What Triggers Human Behavior? - Expository Essay

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Human behavior is a complex topic to precisely understand. A vast amount of research has been undertaken to shed some light on what triggers human behavior and how human behavior can be changed, for the better.

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Temperament and Personality

Personality will definitely influence one’s behavior. We all have different behavioral characteristics based on the particular personality trait we fall in. The phlegmatic will display a cool, unshaken trait even in the midst of problems. The choleric personality will aim at achieving set goals at all costs, irrespective of the means employed in achieving those goals. The melancholic personality will display some spell of moodiness and withdrawals at times, not because of some mishap, but because it is just who they are. The sanguine will always be the life of the party, always talkative, always the focus of liveliness. From this, it is clearly evident that your personality will somehow dictate how you will behave under different situations (Hutchison, 2003).

Environmental Effects on Human Behavior

The environmental setting also has a huge impact on human behavior. Consider, for instance, a scenario where you visit someplace where you lived way back when you were a teenager. Memories of such a place will make you behave as you used to while you were young. The environmental setting will trigger behavioral traits in your mind that had been compartmentalized in your memory.

Understanding Human Behavior

An understanding of human behavior is of vital importance as it can help us better understand individuals. You are able to understand why a person does what he does without judging them. An understanding of human behavior can also be helpful in designing motivational tools to be adopted in organizations.

Human Behavior Psychology

Behavioral traits of people with mental disorders and those who are normal will display a great disparity. The uses of diagnostic labels, however, do have its pros and cons. Diagnostic labels attract stigma on those it is administered. This can lead to relationship issues. Diagnostic labels also have the effect of exacerbating symptoms. If for instance, you tell your friend that you have depression issues, there is a high chance that you will act as if you are depressed, you do not socialize, and you might end up indulging in too much junk (Spink & Foster, 2007).

Labels have their good side, though. A correct diagnosis can help in the administration of the appropriate treatment. It can also be helpful if it leads to better understanding and empathy of the patient.

Cognition refers to such processes of the mind as attention, planning, and language. Emotions can be described as what dives people, or the basic ones such as fear or joy. The two have a very high degree of interdependence that it becomes very hard to clearly distinguish.


Several cognitive theories exist cognitive therapy approach and cognitive behavior modification. The cognitive therapy approach focuses on the relationship between perception and feelings. Those who are depressed, for instance, have a negative attitude towards life events. Cognitive behavior modification focuses on shedding light on the thoughts that lead to negative attitudes so that corrective action can be done. Cognitive therapy, for me, is more real. Most of the time when we focus on negative events in our lives depression seems to be the only logical thing we can experience (Hutchison, 2003).


Hutchison, E. (2003). Dimensions of human behavior. Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage Publications.

Spink, A., & Foster, A. (2007). Human information behavior. Bradford, England: Emerald Group Pub.

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