THEORY OF MENTAL SELF-GOVERNMENT

Theory of Mental Self-Government: Definition, History, and Further Readings

Introduction

Mental self-government is a concept developed in the field of psychology which holds that an individual’s mental processes and behaviors can be governed, to an extent, by their own will. This concept has been studied and explored in various forms since the 19th century, and has been seen as an integral part of theories of personal growth, self-control, and behavior modification. This article will provide an overview of the theory of mental self-government, including its definition, its history, and some scientific journal articles for further reading.

Definition

Mental self-government is the idea that an individual can, to some degree, use their own will to control their mental processes and behaviors. This concept has been described by some theorists as “self-direction,” “self-regulation,” and “self-control.” According to this theory, an individual can actively shape their own thoughts, feelings, and behaviors by actively engaging in self-reflection and actively attempting to modify their own thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. This idea is closely related to theories of positive psychology, which focus on the idea that an individual can take action to improve their own mental and emotional wellbeing.

History

The concept of mental self-government has been studied by various theorists since the 19th century. German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche was one of the first to explore the idea of mental self-government, in his book Thus Spoke Zarathustra. French philosopher and psychologist William James was another early theorist to explore the concept, in his book The Principles of Psychology. William James argued that an individual’s mental processes and behaviors could be governed, to some degree, by their own will.

More recently, the concept of mental self-government has been explored in greater depth by theorists such as Albert Bandura and Aaron Beck. Bandura argued that an individual’s behavior is shaped, to some degree, by their own beliefs and values. Beck argued that an individual can actively shape their own thoughts and behaviors by actively engaging in self-reflection and actively attempting to modify their own thoughts and behaviors.

Further Reading

Bandura, A. (1977). Self-efficacy: Toward a unifying theory of behavioral change. Psychological Review, 84(2), 191-215.

Beck, A. T. (1976). Cognitive therapy and the emotional disorders. New York: International Universities Press.

James, W. (1890). The principles of psychology. New York: Holt.

Nietzsche, F. (1883). Thus spoke Zarathustra. Leipzig: Carl Reissner.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2011). Flourish: A visionary new understanding of happiness and well-being. New York: Free Press.

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