Rogers was raised on a farm in Illinois, where he developed an interest in agriculture and biology. He enjoyed his own company most of the time when he studied alone. Expressing one’s emotions was not an allowed form of behavior at his home. It greatly affected him and he got an ulcer. He started studying humanistic psychology. Among his notable contributions, there is the statement developed by him. Rogers says that human beings get motivated through having innate potential. It helps persons to have a strong self-maintenance enhancing them. Rogers also sees people as being decent. Some of his points of view are readily accepted by human beings. However, others in his person-centered theory are hard to be accepted.
Points to Agree with
According to Rogers, an inner desire and a trend, which is always positive, motivate human beings. Their desire to grow has an expression and activates persons’ every capacity. Rogers says that the formative tendency is a tendency that makes one move towards development in any situation. It makes human behavior be seen as rational and always the main reason for one to achieve his or her goal. Rogers says that human beings with the actualizing tendency always move towards complexity, social responsibility, and independence. I agree with this point. The reason behind this is that in every person, there is usually a desire. Every human being with a goal is a superb example of this. It makes any person with strong aspirations move forward. The human motivational instinct is plentiful and healthy. However, some people see optimism about the human condition as similar to radical. Others see it as selfishness, while the Christians accept it as sinful.
Organismic Valuing Process
It is a subconscious knowing that is in the inner part of a human being, which usually guides him or her in evaluating some new experiences for potential growth. This inner feeling usually draws human beings towards experiences that induce growth. The latter direct people to their choices mostly in positive ways. It is only possible if one can be taught to attend to it. In human beings, there is usually an inner valuing process that can be considered as the only correct one. It takes place if only one is raised with trust in himself or herself and respects his or her emotional needs. I agree with this point because human beings that trust their feelings never act to please people but to help themselves. A compelling example is Rogers himself. His childhood development is marked by the repression of his individual functioning. His family was extremely strict and repressive, and this can be believed to have contributed to his actions later in life.
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Points to Disagree with
Rogers was the first person to explore the role of the self in the development of one’s personality. He categorized two selves: one, which is a social and cultural success, perhaps may be authentic. The second category was the self that did arise after the death of the acculturated one. Rogers says that the ideal self can often lead a person to have mental disorders. It is because he or she may feel that he should be the idealized self, ends up living in self-denial, and rejects the self he or she is. The more a person accepts oneself as the ideal and authentic self, the more he or she finds the real self threatening. I disagree with this point because one cannot simply change oneself into a more sociable person. It is because if one is shy, he or she is likely to remain such for a long time, except for special cases. A person born with certain personalities cannot change immediately if he or she is subjected to a different environment.
Rogers says that development affects the way, in which the child perceives him or herself. Most children substitute any adult praise for their own desires and feelings. It can be when parents and adults tell them that they are capable. It makes parents have an interest in giving their children motivation to work hard and be respectful. In turn, the latter portrays their true behaviors and hide defiant ones. I disagree with this because a parenting style affects the child’s personality. It means that when children want to get decent praise from their parents, they will try to work hard and have a noble character. As Rogers tries to say, it will not result in hiding crude behaviors. Some parents are authoritative, and mold their children, when they are young.
Observation of Human Personality Contributing to the Theory
To support Rogers’ theory, there is research done on violent people and criminals in this paper. They have weird behavior in the community. Following their background, it was easier to note that neither of them came from a friendly family and environment. An unfriendly environment and abuse at a young age made these people lose touch with their inner feelings. Most of them were ignored or punished. It made them validate any emotional reaction, especially empathy. Such people have remarkably little or no reaction to persons they afflict and hurt. Robbers and thieves, who hurt people to steal, act out of defensiveness. Some of them may try to find something to feed on. It can be seen that these people do not act out of innate evil forces, but out of fear and defensiveness.
Observation Contradicting the Theory
When parents become strict with their children, they are forced to behave in a way they are supposed to. It will make the child have upstanding moral principles. In the theory, Rogers believes that children will tend to hide and disown their characters. Parents give warm praise for such behavior. The child is likely to get tired of always living a lie. At some time, he will own up. The same case applies to adults. Those trying to input themselves into the ideal self will also get tired of living a lie. They may even end up forgetting to impersonate themselves. It makes it hard for them to always live a lie, and they may accept their real self.
Maslow's Definition of "Self-Actualization"
According to Abraham Maslow, self-actualization is human beings’ desire to have self-fulfillment. Maslow says that every man can be what he is destined to be. Self-actualization refers to the tendency of a normal human being to become what he or she potentially is. I agree with Maslow’s definition of self-actualization. It is because some people do need self-esteem more than love and relationships. For others, creative fulfillment is more valuable than other basic needs. Most people, who are self-actualized, have a realistic perception of others around them. Maslow says that self-actualized people share other people’s problems. They are motivated by having a sense of personal ethics and responsibilities. This kind of person is often spontaneous. It especially concerns the thoughts they have internally and their outward behavior. Self-actualized people are always open and unconventional, but they can also observe the rules and their self-expectations. These people have the need for total independence and some privacy. It is observed that when they always enjoy other people's companies, they always need time to have a strong focus on the development of individual potential. Such people always tend to have a different view of the world than others. They see with a sense of awe, wonder, and passionate appreciation. Most of the time, they get some peak experiences that include their moments of sheer joy, ecstasy, and wonder. Self-actualized people always want to have the best time with others, but they prefer to spend some hours alone.
Humanist Approach Discussion
Rogers’s Idea that People are Basically Good
I strongly agree with Rogers’s idea that people are inherently decent. It is because human behavior can be seen as rational, and leads a person to his or her goals. It makes a human being move forward to independence, social responsibility, and complexity. The human motivational instinct is healthy and inherently decent. Human beings have an inner valuing process, which is organismic. It guides people in evaluating experiences that may be new to them and leads them to the ones that induce growth. Inner experiences direct human beings to positive choices, according to the way, in which they have been taught. They make a human being be accurate if he has been told to trust himself and respect his needs emotionally. Unfortunately, not every human being has been raised having respect for his or her personal needs. It usually makes persons act to always please others. An excellent example is Rogers’s childhood when his family was strict and highly repressive. It conditioned his individual functioning, which might have contributed to his later life. A person considered being functioning fully can listen to his or her inner feelings and pay attention to them. Human beings can be said to be intrinsically respectable if they can be within their experience at the present moment. They must be able to feel affected by responding to other peoples’ experiences around them. A human being does not assume the impact these events have but can trust his or her feelings. People also try to live well every time they have. They can experience fully and observe better each and every moment. Thus, human beings are acceptable, since they are willing to get changed by their interaction with the world, and can respond to life experiences easily.
It is clear that Rogers’ person-centered theory has some acceptable and unacceptable points. Rogers says that the inner desire of a person to grow makes him or her yearn for being better. He sees the behavior of human beings as being rational, and the main reason for people to achieve their goals. He says that there is an inner feeling that guides humans in evaluating some experiences that need for their potential growth. Rogers’s theory also has parts that suggest that some people live in self-denial due to realizing that their personality is not appealing. Rogers says that when children receive praise from parents, they use it for their own inner feelings and development.