Mental Health Assessment Test

Mental Health Assessment Test

Take The Mental Health Assessment Test
 ⏱ 15-20 MINUTES

Are you thinking about seeking the help of a therapist? If certain issues have been causing problems in your life and you aren’t sure how to make the necessary changes, therapy can help.

With the help of a professional, you can get out of an unhealthy cognitive, emotional, and behavioral pattern.

Fill out the following questionnaire truthfully, paying special attention to the specified time period to which the questions refer.

The results will only be helpful if you answer in an honest and complete manner.

 

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Sport and religion

Is Sport a Religion?

Psychologists are closing in on the conclusion that sport has many of the same effects on spectators as religion does [Barber, 2012].

Daniel Wann [2001], a leading sport psychologist at Murray State University, and his co-authors said:

“The similarities between sport fandom and organized religion are striking. Consider the vocabulary associated with both: faith, devotion, worship, ritual, dedication, sacrifice, commitment, spirit, prayer, suffering, festival, and celebration.”

It may seem odd, to equate religion with sport entertainment but it must be understood that prior to mass communications, religious ceremonies were a source of entertainment for ordinary people who rarely attended a theater or traveled to a sporting event. Sports and religion may get categorized separately but their intersection is difficult to miss.

As Wann and collaborators note, various scholars discuss sport in terms of “natural religion,” “humanistic religion,” and “primitive polytheism” pointing out that “spectators worship other human beings, their achievements, and the groups to which they belong.” And that sports stadia and arenas resemble “cathedrals where followers gather to worship their heroes and pray for their successes.” [Wann, et al., 2001, p. 200]

If ritual may be entertaining, then entertainment, as experienced in a sports stadium, may be ritualistic. Fans wear the team colors and carry its flags, icons, and mascots. Then there is repetitive chanting of team encouragement, hand-clapping, booing the other team, doing the wave, and so forth. The singing of an anthem at a sporting event likely has similar psychological effects as the singing of a hymn in church.

Given that sports entertainment has obvious similarities to religious rituals, it is reasonable to ask whether the connection between fans and their preferred sport has psychological effects that are comparable to religious experiences – effects that account for religion as a worldwide human adaptation.

 

Sports as a substitute for religion

As a group, sports fans are fairly religious, according to research. It is also curious that as religious attendance rates have dropped off in recent decades, interest in sport spectatorship has soared. Moreover, research has debunked several stereotypes about sports fans that seem incompatible with religiosity. Fans are not lazy, nor are they particularly prone to violence. Male fans do not have bad marriages.

Some scholars believe that fans are highly committed to their favored stars and teams in a way that gives focus and meaning to their daily lives. In addition, sports spectatorship is a transformative experience through which fans escape their humdrum lives, just as religious experiences help the faithful to transcend their everyday existence.

From that perspective, the face painting, hair tinting, and distinctive costumes are thought to satisfy specific religious goals including identification with the team, escape from everyday limitations and disappointments, and establishing a community of fans.

So far, the transformative aspects of fandom are quite close to those associated with religion. Lest the fans become too smug, here is a socialist critique.

Shaped by the needs of capitalist systems, spectator sports serve vested interests as a type of “cultural anesthesia,” a form of “spiritual masturbation,” or “opiate” that distracts, diverts, and deflects attention from the pressing social problems and issues of the day [Wann, pp 201-202].

Of course, Karl Marx famously declared that religion is the opium of the people, Not all religions numb people to their social and moral responsibilities, however. On thinks of liberation theology in Latin America, for instance.

No one ever claimed that sports had such redeeming qualities, however. According to one critic (Harris, 1981), “it has turned into a passion, a mania, a drug far more potent and widespread than any mere chemical substance.” It is the new opium of the people.

Performance Psychology

Performance Psychology Domain

When listening to coaches and athletes share their thoughts following competition, it appears that there is increasing acceptance that the psychological domain plays a central role in determining the nature of performance.

There is an abundance of commonly used phrases that individuals employ when attributing failure to their on-field performance including (but by no means limited to); “it’s the top two inches that count”, “we just didn’t show up”, “we played scared”, “our minds were elsewhere”, and the dreaded… “we choked”.  These types of comments are indicative of an individual, and collective, belief that our preparation, focus, and ability to manage our arousal and anxiety  levels in ‘the moment’ will be influential in shaping the quality of our performance.

Being involved in, and observing, competitive sport, it does not seem however, that the majority of athletes and coaches spend a proportionate amount of time deliberately practicing these skills.

So why is there such reluctance to address psychological elements of performance, or commit time to developing strong mental skills?  There are various determining factors that will influence an individual’s likelihood of deliberately addressing psychological skills with their athletes and herein these will be considered.

The belief that mental skills cannot be taught (or do not need to be taught)

Whilst some are holding on to the belief that elite athletes are 100% born, or have been provided with gifts from a higher power, the majority of people subscribe to the belief that elite athletes (while perhaps have been fortunate enough to inherit good genes) have in reality worked extremely hard, and had significant support and guidance to reach the pinnacle of the athletic pyramid.

This typically includes, whether consciously pursued or manifesting as a result of a particular coaching style or philosophy, significant dedication to developing robust mental skills that will allow athletes to perform as desired.

Of course some athletes naturally have an unwavering confidence, providing the unique self-belief which enables them to perform under immense pressure, while also (importantly) avoiding complacency, but unfortunately this is the exception, not the rule.

Most athletes that progress to the highest echelon of a particular sport will do so as a result of a collective (athlete and coach) commitment to developing both the physical and mental elements that encompass performance.

Remedial approach

As mentioned above, the acknowledgement of sport psychology is becoming increasingly prevalent; however, many still take a remedial approach to addressing mental skills which involves considering psychological issues if they arise.

Although this is better than not addressing them at all, why not take a more active and developmental stance, embracing the practice of mental skills to gain an edge over competition, as well as work towards preventing issues from arising? To utilise a very primitive analogy; we generally encourage athletes to drink before they experience thirst.  Also, as with dehydration, once issues do emerge, they can be fairly difficult to resolve, so remember, prevention is always easier than restoration.

Limited time and resources

One of the more common rationales for not implementing mental skills into regular practice is the limited time (either perceived or real) that coaches have with their athletes.  This is at times perplexing however, due to the concurrent belief that it is ‘whoever turns up (mentally) on the day’ that will likely be successful.

The aim of this article is not to suggest that mental skills are more important than addressing physical elements, but it is unrealistic to think that just because an athlete can perform a certain skill in a low pressure environment, that they will naturally inherit the mental skills that are necessary to enable them to perform to the same level consistently under pressure.

Reflect on your approach regularly and assess what opportunities you are providing your athletes to practice performing in situations similar to those that will confront them in competition.  Also, think about what skills your athletes are developing to cope with pressure, setbacks, success, adversity, etc. as these are all inevitable in competitive sport.

Unsure of how, and when, to teach mental skills

Another reason we are still seeing a reluctance to teach mental skills is a ubiquitous unfamiliarity with exactly how to address mental skills.  Coaches often use instructions such as “stay positive” or “you need to focus” which are often acknowledged with a confused look on the athlete’s face.  If an athlete has just made a few errors, how does one go about staying positive?

Sport psychologists and mental skills trainers are regularly approached by coaches asking how often mental skills should be addressed; once a week, once a fortnight, or at the beginning of the season?  The answer to this is EVERYDAY.  Mental skills should be made part of everyday practice.

Developing effective strategies to cope with pressure, maintain focus, avoid distractions, and perform physically under stress requires systematic and deliberate practice, just like physical skills.

It is important to note, however, this does not mean that you need to break halfway through each training session to sit around a dry erase board and talk about feelings.  It may just mean before a particular drill, that you instruct your athlete to focus solely on arm movement, and then afterwards asking him/her to reflect on the technique.

By providing this instruction, and then a follow-up question, you have helped the athlete focus on a controllable element (which should help skill acquisition and avoid outcome thinking), as well as promoting reflective thinking (likely developing analytical skills) and heightening engagement.

Sport psychology continues to gain momentum, predominantly as a result of high-profile athletes attributing success to a synthesis of physical and mental skills, and is moving closer towards receiving the deliberate attention that nutrition, strength and conditioning and biomechanics (rightfully) enjoy.

We are beginning to see greater use of the various skills and strategies that can enhance performance and wellbeing in competitive sport, and similar to the aforementioned fields, in time, sport psychology will become a mainstream field with the majority of coaches and athletes addressing this area as a critical part of preparation and performance.

 

Because people, when they’re gonna either die or succeed, tend to succeed.” – Tony Robbins

You hit rock bottom. The lowest possible level, absolute bottom. It can’t get worse than this. The morning when you can’t stand the face you see in the mirror. The bitterness that you have to swallow each time you take a deep breath, the pain you have to carry in your heart, while pretending everything’s okay. That you’re fine. That it could be worse. That others have it worse.

The true dark night of the soul. No amount of pretending, rationalizing, meditating can do any good.

When it’s do or die.

I’ve been there. Twice. Funny. I did not learn the first time. I had to reach rock bottom twice to figure things out. I am still trying to understand how it is. How our suffering, our struggles, our failures make us better.

When you’re twenty years old, unemployed, broke, struggling with health issues and no healthcare plan, when your friends have abandoned you, when you think of yourself as a monumental failure, when it’s a struggle to wake up in the morning because, well, what’s the point?

I’ve been there. And I know that one of two things happens: you either get tired of it all and give up on life, or you get so angry that it sets your soul on fire and you conquer your demons and fight your way up.

One of two things: do or die.

But I do want to ask you a question: is it necessary to reach rock bottom? Do we have to be at our lowest to realize that we must fight and keep fighting?

What if you were to do anything as if your life depended on it?

Don’t want to work out? Work out. Don’t feel like writing? Write. Don’t want to talk to people? Talk to people.

Do the scary thing. Do what you’ve been postponing over and over again. Postpone being lazy, watching TV, procrastinating.

I’ll act lazy tomorrow.”

And then you wake up the next morning and welcome the grind with a big, cheeky grin glued to your face. You look like hell, but you like the face that’s staring you in the mirror.

Remember this: if you wake up tired, you’ve been chasing dreams. If you go to bed tired, you’re making your dreams come true.

via Do or Die! — Cristian Mihai

7 Reasons To Feel Confident About Quitting

Perseverance, especially during hard times, is praised so highly and so often that sometimes we forget there’s another option. And we forget how to not feel like a failure when we give up.

The slogans are seemingly infinite: You only get out what you put into it; I never dreamed of success, I worked for it; nothing worth having comes easy. Even Malcolm Gladwell’s “10,000-hour rule” claims that the holy grail of mastery is achieved only through decades of dedication.

But how often do you come across a piece of advice that says you’ve tried hard enough—at starting a business, following your goals, supporting your loved ones—and now it’s time to move on? Infrequently. And how much blood, sweat, and tears are wasted on hopeless cases? A lot. Maybe you’ve been there—exhausted emotionally, financially, or both, yet you can’t bear to end it.

Why? Consider a concept known as the “sunk cost fallacy.” It comes from both psychology and economics and refers to a decision-making bias that leads us to pour more time, money, effort, or other resources into a project simply because we’ve already invested in it. We fall prey to this whether the stakes are high, like continuing to throw money and energy into a business that is not succeeding, or low, like forcing yourself to finish an overcooked steak just because you (over)paid for it. No matter the scale, humans often have a hard time calling it quits.

Why Do We Refuse to Quit?

Why did evolution do this to us? Researchers theorize that the phenomenon may come from an effort to avoid wasting valuable resources. This rule makes sense when you look at it from a scarcity perspective—better to keep working at something if you’ve already invested resources, but at a certain point the logic no longer holds up.

For example, it might seem a waste to part ways with a partner of many years, but trying to fix a broken relationship is no less wasteful. You could argue that staying is actually more wasteful and that bringing an unfulfilling, emotionally draining relationship to an end allows you to move on and try again.

The notion of failure, however, is so looked down on that it’s no wonder we keep the doors of our failing concert hall open rather than truly facing the music. Plus, it simply feels wrong to extinguish the fire even though we’re likely to get burnt. However, that feeling may actually be the sunk cost fallacy leading us astray. What do you do when you find yourself in this situation? Here are seven ways not only to give up but to feel confident about it.

Tip 1: Write down what it’s cost you and what it will continue to cost in the future.

Sometimes going with our gut can be useful, but sometimes our guts are best described by a certain spot-on quote from Nick Hornby in High Fidelity.

So work around your gut by actually writing out gains and losses associated with staying in, and gains and losses associated with getting out. It’s similar to the classic pros and cons list and it helps you focus on the often-forgotten possibilities of missing other opportunities that come with staying in.

Tip 2: Reconceptualize “giving up” as “knowing when to quit.”

In this society, everyone from Thomas the Train to Sean Paul tells us to never give up. The most straightforward never give up quote is attributed to Winston Churchill, who allegedly said, simply, “Never never never give up.”

But it turns out this was taken out of context. What he really said was, “Never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense.”

Indeed, the idea of “giving up” is so undesirable that sometimes we forget the maturity and integrity required to have the insight that something is not working and that a change needs to be made. The take home message “Never give up” should not be taken as a one-size-fits-all statement. Giving in when it makes the most sense, or is the noble thing to do, is the right choice. I think even Thomas the Train would agree.

Tip 3: Giving up can be a sign of wisdom. 

A study in the journal Psychological Science found that young adults are significantly more likely to engage in the sunk cost fallacy than senior citizens.

Younger adults have a stronger negativity bias, meaning they weigh negative information, such as losses, more heavily than positive information. The decisions of older adults, by contrast, generally balance gains and losses more equally. This suggests that the older we get, the wiser and more cautious we may become about the best way to invest our time and money. In short, sometimes cutting our losses is the mature and astute thing to do.

Tip 4: Throw out the baby with the bathwater.

One thing people hate about giving up is feeling like forces they could not control got the better of them. However, you can reestablish a feeling of control by reframing your choice to get out as a tough-love executive decision. This project may seem like your child, but sometimes, you just have to throw out the baby.

Tip 5: Rethink failure.

Biases and fallacies aside, the core of our protest to giving up our fear of failure. We’ve been socialized to see dreams that can’t come to fruition as failure. It’s even harder when the failure is seen by others, like a marriage or a business venture.

Choosing to end a relationship or a project, especially if you started out eager and deeply invested, is a loss to be grieved. So give yourself the space you need to properly grieve, but then, consider this: It’s not failure if it moves you forward. Call it lightening your burden, simplifying your life, making a better choice, taking stock, turning over a new leaf, moving on, rising up, whatever you want—none of which carry any whiff of failure.

Tip 6: You can’t control everything.

Sometimes life provides you with circumstances that you can’t change. Say you put your heart and soul into launching a bakery, but maybe the opening coincided with the low-carb craze, your landlord just doubled your rent, or there’s been a run-up on worldwide sugar prices. Could you control any of this? Not in a million years.

You may feel like you failed, but don’t hold yourself accountable for those things that had nothing to do with your competence, dedication, or character.

Tip 7: Knowledge is power.

Take solace in knowing that everyone experiences forces beyond their control, and most people don’t muster the necessary clarity and strength to challenge the sunk cost fallacy. So if you give up when the time is right, consider yourself operating at a higher level of human reasoning!

To wrap up, you didn’t know then what you know now. What’s more, there’s no way you could have known. But now that you have gained knowledge, experience, and, dare we say, some wisdom, you’ll be ready to chuck your sunk costs and set your sights on new goals.