What does it mean to be psychologically fit? Throughout the years, famous psychologists have endeavored to answer this question including Sigmund Freud (psychosexual stages), Jean Piaget (Cognitive development theory), Emil Kraepelin (Classification of mental illness), and Howard Gardner (Theory of multiple intelligences). Several ways of determining if a person is deemed psychologically fit include the ability to learn, process, and store information accordingly, obtaining an intelligent quotient (IQ) above 69 (classified as mentally retarded), and is not classified or diagnosed as mentally or psychologically ill.
Learning is a change in behavior as a result of practice or observation. Different types of learning include habituation, classical conditioning, operant conditioning, trial and error, insight, and the social learning theory. Habituation is the gradual diminishing of a response that repeated over and over, for example: dog + high pitch. Classical conditioning, a method of pairing a new stimulus with an old stimulus by Ivan Pavlov, is another form of learning. Operant conditioning by B.F. Skinner depends upon an organism’s response that is followed by a reinforcing stimulus, either positive or negative. Trial and Error is another method of learning that takes alternative possibilities and discarding those to be unsatisfactory. Insight is the sudden appearance of a solution to a problem. Finally, the social learning theory is learning based on the observation of others. If all of these methods proves to be incompetent towards another person in regards to learning and processing information, then that is one sign that the person is not psychologically fit.
If a person cannot store information properly, is it possible to say that he/she is psychologically fit? Storing information requires a proficient memory. The processes of memory include encoding, which is recording information, storage, which is saving information, and retrieval, which is calling up, stored information. There are also three stages of memory. They include sensory, or a very brief information for a fraction of a second, Short term memory (STM), which stores about 7-9 items, also called working memory, and long term memory (LTM), which stores information of importance or significance, semantic, episodic, declarative, and procedural memory. Therefore, if one fails to exhibit proper memory functions, then he/she may not be deemed psychologically fit.
Intelligent quotient, or IQ is the ratio of mental age divided by chronological age multiplied by 100. The mental age is represented by a score on the actually IQ test and the chronological age is the age of the person. A person with an IQ above 120 is said to be superior and a person with an IQ of 69 and below is proclaimed mentally retarded. With that in mind, it is impossible to argue that a person who is psychologically fit can be mentally retarded at the same time.
Finally, a person who is not classified as mentally or psychologically ill may be deemed psychologically fit. There are many cases and examples of mental or psychological illnesses including anxiety, disociative disorders, and affective or mood disorder. All of these instances diminishes a person’s awareness or conscious level and reckons them to be abnormal in regards to society.
People who are deemed psychologically fit would have no problem learning, processing, or storing new information, having an IQ above 69, or not diagnosed as mentally or psychologically ill. In other words, a person who is psychologically fit would have the ability to think clearly, make rational judgments, and act normally in comparison with society.