Psychodynamic Theory and Therapy

By | July 7, 2016

Theory of Motivation

The Constancy principle

States that the aim of the psychic apparatus is to keep stimulation to near zero if at all possible

Affect theory

The psychic quantity that the constancy principle regulated (required to discharge) were the affects

Drive Theory

Drive is an energy source
Activates the psychic apparatus
Determines humanity’s essential nature

Theory of Development

Psychosexual stages

Oral :
Incorporative (0-8 months) : focus on the mouth
Sadistic (8-12 months) : biting and devouring

Anal (2-3 years) :

Child is learning how to control physiological functions
Phallic (4-5 years) :
Oedipus Complex

Latency (6-12 years) :
Sexual instincts are sublimated until genital stage

Genital (12 years +) :
Sexual instincts are not primarily autoerotic
Health defied as the establishment of appropriate relationships with whole objects

Theory of psychopathology

Actual Neuroses
Anxiety neuroses
Dysfunction of current sexual life
Related to hypothesized chemical sexual substances


Not neurological or physiological
Available for psychoanalytic treatment
Result of a conflict brought about the incongruity of ideas an the ensuing failure to release affect

Symptoms are uncovered through what the patient talks about
Character is uncovered and revealed in the way and manner the patient talks and how the patient relates to others
Symptoms not only defend against forbidden wishes, symptoms also partially gratify the wish.

Key Theoretical Concepts

Drive / Structure Model
Constancy Principal
Pleasure Principal
Reality Principal
Psychosexual Stages
Pathology has developmental characteristics
Talking Cure