People do have the ability for choice and self-awareness

People do have the ability for choice and self-awareness, according to the humanistic theoretical approach (Cervone& Pervin, 2019). Human nature, according to the humanistic perspective, is good, and it is an inherent virtue to form and maintain healthy relationships (Cervone& Pervin, 2019). Humanistic theorists, according to (Timulak,2018), are skeptical of mainstream categorization systems and have thus not traditionally matched their research activities directly with mainstream classification systems (e.g., investigating a manualized therapy for a certain disease or condition) (Timulak,2018). Furthermore, researchers working from a humanistic perspective have historically tended to be under-represented in disciplines such as clinical psychology which have traditionally played a leading role in research developing and studying the efficacy/ effectiveness of psychological therapies per classified mental health condition (Timulak,2018). The phenomenological orientation is concerned with consciousness from the first-person point of view (Cervone& Pervin, 2019). One significant concept is the intentionality with which an object is explored, as well as the direction in which the object is explored (Cervone& Pervin, 2019). Because the phenomenon has been experienced consciously, this is a straightforward approach to it (Cervone& Pervin, 2019). While the existential orientation shares some beliefs with the humanistic orientation in that humans have the potential for choice and self-awareness, it differs in that it believes human nature is neither good nor bad, as opposed to the humanistic viewpoint. This suggests that there is no intrinsic characteristic in human nature. Existential orientation, like humanistic orientation, lays a strong emphasis on the meaning and purpose of one’s existence.

The phenomenological orientation focuses on first-person point of view of consciousness (Cervone& Pervin, 2019). One major idea is the intentionality of exploring an object and its direction towards that object (Cervone& Pervin, 2019). This is a direct approach to the phenomenon since it has experienced consciously (Cervone& Pervin, 2019). The existential orientation shares common belief with humanistic orientation with the view that people possess the capacity for choice and self-awareness though it differs in the sense that it considers human nature is neither good nor bad. This means human nature carries no inherent quality. Like humanistic orientation, existential orientation places emphasis on the meaning and purpose of life.


Cervone, D., & Pervin, L. A. (2019). Personality: Theory and research (14th ed.). Wiley.

Timulak, L. (2018). Humanistic‐experiential therapies in the treatment of generalized anxiety: A perspective. Counselling & Psychotherapy Research, 18(3), 233–236.

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