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The term psychodynamic refers to a group of explanations that try to account for the dynamics of behavior, I .e.

the forces that motivate our behavior.

Much of our behavior is driven by unconscious motives. Childhood is a critical period in development. Early conflicts result in unconscious forces that drive many aspects of adult behavior Mental disorders arise from unresolved ,unconscious conflicts originating in childhood.

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Sigmund Freud (Founder) C G Jung (Carl Gustav Jung) Alfred Adler Erik Erikson Erich Fromm Karen Horney Harry Stack Sullivan Anna Freud

Freud argued that our personality (mind) is divided into three parts. 1. The Id 2. The Ego and 3. The Super Ego


The Id: it consists mainly of sexual and aggressive desires. it is raw, unorganized and inborn part of our personality. Its sole purpose is to reduce tension created by primitive drives related to hunger,sex and aggression. It wants immediate gratification. It operates according to the pleasure principle.

2.The Ego: is the rational and conscious part of mind. It provides Buffer between the id and outside world. It operates according to the reality principle. It makes decisions and controls action.

The Super Ego: it represents rights and wrongs of society. It helps us to control impulses Makes our behavior less selfish and makes us more virtuous.

Freud separates childhood personality development into five distinct phases or stages. If a child experiences severe problems or excessive pleasure at any stage of development, this leads to Fixation.

Fixation refers to personality traits characteristics of earlier stage of development due to an unresolved conflict stemming from earlier periods of development.


The oral stage lasts from birth to about 18 months. Much of child behavior during this time is devoted to obtaining food. The focus of pleasure is, the mouth, Sucking and biting are favorite activities. Fixation at this stage might produce an individual who may be unusually interested in, over eating, Excessive talking, Smoking, Dependency and sarcasm .

The anal stage: (1-3 years)

Major focus of learning and experience is is on controling the elimination of waste product from the body. The child learns that he can exert surprising control over his or her parents, Pleasing or displeasing them profoundly, By giving and withholding certain behaviors. If fixation occurs during this stage ,the adult might show, Rigidity Extreme orderliness Perfectionism Punctuality or Disorderliness .

Phallic stage: (3 to 6 years) Interest in the genitals Development of oedipal and Electra complex
Latency period: (6 to 12 years) Freud thought that no significant development occur during this age.

Genital stage: ( adolescence to adulthood) During this time the adolescent learns the perils and pleasures of adult sexuality.

The ego deals with the demands of reality, the id, and the superego as best as it can. But when the anxiety becomes overwhelming, the ego must defend itself .
The defense mechanisms are the methods by which the ego can deal with conflicts between the super-ego and the id.

Denial involves blocking external events from awareness.(a person who is a functioning alcoholic will often simply deny they have a drinking problem, pointing to how well they function in their job and relationships). Repression :not being able to recall a threatening situation, person, or event .

Displacement is the redirection of an impulse onto a substitute target .(the man who gets angry at his boss, but cant express his anger to his boss for fear of being fired. He instead comes home and kicks the dog or starts an argument with his wife).
Projection :It involves the tendency to see your own unacceptable desires in other people( a spouse may be angry at their significant other for not listening, when in fact it is the angry spouse who does not listen.).

Reaction formation is changing an unacceptable impulse into its opposite. (a woman who is very angry with her boss and would like to quit her job may instead be overly kind and generous toward her boss and express a desire to keep working there forever). Undoing involves "magical" gestures or rituals that are meant to cancel out unpleasant thoughts or feelings after they've already occurred. .

( after realizing you just insulted your significant other unintentionally, you might spend then next hour praising their beauty, charm and intellect). Regression is a movement back in psychological time when one is faced with stress. When we are troubled or frightened, our behaviors often become more childish or primitive.(an adolescent who is

overwhelmed with fear, anger and growing sexual impulses might become clingy and start exhibiting earlier childhood behaviors he has long since overcome, such as bedwetting.

Rationalization is the cognitive distortion of "the facts" to make an event or an impulse less threatening.( Sublimation is the transforming of an unacceptable impulse, whether it be sex, anger, fear, or whatever, into a socially acceptable, even productive form

The life and death instincts Freud saw all human behavior as motivated by the drives or instincts, he referred to them as the life instinct (Eros). This instinct perpetuate (a) the life of the individual, by motivating him or her to seek food and water, and (b) the life of the species, by motivating him or her to have sex. it also includes all creative ,life producing drives.

The motivational energy of these life instincts, that powers our psyches, he called libido, from the Latin word for "I desire." Libido is a lively thing a pleasure principle that keeps us in perpetual motion .

2. and the death drive (Thanatos). (or death instinct) represented an urge inherent in all living things to return to a state of calm, or, ultimately, of non-existence.

The primary goal of Freuds psychoanalytic therapy was to uncover repressed memories through free association and dream analysis. Free Association In free association, patients are required to verbalize every thought that comes to their mind.

Dream analysis The basic assumption of Freuds dream analysis is that nearly all dreams are wishfulfillment. (the fulfillment of acknowledged or unconscious wishes in dreams and fantasies) Dreams have latent and manifest contents. The manifest content of the dream is the surface meaning or the conscious description given by the dreamer. The latent content refers to its unconscious material.

Psychoanalysts who were trained in Freudian theory but who later rejected some of its basic concepts. They paid more attention to social factors and the effects of society and culture on personality development.

The test of one's behaviour pattern and ones normalcy: relationship to society, relationship to one's work, relationship to sex .(Adler)

The primary differences between Adler and Freud centred on Adler's concept that the social realm is as important to psychology as is the internal realm . Alfred Adler postulates a single "drive" (An inner urge to satisfy some basic need)
or motivating force behind all our behavior and experience.

he called that motivating force the striving for perfection. It is the desire we all have to fulfill our potentials, to come closer and closer to our ideal. Adler used the term Inferiority complex which is a condition that develops when a person is unable to compensate for normal inferiority feelings. These feelings stimulate peopel to set a goal of overcoming their inferiority.

Many of Adler's theories on individual psychology focus on birth order, referring to the placement of siblings within the family . He found that the oldest, middle ,and the youngest child because of their position s in the family, have different social experiences.
firstborn child would be loved and nurtured by the family until the arrival of a second child.

This second child would cause the first born to suffer feelings of dethronement. He found the second child to be ambitious, rebellious and jelous,and Constantly striving to surpass the first born.

Behaviorism teaches that man is nothing more than a machine that responds to conditioning. Behaviorism teaches that we are not responsible for our actions Behaviorism is manipulative

John B. Watson, (1878-1958) an American psychologist. Watson claimed that psychology was not concerned with the mind or with human consciousness Watson's work was based on the experiments of Ivan Pavlov

Ivan Pavlov studied animals' responses to conditioning Pavlov's best-known experiment, he rang a bell as he fed some dogs several meals

Basic Assumptions of Behaviorism

Behavior is all that matters, the stimulus and response. It doesn't matter what goes on inside the mind. All behavior is learned. And maladaptive behavior is no different .

This learning can be understood in terms of the principles of conditioning and modeling.
What was learned can be unlearned, using the same principles. the same laws apply to human and non human.

The basic themes of Humanistic Psychology

An emphasis on conscious experience A belief in the wholeness of human nature A focus on free will ,spontaniety,and the creative power of the individual. The study of all factors relevant to the human condition

The humanistic psychologists saw behaviorism as a narrow and artificial approach to the human nature.
They also opposed the deterministic tendencies in Freudian psychology.

The spiritual father of humanistic psychology He wanted to understand the highest achievements humans are capable of reaching. In his view each person possess an innate tendency toward self actualization.

This state involved the active use of all our qualities and abilities, the development and fulfillment of our potential. To become self actualizing, we must first satisfy the needs that stand lower in the inner hierarchy of needs.


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The physiological needs for food ,water air, sleep and sex, The safety needs for security,stability,order,protection,and freedom from fear and anxiety, The belonging and love needs, The needs from esteem from others and from oneself, The need for self actualization.

An objective perception of reality A full acceptance of their own nature A commitment and dedication to some kind of work Simplicity and naturalness in their behavior A need for autonomy,privacy,and independence Intense mystical or peak experiences Empathy with and affection for all humanity

A resistance to conformity A democratic character structure An attitude of creativeness A high degree of social interest

According to Rogers fully functioning persons are characterized by the following: An openness to all experience A tendency to live fully in every moment An ability to be guided by one's own instincts rather than by reason or the opinion of others A sense of freedom in thought and action A high degree of creativity