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The Humanist 1- Maslow.pdf

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McMaster University
Jennifer Ostovich

Humanists 1 : Abraham Maslow Humanistic Theories - Focus on meaning of life for individual o Only one that does not take a nomathetic approach, take idiographic approach  interested in individual only as he or she is - Desire to help person achieve understanding, wholeness, meaning o Not interested in the development, biological basis of personality, but about how the individual is functioning in the world right now o Interested in increasing the extent to which the individual is optimally functioning, is psychologically healthy, is subjectively happy/productive/content, has a meaningful life o focus on meaning of life of each individual: how do you see yourself in the world, what are your hopes/dreams, individualmeaning o therapeutically: want individual to achieve understanding of self, self-awareness (critical to self-development) - Focus on individual’s unique perception of the world o How you see the world around you o Each of us is living in a different world, at any givenmoment, we are paying attention to different things/different aspects of the environment, and that’s the reality in which we life. Reality is our perceived environment  will differ from person to person o Need to understand how each sees the world - Avoid reductionism o Interested in holistic view  don’t agree with cognitive/behavior/psycho approach that we should analyze down to the details out of which personality is built o Only way to appreciate person is as a whole-much greater than sum of any of its parts, can never know how person is like by knowing their traits/impulses o There’s a holistic integration which we need to understand o Cake: can’t understand what a cake is like by understandingthe ingredients itself  it is more than that o Avoid reducing person to set of components, analyzing the pieces will not let you understand the whole person - More idiographic than other approaches - Optimistic view of people: people are good/positive unless they had been interrupted in their development  only time they’re not positive is if they have been denied opportunity to develop as they should. When natural process is blocked  evil/badness - The most important humanmotivation is simply to develop our set of potentials- to be all we can be (become what we are naturally designed to become) o In Rogers theory: this is the only motive we have- trying to understand our essential nature Humanistic Principles - Maslow + others formed the humanistic association, basedon a number of principles 1. “The primary study of psychology should be the experiencing person.” o it’s about the individual/person (idiographic approach) o focus/see person in the world as he/she is living  what dothey experience in world around them 2. “Choice, creativity, and self-realization…are the concerns ofthe humanistic psychologist.” o self- realization: knowing who you are, becoming as much as you can be, having the experience of full choices in life o ability tomake choices, necessity to making choices- need/desire to be creative/make something o one self 3. “Only personally and socially significant problems should be studied..” o there’s a lot of stuff we want to know, but if it doesn’t impact the way society works, if it doesn’t effect individuals in their life, it should not be the primary focus of investigation o should ask questions about how individuals function, how society functions well  what conditions leads best to individual development? o What situations best allows society for function optimally for all its members? o Just because we can know something, doesn’t mean we have to know it, unless its socially and personally significant 4. “The major concern of psychology is the dignity and enhancement of people.” o Making things better for the individuals, improving lives of people Abraham Maslow’s Background - Jewish, not well off family, unhappy childhood: troubled relationship withmother, picked on  Wisconsin: encountered work of behaviourist (Watson: people can be made better if you control their environment), switched into psychology  did work under Harlow (who worked with monkeys and contact comfort with mother)- sexual dominance in hierarchal monkeys  Columbia: sexual dominance/hierarchy in humans- at women, first American paper ever published on human sexuality  Brooklyn college: at this time, lot of prominent intellectuals who have left Europe and come to North America,many gathered in Columbia,NYC- Maslow met a lot of people, turned him around - Found that many of the black foot tribe were “well adjusted”, and there were common set of personality in those who were not adjusted  became interested in consistencies inhuman behaviour - Optimal human development: how are the well-developedpeople like  continued publishing work on optimal development, personal development (60s) - Also interested in optimal work places: factory- digital bowl makers  workers were organized into teams where everyone had creative input into the process  Maslow onmanagement (published)- ideas picked up by Japanese, much ignored by Americans in the beginning - 120 articles, 6-7 books “Instinctoid” Motivation - What motivates human beings? Maslow: our sources of motivation are instinctoid (built in to us) o All human beings have the same motivational drives o Human motivation is built in, biological based, but Maslowmade the distinction betweeninstincts and instinctoid (“like instincts”)  different from instincts because they are biological given but we can modify times/ways expressed, modified by culture, experience, learning etc. (moremalleable than true instincts) - Human instinctoid vs. animal instinctive - not dominating, uncontrollable- unlike animal instincts - Can be controlled, repressed o animal instincts are uncontrollable, as soon as stimulus is presented, they engage in it and cannot modify their built in automatic responses. Human motivations are built in, like an instinct. But unlike the dominating/uncontrollable, we have conscious control over them, can be modified - Overlain by learning, cultural expectations, etc. o Can be modified by experience, cultural expectations o The things that happen to us, determines the way instincts are elaborate, projected, given in to etc. - Both Jung and Freud had these theories that basic insticts are modifiable - Like Jung (less Freud), Maslow argued for a number of instinctoid motivations  argued for Heirarchy of needs (biological  psychological based needs, evolutionary ancient  evolutionary recent needs, needs that show up early  show up in few years, if at all) Maslow’sHeirarchy of needs - Maslow’s hierarchy of needs: Maslow's theory rests on the idea that human motivation consists of a hierarchy of needs. From bottom to top, we move from needs that are evolutionarily old to those that aremore recent; from needs developing early in the individual's life to those developing later; and from needs that are primarily biological or physiological to those that are primarily psychological. - What makes it a HEIRARCHY structure o Organized from biological/physiological needs to psychological needs at the top  Food, water sleep (physiological, basic biological needs)  purely psychological (even without them, your physiology is unaltered, you can function fine) o In terms of evolutionary age of these need (evolutionary old  recent)  Bottom: needs shared bymost of the animals/plant kingdom (evolutionary extremely old, back to first forms of life) – most life needs air, food, oxygen- ancient needs shared bymany species  Move up: evolutionary recent needs  needs for safety, love (not seen in bacteria, earth worm) – morelimited tomammals. Esteem needs-may be uniquelyhuman o Age at which these needs appear (developmentally early late)  needs at the bottom appear earlier inlife, typically right as you are born (oxygen, food, water, sleep etc)- fundamental to human life and appear early  move up: needs that don’t develop until a number of years, some may never develop  safety needs; 8-12 months, love: 18-24 months, esteem: 3-4 years - everything below self actualization are deficiency needs (deficiency motives, de-motives) o they are things we absolutely need in order to be whole human being, needs thatmust bemet o physiological, safety, love and belonging needs  all are necessary to be complete human being, feel emptiness if we lack them and feel driven by these needs of which we have notmet o our focus, attention will be on these un-met deficiency needs  what we strive for The Development of Needs (is progressive) - The progressive development of needs: Each level of needs emerges only when the needs of the previous level have been at least partly satisfied. Maslow argued that most of our behaviors are over-determined, by which hemeant that they are simultaneously motivated by a number of different needs. - these needs don’t emerge suddenly one after another  gradual process o if you have a need that’s partly satisfied, then the next needs will begin to emerge, once these are partly satisfied, next begin to emerge o physiological needs met 50% of the time, then 20% of the safety needs emerge, 5% of love and belonging needs o at one time, number of these needs might be present or emerging - our behavior is over determined o for any type of behavior, we are trying to meet multiple needs simultaneously o e.g. go to lunch with friends: meets physiological need (food), structural needs, love and belonging needs, esteem needs o try to engage in behavior that simultaneous needs (~Freud’s dream symbols representing 3-4 impulses- Freud used the term over determination) Back to hierarchy of needs.. Deficiency hierarchy: - Physiological needs o First to emerge, evolutionary oldest o Biological based: keeping body alive o Includes: air, oxygen, sleep, some aspects of sex o Once partly met, next emerges - Safetyneeds o Beyond shelter o Need for security, predictability, for order and structure in life o Begins to emerge at a few years of age, remains significant as drive for as long as we live o Most people successfullymeet both of these set of needs in N.America - Love and belongingness needs o Belongingness: similar to Jung’s persona (instinct to want to be accepted by others, do things that others will value and respect)  we need to be part of a social group, we need to be accepted by others (social species)- hardly prefer to do things by ourselves  We identify ourselves very commonly in terms of our social relationships o Love: we need to be loved, but just as importantly, we needto be loving (give love to others)  Equally important to love and be loving (give + receive) o If any of these needs (safety, love, belongingness) incompletely met, can lead to psychological problems  Don’t have enough security, structure, predictability  psychopathology (extreme: obsessive compulsive disorder- avoid anxiety through order, handwashing etc. attempting to produce order/structure/predictability that is absent)  Biggest source of psychological source is failure to meet need of love and belongingness  depression, anxiety etc. - Esteem needs (self and others) o Need respect status from others: recognition that others can give us, be recognized as valuable, contributing human being (by friends, family, co workers, society) o Self-esteem: need to accept ourselves as valuable, worthwhile, capable, mastery of skills etc. o We have to believe in ourselves, like ourselves, just as important if not more important than receiving esteem from others - Up to this point, all are things we need to be complete as human being (keep body andmind going/healthy)  nothing beyond this is required, in fact 95% never go beyond this set of needs o Most of us spend most of our lives being motivated by de-motives, constantly lacking something (of the above) o When we are engaged in the de-motive hierarchy, we havea particular way of interacting with the outside world: de-cognition (or: deficiency-perception/deficiency cognition) o Nature of de-cognition, two main characteristics  Focused: attend, notice, process only those things in the outside world that is relevant to our current un-met needs  e.g. hungry, all we can think about is food; unsafe, all we can think about are those situations that will provide a greater degree of security andpredictability; missing esteem needs, only paying attention to situations/aspects of world that are relevant to this need  Active: actively seeking out things/situations in which we could satisfy our un-met needs  A narrow focus and active striving to get ourselves into situations that will fulfill our needs (dig, strive, go)  for most of us, this is our lives because we are de-cognitive. Constantly striving to meet these needs o They are related by separable o Need to be 100% fulfilled before you canmove onto self-actualization, before you are “whole” in this sense, you will be continuing to fulfill the deficiency heirarchy - Self-actualization (introduction) o Can only occur if and when we have fully met our deficiency motives (now a whole person having bet all the biological emerging needs) o Intrinsic growth of what is already in the organism, of what is the organism is itself o Highest motive is to be unmotivated and un-striving. Behave purely expressively, be who you are  it is growth motivated rather than deficiency motivate. Wise innocence- another childhood but wiser o Self-actualized person is similar to a child (child like qualities) o Realization of full inner potential after meeting the basic biological and psychological needs o Grow from within: express one’s true inner nature, be all you can be/be what you are intended to be o Involves knowing and accepting what that inner someone is o Maslow’s hierarchy of needs – add cognitive and aesthetic needs: In addition to the needs on the main hierarchy of D-motives , there is another, higher need - self-actualization - that emerges only when all lower needs are completely satisfied. There are, in addition, two other sorts of needs (aesthetic and cognitive needs) that do not fit into the hierarchy, but seem to be continuously present from a very early age (and remains)  2 other sets of needs that are not really in deficiency hierarchy, but not self-actualization. they don’t emerge in the same way as those in the deficiency hierarchy, somehow from birth  Cognitive needs: curiosity, need to know/understand  someone who becomes a scholar has a set of strong cognitive needs  Aesthetic needs: need for beauty, symmetry  in some people their aesthetic needs are so strong they can be made physically ill by ugliness Exceptions to Heirarchy - Even though generalities of d-motive hierarchy is true, it can be different in some people - For some people, the order of items is reversed. Most likelyto happen at the top end (i.e. it is unlikely for security to come before physiological needs) - Esteem comes before love and belongingness (not uncommon for) o After meet need for safety, structure, predictability etc, esteem is the next to emerge o Sheldon @ Big Bang Theory : concern for how other peopleviews him, high self esteem is greater than concern for love and belongingness - Long satisfied need may be undervalued o Another example: when we have a set of needs completelymet very earlier on, we never know the deficiency of real hunger, real deprivation of physiological needs  don’t see these needs as important anymore because we are so used to having them fulfilled, and don’t see the significance o Fulfilled for long period of time  undervalue them  cango for substantial amount of time withoutmeeting these needs and still strive for upper level needs o E.g. you volunteer in a 3 world country, during that time,may not live well (unsafe, unpredictable, not meeting physiological needs)  but this un-fulfillment won’t matter, and we continue to strive for esteem/love & belongingness needs.  can sustain higher level needs without having the lower level needs met because you always had them met and you don’t place much value on it anymore (instintoid- can modify!) o For people who always had lower level needs met, can go w/o having lower level needs met and strive for the upper ones o Take out basic physiological needs, pyramid would normallycollapse  lack interest in higher level needs because you are focused on lower level that is not met. There are exceptions- If we always had bottom level met, we can go on without bottom level for some time and have upper level intact - Creativity may overwhelm all other drives o Aesthetic needs so strong that they sacrificed all other needs o E.g. the starving artist who sacrifices money for food to buy paint - Satisfaction of constant lack: Higher drives need appear o Opposite of long satisfaction- never had a needmet o E.g. born in war zon
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