Adler was born in Vienna from a middle class family. In his family, he was the second and always felt in shadow of his older brother. He came to USA in 1934 and developed so much influence in psychology with his theory.
Adler’s view of human problem is basically on the person’s perception about him/herself. Human being may engage in abnormal behavior because of the sense of protection – to protect his/her opinion of self. When a person has wrong opinion about the self and/or the world, the person may become self-centered rather than other centered. There are three aspects of human being when it comes to the problem:-
i. Inferiority complex
a. When the person is overwhelm by the feeling of inadequacy or hopelessness.
ii. Superiority Complex
a. Very strong opinion of self – argue to personal solutions
iii. Family constellation
a. Mediates the heredity and situational factor that influence the child
a. Related to fictional goal.
Adler has emphasized the importance of self or ego that may come from interactions and conflicts, motivation and social interaction. Ego is the central core of personality. Adlerian also sees that the cognitive, behavior and effective (emotion) are one entity. Besides that, birth order and sibling relationships are also emphasized. This teach the person to be responsible, creative, coping and make own decision (to choose). Thus, the therapy according to Adler, should involve collaborative partnership to parents, siblings and society.
Adler stressed on the client’s view about the world – it is as a frame of reference (Phenomenological Approach). This theory looks at the present situation and therefore, Adlerian does not look into the past or the unconscious instinct. The most important is how human chooses to responds to the situation – awareness of the present and related to social connectedness.
In order to help a person with problems, Adler emphasized the encouragement is very powerful method to assist the person to change the wrongly perceived belief. Through encouragement, it could help the person to realize the ability to choose and act differently. In the therapy session, the person will explore his/her logic concepts about self, others and lifestyle. Look into the purpose of behavior and learn how to correct faulty assumptions and beliefs.
There are some good aspects / advantages from this theory. Since the therapy aim to establishing the positive relationship with client, it is possible to be used for numerous issues and problems. The psychological dynamics in this theory allows the client to start change and search for other better possibilities. Normally, this theory is well conducted in group work.
However, there are also some disadvantages of this theory. It seems that this theory may only effective if the client is aware, alert and can communicate well. This theory does not lead to any diagnoses.
In the nutshell, this theory more on educating, guiding and giving information to the client who has issues / problems in his/her life so he/she be more responsible for his/her own future, has clear realistic vision and able to make a good choice in life.
Adler believed that the eldest possesed certain personalities that make them outstanding from the other siblings. And me... no more the eldest, because we have the oldest... and of course, she's outstanding from other siblings..... she got her PhD... me, on the way... and brother, you go for Dato' ship lah ya...