Behavior Articles

Behavior is defined as emotional, physical and social activities that people experience within these stages of their lives: prenatal, infancy, childhood, the teenage years, and adulthood. Human behavior is influenced by different cultures, societies, morals as well as genetic information.

Here you will find articles that help you to better understand how human behavior works and what to expect from people in your lives. This section can inform your understanding of the many people in your life and assist you in developing positive relationships with friends and family.

What Is An Applied Behavior Analyst, And What Do They Do?

What Is An Applied Behavior Analyst? As the name implies, applied behavior analysts study behavior. Applied behavior analysts can study a wide variety of behaviors, situations,...

How Can I Find The Right Children’s Behavioral Therapist Near Me?

Finding the proper care for kids can sometimes be tricky and sometimes even stressful, especially for parents. Despite this, regardless of what a child’s condition is, you can...

How ABA Behavior Strategies Can Help Change Maladaptive Behaviors

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) can be a useful asset in the process of changing unwanted, negative behaviors into ones that are positive and productive. In this article, you...

25 Examples Of Stimming Behaviors

Many people engage in some form of stimming, but it may not appear as obvious to some as others. The behavior includes engaging in movements or sounds created in a repetitive...

What Are Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors And How Are They Controlled?

There are some habits people do regularly that seem normal such as touching their hair or washing their hands after using the bathroom, but a body-focused repetitive behavior...

Important Behavioral Development Milestones In Childhood

Parenthood can be an exciting prospect for those who are expecting, and many can’t wait to welcome their bundles of joy into the world to love, cherish, and guide them through...

How To Change Your Thoughts And Behavior Patterns For The Better

If you have thoughts or behavior patterns that you know are unhealthy or unproductive, or even toxic to yourself and those around you, changing can be hard. After all, these...

What Is Extinction? Behavior Modification For Reducing Problematic Behaviors

Extinction, in psychology, has a different meaning than the traditional sense of the word. However, to an extent, they are also similar in some ways. In this article, you will...

4 Behavioral Theorists That Made Their Mark On Psychology

Behavioralism, also sometimes referred to as behavioral psychology, is a school of thought that revolves around the notion that all human and animal behaviors are conditioned,...

What Are Internalizing Behaviors?

Are you or someone you know struggling with internalizing behaviors? If so, you are in the right place to get help. When we think about negative or harmful behavior, we usually...

The Behavioral Approach To Psychology: An Overview of Behaviorism

There are quite a few different approaches to psychology and how the mind works and evolves, what affects human behavior, and the various factors to impact one’s thoughts and...

What Is Behavioral Learning?

Behavioral learning isn’t just a theory of interest to those in education, though they should certainly be familiar with it. Parents and people in other leadership positions...

Human behavior is “actions.” Many psychologists describe what behavior is and how certain actions can be problematic or maladaptive. They also talk about changing behavior so that you can be more productive in your life. Behavior is a range of actions, such as gestures or mannerisms made by human beings or other organisms. Today, we are focusing on human behavior. Some psychologists talk about human behavior, such as Freud or Skinner, and one of the most common forms of therapy is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) which was formulated and developed by Aaron Beck. Starting with Aaron Beck and the methods that he produced, let’s dive into how behavior relates to and affects mental health.

CBT and Aaron Beck

Cognitive behavioral therapy is a model of treatment in which a person works to change their negative thought patterns to make them more productive. Thoughts and feelings are separated from one another. Beck establishes that your ideas are not stagnant and that they are malleable. Aaron Beck was a psychologist and professor who worked at the University of Pennsylvania. He is often referred to as the “father of CBT.” He was a pioneer in treating depression and anxiety, and he developed the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) which can measure as an instrument how depressed a person is and what they need to get well. Today, Beck is in his 90’s, and his daughter, Judith Beck, is active in the mental health community. With regards to CBT, he is the founder, and he talks about “automatic thoughts” and how they fall into different categories - negative ideas about the world, themselves, and the future. There’s something called the “cognitive triad,” which is a triangle. At the top of the triangle, there are ideas about the world. On the left-hand side of the bottom, there are contrary views above one's self, which is caused by negative opinions about the future, which is on the right hand of the triad (or triangle.) So, automatic thoughts are about negativity. They are pervasive, and they are distorted thinking, so, what CBT does is challenge the automatic ideas - which can be maladaptive -, and you learn to work through them using thought records and cognitive distortions.

Cognitive Distortions

Here are some common cognitive distortions developed by Dr, Aaron Beck that promotes negatively thinking. Learning these will help you identify negative thought patterns and work to change them.

Black and White Thinking: One potential cognitive distortion is black and white thinking - so, you don’t see things in “shades of grey.” Either someone is a bad person or an angel, no in between. Say that someone is not a terrible person, but you can’t see that they have flaws, as everyone does - it’s either good or bad, and that’s it. That’s an example of black and white thinking. Black and white thinking is often present in those who have Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) and experience a rigidity in thinking. Black and white thinking is dangerous because it makes it difficult to navigate relationships and it is incredibly rigid.

Mental Filtering

When you engage in mental filtering, you take a negative detail and amplify it in your mind, The amplification of the bad part of the situation then overshadows the positive aspects of a what you’re experiencing. For example, you might be at a great party, and you spill a glass of wine on your pants. You forget how much fun you’re having at the event, and focus on the wine spill. Your vision of reality is skewed and darkened. A person who is using mental filtering sees only the negative and disregards what is positive.

Overgeneralization

Much like mental filtering, overgeneralization happens when a person comes to a conclusion based one piece of negative evidence, rather than looking at the entire situation as a whole. If there’s a single unfortunate event, they assume that it’s going to be a pattern of negative happenings.

Jumping to Conclusions

People who jump to conclusions believe they know what’s going to happen or what another person is thinking or feeling. People who jump to conclusions may believe in fate, and that they don’t have the autonomy to make their life choices.

Changing Behavior

We just looked at some of the cognitive distortions and how they influence our behavior. It’s crucial to understand that your behavior isn’t stagnant or fixed. You have the power to change the way you behave. One excellent way to work on how you act towards others is by seeing a therapist, and online counseling can help.

Online Counseling

When you work with an online counselor at BetterHelp, they will guide you towards healthy coping strategies. You may not be aware of behaviors that don’t serve you or are upsetting others. Your online counselor can help you learn about yourself, and teach you ways to curb unhealthy actions. You’ll learn how to navigate challenging situations and life transitions. You can stop blaming others for their actions, and learn to take responsibility for yourself. Your wellness matters, and we want you to feel good about your efforts.

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