Psychology 465: The Psychology of Work/Life Stress FINAL ESSAY PROMPTS
Please pick TWO of the following four topics, and write a minimum of 1500 words, total, on those topics. You may choose to write on one topic if you prefer, as long as you meet the 1500 word minimum. Your paper should be double spaced, formatted with 12 point Times New Roman font, with one inch margins. No cover page is needed. Make sure to cite where you get your information ex: “…..” (Self-Care lecture). If you use ANY outside sources please cite them in a reference page! REMEMBER, if you are caught engaging in plagiarism, you receive an automatic F on the assignment, and will be reported to the Academic Disci- plinary Committee.
1) Think of a recent situation that did not turn out as you would have liked (e.g., an exam, a relationship or date, a job, an interaction at the grocery store, etc.). Using the ABCDEF model proposed first by Albert Ellis and modified by Jay Uhdinger’s go through the process of reframing the event. Label each section asA, B, C, D, E, and F for clarity.
A) Activating event: What happened?
B) Beliefs and thoughts (unhelpful): What did you think? Why did you think this?
C) Consequences: What did you feel? What did you do?
D) Dispute!: Dispute your thoughts. Challenge your beliefs.
E) Effective new beliefs and thoughts: Find effective & helpful new beliefs and thoughts F) Feelings (new): How do you feel about this recent situation now?
2) Imagine your perfect graduate program, and describe it in detail (if it is a real program, use that.) What kind of work would it allow you to do after graduation? Why would it be the best possible preparation for your career goals? (If you don’t know, do some research on the available graduate school options.) After describing it, write a one page description of why you would be an appropriate candidate for the program. What are your strengths and your interests? Why are you a good candidate for the work you plan to do after graduate school? (Use this as a preliminary writing exercise for a personal statement!) If you are actually applying to graduate school in the near future, and are choosing to do this prompt, make a note of that so that we can be sure to read the personal statement with that in mind, comment ap- propriately, etc.
3) Complete the Self-Care Assessment at http://www.socialwork.buffalo.edu/content/dam/socialwork/ home/self-care-kit/self-care-assessment.pdf. Then, answer the following questions. What is your total score? Briefly describe two of the specific areas that you enjoy that you evaluated as 2 or 3 points.
Why do you enjoy these things and how do they promote your self-care? Briefly describe two of the specific areas that you would like to do more of that you evaluated as 0 or 1 points. What are the specif- ic steps you are going to take to make these things more of a priority in your life?
NOTE: If you wrote on this prompt for the midterm you may NOT write on it for the final 🙂
Psychology 465: The Psychology of Work/Life Stress FINAL ESSAY PROMPTS
4) Complete the Perceived Wellness Survey at http://perceivedwellness.com/pws.pdf. Once you’ve taken the survey, describe how happy you feel right in that moment. Only AFTER you’ve completed the sur- vey and described your level of happiness will you then keep a log of at least 5 things you are grateful for everyday for three days in a row. These 5+ things can be big or small. Each time you feel grateful, make a brief note of it, and record it in writing. Then, IMMEDIATELY AFTER the three days of log- ging, take the Perceived Wellness Survey AGAIN. Once you’ve taken the survey again, describe how happy you feel right in that moment. What was your score on the survey for the first time versus the second? How happy did you feel after the first survey versus after the second? How did you feel about paying attention to the things you were grateful for each day? What were you most grateful for during that time period? Would this be something that you’d like to continue doing going forward? Why or why not? Include your raw logs and 2 Perceived Wellness Surveys with your essay.
5) Stress and Media. Describe your relationship with the media ( you can choose specifically social media, if that is most applicable) and how this relates to stress in your life. Has your relationship with media changed this year amidst COVID, protests, the election and other unprecedented stressors? Do you find media consumption to be a form of self-care, a stressor or both? What changes in the media have you noticed over the last year? Choose a specific form of media, platform, or account and analyze how it makes you feel both internally and externally. Make sure to connect it to lecture material and how it re- lates. “Stress and the Body” is a good lecture to cite when describing your physical reactions. Do you feel social media does more harm or good for mental health?
6) Think back to how you perceived your future, your stress levels, you level of resilience to stress, and your goals one year ago today. Reflect on how that is different from your perceptions of these issues today. Are you more resilient to stress than you realized, or less? Have your coping mechanisms changed? Is your fundamental view of the world and your future different than it was a year ago? Ex- plain what has changed, and what you have discovered about yourself in the process. Please related this to the lecture material and the things we have covered in class.
Note: Similar to one of the midterm topics, but instead of a focus on how future plans have changed this year, write about how resiliency, stress levels and coping mechanisms have changed.
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