You’ve probably heard the phrase “a certain mentality.” Although the meaning seems clear at first glance, the term can cause confusion.
The word “opinion” has many different meanings. But in the end, we all have an opinion about something.
But what exactly is a certain mentality? The dictionary defines it as a feeling or thoughts about something or someone. It also includes behavior if it arises from the thoughts or feelings.
A more advanced description states that it is a mental and emotional way of thinking. This one is characteristic of someone. It can also be said that it stems from past experiences, and that it determines our way of responding.
Actually, there is no single definition for a mentality. There are also several ways in which these arise. Let’s dig a little deeper into this.
What does it mean to have a certain mindset?
There are hundreds of different definitions of the term “mentality.” One of our favorites is Solomon Asch’s. He says that mentality is a long-term attitude that arises from past experiences. The key word here is “attitude.”
These attitudes, which have to do with mentality, are thinking, feeling and behavior. Therefore, mindset is seen as a combination of emotions and thoughts that lead to behavior. But the subconscious also plays a role. This could be the same attitude as the conscious one, but it doesn’t have to be.
Basically, mindset is a prejudice about people, situations, and things. It also means that you can have different opinions. And it’s impossible to go through life without it.
And if this is so, why do we use only this one description to describe a certain kind of person?
Different types of mentality
The expression “having a certain mentality” actually refers to a specific attitude. But it is also worth mentioning that there are all kinds of opinions. And that one person can have multiple opinions.
It is even possible to have two different kinds of opinions on the same subject.
Sometimes it is advisable to divide attitudes into groups based on feelings, actions, motivations, relationships with others, and stimulus evaluation:
- Emotion: These can be positive, negative or neutral feelings. Positive attitudes occur when someone instinctively accepts something or someone. Negative feelings are the opposite. A neutral attitude indicates emotional indifference.
- Action: Actions can be proactive or reactive. A proactive attitude implies that there is initiative and a certain direction. Reactivity means passivity and adaptation.
- Motivation: Motivation has to do with the intentions of the actions. By this we mean a selfish mentality, where you pursue a personal goal, or selflessness, where the goal is common.
- Relationship with others: This determines how you interact with other people. For example, you could be manipulative together, cooperative, passive, aggressive, assertive, or indulgent.
- Stimulus response: By this we mean the way you react to both internal and external stimuli. The response is either rational or emotional, depending on whether your head or your heart plays a dominant role.
The perfect combination as a goal
We all have opinions about the world and about ourselves. We base this on previous experience. Of course, we must strive for a positive, proactive, selfless, collective and rational mentality. This perfect combination is what people mean by “a certain mindset.”
Unfortunately, it is not always feasible to live like this all the time. And no one can keep this up all the time, regardless of the circumstances. Therefore, it is wise not to see this as something that must be done. Instead, it could be a guideline.
But what does a certain mentality help you with? Well, the mindset we’re talking about can help you live in balance, with a clear course. It can also help you avoid conflict and deal with adversity. It makes it easier to interact with others. And it makes you more resilient.