Hello, behavioral science/psychology-lovers and anyone else viewing the psychology tag, my name is Jesus. I am the owner of the Bad Psychology blog where I write about psychology and, more specifically, misconceptions about the human mind and human behavior.
(This isn’t a self-promoting post—I’ll go straight to the point)
I began this blog because I learned many things from my different psychology classes and I thought it would be nice to share them with like-minded people who, like myself, love to learn new things. Since I began using tumblr in late April/early May, I’ve been visiting the psychology tag pretty frequently. As I’ve said, I love to learn new things, and I’m looking for great blogs to follow. Maybe even make friends with other psychology majors or just people who love psychology in general.
However, my optimism of the psychology tag is slowly deteriorating. I’ve noticed that much of the information shared and tagged as psychology is not real psychology, rather, cheesy “optimism quotes” or “love quotes” tagged as psychology. I don’t have a problem with people making those quotes as inspiration and motivation to others, but please don’t tag them as psychology. It’s not. Human behavior is very complex. To claim that one sole thing is responsible for, say, anger or happiness is absurd. There can be many different factors in play, including our dispositional traits that we inherited from our parents (biological) and things we learn from the community and our peers (environment).
As someone who loves psychology for what it really is (a science), it irritates me greatly when I see those “Psychological Fact” facts spreading like wildfire. Granted, some of them are true, but only a handful of them are. Most of them are false. I just recently saw a post about how “Psychologists have discovered that the manner in which people eat Oreo cookies provides great insight into their personalities.” This is nonsense and the post has no legit source. No such “psychologists” exist. Personality is much more complex than that. Moreover, you can tell that the blog that posted this is a sell-out blog infested with advertisements all over their page. It disgusts me that someone would willingly be spreading false information for selfish, personal gain.
But moving on.
What ultimately made me fall in love with psychology is the fact that the human brain is probably the most complex thing (known to us) in the universe. How can a piece of organic material give rise to the complex persona? How can it generate consciousness? Love? Curiosity? Empathy? Hate? That’s what psychologists and other cognitive scientists are trying to figure out. But it’s hard to do so because, as previously mentioned, humans can be influenced not only by personal traits but by the way we are raised. Therefore scientists must try and eliminate these factors while carrying out the scientific method.
Psychology, unlike astrology, is a science. I specifically said astrology because I’ve seen it pop up in the psychology tags a couple of times. Astrology has nothing to do with our behavior whatsoever. To link astrology to psychology is offensive to those of us who respect science. Psychologists carry out experiments to confirm or deny their claims. Astrologists don’t.
One last thing: be skeptical of what you read. Don’t believe something just because you read it in a book. There are popular science writers out there who don’t even know what they’re talking about. They have not read the scientific literature. Do research on them, see what other scientists are saying about them. Are they giving positive or negative reviews? Are the authors offering evidence from peer-reviewed articles or are they merely giving out their own speculations and opinions?
That’s it. I’m done. Hopefully some of you bothered to read this rant. Contact me, let me know what you think. Tell me that you agree or disagree with me because, more than a rant, this is an attempt to fish out people who have a real desire to learn what there is to learn in the wonderful scientific discipline known as Psychology.
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