Reasoning versus realisation

Q. What are the characteristics of a fully functioning person? What could be the reasons for its impairment? Discuss Rogerian method of restoring the balance. 15marks

5 thoughts on “Reasoning versus realisation”

  1. Carl Roger adopted Abraham Maslow’s concept of self-actualisation i.e able to realise and fulfill one’s own potential. He gave the concept Fully Functional person, a person whose self concept is closer to the reality. The key features are:
    1. Trust in oneself: Such people follow their instinct, gut feeling. They will hear all the worldly suggestions present in their environment but will follow what they want to do and like.
    2. Open to experience: They accept their positive and negative emotions. Negative emotions are pondered upon and walked through.
    3.Existential Living: They live in the present, learn from past mistakes. They think of themselves as capable to some or other ability. they are confident and self directing.
    4. Creativity: They take risks to realise their potential to do something. They accept their unique way of thinking. They pursue their interest.
    5.Unconditional regard: They don’t put stringent restriction on themselves. They accept their failures.
    6. No denials: They accept different point of view, and do not try to deny or distort the reality. They challenge their prejudgements.

    The reason a person cannot develop as fully functional person is:
    Social environment: Unconditional regard is required to create the self worth. When a person get positive regards from the environment it automatically integrates it into its personality and generate feeling of positive self worth. When positive regards are not given then the person evaluates itself through other people’s perspective which is negative. Hence a person feels torn between what is and what environment demands it to be. They feel less congruent with their idle self. Person usually get conditioned self regard, therefore gets directed towards what they are conditioned to.

    Roger proposed Client centred therapy to bring back the person to state of congruence. He believed the a person’s instability can be restored if it is made to realise its potential and worth through its own view point rather than unconscious motives or someone’s interpretation of their reality. In this therapist must be genuine ie holds its view points, empathetic ie understand the feelings of the client, give unconditional positive regards ie accepting the client as it is. The therapist act as reflective board ie a client started to realise its own incongruence. The therapist facilitates client’s present self to its true self.

  2. According to CARL ROGER,a fully functioning person is the person who is in touch with his inner most feelings and desires.
    They always try to achieve ‘SELF ACTUALIZATION’.
    He identifies five characteristic of fully functioning person :
    1)Open to experience:They dont use ego defence mechanism to restore their emotions.They welcome both positive as well as negative emotions with open arms.
    2)Existential living:They live in present ,not always think about future and past.Prejudging and prejudices are repelled by these people.
    3)Trust feelings:People who are fully functioning,trust themsleves for taking right decisions.
    4)Creative thinking:They have ability to change and adjust.Always ready to take risks in their life.
    5)Fulfilled life:These people are happy and fully satisfied in their life and are ready to learn from new experiences.

    As roger says, we also need an environment to grow ..if we dont get that environment full functioning of person will not take place peoperly.

    Reasons for impairemnent are as follows:
    •Conditional positive reward:
    When person get conditional positive reward according to ROGER ,his personal self growth and happiness depends on other people’s approval.
    This affect his SELF WORTH ,IDEAL SELF and SELF IMAGE.
    These all are necessary to gain self actualization.

    CARL ROGGER also QUOTED that

    “The every essence of the creative is his novelty,and hence we have no standard by which to judge it”

    •Getting less importance in childhood:
    It directly affects SELF ESTEEM of child and he start disrespecting himself.
    Because of this he goes away from his REAL IDENTITY and this leads to INCONGRUENCE.

    Now,the question is HOW we can RESTORE it?
    According to rogerian method ,
    •A person should get unconditional positive reward,warmth and acceptance from therapist.
    •He should NOT get INTERPRETED in between,approach should be NON DIRECTIVE in nature.
    •Person should also feel empathise while talking to THERAPIST.
    •GENUINE,open and honest response should be given to client.

  3. Humanist theorists emphasised that humans strive for personal growth.
    Carl rogers in his “self theory” mentioned the characteristics of a fully functioning person to be:
    1. Open to experience, both negative and positive emotions are accepted
    2. Existential living : focusing on the present
    3. Creative thinking and risk taking
    4. Trust one’s feeling
    5. Fulfilled life – happy and satisfied with life and looking for new challenges.

    The reasons for impairment include denial and distortion of reality as can be seen in below cases.
    1. When one doesn’t accept one self. This leads to incongruence between real self and ideal self – this happens when one’s ideas about one’s self doesn’t match with reality. Eg: honest(ideal self) but lied(real self). This leads to self defeating behaviors such as distortion of reality (probably i didnot lie) or denial (refusing to accept that just because i lied doesnt mean im not honest)
    2. Presence of conditional positive regards. This creates condition for worthiness and thus lowers one’s self esteem. Eg: parents telling you are worthy only if you clear the exam. Thus, feeling unworthy if failed in exam(distortion of reality), or refusing to accept that just because i failed once doesnt mean im unworthy(denial).

    Carl Roger in his client centred therapy tries to create an atmosphere of unconditional positive regard. Through ‘reflection of feeling’ technique, the clients realise their true self and start accepting it. This reduces the incongruence and balance is restored.
    Research finding also validated that persons seeking psychotherapy have a higher disparity between ideal self and real self. And this disparity reduces in the course of successful therapy. However, there is a criticism that acknowleding the disparity is a sign of maturity and may not work for children and adoloscent.

  4. Carl Roger believed people have a tendency to reach their full potential. This concept of self-actualisation is also supported by Abraham Maslow in his Need hierarchy theory. Roger believed that a fully functioning person is an individual continuously working to achieve self-actualisation.
    Characteristics of fully functioning individuals:
    1. Openness to experience: They have learned from their past experiences and live their present freely and subjectively. They experience a sense of inner freedom and embrace the concept of living in the moment.
    2. Creative: They are capable of thinking outside the normative. They are in touch with their deepest innermost feelings and are not afraid to explore the road less taken. They are capable to express their emotions freely and thereby excel in the creative aspect.
    3. Flexible self-concept: They have unbound trust on their inner urges and feelings. They trust their instincts wholeheartedly. They explore, experience and evolve. They are constantly exploring the self-concept.
    4. Open to feedback: These individuals are constantly striving to full potential and thereby welcome the feedback. Feedback help them analyse their performance and make the necessary changes to betterment.
    5. Unconditional self-regard: Such individuals have an untainted self-worth and they consider their failure as experience rather than as a barrier. Every failure is a stepping-stone to more realistic changes that will eventually lead to self-actualisation.
    Reasons for impairment:
    1. Self-concept: A fully functioning person is aware of his innermost feelings and accepts it. When there is incongruence in the real and the ideal self it may lead to denial and distortion in reality. Eg: One may believe he is neutral and unbiased but may show bias towards a certain idea or person it creates a dissonance in his ideal and real self. He may try to bring congruence by distorting the reality by changing his belief or saying the situation was such that he required to act that way.
    2. Unconditional positive regard: In the path to becoming a fully functioning person, he needs to have unconditional positive regard which is an ideal concept. In reality positive regard is conditional which therefore hinders the process. Eg: Society assessing worthiness of a person by their job and how much money he makes. Criticising a person when he follows his passion.
    Roger proposed client centered therapy in order to bridge the gap created by this incongruence in the real and ideal self. It is centered around the concept of unconditional positive regard, empathy and authenticity. The client is the active participant and the therapist considers the client as fully responsible adults capable of understanding and shaping their own life. By unconditional positive regard, empathy and genuine interest the therapist is able to create such an environment for the client where he can connect with his true self and accept the experiences that were denied or distorted thereby leading to a more congruent self-concept.

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