We may think of emotions as falling primarily into two groups -- the unpleasant and/or excited feelings, and the calm and/or satisfied emotions. The first group tends to accompany the seeking effort of the organism, and the second to accompany satisfaction of the need, the consummatory experience. The first group appears to have the effect of integrating and concentrating behavior upon the goal, rather than having the disintegrating effect which some psychologists have pictured. Thus, in anything but excessive degree, fear accelerates the organization of the individual in the direction of escape from danger, and competitive jealousy concentrates the efforts of the individual to surpass. Learning to navigate vulnerability carefully is paramount because vulnerability is the seed of connection. As you'll learn in the next article, connection can bolster us when we come up against hard times and oppression; CONNECTION IS THE ANTIDOTE My mom died young, in her sixties, in a car accident. Three months later, my father died as well, from internal bleeding related to his cardiovascular disease. Given the low severity of his disease, it seemed well before his time. But my siblings and I understood the real cause of death. My dad died of a broken heart. He just couldn't live without my mom. I don't think dying from a broken heart is just a metaphor. But in reality, the things I did when I was drunk scared me, and I didn't know how to stop drinking. Shortly after Leo moved back home after graduating from college, his parents quickly realized that their son's drinking was beyond just normal young-adult antics. Luckily, when they sat down and confronted Leo about their concerns, Leo realized his drinking and partying had crossed a line, and he was ready to work on getting sober. Staying sober is harder than I ever thought it would be, Leo continued. I'm twenty-two years old. Most of what people my age do for fun is go to parties, bars, and concerts.

It goes without saying that 99 percent of the time drinking is involved. I'm trying hard to build friendships with other sober people my age, but it takes time. I don't just want to cut off the friendships I have with all the people I met at college and friends I've known since I was really little too. It's estimated that 19. Leeper (110) has formulated this point of view more fully. The intensity of the emotional reaction appears to vary according to the perceived relationship of the behavior to the maintenance and enhancement of the organism. Thus if my leap to the curb to escape the oncoming automobile is perceived as making the difference between life and death, it will be accompanied by strong emotion. The reading of another article tonight in a new psychology article, a behavior which is seen as having a slight relationship to my development, will be accompanied by a very mild emotion indeed. Both these propositions have been worded and discussed as though behavior always had to do with the maintenance and enhancement of the organism. As we shall see in later propositions, the development of the self may involve some modification of this, since behavior is then often best described as meeting the needs of the self, sometimes as against the needs of the organism, and emotional intensity becomes gauged more by the degree of involvement of the self than by the degree of involvement of the organism. As applied, however, to the infra-human organism, or to the human infant, Propositions V and VI appear to hold. VII) The best vantage point for understanding behavior is from the internal frame of reference of the individual himself. It was mentioned in Proposition I that the only person who could fully know his field of experience was the individual himself. Behavior is a reaction to the field as perceived. Without my mom, my father lost his primary source of belonging and connection. Connection is that beautiful feeling I get when I see someone else, value them, and feel seen and valued by them. We all want connection. We need it. Social disconnection is bad for health and well-being. You didn't need me to tell you that, did you?

Of course it is. It is well established that people with fewer and weaker social relationships die earlier on average than those who are more strongly connected. Research indicates, too, that we feel less pain when we are with those we love, and that our feelings of self-worth are more dependent on our social connections than our financial status. THE BIOLOGY OF DISCONNECTION This means that those abusing alcohol develop a destructive set of behavioral responses and associations, formed from deeply ingrained habits, telling them that drinking alcohol leads to rewarding experiences. This makes for a difficult and tenacious behavior and emotional association to break. In treatment, Leo worked hard on identifying his triggers--more specifically, the people, places, and things that made him more likely to have an urge to drink, setting him up for a relapse. Whenever I'm working with someone in recovery, one of the very first treatment goals we set involves devising a plan of action to avoid succumbing to tempting alcohol-abuse triggers. For Leo that meant working with him to identify and anticipate alcohol triggers, being able to recognize them in their early stages, and developing strategies to reduce their power over his behavior. Leo recognized that his coping mechanisms were severely compromised and that even after completing twenty-eight days of an in-patient treatment program, his old habits remained tenacious. One of his most tenacious habits was social-media use. People my age, me included, see social media and our smartphones as lifelines. But now social media is one of my triggers for me, because so many people I follow post pictures of themselves out partying and drinking. I can't help but feel left out and that I'm missing out on being with my friends when I'm scrolling through Instagram, viewing Snapchat, and on the rare occasion [when] I look at my Facearticle account. It would therefore appear that behavior might be best understood by gaining, in so far as possible, the internal frame of reference of the person himself, and seeing the world of experience as nearly as possible through his eyes. What we have been doing for the most part in psychology may be likened to the early studies of primitive societies. The observer reported that these primitive peoples ate various ridiculous foods, held fantastic and meaningless ceremonies, and behaved in ways that were a mixture of virtue and depravity. The thing that he did not see was that he was observing from his own frame of reference and placing his own values upon their modes of behavior. We do the same thing in psychology when we speak of trial-and-error behavior, delusions, abnormal behavior, and so on. We fail to see that we are evaluating the person from our own, or from some fairly general, frame of reference, but that the only way to understand his behavior meaningfully is to understand it as he perceives it himself, just as the only way to understand another culture is to assume the frame of reference of that culture.

When that is done, the various meaningless and strange behaviors are seen to be part of a meaningful and goal-directed activity. There is then no such thing as random trial-and-error behavior, no such thing as a delusion, except as the individual may apply these terms to his past behavior. In the present, the behavior is always purposeful, and in response to reality as it is perceived. If we could empathically experience all the sensory and visceral sensations of the individual, could experience his whole phenomenal field including both the conscious elements and also those experiences not brought to the conscious level, we should have the perfect basis for understanding the meaningfulness of his behavior and for predicting his future behavior. As discussed previously, our brains often respond to the world automatically and without our awareness. Sacrificing logic for speed helps us cut through the complexities and the immensity of information inundating us on a daily basis. We saw examples of how this attempt at efficiency can lead us astray, resulting in the faulty conclusions that can arise from negativity bias and confirmation bias. There are many other biases that can distort our thinking, also arising from this adaptive purpose of allowing us to reach decisions quickly. Consider the so-called halo effect, which refers to the idea that our overall impression of a person influences how we feel and think about their character. This especially applies to physical attractiveness. Researchers have found that teachers perceived as attractive receive higher ratings in overall quality of teaching, clarity, and helpfulness than those perceived as less attractive. I know one fat university professor whose less-than-stellar reviews from her students--many of which suggested that she was a poor role model for applying the nutritional concepts she was teaching (a sign of the students' prejudice)--were cited when she was denied tenure and later fired. Another bias, referred to as the availability heuristic, has us placing greater value on information that comes to our mind quickly. If you can quickly think of multiple examples of something happening, you will believe what is more common. I know I'm not ready to be around alcohol, so I'm keeping my distance from seeing these friends in real life, but to be honest, the thought of picking up ramps up after being on social media. I don't want to completely shut down from social media and cut off social-media ties with my friends that still drink. In many, ways Leo was right: As social beings, our social relationships are crucial to our well-being. And for Leo, growing up with social media and the Internet meant social media was an integral part of his social network and support system. As far as social media's potential destructive consequences for a person's recovery, it's not hard to see how scrolling through Facearticle and Instagram, seeing photos of friends drinking and out having fun, can trigger unwanted cravings--for example, by stirring up a fear of missing out from being sober. Additionally, virtual triggers are alarmingly similar to real-life triggers: Being in a social setting where there's alcohol--such as at a bar, a party, or any event where alcohol is served--or running into drinking buddies can trigger the faulty wiring in the brain that links drinking to pleasurable experiences and makes us only remember the good times we had when drinking or using other substances.

Just so, seeing mere pictures that conjure up these memories on social media has the exact same effect. Social media's powerful emotional impact should not be underestimated as a real potential trigger for those in recovery. Leo needed to develop a way of making social media work for him--using it in a way that supported his recovery and helped him to build positive relationships while at the same time maintaining his established friendships that were already positive and healing. Over the many months Leo was in treatment, he worked hard on boiling down how he was triggered and which people were triggers for him on social media. This is an unattainable ideal. Because it is unattainable, one line of development in psychology has been to understand and evaluate and predict the person's behavior from an external frame of reference. This development has not been too satisfactory, largely because such a high degree of inference is involved. The interpretation of the meaning of a given bit of behavior comes to depend upon whether the inferences are being made, say, by a student of Clark Hull or a follower of Freud. For this and other reasons, the possibility of utilizing the phenomenal field of the individual as a significant basis for the science of psychology appears promising. There can be agreement on the specific way in which the world is experienced by the individual, and his behavior follows definitely and clearly upon his perception. Consequently, with agreement possible on the datum for a science, science can conceivably grow. To point out the advantages of viewing behavior from the internal frame of reference is not to say that this is the royal road to learning. There are many drawbacks. For one thing, we are largely limited to gaining an acquaintance with the phenomenal field as it is experienced in consciousness. Research on television and reality programming suggests that Black men are more often depicted as criminals than men of other races (much higher, in fact, than actual statistics demonstrate). With so much exposure to ideas like this, these images are in the forefront of our brains and we're more likely to grab onto the association and be less trusting of Black men. Related to this, we're also programmed to put things--and other people--into categories, meaning that othering is biologically wired into us. Stereotypes serve a purpose because clustering people into groups with expected traits allows us to rely on information we already know about the person's group and quickly make decisions. Since these categories, and the meanings ascribed to them, are reflections of social constructs, this shortcut comes with high costs. The beliefs about a group might not be accurate, and even if they may accurately describe some group members, they are unlikely to be true for every member.