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Biological and Humanistic Approaches to Personality


On the authority of humanistic psychologist Abraham Maslow, the people’s actions are impelled in order to achieve particular needs. Maslow established his conception in a form of needs’ hierarchy. This hierarchy depicts that people are impelled to accomplish fundamental needs before progressing to other, more advanced needs. The most fundamental needs create the lowest levels of the hierarchy, while the most complex needs are placed at the top of the pyramid. As people advance up the pyramid, their requirements become progressively social and psychological. In fact, the need for friendship, intimacy and love becomes more essential. Then, the requirements of self-esteem and feelings of accomplishment rank in priority. Maslow underlined the importance of self-actualization, which is a process of growing and developing as a person in order to achieve individual potential. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs encompasses five levels. Physiological needs incorporate the most fundamental needs that are imperative to endurance, including the need for air, water, nutrition, and sleep. Security needs encompass demands for safety and security, including a desire for stable employment, health care, and shelter from the environment. Social needs encompass needs for belonging, love, and affection. These requirements of companionship and acceptance can be accomplished with the help of such relationships as friendship, romantic attachments, and families. Esteem needs become increasingly crucial after the satisfaction of the first three needs due to the fact that these requirements incorporate the need for things that reflect personal worth, social recognition, self-esteem, and accomplishment. Self-actualizing need is the highest level of hierarchy of needs. Self-actualizing people are self-conscious, engaged in individual development, less interested in the opinions of others, and concerned with realization of their opportunities.

From a biological point of view, individuality development is considered to be principally subjected by the biological growth and development of the person. Biological factors, such as hormones and brain structure, affect the behavior. Genes control the development of nervous and endocrine systems, which in turn control behavior. Therefore, the genes do not have the downright control over the individual characteristics and habits, but they do play a role in affecting behavior. Complex human behavior is not defined by single genes. The impact of biology on behavior is also detected by the occurrence of temperament, or innate individual character. Any parent can confirm that children are born already having protomorphic individual inclinations. Some children have moderate inclinations while others are more solicitous and apoplectic. These innate individual inclinations (temperaments) are supposed to be greatly affected by genetic aspects in some degree cognate to the way eye and hair colorations are genetically preconditioned.

In Maslow’s conception, the biological requirements encompassing the nutrition and accommodation are to be met. The Maslow’s theory and the psychological requirements may be equated with the biological needs of the human being. The biological component is the one, which includes the requirements to get rid of sensations of hunger and thirst combined together with the needs of the Maslow’s theory. When the psychological aspect or the requirements are fulfilled, then the biological component stops to be the stimulating force. These needs are expressed by love, dependence on other human being and belonging to a particular society. The accomplishment of the esteem needs makes the person optimistic, which helps to control oneself and be successful. The self-actualization is the highest need in the hierarchy of needs and as such, it is directed towards the meaning and the purpose of life. The biological factors pertain to the Maslow’s theory owing to these components viewed in the light of theory of needs.

The fundamental concepts of humanistic and biological theories are highly different. Humanistic psychology is based on four aspects. Firstly, the present is the most crucial aspect of a person. Humanists concentrate on the present rather than analyzing the past or the future. Secondly, salutiferous people must bear responsibility for themselves, neglecting the actions. Thirdly, every individual has an intrinsic worth. Even negative actions do not refute the value of the person. Fourthly, the achievement of personal growth and the understanding of its importance are one of the main goals of life. On the other hand, biological theories concentrate on thoughts rather than feelings of self-worth. Biological theorists assure that genetics defines a disposition of an individual. The fundamental concepts indentify that even if biology has no direct impact on personality, the way a person looks affects the way a person views oneself and the way others cooperate with that person. This uneven impact defines how a person will maturate into nubility. Biological aspects also depict that mental endowments and genes define an individual’s identity.

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Keywords

personality , motivation , self-development

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