The first surprise I’m discovering as I study psychology is how much energy, work, and just plain basic structure is devoted to the study of processes that are not in any way, shape, or form considered disease states – elements like the basic nature of cognition, the wealth of different systems used to describe, explain, and understand just plain old healthy thinking. I’ve noticed that this isn’t just limited to introductory psych 101 survey texts; to the contrary, there are entire advanced undergraduate courses devoted to these sorts of considerations, and many, many of them.
I love this because so much of the armchair psychology I see out and about in the world is concerned with discerning what pathologic diagnosis a person has. It’s a disease-based approach. And while that sort of approach I’d imagine could be very usual for a clinician and serves well to validate emotional pain when a difficult person is making our life more or less unlivable, there are other perspectives and other frameworks that are far less discussed among laypeople.Don’t get me wrong, I’m still of that class, a mere tyro (some might venture to say a dilettante), but I’d like to think of myself as an aspiring apprentice.
Quite refreshing to look at the way we interact from the “healthy” model.