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Humanistic and Existential Theories of Abnormality

Humanistic and existential theories of abnormality involve the idea that individuals feel pressure and stress with confirming to society's rules, which causes them to be unable to achieve their desires, leading to abnormal functioning. Various humanistic theories include Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs and Carl Rogers' self-actualization concept.

Carl Rogers is one of the most well known proponents for humanistic therapy. He believed that if societal pressures were removed, individuals would grow happily and achieve self-actualization - true meaning in the world. However, individuals in society faced with the burdens and constrictions placed upon them may have a distorted view of themselves and lose touch with their own needs and desires. Through his client-centred therapy, Rogers helps people realize their own needs and break free from outside pressure.

Similarly, Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs states that a person's needs range from the most basic needs, such as food and water, to the higher-order needs, including self-actualization and meaning in life. The higher-order needs can only be achieved when the lower-order needs are met, and if these lower needs are not met, a person can be faced with distress and anxiety.

Image credit: J. Finkelstein

The humanistic and existential theories of abnormality hold strong in psychological treatment due to the positive mentality behind individuals taking control of their lives, loving themselves, and realizing their own strength and potential. However, a negative aspect of this approach is that it is very difficult to study scientifically in research.

The Person-Centered Approach

Please help with the following: describing and evaluating two of the basic tenets of person-centered theory. Compare similarities and differences among person-centered, cognitive-behavioral, and psychodynamic theories with respect to how a client's problems arise and how people change. Finally, analyze this information with resp

Science vs. Scientism

After viewing Hutchinson's YouTube video (listed below), please provide a one page (single spaced) response to the following questions: Question 1: Explain the difference between science and scientism. Question 2: How does this distinction influence how Christian counselors view the relationship between psychology and the

Concept's Application to Society

Pick a term from this list. Apply the term to social psychology and explain the concept's application to society. Develop the concept in terms of applicability and heuristic value. Inform your response with scholarly support. a. Entitativity b. Essentialism and social psychology c. Attribution error and social psychology

Application of humanistic theory

Explain one way in which the application of humanistic theory might be the same and one way in which it might differ for adults in a face-to-face learning environment versus adults in an online learning environment. Then, provide an example of how an instructor might apply humanistic theory in an adult online learning environmen

Questions about Humanistic and Existential Therapies

1). Compare and contrast Humanistic and Existential therapies. 2). What impact might cultural and/or ethnic diversity have on the processes and outcomes of these two therapeutic approaches? 3). Support your response with the inclusion of at least 1 APA citation from a scholarly reference.


1/In reading your answer in reality therapy "it is not the role of therapist to affect change, but that of the individual." I was thinking no matter what theory is used the therapist in some fashion will have a part in the client's change. I think it is human nature to see what others want for you this especially with client and

Counseling Theory

Would you help me to get started on the following question: Compare and contrast Person-Centered, Existential, and Gestalt therapies.

Phenomenological Humanistic) theory using Rogers Maslow theory

Explain Phenomenological (Humanistic) theory using Rogers Maslow theory explain each of the ideal below: 1. Key Concepts of Personality Formation 2. Explanation of Personality Disorder 3.Validity 4.Comprehensiveness 5.Applicability 6.Cultural Utility

Humanistic Theory: Abraham Maslow and Carl Rogers

Discuss the significant contributions, theories and concepts of the two main figures in Humanistic Psychology. Include a diagram of Maslow's hierarchy of needs and a case study example demonstrating Rogerian techniques. Thanks.

Rollo May (1909 - 1994)

What is the significance of Rollo May's (1909-1994) life and personality theory? Provide a brief biography and touch on the main points of his theory. Thanks.