Sample Paper on Humanistic and Existential Personality Theories
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Sample Paper on Humanistic and Existential Personality Theories

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Sample Paper on Humanistic and Existential Personality Theories
  1. Abraham Maslow proposed the hierarchy of needs theory of personality.
  2. According to Maslow, self-fulfillment and realization of one’s full potential are examples of self –actualization needs.
  3. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs proposes that deficiency needs must be satisfied before growth needs will become motivators for behavior.
  4. The belief that matter evolves from simpler to more complex forms is formative tendency.
  5. The ideal self, according to Rogers, is one’s view of self as one wishes to be.
  6. Carl Rogers believed that conditions of worth, incongruence, defensiveness, and disorganization are all considered conditions of worth.
  7. Rogers believed that objectives, the process in the client, and the conditions of the therapistare necessary elements of psychotherapy.
  8. Intentionalityis the structure that gives meaning to experience and allows people to make decisions about the future.
  9. May propose that existential freedomis the freedom of action, whereas essential freedomis the freedom of being.
  10. The basic concepts of existential theory are freedom of choice and isolation.


Match the following theoretical components with their correct theorist or theorists.


Theoretical component


1. Unconditional positive regard

A. Abraham Maslow

2. Eros

B. Carl Rogers

3. Love and belongingness needs

C. Rollo May

4. The self-concept

D. Carl Rogers

5. Guilt

E. Sigmund Freud

6. Levels of awareness

Sigmund Freud

7. Self-actualization

Abraham Maslow

8. Neurotic anxiety

Sigmund Freud



Short Answer Question

Question 1

The characteristics of self-actualizing people include they take themselves the way they are, their lives are free of guilt, and have a sense of realism. These characteristics are important because they enable individuals to view things realistically and rationally.

Question 2

One of the strengths of humanistic theory is that it stresses on the responsibility and choice of an individual. The theory values self-fulfillment and personal ideas which makes people to be satisfied. Lastly, it gives researchers a flexible framework for observing behaviors of human beings because it considers an individual based on his environment and in conjunction with his private feelings and opinions.

Question 3

One key limitation of humanistic theory is that its concepts are vague. Opponents of this theory argue that ideas like real life experiences are not easy to objectify. Critics further argue that this theory is not a correct science because it entails applying a lot of common sense. 

Question 4

One of the strength of existential theory is their capability to allow clients to examine the level at which behavior is influenced by cultural, family, and social conditioning. If an individual does not satisfy personal needs, he may experience depression, anxiety, and frustration. One of the limitations of this theory in the area of multicultural; populations is that they are highly individualistic and fails to put into consideration social factors that lead to human problems. A good example is an African American who puts up in a slum and the existential therapist persistently tells the customer that it is his choice to make his life better, while the truth is he cannot make life better.

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