Chapter 5 concerns the physiological mechanisms of regulation. The behavior of an individual is largely determined by his physical state of being. Researchers have found that one’s mood, and consequently the choices one makes, may be affected by his or her state of physical being. Proper diet results in a healthy individual who can make rational decisions. When one is lacking in physical maintenance he or she may be uncharacteristically angry and unfriendly. Such behavior is a consequence of the deprivation of basic needs. Psychological disorders such obesity are largely determined by one’s eating patterns. Furthermore, such disorders may result in unsocial behavior, as individuals feel alienated and different from other members of society.
The same principle is applicable to anorexia nervosa and bulimia that result in malnutrition of the body. In order to prevent the victims from becoming chronic prisoners from these disorders psychological help is critical. The inherent causes of these disorders are mostly low self-esteem and misguided perspectives from the media. Once this is addressed, the individuals can relate well with others while feeling confident with their bodies. It is also crucial to appreciate the need to regulate various types of thirst such as drinking, sexual desires and aggressive behavior. Uncontrolled drinking can cause serious drug addiction and hence numerous detrimental effects on one’s behavior due to impaired judgment. Sexual desires must be conveniently channeled to specific partners to reduce instances of rape and spreading of sexually transmitted diseases. Similarly, young people must teach themselves to abstain before they settle on a single sex partner. Failure to do so may build up into a habit of sexual promiscuity. Many individuals, even those in committed relationships and marriages, display this behavior.
Chapter six concerns conditioning of one’s behavior according to certain desired results. Pavlonian conditioning and other types of conditioning mechanisms can be utilized in eliminating of undesired behavior among people. This is especially applicable in breaking bad habits such as drinking and smoking addictions. A good example is the use of rubber bands to inflict pain to one whenever the craving for such a drug arises. With time, the body learns to associate pain to such a craving and eventually the person is able to break away from the addiction. Any form of conditioning from an undesired behavior requires discipline and in some instances the guidance of a mentor or supervisor. This helps to set clear limits and goals that the individual must achieve in changing his behavior. Consistency and a strong willpower can achieve a tremendous change of behavior from past habits and norms. The same applies to conditioning of sexual behavior. The body becomes accustomed to whatever it is exposed to.
This means that sexual desires can recur based on how often one chooses to have sex. The more one does so, the more recurrent they become, and vice versa.
Various forms of incentives can alter an individual’s behavior. This is because certain generators of human emotion can motivate one to work harder or even smarter. Hope may inspire one not to give in instances that seem to be deemed for failure. Fear can be both a motivating and a demotivating factor in one’s behavior ad achievement of set goals. As far a sexual behavior is concerned, the main motivators are physical attraction. People become stimulated when they see persons of the opposite sex who are sexually attractive and this may even inspire confidence for one to make a move or seek to establish a relationship with the person of interest.