By Mark R. Leary, Rowland S. Miller

A colleague lately acknowledged a talk she had had with a gaggle of graduate scholars. For purposes that she can't remember, the dialogue had grew to become to the subject of "old-fashioned" rules in psychology-perspectives and ideology that had as soon as loved common help yet which are now considered as old fashioned curiosities. the scholars racked their brains to outdo one ofthe historic minutiae of psychology: Le Bon's one other with their wisdom fascination with the "group mind," Mesmer's idea of animal magnetism, the short-lived approval for "moral therapy," Descartes' trust that erec­ tions are maintained by means of air from the lungs, and so forth. while it got here his tum to give a contribution to the dialogue, one pupil stated an enigmatic magazine he had visible within the library stacks: the magazine of irregular and Social Psychology. He suggestion that the inclusion of irregular and social psychology in the covers of a unmarried magazine appeared a wierd mixture, and he puzzled aloud what kind of old quirk had led psychologists of an prior new release to treat those fields as by some means similar. Our colleague then requested her scholars in the event that they had any rules approximately how such a wierd mix had stumbled on its manner right into a unmarried journal.

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Extra info for Social Psychology and Dysfunctional Behavior: Origins, Diagnosis, and Treatment

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Alternatively, the research on illusion of control suggests that depression results not so much from perceived lack of control as nondepression results from perceived control. In other words, the tendency to overestimate one's degree of control provides a buffer against depression, and people who do not overestimate their control are more prone to depression. This raises the provocative possibility that the incidence of depression would be higher if everyone accurately perceived the minimal control they have over many objectively uncontrollable events.

When the cause of one's difficulty is thought to be temporary or modifiable, the individual may continue to work toward control and show few helplessness deficits. Thus, the chronicity or time course of a depressive episode may be related to the stability of the perceived causes. Global-specific. , specific). The more global the apparent causes of one's helplessness are, the deeper the depression and the more it generalizes to many areas of life. Thus, from the standpoint of the individual confronting an uncontrollable situation, the most dysfunctional attributions are those that emphasize internal, stable, and global causes, and the least dysfunctional involve factors that are external, unstable, and specific.

Moreover, they can help develop or maintain dysfunctional behavior. Johnson, Ross, and Mastria (1977) presented a case study that exemplifies this point. " He never masturbated but had been brought to orgasm several times by this mysterious entity. Understandably, he was quite concerned. When Johnson et al. encouraged him to attribute his sensations to normal sexual desire (he had no steady partner) and inadvertent masturbation through leg movements, his delusions disappeared and he had no further problems.

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