Human behavior cannot be called static and inflexible since it depends on a number of factors and is determined by many related circumstances. In the academic field, there are many theories and models that interpret specific features of the manifestation of emotions and feelings. By using individual concepts as examples, behavioral peculiarities will be examined and analyzed in the context of their implications and in relation to personal experience.
Behaviorism as a Concept
Behavioral models occupy a significant place in scholarly literature and cover a wide range of concepts. For instance, Skinner (1948) analyzes the instincts of pigeons and notes that, despite the stereotypes that only humans can manifest feelings in a targeted manner, some behavioral patterns are also characteristic of the fauna. In particular, head movements, flapping wings, and other reflexes are considered manifestations of eating interest in pigeons, which indicates reflexive behavioral motives (Skinner, 1948). Another example is the study proposed by Watson and presented in the video by New Scientist (2014).
Experimenters develop a conditional fear of some animals in a baby and influence the infant’s emotions through sharp signals. The child begins to be afraid, which proves an unconscious behavioral reaction to corresponding stimuli and the relationship between visual and sound perception. I also encountered such manifestations of behaviorism when I came across pet feeding. They recognized my actions and showed increased interest after hearing the characteristic sounds of an opening refrigerator, thereby confirming reflex behavior.
Another example of a concept that interprets specific manifestations of human behavior is observational learning. In the experiment demonstrated by Bandura, children’s propensity for aggression may be observed, and specific patterns are analyzed based on unique character traits (PsychHub, n.d.). This experiment explains how participants who are able to observe the behavior of others behave in the context of the availability of different game tools.
As a result, one can conclude that observation is an important aspect of learning and adopting certain patterns unconsciously. In my life, I came across such situations when I observed the behavior of children in stores. One child started to cry and demanded that his parents buy a toy for him, and other children who had been silent before also began to cry and act similarly, which is an example of an observational experience.
The provisions of gestalt psychology are additional factors explaining some specific features of behavior. According to Sharps (2017), the manifestations of emotions can be distinctive not only in different circumstances but also with different interpretations, when a person puts a certain meaning into his or her actions. The significance of individual deeds can largely determine the propensity for specific patterns. I observed situations when adults preferred appropriate driving routes to work, preferring certain roads to others for personal reasons. This behavior explains the individuality of behavioral traits that depend on the tendency to specific beliefs.
The examples of individual behavioral theories prove that human actions are largely subordinate to reflexes and depend on many factors, including both external drivers and internal beliefs. Academic concepts explain the tendency to unconscious imitation, observation, and other properties of the human psyche, which testify to the distinctive backgrounds of specific inclinations and habits. Illustrative examples confirm the complex nature of behavior as a multifaceted aspect of personality in various living conditions.
New Scientist. (2014). How a baby was trained to fear [Video]. YouTube. Web.
PsychHub. (n.d.). Albert Bandura’s Bobo Doll experiment [Video]. YouTube. Web.
Sharps, M. (2017). Aging, representation, and thought: Gestalt and feature-intensive processing. Routledge.
Skinner, B. F. (1948). ‘Superstition’ in the pigeon. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 38(2), 168-172.