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Theories Of Personality

Satisfactory Essays
Anne Ricards
Doctor Nardone
PSYC 2800- C01
March 12th, 2014
Psychoanalytic vs. Phenomenological Theories of Personality
In its most basic form, personality is what defines a person through their “…expression of emotions, relationship building, and their individual patterns of behavior…” (CITE). Two of the most prolific theories on the formation of personality were developed by neurologist Sigmund Freud and psychologist Carl Rogers. Both Freud and Rogers worked in psychotherapy, the area of therapy, which “…focuses on fostering a positive mental well-being…” (CITE). These men based their general theories of personality on their experiences with patients, however their conclusions are worlds apart. Rogers is recognized for his approach to therapy where the “…client…” has a more direct role in the process (CITE). Whereas Freud is best known for his work on the unconscious mind.
The theory of psychoanalysis, founded by Freud, asserted that people could be cured by “…making conscious their unconscious thoughts and motivations…”, therefore gaining insight into their behavior and state of being (CITE). The aim of psychoanalytic therapy is to release repressed emotions and experiences, because Freud believed that psychological problems are rooted in the unconscious mind. In certain cases, individuals would have manifested symptoms caused by “…latent…”, or hidden disturbances (CITE). Typical causes could include unresolved issues during development or as a result of repressed trauma. Those who practice psychoanalysis believe that only with a cathartic experience can be the person be helped and therefore cured. In other words, , Freud’s treatment focused on bringing the repressed conflict to consciousness, where the patent then could wo...

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...s’ theory superior is in its simplicity. The entire theory is built on a single “…force of life…” that he calls the actualizing tendency or the built-in motivation that is present in every life-form to develop in accordance to its full potential (CITE). Unlike Freud, Rogers is not just talking about survival. Instead, Rogers believes that all creatures strive to make the very best of their existence and if they fail to do so, it is not for a lack of desire.
Rogers captures with this single great need or motive all the other motives that other theorists talk about. He asks us, why do we want air and water and food? Why do we seek safety, love, and a sense of competence? Why, indeed, do we seek to discover new medicines, invent new power sources, or create new works of art? Because, it is in our nature as living things to do the very best we can.

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