The Info List - Adlerian

Adlerian pertains to the theory and practice of Alfred Adler
Alfred Adler
(1870 - 1937), whose school of psychotherapy is called individual psychology (Individualpsychologie).[1]


1 Holism 2 Compensation 3 Withdrawal 4 Therapy 5 Continuing influence 6 Notable Adlerians 7 See also 8 References 9 Further reading 10 External links

Holism[edit] Central to the Adlerian approach is to see the personality as a whole and not as the mere net result of component forces. Thus the term individual (indivisible) psychology.[2] Adlerians adopt a radical stance that cuts across the nature-nurture debate by seeing the developing individual at work in creating the personality in response to the demands of nature and nurture but not absolutely determined by them. The self-created personality operates subjectively and idiosyncratically. The individual is endowed with a striving both for self-development and social meaning - what Adler himself called "the concept of social usefulness and the general well-being of humanity"[3] - expressed in a sense of belonging, usefulness and contribution, and even cosmic consciousness.[4] Compensation[edit] Neurosis and other pathological states reveal the safe-guarding or defensive strategems (largely unconscious or out of awareness) of the individual who believes her- or himself to be unequal to the demands of life, in a struggle to compensate for a felt weakness, physical or psychological.[5] In "normal" development, the child has experienced encouragement and accepts that her or his problems can be overcome in time by an investment of patient persistence and cooperation with others. The "normal" person feels a full member of life, and has "the courage to be imperfect" (Sofie Lazarsfeld). In less fortunate circumstances, the child, trapped within a sense of inferiority, compensates - or overcompensates, perhaps in grandiose fashion[6] - by striving, consciously and unconsciously, to overcome and solve the problems of life, moving "from a felt minus to a felt plus". A high level of compensation produces subsequent psychological difficulties.[7] Withdrawal[edit] In cases of discouragement the individual, feeling unable to unfold a real and socially valid development, erects a fantasy of superiority - what Adler termed "an attempt at a planned final compensation and a (secret) life plan"[8] - in some backwater of life, which offers seclusion and shelter from the threat of failure and annihilation of personal prestige. This fictional world, sustained by the need to safeguard an anxious ego, by private logic at variance with reason or common sense, by a schema of apperception which interprets and filters and suppresses the real-world data, is a fragile bubble[9] waiting to be burst by mounting tension within and by assaults from the real world.[10] The will to be or become has been replaced by the will to seem. Therapy[edit] At the heart of Adlerian psychotherapy is the process of encouragement,[11] grounded in the feeling of universal cohumanity and the belief in the as yet slumbering potential of the patient or client. By making the patient aware of their secret life plan, the therapist is able to offer an alternative outlook better adapted to the wider world of social interests.[12] This process of encouragement also makes the Adlerian approach so valuable to all those professions that concern themselves with the development and education of children - therapeutic education being one of Adler's central concerns.[13] Continuing influence[edit] Henri Ellenberger wrote in the seventies of "the slow and continuous penetration of Adlerian insights into contemporary psychological thinking".[14] Adlerians continue to flourish in the 21st century, some employing an eclectic technique integrating elements of other therapies, from the psychodynamic to the cognitive, others focusing on a more classical approach.[15] Notable Adlerians[edit]

Alexandra Adler
Alexandra Adler
(USA), deceased Kurt Alfred Adler
Alfred Adler
(USA), deceased Heinz Ansbacher (USA), deceased Robert Armstrong (Canada) Phyllis Bottome (UK), deceased Allan Cox (author)
Allan Cox (author)
(USA) Rudolf Dreikurs (Austria and USA), deceased Loren Grey (USA), deceased James Hemming (UK), deceased Henry Jacoby (Germany) Russell King (Canada) Arthur Kronfeld
Arthur Kronfeld
(Germany) Fritz Künkel (Germany & USA) Sofie Lazarsfeld (Austria) Kevin Leman (USA) Victor Louis
Victor Louis
(Switzerland), deceased Harold Mosak (USA) Alexander Mueller (Switzerland), deceased Karl Nowotny (Austria) Hertha Orgler (Germany and UK) Linda Page
Linda Page
(Canada) Paul Rom [Paul Plottke] (Germany and UK) Otto Rühle
Otto Rühle
(Germany) Alice Rühle-Gerstel (Germany and Mexico) Manes Sperber (Germany), deceased Mark Stone (USA) Henry T. Stein (USA) Richard E. Watts (USA) Erwin Wexberg (Austria and USA)

See also[edit]

Classical Adlerian psychology Neo-Adlerian North American Society of Adlerian Psychology Alfred Adler Rudolf Dreikurs


^ Brian Lake, 'Adler, Alfred', in Richard Gregory ed., The Oxford Companion to the Mind (1987) p. 5-7 ^ J. & E. Sommers-Flanagan, Counselling and Psychotherapy
Theories in Context and Practice (2012) p. 82 ^ Alfred Adler, Understanding Human Nature (1992) p. 141 ^ Henri F. Ellenberger, The Discovery of the Unconscious (1970) p. 609 ^ Adler, Understanding p. 40 ^ Adler, Understanding p. 70-1 ^ Lake, p. 6 ^ Adler, quoted in Eric Berne, What Do You Say After You Say Hello? (1974) p. 58 ^ Adler, Understanding p. 188-9 ^ Ellenberger, p. 608 ^ J. Frew/M. D. D. Spiegler, Contemporary Psychotherapies for a Diverse World (2012) p. 116 ^ Ellenberger, p. 620 ^ Ellenberger, p. 621-2 ^ Henri F. Ellenberger, The Discovery of the Unconscious (1970) p. 644 ^ Frew/Spiegler, p. 93-4

Further reading[edit] A. Adler, 'Individual Psychology', in G. B. Levitas ed., The World of Psychology (1963) External links[edit]

Library resources about Adlerian

Resources in your library Resources in other libraries

Adlerians in France Adlerians in Germany Adlerians in Ireland Adlerians in Japan Adlerians in Romania Adlerians in the UK Adlerians in Uruguay North American Society of Adlerian Psychology Development of Adlerian Psychology in the 20th Century

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Psychoanalysis Adlerian therapy Analytical therapy Mentalization-based treatment Transference focused psychotherapy

Cognitive and behavioral

Behavior therapy Cognitive behavioral therapy

Cognitive therapy Compassion focused therapy Dialectical behavior therapy

Rational emotive behavior therapy Combined with Applied behavior analysis

Clinical behavior analysis or CBA Functional analytic psychotherapy Acceptance and commitment therapy


Person-centered therapy Emotionally focused therapy Existential therapy Focusing Gestalt therapy Logotherapy


Art therapy Dance therapy Feminist therapy Multimodal therapy Music therapy Narrative therapy Play therapy Reality therapy Systemic therapy Transactional analysis List


Eclectic psychotherapy Integrative psychotherapy Transtheoretical model


Brief psychotherapy Counseling Online counseling Residential treatment Self-help Support groups


Clinical formulation Clinical pluralism Common factors theory History Practitioner–scholar model Society for Psychotherapy


Behaviour therapy

Aversion therapy Applied behavior analysis
Applied behavior analysis
(ABA) (formerly Behavior modification) Desensitization Homework

Other individual therapy

Autogenic training Biofeedback Cognitive restructuring Exposure therapy Free association Hypnotherapy

Group psychotherapy

Family therapy Psychodrama Sensitivity training Relationship counseling


Philippe Pinel (1745–1826) Josef Breuer (1842–1925) Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) Pierre Janet (1859–1947) Alfred Adler (1870–1937) Sándor Ferenczi (1873–1933) Carl Jung (1875–1961) Ludwig Binswanger (1881–1966) Melanie Klein (1882–1960) Otto Rank (1884–1939) Karen Horney (1885–1952) Harry Stack Sullivan (1892–1949) Fritz Perls (1893–1970) Anna Freud (1895–1982) Donald Winnicott (1896–1971) Wilhelm Reich (1897–1957) Milton H. Erickson (1901–1980) Jacques Lacan (1901–1981) Erik Erikson (1902–1994) Carl Rogers (1902–1987) Viktor Frankl (1905–1997) George Kelly (1905–1967) Rollo May (1909–1994) Virginia Axline (1911–1988) Carl Whitaker (1912–1995) Albert Ellis (1913–2007) James Bugental (1915–2008) Joseph Wolpe (1915–1997) Virginia Satir (1916–1988) Aaron T. Beck (b. 1921) Salvador Minuchin (1921–2017) Hans Herrman Strupp (1921–2006) Paul Watzlawick (1921–2007) Haim Ginott (1922–1973) Arthur Janov (1924–2017) Eugene Gendlin (1926–2017) R. D. Laing (1927–1989) Jean Baker Miller (1927–2006) Otto F. Kernberg (b. 1928) Irvin D. Yalom (b. 1931) Arnold Lazarus (1932–2013) Lorna Smith Benjamin (b. 1934) Marsha M. Linehan (b. 1943) Vittorio Guidano (1944–1999) Les Greenberg (b. 1945) William R. Miller (b. 1947) Michael White (1948–2008) Jeffrey Young (b. 1950) Peter Fonagy