Why are you afraid of snakes? Do you know how to cope with your phobias? How do you understand the concept of preparedness? Preparedness is a concept, which explains why some associations are learnt more rapidly than others. In simple words, preparedness theory explains why you avoid consuming poor quality food and why you are afraid of spiders and rats. Preparedness theory is a very interesting issue for analysis, because it touches upon numerous aspects of psychology and human behavior. I want to write about the most essential elements of preparedness theory of phobias in order to emphasize its usefulness and importance for self-understanding.
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The preparedness theory of phobias is connected with the name of the American psychologist Martin Seligman. He is a famous psychologist and educator who tries to help people cope with their psychological problems. He has written many self-help books, which help people cope with the challenges of their life. Martin Seligman has developed the theory of preparedness, which tries to explain the roots of the definite phobias. To my mind, this theory has sense, because the author uses many persuasive arguments, which prove that phobias are connected with our evolutionary history. It is possible to say that preparedness theory is related with a Pavlovian model of acquisition of the definite types of reactions towards the irritant. I should say that this theory could be easily integrated into this model.
According to Seligman, phobias are closely connected with survival. When one wants to survive, he should react to the impact of the definite irritants rapidly. Doubtless, when a snake bites you, you will never try to touch it again. You will be very careful and think twice before touching it. When a snake bites your grandparents, parents, you and your children, this fear will remain in the brain of your entire family. With the run of time, your offspring will be afraid of snakes though it has never bitten him. Moreover, he will be afraid of snakes even though he has never seen them. This subconscious fear is called phobia. Naturally, phobias are important for survival. When an organism has learnt to fear the natural threat, he has more solid chances to survive. In addition, this organism shares this fear with its offspring and this species of organisms survives.
The preparedness theory of phobias touches upon all organisms. This innate predisposition to fear a threat is one of the most important factors, which have helped people survive and adapt to the challenges of the natural environment. Preparedness theory can be explained from the side of psychology. When one was scared in childhood by a rat, spider or dog, this fear remains in his mind for the rest of his life. Very often, people do not remember about the case when they were scared.
Nevertheless, they are afraid of these animals subconsciously. Fortunately, it is possible to defeat these phobias co-working with a psychologist. He tries to find the roots of your phobia in your childhood or any other crucial periods of your life and helps you cope with your fear.
Preparedness is also connected with conditioned taste aversion. This phenomenon occurs when an animal or a human being associates the taste of the definite food with poison or intoxication.
Consequently, we do not consume spoilt products, because we understand that it can cause harm to our health and life. When the smell or taste of a product is suspicious to us, we will not consume it.
We will look for a good-looking and tasty food, because it is approved by our brain. This phenomenon is also the result of evolution.
Preparedness is a very interesting topic, because it explains our behavior when we smell a poor-quality food or see a spider near at hand. In my opinion, preparedness is the most important phenomenon, which has helped us survive in the long run of time.
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