There are six main functions of behaviors that are involved in human sexuality. These functions involve: arousal, exploration, maintenance, sexual fantasies and satisfaction, orgasm and ejaculation. These functions are all important aspects of sexual functioning. They all have to do with how the body feels when the activities involved in sexual intercourse happen. They also have to do with what you as an individual experience during sexual arousal and activity.
It is not easy to conduct a functional assessment. In most cases, you will need help from a sex therapist. However, there are many self-help guides that offer information on how to assess sexual functions of behaviors and provide information on the relationships between these functions. These guides often use a functional assessment framework called the Worsley Process. This framework was developed by David Steele and Barry Lackland, two leading sexual behavior therapists.
The first function of behaviors that we will examine is attention. As a person moves through each of the six stages of arousal, he/she will be exposed to different kinds of stimuli and will seek out social interactions that will provide them with attention. When people are actively pursuing their sexual desires and actively engaging in sexual behavior, they are being attentive. In terms of the social interaction process, these folks will seek out attention through being socially competent and having a sense of humor. The attention they get may be through sexual stimulation, or it could be through something as simple as the other person asking them what they are doing.
The second function of behaviors that we will look at involves maintenance. Maintenance functions of behaviors to deal with how that behavior is sustained after it has been initially engaged in. People have very powerful cognitive defenses and it can be very difficult to make them realize that their behaviors are causing real world harm and real consequences. In applied behavior analysis, psychologists would look to see if there is a consistent pattern developing. If there is a consistent pattern of maintenance, this means that the person has a firm grasp on the concept of “I am being harmed if I do this.”
Finally, the last of the functions of behaviors to consider is the problem behavior occurs. Problem behaviors are very specific in that they do not fit into any other category. While being attentive and socially competent can be useful, problem behaviors tend to be very distinct from all of the other categories. When an applied behavior analyst is looking for the problem behavior, they will look at whether or not there is consistency between the various functions of behaviors and the way that the behavior is being maintained.
In conclusion, the functions of behaviors can be used to help individuals who need assistance in their lives. The functions are useful for identifying behavior problems in order to find the solution for the individual. They can also be used to help with the development of a more adaptive thinking process and better attention to detail.
Identify the Functions of Behaviors
If you’re like most people, your daily life is filled with functions of behaviors. For example: You go to work, come home, eat dinner, take a shower, watch TV, do homework, finish your email, make a phone call, finish your paperwork, put your clothes on the hamper, and do the dishes. Each of these activities requires different behaviors, such as: eating, drinking, thinking, touching, walking, and so on. However, each of these activities occurs in conjunction with one another and often with the actions of other people. In this way, behaviors are multi-faceted and rarely stand alone.
These multi-faceted behaviors exist within you as an individual, but they also exist in your interactions with others. Take, for example, the first function of behaviors: acquiring attention. Here, you are aware of what is going on around you, such as a conversation taking place, or an object being placed in your path. From this information you gain information about what is important, what is worth watching, and what you should do next in order to get what you want. The next function of behaviors is to provide a source of sensory stimuli to enhance your experiences and help you gain attention.
In more naturalistic settings, it may not be easy to determine which functions of behaviors are important and which are not. In addition, you may not always know where to find the information that you need, and you may fail to differentiate between critical information and non-critical information. That’s where functional assessment comes in. Functional assessment is a set of tests designed to help you distinguish the important functions of behaviors from the non-important or challenging behaviors, which you can then use to assist you in gaining control over your life.