Self Concept Paper

There have been many things that I have learned about myself in the past few weeks. I have learned many things about myself that I would have never known if it was not for this course. I have learned about my self concept, attitudes and feelings and things that might be influenced by gender roles. I have also learned about social influence, group dynamics and relationships. In many ways I learned about myself and how to describe the way that I am and the way that I think.

I have learned that I am a creative and compassionate. I belief that I am a kind person. I am a creative person because I love to put things together. I like to let my imagination run and make things looks more exciting. I use my hands to make arts and crafts which I usually give away to family and friends. I also think that I am a very good listener which makes me a very compassionate person. I try to support anyone that may need my help without expecting anything in return. Even though I do not have much, I like to extend my hand and try to help others when they are in need. I try to put myself in the shoes of the people who are suffering and try to support them in any way possible because if I were in their shoes, I would also want someone to help me. My heart is fill with kindness. I try to offer my help to people whenever I know they need it, without waiting to be asked for help. I am willing to sacrifice many things for my family, friends or anyone who I might be able to help.

Self-Serving bias plays a big part in my life. I have learned that when something negative happens I usually blame someone else. It takes a significant amount of time before I realize that I could have changed the outcome of what happened if I would have invested more time in it. When something good or positive happens in my life, I give full credit to myself and sometimes fail to thanks those that helped me and guided me. People might think that I am self centered and selfish when I do not give credit to others that helped me. I also consider myself to be interdependent because I depend on my husband for a lot of things. For example, I know that he takes out the trash can every week to the curbside. I never take it out because I already know that he is going to do so. When he does forget and the trash can stays inside, I blame him for forgetting to do his task.

Internal locus control is something that plays a major part in my self-concept. This course made me understand that I have very strong internal locus of control and a very low percentage of external locus of control. The Wilderdom.com, states that with external locus control an individual believes that his or her behavior is guided by fate, luck, or other external circumstances (2006). I am the type of person that believes the opposite; I believe that my behavior and any outcome are guided by my own personal decisions and efforts. For example, my husband and I have been trying to conceive for the past two years with no luck. Everyone would just tell us to just let fate take over and that we would eventually have a baby. I started having pelvic pain a couple of months ago and my gynecologist did some ultrasounds. He found what he thought were cysts in one of my ovaries and immediately scheduled me for surgery. During surgery he did not find any cysts but he found a tremendous amount of endometriosis. The gynecologist thinks that this might be the reason of infertility but thinks that it will eventually go away. I remembered all of the times that people would tell me not to worry and to leave everything to fate. I asked my doctor to refer me to a fertility doctor. He was not so sure he wanted to refer me just yet but saw that my mind was already made up and decided to do so. It turned out that the fertility doctor is also an endometriosis specialist and will start me on treatment for both things immediately. If I would have left everything up to fate, I would most likely still be waiting and would still not be on treatment. I think that it is better that I have internal locus of control rather than external. I do not wait around for people to help me or figure things out for me. I go and look and answer or a solution myself.

According to Changing Minds Org., confirmation bias is when we have made a decision or build a hypothesis; we will actively seek things which will confirm our decision or hypothesis (2008). People have the tendency of making up things, then they start believing in it and at the end it can turn out to be a reality. Before I was diagnosed with endemetriosis, I started having some pelvis pain. I immediately made up my mine that something as wrong with me. I had already dignosed myself with a bunch of illnesses before even going to the doctor. I started reasearching on the internet a many side effect for all kinds of illneses. When I finally had my appointment with the doctor, he requested an ultrasound and indeed though he had found cysts on my ovaries which was the first thing I thought I had. I went in to surgery a week later and the doctor did not find any cysts but a condition called endemetriosis. Since first day I first started feeling pain, I knew something was wrong. My own dignostics were not correct, but it was confirmed that there was something definnetly wrong with me. I need to know all of the facts and not just assumptions that have been put out in the open. I do have the tendency of making up my mind about things that have to do with me or about others and do not even give them the chance to redeemm themselves. I ususally try to avoid anything that will make me change my mind.

Behaviour is something that has always influenced my attitudes. I start getting comfortable with a way of life and usually take it for grant it. For example, I have been at my present job for a little bit over a year. I got hired as a accounts receivable clerk, but little by little they have been giving me more responsibilities to take. I have been doing certain tasks that belong to four different departments. I got really comforatble, the more responsibilities they gave me the more I felt irreplaceable and full of knowledge. My attitude started changing, I felt more comfortable and as if I could get everything done. It got to the point to where I had to much work and could not even finish one task before starting another one. Everything was left unfinished. My attitude then started to show signs of worrieness and stress. I had to go ask for help and let them know that I was struggling. The manager decided to give some of my resposiblities to soemeone else ans now my attitude is once again positive.

My mother was a single parent rasing my sister and myself. Although my mom was a signle parent she always tried to teach us that once we would get married we would need to do everything possible to take care of our husbands. She use to also tell us that the reason she was a single parent was beause she had pressured my father to much in to helping her with all kind of things. She wanted us to be able to succeed in our marriages and therefore was trying to incolcute ways of thinking. My mom would always tell me that men are always dominant over wome in a household and therefore we needed to always do what they would ask for. She use to tell us to avoid any conflict with our spouses but never to take any abuse from them. My husband and I both work, but when it comes to the household chores they all fall on me. I was taught by mom to not ask for his help and I never do. If he offers to help, which he usually does, I take his offer and let help around but always with my mother’s comments reinstating themselves in my mind.

On a daily basis the degree of conform in my life is not very high. If I am in disagreement with someone over something that we need to discuss, I usally give them all the points to backup my stament. If I do not agree with someone, I let them know right away. This might make me look as a conflictual person but it is just a way if letting them know that I am not going to agree with them just to be in complete harmony with them. I tend to stick to my decisions and to my first instinct. For example, sometimes at work I am given assignments were I need to make decisions and work on them by myself. I usually try to go with what I think and not ask anyone else. The more I think about it, the more that it makes me nervous to think that someone might have a different opinion, that is why I just stick to my solutions and go with them. There are other times when a group needs to come up with a solution to a problem. In many of those occasions, some of my coworkers just want to finish work assignments and will just to throw in ideas that do not make sense. Sometimes I am the only one that does not agree with them and it creates a little bit of problems. I always make sure that my side of the story as to why I am not agreeing with them and why they need to listen to me is heard.

Many times we will do something against our personal ethics simply because an authority has asked and we might be afraid of the consequences. We might feel that what the authority is asking is the right thing to do even if we do not agree. We might also feel insecure about making our own decisions so we simply go with what the authority says and obey any command. In the everyday life authority affects obedience in many ways. I used to work at a company where I was the bookkeeper. I knew that my boss was using the company’s money for his own personal expenses. He would always give me the receipts and asked me to put it in as a business expense. I knew that it was wrong but also felt that I needed to obey in order to not get fired.

The foot-in-the-door technique was once used persuade me in to joining a committee. The committee was supposed to organize all employee events. I did no really want to join because I already had too many responsibilities at work and I was also going to school. The chairperson of the committee approached and asked me to join because she was really in need of someone that had a company credit card to make all of the necessary purchases. I agree to join the committee to help them whenever they needed to use my credit card. Later they asked me to go do all of the purchase on my own and a few weeks later they asked me to organize one event. A few months later the chairperson was leaving on maternity leave and without asking, appointed me to take over all of her responsibilities. A year later, I felt that it was too much work for me; I decided to use the same technique and followed the same steps to appoint someone to take my place.

The presence of others produces changes in our level of performance and awareness in many ways. After I was diagnosed with endometriosis, I started researching the illness and in most sites it states that abstaining from alcohol will limit the illness from progressing any further. I am a social drinker and have found hard to limit myself when there are people that are drinking around me. I tend to change my behavior and usually give in and have a couple drinks with my friends. The Journal of Studies in Alcohol states that expecting people to behave appropriately when under the influence of alcohol may lead to significant behavioral changes. I have found it really difficult to stay around people who are drinking and when I am not, they usually get on my bad side faster.

In this course I have learned about group dynamics. I have learned about social loafing and deindividuation. There are many ideas on how to deal with social loafing. In the same committee that was appointed to, there was a lot of social loafing going on. There were many members in the group but most of them were not active. They only time the non-active members would show up was when there was a free lunch. The non-active members would always take credit for things that they would never participate in. We, the active members, finally gave them an ultimatum, to either show up to all of the events or say goodbye to the group. Needless to say, we lost a major percentage of members. After the ultimatum, the members that did stay became more responsible and active in the group. There was never again and issue that had to do with social loafing within the group. Members of a group can also become deindividuated in the presence of other group members. There were may times when this particular group was not listed to if all members were not present. People become deindividuated when they loose their self esteem, when they are looking for something to make them feel better or for many other reasons. For example, when someone joins a cult, they become deindividuated. The presence of others exist in a cult and everyone is look at the same way expect for the people that are running the cult.

In my opinion, the personality is what makes someone attractive. When someone treats others with respect they are attractive. Facial features also matter but the personality is definitely the most important thing to make someone attractive.
Similarities in couples help sustain a relationship. People with similar interests are more attracted to each other because they find things to do together. They are able to do things that each other like with out feeling that they have to do it for the purpose of making someone else happy. Couples, who like similar things, find each other interesting and understand each other. Similar interests create lasting sustainability in a relationship and usually are free of conflict.

Communication is a perfect method to be used to resolve conflict and for reconciling. For example, my two small nieces were misbehaving and fighting with each other. They had asked me earlier to take them to McDonalds. I sat down and talked to them, I told them that they had to behave for the next two hours in order for me to take them were they wanted to go. I had to bargain with them because there was no other way they were willing to listen. They decided to behave and I decided to take them to McDonalds. With my nieces I use arbitration frequently. They are about the same age and tend to fight with each other very frequently. They both seem to think that they are always right. When issues like this happen, I try to get involved for mediation. I am very neutral when it comes to them and try to help them resolve any issues so that they can stop fighting. Many of the times, they just need for me to listen to what they have to say in order for them to go about their day and keep on playing with each other. These methods usually resolve many of the conflicts that might arise at my home.

This course has helped me to understand and get to know myself better. It has also helped me use methods to resolve conflicts and to overcome them. It has helped me understand my attitudes and feelings. I learned that gender roles play a big part in my life. I learned about myself and how working with others can change my perspective in things. This course has helped in many ways. The best way to understand myself is by knowing myself.

References

(2008). Confirmation Bias. Retrieved December 13, 2008, from ChangingMinds.org Web site: http://changingminds.org/explanations/theories/confirmation_bias.htm

Neill, James (2006, 12, 6). What is Locus of Control?. Retrieved December 13, 2008 from wilderdom.com Web site: http://wilderdom.com/psychology/loc/LocusOfControlWhatIs.html

Source Citation:Zack, M., and M. Vogel-Sprott. “Drunk or sober? Learned conformity to a behavioral standard.” Journal of Studies on Alcohol 58.n5 (Sept 1997): 495(7). General OneFile. Gale. Apollo Library. 13 Dec. 2008
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Gale Document Number:A19715245

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