"The organism has one basic tendency and striving - to actualize, maintain, and enhance the experiencing organism” (Rogers, 1951, p. 487).
Rogers rejected the deterministicnature of both psychoanalysis and behaviorism and maintained that we behave as we do because of the way we perceive our situation. "As no one else can know how we perceive, we are the best experts onourselves."
Carl Rogers (1959) believed that humans have one basic motive, that is the tendency to self-actualize - i.e. to fulfill one's potential and achieve the highest level of 'human-beingness' wecan. Like a flower that will grow to its full potential if the conditions are right, but which is constrained by its environment, so people will flourish and reach their potential if their environmentis good enough.
However, unlike a flower, the potential of the individual human is unique, and we are meant to develop in different ways according to our personality. Rogers believed that people areinherently good and creative. They become destructive only when a poor self-concept or external constraints override the valuing process. Carl Rogers believed that for a person to achieveself-actualization they must be in a state of congruence.
This means that self-actualization occurs when a person’s “ideal self” (i.e. who they would like to be) is congruent with their actual behavior(self-image). Rogers describes an individual who is actualizing as a fully functioning person. The main determinant of whether we will become self-actualized is childhood experience.
The Fully FunctioningPerson
Rogers believed that every person could achieve their goals wishes, and desires in life. When they did so self-actualisation took place. For Rogers (1961) people who are able be self-actualise,and that is not all of us, are called fully functioning persons. This means that the person is in touch with the here and now, his or her subjective experiences and feelings, continually growing and...