Hello all. Earlier I was reading THIS THREAD
and slowly the gears in my head started
turning. I've been an admirer of psychology ever since I can remember. Being able to know why people are the way that they are and what leads them to
act the way that they do has always been facinating to me. So while I've been in school for the past 7 years I've made an effort to take every
psychology class that my school offers. A couple of years ago I was exposed to 'learned helplessness' and I believe a vast ammount of people may be
suffering from it today.
Basically, learned helplessness is a disorder where someone or something has been told so many times that there is nothing that can be done about
their current abysmal situation, that they won't even try to make it better when an opportunity presents itself. Even more, they are hindered from
even being able to recognize an opportunity to better themselves. A good example of this is Seligman and Maier's experimentation with dogs (I know
people care immensely about animals on this site, as they should everywhere, but alas, this expierement was performed on dogs, so I do apologize,
while I believe animal testing is wrong, I do believe in analizing existing data). Basically, they took some dogs and put them into a 'shock box'. One
group was able to escape the 'shock' by pressing a lever, while a second group of dogs had no lever. The second group of dogs was then put into 'shock
box No. 1' (the box with the lever) and they made no attempt to avoid the shock. They just sat there and took it. There are more examples and
expierements should you want to look them up.
Now, dear reader, think about yourself and the society around you. How many times has someone said "there's nothing we can do about that" or "that's
just the way it is"? How many people around you have you seen fail, while thinking to yourself 'why should I even bother?' I know how you feel. I've
gotten the short end of the stick so many times that, although I always give 100% in my endeavors, I usually expect the worst to happen. It's all a
mirage! The lever is there, but most people are just unable to see it.
This principle also can be applied to entire groups of people. Think back a couple hundred years. Can you think of a group of people who had enough
numbers to change everything about their lives, but didn't because of learned helplessness? Hell, think about preasent times, can you think of a group
of people who have the numbers to change everything about their lives, but don't because of learned helplessness? Hello..... America.....are you
there? We were told for years that the governemnt is there for us, but I think most people are slowly waking up to the idea that this too, is a
mirage. We've learned to depend on 'big brother' for our very existance, while each and every one of us is completely capable of providing for
ourselves. Sure there are special cases, some people have serious mental problems that exempt them from providing for themselves, but not the
astounding number of people we see today.
Anyhow, that's what I believe is happening on a personal and global scale. Just something to think about if you've never been exposed to 'learned
Thank you for your time,
Edit: Just to have some sort of source heres the Wikipedia Article on Learned
edit on 4-1-2013 by MessOnTheFED! because: (no reason given)