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Individual Psychology (Adler)

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Synonyms

Adlerian psychology

Definition

Developed by Alfred Adler, Individual Psychology is a theory of human behavior and a therapeutic approach that encourages individuals to make positive contributions to society as well as to achieve personal happiness.

Introduction

Also known as Adlerian Psychology, Individual Psychology is a theory of human behavior that focuses on the basic need of belonging and the importance of engaging in constructive actions (Adler 1956). Alfred Adler, its founder, believed that all behavior is goal oriented and that individuals are motived to seek “belonging” or significance and meaning in their lives by the way they function in social systems (Adler 1956). Adler believed that human beings first learn how to belong and interact with others in their initial social environment, their family. He emphasized the individual’s position in the family system, psychological birth order, family dynamics, and attempt to avoid feelings of inferiority (Carlson et al. 2006)....

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-24612-3_1387
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References

  • Adler, A. (1956). In H. Ansbacher & R. R. Ansbacher (Eds.), The individual psychology of Alfred Adler (p. 1956). New York: Harper & Row.

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  • Carlson, J., Watts, R., & Maniacci, M. (2006). Adlerian therapy: Theory and practice. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

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Further Reading

  • Dinkmeyer, D., & Sperry, L. (2000). Counseling and psychotherapy: An integrated individual psychology approach (3rd ed.). Columbus: Prentice-Hall.

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  • Dreikurs, R. (1998). The challenge of marriage. Philadelphia: Taylor & Francis Group.

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  • Mosak, H. H., & Di Pietro, R. (2006). Early recollections: Interpretative method and application. New York: Routledge.

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  • Orgler, H. (1963). Alfred Adler: The man and his work. New York: Capricorn Books.

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  • Sperry, L., Carlson, J., Duba, J., & Sperry, J. (Eds.). (2014). Psychopathology and psychotherapy: DSM-5 diagnosis, case conceptualization, and treatment (3rd ed.). New York: Routledge.

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Correspondence to Jon Sperry .

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Sperry, J., Sperry, L. (2020). Individual Psychology (Adler). In: Zeigler-Hill, V., Shackelford, T.K. (eds) Encyclopedia of Personality and Individual Differences. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-24612-3_1387

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