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Humanistic Personality

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The Humanistic Personality

The humanistic perspective on personality deals exclusively with human behavior. Humanistic psychologists believe that human nature includes a natural drive towards personal growth, that we as humans have the ability to choose what they do regardless of environment, and that humans are pretty much conscious beings and that we are not controlled by unconscious needs and conflicts. Three of the humanistic psychologists that I have outlined are Carl Rogers, Abraham Maslow, and Rollo May. I am going to outline their theories on humanistic personality and the reason why I agree with them and how it fits my own personal personality.

Carl Rogers, Abraham Maslow and Rollo May differ in their emphases but they all agree on a few basic points. Unlike the Freud theory they believe in the basic goodness of the human nature. Rogers believed that if people discovered their "true Self" and Maslow believed if they could "self actualize" and Mays believed if they had the "courage to be" then people would be whole, and live worthwhile lives. They claimed that people had responsibility, choice, and freedom in determining their own behavior.

Carl Rogers approach to humanistic psychology was extremely optimistic, he believed that all people have a tendency toward growth, this was a basic need in his eyes to maintain and enhance your life. For example your physical way of maintaining and enhancing your life would be to stay alive by eating, keeping warm, and avoiding physical danger, whereas on a psychological level you would seek out new experiences, master new skills and quit boring jobs and find exciting new ones. He used the term "fully functioning person" for people that were self actualizing and these people were people who were very open to their feelings no matter what they were, those people were exactly what he was basing his theories on. Rogers was a firm believer that how and when we self actualize was based on childhood experience, that it is crucial for children to have positive regard or they will not be able to have this growth. He also believed that when you had an anxiety that in order to protect your mind that humans distort reality, that I can firmly believe too.

In the same theory with slight different beliefs Abraham Maslow based his theory on his Hierarchy of needs. Therefore he viewed human needs or motives as forming a hierarchy. There are five levels to his hierarchy including physiological needs, safety and security needs, love and belongingness needs, esteem needs and finally self actualization. Characteristics of self actualized people according to Maslow were that they are efficient and accurate in perceiving reality, they are accepting of themselves and of others, they are spontaneous in thought and emotion, are problem centered can identify with all humanity, form deep ties with only a people, appreciate the process of doing things have child like creativity and inventiveness, and may appear temperamental or ruthless because of their strong independence. Some examples that Maslow believed to be self actualized are Albert Einstein, Eleanor



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