Bhaviour across the lifespan

Erik Erikson’s psychosocial theory of development is I think explained best the personality development of an individual. His theory focused on the boundary between the child and the environment and then graphed the evolution of the maturing ego’s relations with an expanding social world. Psychological developments results from the interaction between maturational process or biological needs and the societal demands and social forces encountered in everyday life. His theory concerns psychological development throughout the lifep, rather than just the birth through adolescence.

He based his theory on the concept of epigenetic principle, which means that development takes place in order, clearly identified stages, and that phase ought to be adequately resolved for growth to proceed smoothly. The eight stages of the life cycle clearly illustrate the development of an infant to his older years. He believes that development does not end when maturity is reached, but extends into old age which is very true. The process of learning continues throughout life. For instance, stage 1 of Erikson’s trust vs.

mistrust theory, infants learn either to trust or mistrust that their needs will be met on the basis of their experience (Sternberg and Wilson, 2004). Successful passage of this stage leads to a child that wants to learn to become self-sufficient and to develop his own independence. At each step of development, children learn that certain behaviors are acceptable whereas others are not. The years of middle childhood are particularly for the learning taught by the family, culture, and society. Peer relationships become more important over family.

Erikson believed that individuals on this stage search for an identity as part of the society and must balance the desire to be unique and the need to conform. Adulthood life stages focused on achieving unselfish love, the feeling of productivity and wisdom. Certainly, that many people experience conflicts at the ages Erikson specified, everyone would undergo the eight life cycles, but then successful passage of these stages can be a healthy experience for an individual. Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) has been regarded as a neurotic disorder, like phobias and anxiety states.

A neurotic patient, unlike a psychotic, he is aware that he has a problem- that is, he has insight and his contact with the outside world is relatively intact. People with this problem can suffer considerable distress, and often feel that they are helpless victims. Severe OCD can cause major incapacitation and drastically affects people’s lives. Criteria used for diagnosing OCD are: a person must have obsessions, compulsions or both; the disorder is not due to another disorder such as depression or organic disorders.

Finally, the obsession and/or compulsion cause distress to the person and interfere with his life and activities (Penzel, 2000). A person with this disorder experienced unwanted recurrent and persistent thought which is not voluntarily produced just like when one is saying I am obsessed in football but experiences that invade a person’s consciousness that can be worrying, repugnant, blasphemous, obscene or nonsensical. An obsession is a passive experience: it happens to the person.

He may be engaged in some activity, like driving a car, when the obsession intrudes into his consciousness. It disrupts his normal thinking and behavior. Compulsion on the other hand is a repetitive and seemingly purposeful behavior that is performed according to specific rules or in a stereotyped manner (Maj, 2003). The behavior is not an end in itself, but is usually intended to prevent some situation or event, though, the action is not related in a logical or reasonable way, or it may be clearly excessive.

The person feels a strong compulsive urge to engage in a particular behavior which he carries out despite resistance and recognizing that it is irrational or excessive. Recovering from OC disorder is not simply a matter of sheer willpower or resistance. OC individuals need intensive help in retraining themselves, both in terms of behavior and their outlook on life. Therapies such as behavioral, cognitive and psychotherapy are the treatments that were used by psychiatrist in order to help an OC person to overcome his disease.

Medications like antidepressants can also help to treat OCD, but important treatment came from the person itself, his willingness and the support from the people around him. WORK CITED Sternberg, R. & Wilson, J. (2004). Psychology. US: Thomson Wadsworth Maj, M. (2003). Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. England: John Wiley and Sons Penzel, F. (2000). Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders: A Complete Guide to Getting Well and Staying Well. New York: Oxford University Press

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