Normal and Abnormal Behavior Scenarios
To reflect on what you have read or studied so far in a course is an essential part of understanding. This worksheet form will provide a place for you to take some time and reflect on understanding how psychology can help you in your everyday life. Please use this week’s readings to assist you.
As you have learned, your mental health and wellness can affect your life and how you interact with others as a student, professional, and in your personal relationships.
A GCU student learns through the 4 Pillars that physical, mental, and spiritual wellbeing is vital to success in academics in a chosen career field and in life in general. Explain what abnormal and normal behavior is and how to apply wellness strategies by completing the following:
Select woof the four case scenarios. Read the scenarios and answer all the questions that follow. Then complete the Wrap-up questions at the end of the assignment.
Jamie Single Mom
Jamie enrolled in the online Bachelors of Science in Psychology program at GCU in the spring of 2011. She is a single mom with two children under the age of 5 and she works a full-time job as a customer service representative.
Jamie is starting to feel overwhelmed with juggling school, work, and spending time with her children. Her physical symptoms are: wanting to cry every day, sometimes being short with her children, withdrawing from friends and family, and being tired and worn out. She is considering quitting school so that her life will return to some normalcy, but then she worries about how she will pay back her student loans when her current job barely covers her bills. Not only that, but she doesnot want to give up on her dream of becoming a counselor. Jamie feels as though she is in an endless cycle and does not know how to resolve her feelings and physical symptoms. Her negative thought processes have skewed her thinking.
As Jamie’s friend, what steps would you take to assist her?
What resources could Jamie use (both at school, home, and at work) to help her not feel so alone and isolated?
How could Jamie shift her thinking from a negative perspective to a more hopeful perspective?
John- Anxiety Disorder – Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
John is single and has not worked in sometime. On a daily basis he fears what the day might bring. To make sure that the day goes right he takes 2 showers daily, one after getting up in the morning and one at mid-day. He also makes sure that each household task such as vacuuming, washing dishes, scrubbing the floors, etc is completed by noon every day and marks off these tasks on a checklist. Lastly, at night, he checks his house to make sure all windows and doors are locked. He unlocks and locks the front door at least three (3) times to assure that the lock is working.
John is also going to school, as he knows that he needs to find a job and is hoping to be able to do online computer work when he completes his degree. He is currently struggling with his schoolwork as he has started to obsess about certain routines in it as well, such as double- checking with the instructor every day that he has completed all of his work, posting 5 and 6 times to the classroom, and e-mailing his classmates daily to see if he has missed something. John recognizes that he needs some help, but does not know where to begin.
As his friend, what recommendations could you make in helping him reduce his anxiety?
What resources on the Internet could John use to help him daily?
What might be some types of therapy for John to use to reduce his symptoms of compulsion?
Tim – Young Adult
Tim is finding the freedom of being out on his own exciting and cannot seem to experience enough of his friends and having fun. He is going to school online per his family’s request to “make something of himself.” Although this is the case, he does see the value of going to school and would eventually like to complete a degree in business. He finds himself not completing his schoolwork on time and is considering dropping out, but does not want to let his parents know he is failing. He is feeling anxious about this as he is getting further and further behind. He does not want to give up on having fun with his friends either and is stuck in not knowing how to manage responsibility to his family’s wishes and maintaining a sense of freedom and autonomy.
What are some strategies that Tim could use to balance out his needing to have fun and be a young adult with the increasing need to be responsible?
How might you as his friend help Tim stay focused and on track with his schoolwork?
If you were Tim’s parent, how might you approach the actions that you are seeing in him in a positive and supportive way?
Alice Sleep Disorder – Insomnia
Alice is an executive at a local business and has struggled since her early adulthood with falling asleep most nights. She says that she feels “mentally hyperactive” at bedtime, and is unable to stop the thoughts of the day, especially those issues that were unresolved. She also feels that when she does not get all of her work done for the day that she does not “deserve to go to bed.” Any evening excitement such as a TV show, movie, or a party leaves her unable to quiet herself for hours, which leaves her tossing and turning in bed. Sometimes she finds herself waking up in the middle of the night and her thoughts are again racing about the day’s activities and problems. The lack of sleep leaves her feeling on edge at work the next day with her co-workers and with her fiancé. She has tried sleep-aids, but they make her feel groggy the next day and she does not want to become dependent on them.
As Alice’s friend, what strategies could you recommend to her towards alleviating her symptoms?
What resources are available to assist Alice in finding a solution to her problem?
What steps could Alice take in her life to find more balance with work and home?
After reading the stories and answering the questions, complete this worksheet entry form by answering the following prompts:
1) Based on the 4 scenarios, which scenarios would be considered abnormal behavior? Why?
2) Of the people you chose to read about, how did their symptoms impact their life in a negative way? Explain.
3) How do you relate to the people in the stories you chose?
4) What positive psychology strategies might you use to combat the negative effects of these stressors and/or disorder symptoms?
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