Humanistic/Existential Theories

u10a1 Project – Final Paper

Capella University


Humanistic/Existential theories are beneficial to understand in the coaching environment. Individual seeking change in their life, whether it is in their personal or professional life will benefit from a humanistic/existential approach. Teaching individuals to recognize their abilities to create change within themselves to achieve their goals need to have personal goal plans that are customized to meet their needs. Not all individuals have the same process of creating change and understanding their behaviors and patterns can identify the areas in which need to be focused on.
u10a1 Project – Final Paper
The coaching profession works with individuals who desire change either in their personal life or professional life. Seeking change can be challenging though a rewarding experience for individuals who desire change yet are not sure how to go about it. Having a strong understanding of human behavior and needs can assist a coach in guiding clients through their desired change. The Humanistic/Existential theory can benefit individuals in their journey to self-discovery, setting goals, overcoming obstacles, and achieving goals.
In 1943 Abraham Maslow introduced his theory concept of Hierarchy of Needs in his paper “A theory of Human Motivation” (Feist & Feist, 2009). Maslow’s view of motivation consists of Hierarch of Needs, Aesthetic Needs, Cognitive Needs, Neurotic Needs, and Self-Actualization. The Hierarchy of Needs assumes the lower levels have to be relatively satisfied before the higher needs are able to be met. Maslow (1970) listed the needs in their prepotency order: physiological, safety, love and belongingness, esteem, and self-actualization (Feist & Feist, 2009).   In order for self-actualization to be achieved all the lower levels must be met though not everyone steps up to the level of self-actualization for one reason or another even when their esteem needs are met.