Synthesism pt. 4 “I” #4 Goal-directed Behavior

I. the “do” system
a. brain areabasal ganglia & cerebellum & frontal lobe
b. organ systemmuscles/skeleton
c. neurotransmitter(s)dopamine
i. psychological construct(s)attitudes & persuasion, behaviorism, temperament/delay of gratification, goals/plans, self-efficacy
ii. emotional spectrumsuccessful-failure (self-esteem)
iii. diseasesaddiction, Parkinson’s, schizophrenia (motor issues), anhedonia
d. developmental stage5 – 10 yrs.; esteem (Maslow); concrete operational (Piaget)
e. lifecycle stageschool-aged to right before adolescence
f. evolutionary stageland dwelling non-mammal animals
g. cosmological stageend of life
h. space-time/info./learningreinforcement schedule/feedback; longer term acquisition (as in training) short to long term retention/behavior change; short since can be unconditioned
i. Behaviorgoal-directed (e.g. athletics, sex, hunting, foraging)
j. persongoals, plans, drives
k. environmentintrinsically rewarding stimuli and feedback from task; ability (limitation)
l. chakra4. anahata
m. sephirot9. netzach – victory
n. colorsgreen (& red)
o. Freudian concept/phaseego/latency
p. OCEAN traitsA

Dopamine is not strictly the rewarding chemical in our brains but rather a receptiveness to feedback as to whether a behavior has successfully achieved its goal. This is why drugs that flood the brain with it tend to make everything seem like a success because it numbs us to actual feedback. Recreational drug abusers tend, therefore, to feel great simply breathing and scratching, two actions that lower-order selves do automatically. Self number 4 is the skilled self, the trained self, the one that rides bikes and plays piano and tennis. The lizard brain that helps rats figure out mazes.

The environment is assessed for feedback for behaviors that serve a specific purpose and can be done well or poorly; this environment includes the body and its positioning, which we adjust to perform a behavior optimally. Information in the form of feedback, a.k.a. achievement of a goal like hitting the tennis ball back, is obtained in the short term but over some training period and can result in long-term behavioral changes. Unlike the other systems that involve instantaneous information gathering and short-term action or that involve short-term info. gain with long-term consequences this is a system of timekeeping that involves the cooccurrence of feedback with action and can be measured using reinforcement schedules. This essentially is the behaviorist’s brain.

This self is the second associated with a subdiscipline within my wheelhouse, social psychology, namely the area of attitudes and persuasion. The hierarchical or relational self has to do with the social psychology of interpersonal, one-on-one relations. An attitude in social psychology is a taste, a like or dislike. Often times we like things because an intrinsically rewarding stimulus like sweet taste was paired with an attitude object to make us like the object; this is called evaluative conditioning. Hence, the study of attitudes goes hand in hand with the study of how behavior is molded by the pairing of reward with behavior for example.

NOTE: In conditioning behavior, there is positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement where some reward is taken away, and punishment, but no negative punishment where negative or noxious feedback is removed; this latter condition is for negative drive states like hunger, where a behavior in the right direction is rewarded by removing a negative feeling.

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