Tyranny of the should

Karen Horney (1885-1952) spent the major part of her career explaining how personality patterns, especially neurotic patterns, are formed, how they operate, and how they can be changed in order to increase individual potential. In contrast to Sigmund Freud's view that people are guided by instincts and the pleasure principle, Horney proposed that people act out desires to achieve safety and satisfaction in social relationships. She was optimistic about the possibility for human growth and believed that, under conditions of acceptance and care, people move toward self-realization, or the development of their full potential. She wrote almost exclusively, however, about personality problems and methods for solving them.

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