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The Humanist 2- Carl Rogers.pdf

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Jennifer Ostovich

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Humanists 2:Carl Rogers’ Self Theory - Maslow was very heavy on theory, Rogers from the clinical, counselling field  theories developed out of his practice with individuals o His ideas shaped how people do psychotherapy, counselling etc. - Conservative protestant family  developed interest in scientific methodology in father’s scientific farming  changed views when he went to Asia/China, became more liberal The Phenomenal Field - phenomal: field of phenomena - everything currently or potentially available to consciousness o sets of things that we are currently aware of  contents of our consciousness at any givenmovement o may also include things that are not immediately in consciousness but can easily bring them immediately to attention (e.g. pressure under the seat  if someone mentions it, you can immediately draw attention to it ) - two fold significance: o humanists (esp. Carol Rogers) emphasized that each individual lives in a slightly different world that people around them  live in world that you are paying attention to, in world of things that you notice. If you don’t notice it, its not part of your phenomenal field, not part of events/experiences that willmake up your life.  Phenomenal field is important because only things in your phenomenal field can contribute to your personal growth, can be part of your life o Everyone’s phenomenal field is different. We are not awareof the same things. Fields will overlap ifin the same situation but will not be identical because we live in and react to a world that we notice, that we are aware of (also includes the interpretation we make) - What makes people unique: Differences in phenomenal fields, and ways we respond to them - Rogers kept some of the ideas from psychodynamic approaches to therapy/counselling: o Studied mostly the conscious, but recognized the importance of unconscious. He recognizes the existence of unconscious mind, and says that most things in our mind are first entered without being conscious (sub- ception: perception below the level of conscious awareness)  One of the reasons things can be in the unconscious because it entered at a level too low to be noticed (echoed Jung)  Can be made conscious and become part of phenomenal field, but most things do not enter conscious Motivation - Maslow began with D-motives/basic needs (has to bemet before you can be self-actualized) - Rogers: only one human motive- the actualizing-tendency (self-actualization) everyone is trying to grow into what we are destined to be (realized full potential) o Resembles freud, onemotivation (freud: sex) o For Rogers, Maslow, Jung – all encompassing life force - All other drives (food, water, esteem, sex) are part of the actualizing tendency, they are components of our desire to fully realize potential - They are necessary because we need to maintain the physical organism itself if we are ever going to become actualized/fulfilling potential - Not question of“how we get to self-actualization”, for Maslow, we are always self-actualizing. Actualizing tendency is only our only drive, it’s what governs our behaviour - How do we know what we should be doing in order to satisfy actualizing tendency?? o Freud: Eros and thanatos, which guides us in choice of behaviour, actions o Maslow: we have the Organismic valuing process. Our whole being/gut knows what is right for us. Actualizig tendency leads us to approach and engage in activities thatare consistent with actualization and shy away/be put off by situations/choices which are inconsistent  Organismic valuingprocess: gut sense in ourselves which know what is right for you  Not consciously deciding  similar to Maslow’s “trusting your judgement”  Whole body, person feeling about rightness/wrongness about a particular course of action. Need to follow it, trust it because it is the only inner compass we have that accurately knows what is right for us  people knows what is best for them - What is it that develops? o Actualizing tendency actualizes itself  it is the sense of“self” that develops o The notion of self is central in Roger’s field (even though it appeared before) o Self: portion of phenomenal field  There is a set of experiences, sensations that we come torecognize as not being out there, but as part of “in here” o We are not born with the self  Phenomenal field is undifferentiated at birth, every sensation is the same - no difference between me, you, outside, inside o Babies learn that certain sources of sensations are unique to themselves- learn that chewing on toe is different as chewing a toy. Realizes the difference, difference is “the self” o We come to differentiate part of phenomena we are experiencing as “me”, “self” o Sense of self is what develops, is what is realized/enhancedthroughout life - Absolute condition that has to be met if the self is to be fully actualized/realized: o Self must receive unconditional positive regard  Love, affection, respect that is not contingent on our behaviour  UNCONDITIONAL.  Need to have if we are to fully develop into what being is intended to develop - PROBLEM: formost of us, we do not get UNCONDITIONAL positive regardregard. Love, affection is conditional: it is dependent on us behaving in a certain way o we receive if we do things that others want, like, value. We don’t receive it if we are doing, saying things that others do not like - - - early in life, we discover that positive regard is conditional- only receive it if we meet the expectations of others o conditions of worth: external expectations; things we must do, say- conditions we must meet for others to find us worthy, give us respect o if we behave in ways inconsistent with expectations, love and affection is withdrawn from us - initially conditions of worth are outside  conditions others have set (what we perceived they have set) - as time goes on, we internalize the conditions of worth o similar to Freud’s process of superego formation (take in parents values to form superego) o formation of Ideal self: we form the ideal self by internalizing these external conditions of worth and make them part of who we are o we are now meeting these conditions not because others have set them but because we now feel bad if we don’t meet them (internal standards). It is the ideal self (~superego, persona) o internal representation of societal demands, expectations (especially if they come from significant people like parents, teachers) - What goes wrong  what causes problems/mental disorders/: internalization of conditions o When this happens, we stop using the organismic value to guide our choices, to determine where we should go, how we should feel etc. o We measure appropriateness by the ideal self: is this choice, behaviour, feeling, thought consistent with the ideal self? o Ideal self is external standards, somebody elses idea of whowe should be  run life on some other persons standards and not based on who we should be o This causes personal distress, anxiety, depression to a greater or lesser extent  all is a result of following some body else’s idea of who we should be - There is a special experience, motion when we think, feel, do something that is inconsistent with the ideal self: incongruence o Similar to “anxiety” we experience when we do something that is inconsistent with superego (Freud) o Negative emotional state o We push these incongruent thoughts, feelings down into unconscious so it will not be part of phenomenal field (no longer aware of them, deny them)  don’t feel as much incongruence o We are denying ourselves information about ourselves thatis important for personal growth o Incongruence prevents us from knowing ourselves because it makes us push the “real us” into unconsciousness o We are guided by other people’s standards (called self when we internalize them), we’re denying self important information about who we are that would contribute to our growth o The extent to which our life course goes off course, as wemove away from who we should be  causes problems (dissatisfied, unhappy)  require therapy  If we have parents who know us better, know what we need/more appropriate expectations, then ideal self will be closer to what we should be doing  wont’ go off course that much - Organismic value process not influenced by values of society, culture. It is ours alone  we come with actualizing tendency and organismic value process (a guide to behaviour) o Problem is we need unconditional positiveregard, which we do not. So we internalize these external expectations to form ideal self  incongruence  denial  off track  problems o Left on their own, if they follow inner guide  everything will be positive (people are initially good)  butif we turn people away from their natural positive path, bad things will happen (humanists: no bad people, very optimistic) o E.g. Adolf Hitler in Roger’s perspective: Hitler wanted to bean artist but he was turned down. Potentially if he had been allowed to follow the path that he thought was right for him, it would have been different o Rogers- no one is bad person at birth, only when actualizingtendency is thwarted, then things go wrong Rogers and therapy - Roger’s approach has been very influential, important to understand - What he does is not as simple as it seem - Non-directive therapy o people have internal resources to deal with the problem, they know better than the therapist about what is wrong and how to fix it o directive (therapist tells people what the problem is, what you need to do) to non-directivetherapy: client comes up with the solution, decides when therapy is over o seems like therapist isn’t doing anything Conditions for therapeutic change (what’s required for a therapeutic relationship to occur) - Client an therapist must be in each other’s phenomenal field o Client has to be paying attention to what therapist is doing/saying; therapist also has to paying attention to what client is doing/thinking, noticing what is happening o Attending to each other - Therapist must try to empathicall
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