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Unit 8: Motivation, Emotion and Stress
Transcript of Unit 8: Motivation, Emotion and Stress
Physiology of Hunger
Myers' AP Psychology, 2nd Edition
Unit 8: Motivation, Emotion, Stress
6-8% of AP Exam
motivation: a need or desire that energizes and directs behavior.
instinct: a complex behavior that is rigidly patterned throughout a species and is unlearned.
homeostasis: a tendency to maintain a balanced or constant internal state; the regulation of any aspect of body chemistry, such as blood glucose, around a particular level.
Instinct / Evolutionary Psychology
Optimal Arousal Theory
Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs
The idea that human instinct is what motivates us.
Although instinct theory failed to explain most human motives, evolutionary psychology’s underlying assumption that genes predispose species-typical behavior remains as strong as ever.
The idea that a physiological need creates an aroused state that drives the organism to reduce the need by, say, eating or drinking. With few exceptions, when a physiological need increases, so does a psychological drive—an aroused, motivated state.
Optimal arousal theory holds that some motivated behaviors actually increase arousal. Well-fed animals will leave their shelter to explore and gain information, seemingly in the absence of any need-based drive.
Yerkes-Dodson law: the principle that performance increases with arousal only up to a point, beyond which performance decreases.
Maslow’s pyramid of human needs, beginning at the base with physiological needs that must first be satisfied before higher-level safety needs and then psychological needs become active.
Figure 37.1 Drive-reduction theory Drive-reduction motivation arises from homeostasis—an organism’s natural tendency to maintain a steady internal state. Thus, if we are water deprived, our thirst drives us to drink and to restore the body’s normal state.
Psychology of Hunger
Monitoring stomach contractions Using this procedure, Washburn showed that stomach contractions (transmitted by the stomach balloon) accompany our feelings of hunger (indicated by a key press). (From Cannon, 1929.)
The hypothalamus As we saw in Module 11, the hypothalamus (colored orange) performs various body maintenance functions, including control of hunger.
Insulin: Hormone secreted by pancreas; controls blood glucose.
•Ghrelin: Hormone secreted by empty stomach; sends “I’m hungry” signals to the brain.
•Orexin: Hunger-triggering hormone secreted by hypothalamus.
•Leptin: Protein hormone secreted by fat cells; when abundant, causes brain to increase metabolism and decrease hunger.
•PYY: Digestive tract hormone; sends “I’m not hungry” signals to the brain.
glucose: the form of sugar that circulates in the blood and provides the major source of energy for body tissues. When its level is low, we feel hunger.
set point: the point at which an individual’s “weight thermostat” is supposedly set. When the body falls below this weight, an increase in hunger and a lowered metabolic rate may act to restore the lost weight
basal metabolic rate: the body’s resting rate of energy expenditure.
Hunger’s pangs correspond to the stomach’s contractions, but hunger also has other causes.
Neural areas in the brain, some within the hypothalamus, monitor blood chemistry (including glucose level) and incoming information about the body’s state.
Genes and environment interact to produce obesity.
• Obesity correlates with depression, especially among women.
• Twin and adoption studies indicate that body weight is also genetically influenced.
• Environmental influences include lack of exercise, an abundance of high-calorie food, and social influence.
Hunger also reflects our memory of when we last ate and our expectation of when we should eat again.
Humans as a species prefer certain tastes (such as sweet and salty), but our individual preferences are also influenced by conditioning, culture, and situation.
Some taste preferences, such as the avoidance of new foods, or of foods that have made us ill, have survival value.
In the 1960s, gynecologist-obstetrician William Masters and his collaborator Virginia Johnson (1966) made headlines by recording the physiological responses of volunteers who masturbated or had intercourse. With the help of 382 female and 312 male volunteers—a somewhat atypical sample, consisting only of people able and willing to display arousal and orgasm while being observed in a laboratory—Masters and Johnson monitored or filmed more than 10,000 sexual “cycles.”
Sexual Response Cycle
During the initial
, men’s and women’s genital areas become engorged with blood, a woman’s vagina expands and secretes lubricant, and her breasts and nipples may enlarge.
, excitement peaks as breathing, pulse, and blood pressure rates continue to increase. The penis becomes fully engorged and some fluid—frequently containing enough live sperm to enable conception—may appear at its tip. Vaginal secretion continues to increase.
Masters and Johnson observed muscle contractions all over the body during
; these were accompanied by further increases in breathing, pulse, and blood pressure rates.
, the male enters a refractory period, lasting from a few minutes to a day or more, during which he is incapable of another orgasm. The female’s much shorter refractory period may enable her to have more orgasms if restimulated during or soon after resolution.
Sexual dysfunctions are problems that consistently impair sexual arousal or functioning. They can often be successfully treated by behaviorally oriented therapy or drug therapy.
estrogens: sex hormones, such as estradiol, secreted in greater amounts by females than by males and contributing to female sex characteristics. In nonhuman female mammals, estrogen levels peak during ovulation, promoting sexual receptivity.
testosterone: the most important of the male sex hormones. Both males and females have it, but the additional testosterone in males stimulates the growth of the male sex organs in the fetus and the development of the male sex characteristics during puberty.
Levels of analysis for sexual motivation
Compared with our motivation for eating, our sexual motivation is less influenced by biological factors. Psychological and social-cultural factors play a bigger role.
Our need to affiliate or belong—to feel connected and identified with others—had survival value for our ancestors, which may explain why humans in every society live in groups.
Because of their need to belong, people suffer when socially excluded, and they may engage in self-defeating behaviors (performing below their ability) or in antisocial behaviors.
Feeling loved activates brain regions associated with reward and safety systems.
Social isolation can put us at risk mentally and physically.
We connect with others through social networking, strengthening our relationships with those we already know.
When networking, people tend toward increased self-disclosure.
Working out strategies for self-control and disciplined use can help people maintain a healthy balance between social networking and school and work performance.
emotion: a response of the whole organism, involving (1) physiological arousal, (2) expressive behaviors, and (3) conscious experience
Like a crisis control center, the autonomic nervous system arouses the body in a crisis and calms it when danger passes.
polygraph: a machine, commonly used in attempts to detect lies, that measures several of the physiological responses (such as perspiration and cardiovascular and breathing changes) accompanying emotion.
Much of our communication is through body movements, facial expressions, and voice tones. Even seconds-long filmed slices of behavior can reveal feelings.
Women tend to read emotional cues more easily and to be more empathic.
The meaning of gestures varies with culture, but facial expressions, such as those of happiness and fear, are common the world over.
Cultures also differ in the amount of emotion they express.
Research on the facial feedback effect shows that our facial expressions can trigger emotional feelings and signal our body to respond accordingly.
We also mimic others’ expressions, which helps us empathize.
Stress Response System
Stress is the process by which we appraise and respond to stressors that challenge or threaten us.
Stressors fall into three main types: catastrophes, significant life changes, and daily hassles.
general adaptation syndrome (GAS): Selye’s concept of the body’s adaptive response to stress in three phases—alarm, resistance, exhaustion.
Catastrophes are unpredictable large-scale events, such as wars, earthquakes, floods, wildfires, and famines. Nearly everyone appraises catastrophes as threatening. We often give aid and comfort to one another after such events, but damage to emotional and physical health can be significant. In surveys taken in the three weeks after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, for example, two-thirds of Americans said they were having some trouble concentrating and sleeping (Wahlberg, 2001). In the New York area, people were especially likely to report such symptoms, and sleeping pill prescriptions rose by a reported 28 percent (HMHL, 2002a; NSF, 2001). In the four months after Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans’ suicide rate reportedly tripled (Saulny, 2006).
SIGNIFICANT LIFE CHANGES
Life transitions are often keenly felt. Even happy events, such as getting married, can be stressful. Other changes—graduating from high school, leaving home for college, losing a job, having a loved one die—often happen during young adulthood. The stress of those years was clear in a survey in which 15,000 Canadian adults were asked whether “You are trying to take on too many things at once.” Responses indicated highest stress levels among young adults (Statistics Canada, 1999). Young adult stress appeared again when 650,000 Americans were asked if they had experienced a lot of stress “yesterday”.
Some psychologists study the health effects of life changes by following people over time. Others compare the life changes recalled by those who have or have not suffered a specific health problem, such as a heart attack. These studies indicate that people recently widowed, fired, or divorced are more vulnerable to disease (Dohrenwend et al., 1982; Strully, 2009). In one Finnish study of 96,000 widowed people, their risk of death doubled in the week following their partner’s death (Kaprio et al., 1987). Experiencing a cluster of crises—losing a job, home, and partner, for example—puts one even more at risk.
Events don’t have to remake our lives to cause stress. Stress also comes from daily hassles—rush-hour traffic, aggravating siblings, long lunch lines, too many things to do, family frustrations, and friends who don’t respond to calls or texts (Kohn & Macdonald, 1992; Repetti et al., 2009; Ruffin, 1993). Some people can simply shrug off such hassles. For others, however, the everyday annoyances add up and take a toll on health and well-being.
Many people face more significant daily hassles. As the Great Recession of 2008–2009 bottomed out, Americans’ most oft-cited stressors related to money (76 percent), work (70 percent), and the economy (65 percent) (APA, 2010). Such stressors are well-known to residents of impoverished areas, where many people routinely face inadequate income, unemployment, solo parenting, and overcrowding.
Prolonged stress takes a toll on our cardiovascular system. Daily pressures may be compounded by anti-gay prejudice or racism, which—like other stressors—can have both psychological and physical consequences (Pascoe & Richman, 2009; Rostosky et al., 2010; Swim et al., 2009). Thinking that some of the people you encounter each day will dislike you, distrust you, or doubt your abilities makes daily life stressful. Such stress takes a toll on the health of many African-Americans, driving up blood pressure levels (Ong et al., 2009; Mays et al., 2007).
Stress and Illness
psychophysiological illness: literally, “mind-body” illness; any stress-related physical illness, such as hypertension and some headaches.
psychoneuroimmunology: the study of how psychological, neural, and endocrine processes together affect the immune system and resulting health.
Surgical wounds heal more slowly in stressed people.
Stressed people are more vulnerable to colds.
The bottom line: Stress does not make us sick, but it does alter our immune functioning, which leaves us less able to resist infection.
Coronary heart disease, North America’s number one cause of death, has been linked with the reactive, anger-prone Type A personality.
Compared with relaxed, easygoing Type B personalities, Type A people secrete more of the hormones that accelerate the buildup of plaque on the heart’s artery walls.
Chronic stress also contributes to persistent inflammation, which heightens the risk of clogged arteries and depression.
Stress does not cause diseases such as AIDS and cancer, but by altering our immune functioning it may make us more vulnerable to them and influence their progression.
Facial Feedback & James-Lange Theory of Emotion Experiment