The Social Need for Attention
Psychologist understand that people perform great feats for positive attention such as athletic accomplishments, literary achievements, artistic creations, or political acquisition, yet psychologists have also found out that it seems that people do bad things or procrastinate even for the need for attention. Thus, some suicide attempts were not attempts at suicide at all but a request for attention.
Oddly, though sometimes in other aspects people are not even sure why they sometimes do things, such as why a student continually doesn’t finish his homework, or why a child continually doesn’t clean his room. Because each actions leads to a disciplinary moment, it is precisely that disciplinary moment that the individual is seeking even if subconsciously.
Sometimes this need for attention is created because another sibling or student is outshining or outperforming the one that feels neglected.
Many psychologists have theorized exactly what it is that causes core human motivation. Some claim, such as Freud, that all activity is subconsciously an activity toward achieving sexual gratification and that this is fitting for society because the species must continue. Others have theorized that the need to extinguish feelings of inferiority propel people to achieve so that they are not view as inferior. Other theories claim that there is a natural condition of benevolence in the human being and that if he can achieve greatness he will, but if he cannot, he then erodes, angrily into other destructive behaviors.
Yet it seems that each of these theories can be summed up by one single desire: the need for attention, positive or negative. It seems that the each person’s psychology wants to know what other people think. To get negative attention allows the psychology to verify the inferior concepts, to get positive feedback is to verify its success. It seems that the psychology moves simply to know where it stands.
Consider that people who achieve greatness in mid-life still enjoy having a family. They do not simply ceasing doing. They still interact with others each day. People that have been medically sterilized still seek romance. It is not achievement then, nor sexuality then, it is merely constant social interaction. Like the act of breathing, like the act of dreaming, the need for constant human social interaction is merely a necessity of the human mind. Freud’s theory of sexual gratification lies fallow, because even those who cannot act so to reach gratification still interact daily in life. Under Freud’s theory we would suppose that those that could never again achieve gratification would merely shut down psychologically and languish until death, because the flood of energy coming from the libido would simply give up. Yet these unfortunate beings still interact, speak, talk, tell jokes, and surround themselves with others. Man’s desire in life is not greatness, nor gratification, but mere social interaction.