Verified by Psychology Today
On ourselves, our societies, and our emotions
Thomas Henricks Ph.D.
Material things are more than tools, habitats, and conveyances. They are the circumstances of who we have been, are now, and will be.
Will, character, and choice-making all are important to change. However, we also must be clear about the broader situations that are the contexts of those choices.
The holiday season can create stress, anxiety, and even depression, leading us to play four typical roles. Do any of them apply to you?
Humans do not simply feel or have feelings. We comprehend, monitor, and communicate those feelings with shared ideas through culture.
Retirement isn't a life of ease. It's an ongoing process of self-realization.
Let us happily go down memory trails. But know that the world moves on and that those past days had challenges that rival the ones we face today.
There is a place for emptying the self of daily concerns. However, the better part of self-development occurs through acts of engagement rather than withdrawal.
Are we trying to heal ourselves in the wrong ways? If self-centeredness is a cultural illness, does it make sense to invigorate our capacities for introspection and social escape?
Most of us find satisfaction in the prospect of being individualistic, even "unique." But at what point does this quest interfere with others' desires to realize the same dreams?
We Americans are proud of our individualism and self-reliance; selfishness is different. It implies that we care little about the life possibilities of other people.
Part 2: Racism is much more than personal behavior. Think about the beliefs, policies and practices that influence all our lives.
Part 1: Answering the question first requires examining different aspects of the issue.
Conspiracy theories let one to be part of a grand heroic army, with flags and badges, secret codes, forbidden weapons, and daring comrades.
America suffers from a disrespect of our cherished, Constitutionally mandated, processes. Play teaches us how to place conflicts into honored forms.
According to psychology's cognitive dissonance theory, most of us do not confront our failings and inconsistencies head-on. Instead, we rationalize, evade, and realign.
Certain events, like last week's assault on the U.S. Capitol by an angry mob, are markers of a generation. Televised images of that will remain with Americans for a lifetime.
For some, mask refusal is an act of defiance against those who claim to "know better" than they do.
Cast your vote for the kind of world you want all of us to live in.
By degrees, we have become a lurking, accusatory society, which divides people into those who are like us and those who are not, those who share our beliefs and those who do not.
Our ancestors understood that life can involve long periods of deprivation. They knew how to restrict their appetites and manage their resources. Do we?
The challenge of the moment is to understand that the well-being of any single person intersects with the well-being of all.
Our challenge is to communicate honestly about what unites and divides us and to construct a society that honors everyone’s self-worth and possibilities for public contribution.
Prejudice is not only a set of attitudes but also an involvement in a wider set of social and cultural pathways.
Why do people attack others when they find themselves faced with complicated, stressful challenges?
After the Coronavirus passes, will we still be the same "people," both individually and collectively? Let's consider that issue here.
This health crisis—with its various economic and social impacts—is a collective affair. We must address it collectively.
There are social and cultural factors that support our misdemeanors, including culturally circulated beliefs and values that rationalize what we do.
Part 2: Each of these pathways of experience is different and significant. Deep involvement, even flow, is possible in all of them. Each supports a distinctive version of ourselves.
There are various ways to think about fulfillment or happiness. Let's consider some of those differences.
President Lincoln called them "the better angels of our nature." How can we encourage them?
Thomas Henricks, Ph.D., is Danieley Professor of Sociology and Distinguished University Professor at Elon University.