Behaviour - learned

We said yesterday that we inherit a lot of built-in behaviour from our ancestors. They did things a certain way, and were successful - if they weren't we wouldn't be here

We label this genetically inherited behaviour as our instincts - follow our instincts and we have a good chance of surviving

Humans have a unique capability to learn behaviour in our life times (we don't mean to suggest other creatures don't - just that the ability is exceptional in humans). Dogs also learn behaviour - we call it pavlovian - show them a picture of a yellow car, and give the some food, a lot of times, then afterward they will run to a yellow car - even if they don't get fed

So we learn behaviour - much of it from our parents at an early age - don't talk with your mouth full - unfortunately a lot of this behaviour becomes unhelpful in adult life (men are all pigs, trust no-one, keep your money under the mattress etc.) but it's difficult to unlearn

The good news is that humans are probably the only species to learn that our instinctive behaviour - what loosely equates to Freud's id, and our learned behaviour and prejudices from our childhood, what loosely equates to Freud's superego - can be modified by understanding them in the first place

All therapy and counselling is about understanding these behaviourial origins, and adding to our behaviour to make things better

chat-therapy can help by understanding the behaviours and experiences of others in the group


...where does Freud's ego fit in?

That is the part of us that has the realization that we have an id and a superego isn't it?