One of the simplest explanations of our base instincts is that they are inherent behaviors or inclinations i.e. we aren’t taught them and we don’t learn them – they are a natural biological reaction. They are also things we cannot control. We can learn to control our reaction to the instinct, but we cannot change the instinct itself. Society teaches us how to react to, manage and treat our base instincts, but no set of rules will prevent them from occurring. It’s a fascinating aspect of human behavior and science that we don’t really give much thought to on a day to day basis, because base instincts are just part of the circle of life.
1. Have You Ever Looked Away when You See a Person with Deformities?
This is one of those base instincts you probably didn’t know you had. You know that the person beneath the deformity is the same as you, and you know that person is no threat to you either physically or biologically, and yet you get a funny abhorrent feeling when you see them. This is one of your base instincts from back in the days when different biological traits were embraced or shunned. The feelings of abhorrence are not your fault, but you do need to rise above your prehistoric base instincts at some point. Some scientists will also link this to natural selection. Everyone wants to mate with the best looking and the strongest animal and a deformed animal is seen as weak and is often shunned in many animal communities. Man has taken this a step further – the weak and vulnerable are to be accepted and protected. This is an example of how society has developed to manage our base instincts.
2. Have You Ever Seen a Spider and Had That Small Feeling of Shock?
This is not a feeling of fear or a feeling of disgust. It is a slight feeling of shock, almost like a little jump, which is more closely linked with when someone walks into a room and makes you jump. This small amount of shock is a base instinct linked to a flight or fight response. Some people have it worse in a way that manifests as fear of spiders.
3. Ever Notice How Some Dating Scenarios Feel like the Start of a Roller Coaster?
Even if you are an expert at dating, you still get that little squirt of adrenaline every now and again. This is part of your base instincts that are setting your body up for arousal. Our base instincts tell us to guard off others of our species whilst making ourselves ready for sex. This has translated from your puberty into a “buzz” feeling that comes with romantic/dating interaction.
4. Ever Feel Sick Just from Smelling Rum?
There are lots of base instincts involved with food and smell. Rum reminds the base part of our brains of rotting animals which the human body is conditioned to avoid. Ever crave foods? That is because your body requires their nutrients and it is your instinct to seek them out. How come for one day you liked peanuts? If you do not like a food, have you ever noticed that for one or two days you seem to like them, or you like them on a pie or something? This is your body telling you that you need the nutrients within. It is a common belief that there are micro nutrients in fast/junk food, which is why people seen to crave a McDonald’s burger or KFC gravy every two weeks (think about the junk foods you crave).
5. Do You or Your Man Sleep Facing the Door?
This is a great basic instinct that can tell you lots about your man. Does he sleep facing the door? When you go to hotels, does he sleep on a different side of the bed? It is one of the base instincts that male protectors have, and is an instinctive impulse to put himself between you and potential intruders. Single mothers have also been found to sleep facing the door of the room when their child is in the room with them; they even switch sides of the bed. There are even women who put a cot in their room and instinctively move their bed closer to the door.
6. Ever Feel Uncomfortable in a Room Full of Portrait Paintings?
Even if they are fake eyes watching you, it can still be unnerving. Almost all animal life on earth has a fear response when being watched because you are only watched if you are prey. This goes for all creatures from spiders to killer whales. Peacocks and butterflies use eye shapes and patterns to scare off predators.
7. Have You Ever Lusted after a Person Who Was Completely Wrong for You?
Attraction is not a choice and it is linked deeply to our base instincts. Scientists even believe that we have a preferred smell that is picked up on by our basic instincts. Some also say we emit pheromones to attract a mate (though this is still unproven). You see couples together all the time that appear wrong for each other, but it is probably because they are a slave to their base instincts when it comes to attraction.
This is a hugely complex science when it comes to humans, but if you want to learn more, wildlife programs are an excellent source of understanding our base instincts. In wildlife, the base instincts run raw, true and free because there is no social conditioning to manipulate them in the same way society does for humans. They are much easier to discern and recognize in animals. Do you find this fascinating?