Response to four posts (50-100 words)

Respond to your colleagues’ postings in one or more of the following ways:

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  • Ask a probing question.
  • Share an insight from having read your colleague’s posting.
  • Offer and support an opinion.
  • Validate an idea with your own experience.
  • Make a suggestion.
  • Expand on your colleague’s posting.

Post 1: (Write a 50-100 words response)

Mental Health

Mental Health is the ability to have a positive outlook on life no matter what the situation may be. It is the ability to stay active in body, mind and soul, cope well with challenging situations and stress, problem solve to ensure that one is culturally sensitive, equitable, and fair including making and sustaining positive social connections with family, friends, coworkers etc. (Herrman et al, 2005). According to Nastasi et al (1998), mental health is important to the well- being of the community and can be best reinforced through a participatory intervention model known as a collaborative process to create proactive solutions promoting individual and cultural change within the community.

During my upbringing, it was reinforced and conditioned the notion of positive thinking. I remember my parents repeating the words to me, that there is always sunshine following a thunderstorm and lightning and where there is a will there is a way to work through challenges. In addition, my culture celebrated special occasions with family and friends with tons of food (roasted pig and lamb), music and dance. There were so many happy moments and times. Open and direct communication was welcomed and reinforced with praise, kind words, and acknowledgment. Even when there were disagreements, voices were raised but it was dealt with right away instead of feelings being harboured. According to Auerbach et al (2010), there is a strong correlation between stress and depressive symptoms in adolescence. It was further postulated that patterns of coping during adolescence play a critical role in preventing and fostering mental health. Also, they noted that the earlier the effective coping strategies are established, the more likely that positive mental health will transfer into adulthood. Furthermore, stress reactivity model (Natasi et al, 1998) indicates that boys and girls experience levels of stress differently. They stipulated that girls are more likely to experience increased levels of depressive symptoms in response to such stress. In some cultures, such as the Japanese culture, emotions are more internalized and the focus is on pleasing others and maintaining diplomacy when in challenging situations so as to not offend anyone. This can pose complications as depression may form due to the inability to express or avoid expression and effectively cope with negative situations. (Sue et al, 2002). In contrast, in my culture, emotions are freely expressed and sometimes lack tactfulness, and the negative emotions linked to difficult situations is expressed right away.

The behaviour that is quite normal in my culture that may be considered abnormal in others may be raising our voices to each other in a fairly loud tone, expressing concern with using our hands as a method of communication. This shows interest and passion. In the Japanese culture, more indirect forms of communication such as nodding, smiling, speaking softly and thoughtfully thinking through what to say is used interchangeably. (Furnham & Fukumoto, 2008). They may find this behaviour odd, rude and offensive. The Croatians may find that the Japanese culture may be quiet and may lack confidence. That is why it is important to never assume and try to get to know the person and culture and do research to fully understand and become more informed which would assist in enhancing overall wellbeing for everyone.


Auerbach, R. P., Abela, J. Z., Xiongzhao, Z., & Shuqiao, Y. (2010). Understanding the role of

coping in the development of depressive symptoms: Symptom specificity, gender

differences, and cross-cultural applicability. British Journal of Clinical

Psychology, 49(4), 547–561.

Furnham, A., & Fukumoto, S. (2008). Japanese parents’ estimates of their own and their

children’s multiple intelligences: Cultural modesty and moderate

differentiation. Japanese Psychological Research, 50(2), 63–76. Retrieved from the

Walden Library using the Academic Search Complete database

Herrman, H, Saxena, S., & Moodie, R. (Eds.). (2005). Promoting mental health: Concepts,

emerging evidence, practice. Retrieved from

health/evidence/MH Promotion.pdf

Promotion Book.pdf

Nastasi, B. K., Varjas, K., Sarkar, S., & Jayasena, A. (1998). Participatory model of mental

health programming: Lessons learned from work in a developing country. School

Psychology Review, 27(2), 260–276.

Sue, S. (2002). Asian American mental health: What we know and what we don’t know. In W. J.

Lonner, D. L. Dinnel, S. A. Hayes, & D. N. Sattler (Eds.), Online Readings in

Psychology and Culture (Unit 3, Chapter 4). Retrieved



Post 2 (Write 50-100 words response)

Two topic you are interested in.

Two topics that are of interest to me and which I will consider researching in the future are genders studies that addresses violence against men as opposed to violence towards women, in an attempt to understand the qualities that may make men vulnerable or prone to such violence. I personally see some inequalities in gender studies, most forums leans to the women and for the obvious reasons that women are mainly the victims of violence. Men, however are victims that should be addressed in a more purposeful and balance way. My husband and I attended recently a forum on gender relations/violence recently and we noted the definite imbalance. Another topic of interest is a psychological understanding of the passive aggressive adolescent and the ability understand this indirect expression of aggression in adolescence.

In order to influence social change a person must understand their own society and its needs, and in this case, as it relates to culture and psychology. I believe that education is a major vehicle in social change and sharing what I learn is one way to impact on social change. Taking small steps are important I believe, and understanding our deficiencies lets one know what needs to be the focus. I know we need more efficient services in Trinidad and Tobago, and one way of dealing with that is working with our young people and educating them about mental health so they may recognise the signs of ill health.


Post 3 (Write 50-100 words response)

The behaviour you want to change.

The behavior I hope to change is the fact that I try to live a very structured life. Someone once told me that I live such a structured life it can be detrimental. Through help, I have gotten to the point where I am planning spontaneous behavior. Yes, you read that right. I have to plan to be spontaneous. What I have started doing is telling myself that next Saturday, I plan on doing something spontaneous.; go walk around the mall, visit family on the other side of town, take my kids to a movie, anything like that. I do this because without that planned spontaneity, I can be a very controlling, very boring, and display a very poor attitude. According to Fishbein and Aizen (2009), maintaining personal control of my behavior is what is going to be most effective for me. I have learned, through many recent obstacles that have taken a huge toll on my life, both personal, professional, and academic, that I have to take full control of my behavior. This is there the planned spontaneity comes in. I know, it sounds like an oxymoron, but it is how I feel I can begin to introduce not being a controlling and boring person into my life, and change my attitude towards trying new things. By planning to be spontaneous, I plan on changing my view of how things should or should not be, and just going with the flow; which is how the rest of my family lives their lives. I want to do this because my lack of excitement and adventure has been taxing on me for quite sometime, and recent changes in my life have finally convinced me that without change, my life will only be miserable, lonely, and extremely boring.

One potential challenge is that I have been living like this for so long, I fear I may not give the change a chance, or give the change the effort needed for it to be successful. I fear that I may become complacent after trying for a few days, weeks, or months, and just revert back to my old ways.

A second challenge I think will be my own mind. With recent significant issues in my marriage, I fear I may quit because of my cognitions. I find myself dealing with self-pity quite regularly, and this may be the damaging attitude that overwhelms my thoughts, which would lead to a failure in my goals.


Fishbein, M., & Ajzen, I. (2009). Attitudes, norms, and control as predictors of intentions and behavior. In M. Fishbein & I. Ajzen (Eds.), Predicting and changing behavior: The reasoned action approach (pp. 179–220). New York, NY: Psychology Press.


Post 4 (Write 50-100 words response)

Social Cognition and Social Change

Social cognition is “the process by which people think about and make sense of other people, themselves, and social situations” (Fiske, 2014, p. 126). Prejudice and stereotyping are very big in my book regarding what I would want to work to help change in society. People are so quick to press the “general info” key in their minds regarding an outgroup that they miss the important details necessary to have a solid understanding of perspective about the outgroup. I want promote more diversity and be a “stereotype” breaker in society. People are so busy living and taking care of priorities that they tend to disregard other perspectives.

Despite taking a social psychology course, I am getting into counseling psychology, and possibly with a concentration in criminal psychology. So many clients with different perspective will be entering my office in the future. I am all about understanding perspective and being “relatable”. I want the perception they have of other outgroups to be modified by the time I am finished with our sessions. Intergroup threats will slowly be decreased because my clients would be more open to understanding perspective due to having experience or having friends from an outgroup (Nelson, 2016).

In my everyday life, I am a very influential individual due to my animated personality. People are very visual today due to facebook and other social media outlets. Next month I want to make videos and/or podcasts regarding my perspective on various topics, and, especially that I am more than likely an outgroup member to the majority, it will be good to see a different perspective. This will help with minimizing prejudice and stereotyping.


Fiske, S. T. (2014). Social Beings: Core Motives in Social Psychology, 3rd Edition. [MBS Direct]. Retrieved from…

Nelson, T. D. (2016). Handbook of Prejudice, Stereotyping, and Discrimination, 2nd Edition. [MBS Direct]. Retrieved from…