Chapter Eight

Module 8.1

Motivation: The “Why’s” of Behavior

Biological Sources of Motivation

•      Is what activates and directs behavior.

•      Is what makes our behavior more vigorous and energetic.

•      Is what changes one’s preferences or choices.

•      Something that ‘moves’ the organism.

–    Instincts

–    Needs and drives

–    Optimal level of arousal


•      Instinctive behaviors

–   Fixed, inborn patterns of response

–   Specific to members of a particular species

•      Instinct theory

–   All behavior motivated by instinct

–   Limited evidence, applicability to humans

Needs and Drives

Optimal Level of Arousal

•      Stimulus motives

–   Biologically based needs for

•   Exploration

•   Activity

•      Arousal theory

–   Organism seeks way to maintain optimal level of arousal

•   Sensation-seekers

–   Yerkes-Dodson law

Yerkes-Dodson Law (Figure 8.1)

Psychological Sources of Motivation

•      Incentives

•      Cognitive dissonance

•      Psychosocial needs


Cognitive Dissonance

•      Cognitive dissonance

–   Unpleasant state of tension when attitude and behavior are inconsistent

•      Cognitive dissonance theory

–   People are motivated to reduce dissonance by making behaviors and attitudes compatible

–   Ways to reduce

•   Behavior and/or attitude may change

•   Self-justification

•   Ignore discrepancies

Psychosocial Needs

•      Need for social relationships (affiliation)

•      Need for achievement

–   Extrinsic motivation

•   Performance goals

–   Intrinsic motivation

•   Learning goals

–   Achievement motivation versus avoidance motivation

–   Fear of success

Maslow’s Need Hierarchy
(Figure 8.3)

Module 8.2

Hunger and Eating

What Makes Us Hungry?

•      Stomach contractions (Cannon & Washburn)

•      Blood sugar levels

•      Hypothalamus

•      Brain chemicals

–   Neuropeptide Y

–   Leptin

–   Dopamine

–   Endorphins

Areas of the hypothalamus involved in hunger regulation

Hypothalamic rats: Rats with a damaged ventromedial hypothalamus


•      Obesity

–   Common and increasing in frequency

–   Major health risk

–   Measured by body mass index (BMI)

•   Height and weight taken into account

Causes of Obesity

•      Behavioral patterns

–    Consuming too many calories

–    Insufficient exercise

•      Hereditary and biological factors

–    Slower metabolism

–    Set point theory: brain regulates body weight around predetermined set point

–    Number of fat cells

Losing Weight

•      Consume fewer calories than expended

•      One pound = 3,500 calories

•      Balance eating and exercise

•      “Quickie” diets

–   Tend to be temporary loss only

–   Drugs may have serious side effects

Eating Disorders

Causes of Eating Disorders

•      Cultural factors

–   Pressure for unrealistic standards of thinness

–   Dieting as a normative eating pattern

•      Psychological factors

–   Issues of control and perfectionism

–   History of abuse or family conflict

•      Biological factors

–   Brain mechanisms

–   Serotonin

Module 8.3


•      Feeling states that have three components

–   Bodily arousal

–   Cognition

–   Expressed behavior

Emotional Expression

The universality of emotions

Cultural Differences in Emotions

Facial-Feedback Hypothesis

•      Mimicking facial movements will induce an emotion

•      The Duchenne smile, named after the researcher Guillaume Duchenne, who first described it. It is a genuine smile. The corners of the mouth curl up and the skin around the eyes crinkles in crow's feet like shape. The facial muscles involved in this expression are difficult to control voluntarily. Therefore, it's difficult to fake a Duchenne smile unless you smile from within.

•      The Pan American smile, named after the airline, is a perfunctory smile. It is nothing but a courtesy smile as in the case of a flight attendant responding to a patron. It's an expression of courtesy and politeness rather than inner joy. Alas, the Pan Am airline is dead but the smile will live forever.


Emotions and the Brain

•      Autonomic nervous system

–   Fight-or-flight mechanism

•      Limbic system

–   Amygdala

–   Hippocampus

•      Cerebral cortex

Theories of Emotion

•      James-Lange theory

•      Cannon-Bard theory

•      Two-factor model

•      Dual-pathway model of fear

James-Lange Theory

•      Bodily reactions precede emotions

–   Emotions occur after sensing a particular pattern of bodily arousal

–   Example: feel afraid because of trembling, pounding heart, rapid breathing

Cannon-Bard Theory

•      Subjective experience and bodily reactions occur simultaneously

–   Example: experience fear and trembling, pounding heart at the same time

Two-Factor Model

•      Emotional experiences depend on

–   State of general arousal

–   Cognitive interpretation (labeling) of the causes of arousal

•   Look to cues in environment

•   Doesn’t account for distinctive physiological features of different emotions


Dual-Pathway Model of Fear

•      Two brain pathways to process fear messages

–   Thalamus to cerebral cortex

•   Careful processing

–   Direct to amygdala

•   Fast response

Theories of Emotion

Love: The Deepest Emotion

•      Triangular model of love

–   Three components of love

•   Intimacy

•   Passion

•   Decision/commitment

–   Combinations make types of love

•   Romantic love: intimacy + passion

•   Companionate love: intimacy + commitment

•   Consummate love: all three

Emotional Intelligence

•      Knowing your emotions

•      Managing your emotions

•      Motivating yourself

•      Recognizing emotions in others

•      Handling relationships

The Polygraph

Module 8.4

Application: Managing Anger

Managing Anger

•      Cognitive theory

–   Situations do not cause anger

–   Anger is caused by a person’s reaction to a situation

•   Angry thoughts

•   Anger-inducing self-statements

–   Controlling anger

•   Identify and correct thoughts and statements

Suggestions for Anger Management

•      Become aware of your emotional reactions

•      Review the evidence

•      Practice more adaptive thinking

•      Engage in competing responses

•      Don’t get steamed

•      Oppose anger with empathy

•      Congratulate yourself for responding assertively rather than aggressively

•      Scale back your expectations of others

•      Modulate verbal responses

•      Learn to express positive feelings