Freud and Human Behavior

I believe Sigmund Freud most accurately identifies human behavior. Freud’s earlier medicinal studies show his intelligence because of the difficulty of such a subject. Even though the Victorian era and the anti-Semitism brought about by the world war influenced Freud, it was not to the point where it discredits all his findings. Freud theorized that everything thought, dream, slip of tongue, etc. is caused by behavior and thus sub-conscientiously done on purpose.

Freud’s three divisions of consciousness: 

conscience, preconscious, and unconscious are pretty accurate especially for his time. For Freud to be the first person to link the unconscious with everyday shows his enormous psychological talent.

The id, ego, and superego are also Freud’s concepts which I believe also most accurately explain human behavior as it relates to the brain and our thought processes. These are very good explanations as to why people act the way they do. The id is the instinctual part which acts simply on pleasure and immediate gratification. Primary process is the response that the id makes to the realities of life. It is why we don’t sit down and smoke a pack of cigarettes and eat a box of donuts every time we feel like it. The superego is the moral and ethical code which keeps us from acting like Heathens. The superego can be influenced by our parents or may other outside stimuli. The ego balances the id and super ego to allow for some pleasure but also with some responsibility. Sometimes I realize my id is not being balanced out when I try to convince myself something to do is okay, much like the classical devil and angel perched on conflicting minds shoulder.

Freud’s ideas about emotional energy and instinct as well as the true motivation behind every human’s actions are interesting, though not 100% accurate all the time. Eros is the human sex or “life instinct”. Thanatos is the aggressive or “death instinct.”Freud believes all human action is a result of these two instinctual behaviors. I do not fully believe agree with this theory because I think people tend to have ulterior motives besides sex, however, I agree with too many other basic ideas of Freud for these disagreements to adequately change my decision as to which theory I agree with.

Freud’s idea’s about happiness I also find relatable and thus accurate. Negative happiness is avoiding pain whereas positive happiness is seeking pleasure. It is much easier to be unhappy than happy and it is also easy to give up seeking happiness; however, without pain, pleasure wouldn’t be so special, and we wouldn’t know how good we had it. Freud’s ideas on civilization are also interesting especially as it pertains to guilt within a person.

I agree with Freud’s thoughts about anxiety. Realistic anxiety is actually something to be worried about. Neurotic anxiety and moral anxiety play more into Freud’s model of the id, ego, and superego. Freud was big on the subconscious which is also something I find myself fascinated with. The importance of the subconscious, especially as it relates to dreams, has been adequately disproven however the subconscious remains very interesting to me today.

Lastly, no paper would be done talking about Freud until his infamous reasoning that every human action is in some way related to sex.  Though his most radical ideas about human sexuality have been disproven, the human sex drive is an unmistakable influence on behavior and personality. The Erogenous zone is where sexual pleasure comes from. This pleasure is what Freud believes is the basis for all human action, at any age. From the oral stage to the genital stage, Freud believed sexuality influenced mankind of all ages to the point of affecting personality and everyday behavior.