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Lecture

PSYC 2210 Lecture Notes - Humanistic Psychology, Abraham Maslow, Behaviorism


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 2210
Professor
d

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of 2
Lecture#20
Personality (Part VIII)
ŸHumanism is a much more brighter and optimistic view of personality, Carl Rogers (client-centered
therapy) and Abraham Maslow (self-actualizer)
ŸHumanism emerges in the year following of the second war, in part a response to psychoanalysis and
behaviourism, is a far more optimistic view of people and what we are capable of as a species
ŸIn contrast to psychoanalysis’s, humanists give us far more credit in our day-to-day behaviour, and
decisions we make
ŸWe are acknowledged for the capacity for rationality, conscience intention, we can be purposeful and
goal oriented, whe know what is going on inside of us, we are creative (not simply redirection of
sublimation of sexual urges, like how freud thought), capable of having profound insight of ourselves
and the world around us
ŸThere are two main figures in the humanistic movement, the first is Carl Rogers, who is practised in
psychotherapist, and psychologist, and with interactions with his clienteles, he came into a humanistic
view and their capacity of change, relatively simple view of underlying motivations, in some sense he
is a motivational theorist, and all behaviour can be traced to singly motive, to self actualize, maintain
and enhance oneself (fulfill your potential)
ŸInside you there is a true self, that is a potential that is meant to be realized and that you are meant to
become (like a caterpillar is intended to become a butterfly)
ŸHumanists believe that we have intuitions about our choices, when we arrive at conflicts, we have gut
feelings about which is the right thing to choose, and when we listen to those intuitions we take steps
to take us through the path, the little voice=the organismic value process (fundamental capacity to see
the growth development of an event, you know in your gut if it is good or bad, and you choose to listen
to it or ignore it)
ŸListening to the inner voice, guiding intuition about what is right, sets you on the path to realize all the
potential you have inside you=a fully functioning person, who lets OVP guide us to make all the right
choices and go through all the right experiences
ŸAs fully functioning people, we all have certain traits and characteristics that are commonàopenness
to experience, capacity of existential living (live the moment) and self trust (listening to their OVP,
they rely on it), they have everything together, don’t need to be defensive or distort perceptions of
themselves or reality, very clear, and capable of paying attention to their thoughts and feelings
ŸThere are certain development needs and experiences for achieving this fully functionality
ŸThe primary need is called positive regard, key need that everyone needs, the need to be accepted,
valued and seen positively by others, and in particular by significant others
ŸRogers postulates the need for positive regard and speculates that most of us do not get in in life, most
people are deprived of this need
ŸMore often or not there are conditions attached to our worth, our parents and those around us have
expectations and their regard, praise and congratulations and acceptance are dependant on how we act,
they set conditions, e.g. proud when we get good grades, disappointed when we get bad grades
ŸWe get conditions of worth, if we act this way, you will be accepted, if your not this type of person, we
will love you, etc.
ŸWe learn that our positive regard is conditional, acceptance and praise is conditional based on our
behaviour, and we learn to hide or repress those attributes about yourself that receives criticism or
rejection
ŸThose who learned to hide certain attributes of who they are usually lead to pathology, they are not
able to realize and actualize all the parts they are, some parts are not accepted, so they repress those
aspects of them
ŸWhat Rogers did for his patients; the key to humanistic therapy, is to give patient a kind of respect,
acceptance, and allowance of dignity for no matter what they do (unconditional positive regard), by
looking at the world through their eyes, with all of their experiences they have had, etc.
ŸTo some extent you can produce the feelings and thoughts of the events that have happened to them, a
little bit of this patient is inside you, as the humanistic psychologist, and you state it out loud, those
thoughts and fears=this is the key of psychotherapy, because of the therapist’s ability to reflect wahts
going on with the patient back to the patient (everything they have learned to suppress)
ŸAbraham Maslow had a lot more to say about the human-actualizer
ŸMaslow situated this need within a hierarchy of needs, physiological needs, safety, needs for
belongingness and love, self-esteem and self-actualize, universal set of needs
ŸMaslow believed that we only move onto the next need until our previous needs are met, and once they
are satisfied, then we can concern ourselves with the next stage of needs
ŸOnce you are fed, then housed, does your need to be accepted and loved occurs
ŸThen your need to be treated well by those people=self-esteem
ŸThen you want to get ahead and have those people respect you
ŸAnd only once you have a sense of being esteemed and accepted by others, sheltered and fed, the you
can address your needs for personal needs and the actualization of those potentials (Rogers)
ŸThe last need, is different from all the needs below, because everything below is called deficiency
needs/motive, the lack of something motivates you to acquire it
ŸIn contrast, self-actualization is inducing, once you get a little bit, you want to learn more, the more
you get the more you want
ŸThings self-actualizing people want become concerned with abstract qualities like truth, justice and
beauty, in which we realize our potential
ŸHierarchy of needs is very intuitive in a sense that first you have to deal with one thing, then move
onto another thing, model is very compelling
ŸHowever there are possible fatal flaws, the first is the idea of priority of meeting one need to move
onto the next, and it is problematic, there are all sorts of instances when people try to fulfill higher
order needs before they have fulfilled their lower order needs (e.g. Russian writers, do not have proper
shelter or home, but they still write)
ŸThe order of the needs is also a problem, whose to say that belongingness comes before self-esteem,
other theorists say differently (Erik Erikson says identity comes before intimacy)
ŸHow do we define the need and when the need is satisfied, e.g. need for security and safety, how big of
a house do you need? How much safety? How much food feeds you? How much love makes you feel
like you belong?, etc., fulfillments are unclear
ŸEven if we recognize the flaws with the models, the idea of the self actualizing person who has made
their way through the lower self-ordered needs have come to a point to find the needs that are not seen
previously (higher-order principles, social injustices, honesty, truth, beauty in life, etc.)
ŸThese needs are self-reinforcing, once you become aware of these needs, you want to do more (your
work is not done with one simple act)
ŸOnce at the top of the hierarchy, you become able to have peak experiences, moments of profound
insight to the world around us, have this quality of experience where they feel at the top of their game,
they are whole and unified, they are confident, flexible and open, creative, spontaneous and have a
quality of being
ŸMaslow actually had a pessimistic belief that only 5/1000 people reflect self-actualization, very rare
quality