What Is Learned Helplessness and Why Does it Happen?

Learned helplessness is a term used to describe a state in which individuals learn that they cannot control their destiny and are powerless to affect their situation. Various experiences, including abuse, neglect, and chronic lack of self-confidence, can cause this state.

The phenomenon is often seen in individuals who have been molested as children or have been victims of bullying or other forms of abuse. These individuals often believe they are helpless and unable to cope with life’s challenges. As a result, they may become resigned to their fate and feel there is no point in trying to improve their situation.

Learned helplessness can have damaging effects on individuals and their communities. In extreme cases, it can lead to depression and anxiety, a loss of self-esteem, and decreased motivation. It can also lead to a reluctance to attempt new challenges and a decreased sense of personal responsibility.

There is no cure for learned helplessness, but various interventions can help a person recover. It is important to remember that everyone is different, so the approach to helping someone recover will vary.

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