—adjustmental /euh just men"tl/, adj./euh just"meuhnt/, n.1. the act of adjusting; adaptation to a particular condition, position, or purpose.2. the state of being adjusted; orderly relation of parts or elements.3. a device, as a knob or lever, for adjusting: the adjustments on a television set.4. the act of bringing something into conformity with external requirements: the adjustment of one's view of reality.5. harmony achieved by modification or change of a position: They worked out an adjustment of their conflicting ideas.6. Sociol. a process of modifying, adapting, or altering individual or collective patterns of behavior so as to bring them into conformity with other such patterns, as with those provided by a cultural environment.7. Insurance. the act of ascertaining the amount of indemnity that the party insured is entitled to receive under the policy, and of settling the claim.8. a settlement of a disputed account or claim.9. a change or concession, as in price or other terms, in view of minor defect or the like.[1635-45; ADJUST + -MENT]
* * *in psychology, the behavioral process by which humans (human behaviour) and other animals (animal behaviour) maintain an equilibrium among their various needs or between their needs and the obstacles of their environments. A sequence of adjustment begins when a need is felt and ends when it is satisfied. Hungry people, for example, are stimulated by their physiological state to seek food. When they eat, they reduce the stimulating condition that impelled them to activity, and they are thereby adjusted to this particular need.In general, the adjustment process involves four parts: (1) a need or motive in the form of a strong persistent stimulus, (2) the thwarting or nonfulfillment of this need, (3) varied activity, or exploratory behaviour accompanied by problem solving, and (4) some response that removes or at least reduces the initiating stimulus and completes the adjustment.Social and cultural adjustments are similar to physiological adjustments. People strive to be comfortable in their surroundings and to have their psychological needs (such as love or affirmation) met through the social networks they inhabit. When needs arise, especially in new or changed surroundings, they impel interpersonal activity meant to satisfy those needs. In this way, people increase their familiarity and comfort with their environments, and they come to expect that their needs will be met in the future through their social networks. Ongoing difficulties in social and cultural adjustment may be accompanied by anxiety or depression.
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