted dishonorably or ridiculously and that other people are also aware of these actions.

social status—related to social class, it is a relative measure of social value—based on somewhat subjective things like respect accorded, , love felt for, personality traits, interpersonal skills, value of work done, perceived competence, lifestyle choices, etc. and more concrete objective  things like physical size, appearance, health, family, friends, education, honors bestowed on,  income, possessions, human associates, etc. Anthropologists tell us all societies have status hierarchies.  Long ago—and even perhaps today in some very primitive patriarchal societies--such status was rather simply a matter of size/strength/ combat used to determine the “alpha male.”  Today, beyond social class factors,  beliefs and values are typically the determining factors even to the extent that some value money, possessions, education, family, health,  work in certain professions, etc.  more than others.  Psychological factors—critical in self-esteem—are also important, especially when a person’s possible insecurity / anxiety over rankings others assign is involved.  This is undoubtedly a factor in people needing to surround themselves with symbols,—of success, power, wealth, etc.—engaging in conspicuous consumption, being overly concerned with images associated with them in others’ eyes, etc. 

stem cell therapies -- offer the promise of curing presently incurable diseases, regenerating failing organs, and healing diseased tissue. The most versatile, and most controversial, such cells are from week old human embryos, which have the potential to grow into any desired type of human cell. These cells are typically obtained from unused embryos created for clinics where couples seeking in vitro fertilization go, embryos which supposedly would otherwise be thrown away. Use of adult body stem cells is not as controversial, but these cells (typically from bone marrow) are less versatile. (Bone marrow derived cells are only capable of developing into a few different types cells in blood or immune cell families.) Research continues, somewhat slowed by the controversy, and many hope that exciting new stem cell treatments will result from it. Others who have moral and ethical qualms, want to halt embryonic stem cell research altogether

stress scale--a scale gauging the relative stress of events occurring in one's life invented in 1967 by psychiatrists looking for a relationship between stress and illness in the medical records of thousands of patients.  The death of a spouse--assigned a stress value of 100--defines the top of the scale; getting married is judged 1/2 as stressful and rates a 50; changing schools is assigned a 20, etc.

suicide–the voluntary taking of one's own life.  Reasons for doing this include shame, guilt, depression, desperation, extreme emotional pressure or anxiety, physical pain,  knowledge that slow painful death is inevitable, financial difficulties, etc.  The WHO estimates 1 million people per yr end their lives this way; another 10-20 million attempt to do so.

unconscious memory -- a term that refers to those acts, events, and feelings that have been repressed. Such repressed memories along with wishes and even instincts are the source of unconscious conflict that Freudian psychoanalysis posited was the key to understanding and treating emotional problems.

vulnerability--the extent to which something (person, place, institution, system, etc.) is susceptible to being hurt, wounded, or damaged by external disturbances 


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