Personality Theory

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Personality Theory
Andrea Simpson
HHS 310 H & HS Culture: The Helping Relationship
Instructor: Patricia Knight
June 18, 2012

Personality Theory
The theory that I chose, that best suits my personality, is the Humanistic Holistic Theory. This theory emphasizes “on engaging the whole person and focusing on the future rather than the past” (Brill & Levine, 2005, p.58). This theory best suits my personality, because it shows that a person can change. A person’s personality is not based off of their upbringing or simply by the culture that they were raised in. This theory is based on the fact that a person can be flexible and free to choose who they want to be rather than focusing on their past to determine who they will be. The Humanistic Holistic Theory was originated by Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow. “Humanistic psychology can be traced as far back as the Middle Ages when the philosophy of humanism was born” (Anderson, 1996, para. 1). However, this theory became emerged more in the mid-1950’s. The principles of this theory are “emphasis on engaging the whole person and focusing on the future rather than the past” (Brill & Levine, 2005, p. 58); “attention is paid to the relationship between the therapist and the client with both seen as growing and changing from the therapeutic encounter” (Brill & Levine, 2005, p. 58); and “important tasks of therapy include self-actualization, personal growth, and self understanding” (Brill & Levine, 2005, p. 58). People are basically good. This is what Humanistic basically stands for. At least, this is what Rogers and Maslow hoped for. “When conflict between war and peace arose in the early to mid 1960s, so to did the need to understand human nature. Humanistic theory gave us an understandable way to look at man's need for war for the sake of peace” (AllPsych and Heffner Media Group, Inc., 2011, section 1, para. 2). The ideas of beliefs of this theory are: The present is the most important aspect of the person and therefore humanists focus on the here and now rather than looking at the past or trying to predict the future. Humanistic theory is reality based and to be psychologically healthy people must take responsibility for themselves, whether the person's actions are positive or negative. The individual, merely by being human, posses an inherent worth. Actions may not be positive but this does not negate the value of the person. The goal of life should always be to achieve personal growth and understanding. Only through self-improvement and self-knowledge can one truly be happy (AllPsych and Heffner Media Group, Inc., 2011, section 1, para. 3). During the late 1950s, Abraham Maslow and other psychologists held meetings to discuss the development of a professional organization devoted to a more humanist approach to psychology. They agreed that topics such as self-actualization, creativity and individuality and related topics were the central theme of this new approach. In 1961, they officially established the American Association for Humanistic Psychology. In 1962, Abraham Maslow published Toward a Psychology of Being, in which he described humanistic psychology as the "third force" in psychology. The first and second forces were behaviorism and psychoanalysis respectively (Cherry, 2012, para. 3 & 4). Carl Rogersa felt that “each person operates from a unique frame of reference in terms of buliding Self Regard or their self concept. Self Concept is one's own belief about themselves. These beliefs stem, in part, from the notion of Unconditional Postive Regard and Conditional Positive Regard. Unconditional positive regard occurs when individuals, especially parents, demonstrate unconditional love. Conditioned positive regard is when that love seems to only come when certain condtions are met. Rogers theory states that psychologically healthy people enjoy life to the fullest, hence, they are seen as fully functioning people” (Mesacc, 1998, para. 2). The...
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