Sigmund Freud and his revolutionary theories

Known as the father of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud’s contribution to the world is unparalleled. One of the most influential figures of the late nineteenth and twentieth century, he is almost synonymous with the exploration of the psyche. And Freud’s these three theories have been revolutionary in the field of Psychology:

The Unconscious

According to Sigmund Freud, along with our conscious mind, we also have one unconscious mind. The conscious mind deals with the memories that we are aware of, but the unconscious mind deals with unaware memories. The unconscious mind is in charge of painful memories and unwanted thoughts. We aren’t conscious of those memories but they will influence our behaviour, especially if they’re emotionally charged memories of adverse and traumatic experiences. But the mind works hard to keep the bad memories out of our awareness and this process is named ‘repression. According to Freud, the unconscious is like a dumping ground for difficult issues we don’t want to face. But not facing issues doesn’t resolve them and they can bother us beyond our awareness causing severe problems in our lives. However, Freud didn’t invent the concept of the unconscious, he just elaborated the concept and developed and enhanced techniques to access repressed memories and then deal with them once they reached consciousness which results in a better understanding of the concept and treatment.

Id, Ego and SuperEgo

Sigmund Freud has also introduced one of the most important theories in psychology: the personality theory, Id, Ego and SuperEgo. He gave a new description of the mind with the introduction of the id, the unconscious, impulsive part of the mind; the superego, known as conscience, the moral imperative; and the ego, the rational mind trying to find a balance between instincts, impulses and conscience. These separate but interacting parts of the human personality that work together to contribute to an individual’s behaviour. According to Freud, our experiences in infancy are filtered through the id, ego, and superego, and it is the way an individual handles these experiences, both consciously and unconsciously, that shapes personality in adulthood.

The Interpretation of Dreams

According to Sigmund Freud’s theory, our dreams are inspired by daily events and reflect symbolic desires. Freud viewed dreams as mental processes that reflected desires where he believed dreams have two parts: a manifested content, which is the dream that we remember after we wake up, and latent content, or the dream that we do not remember after waking up which is considered part of the unconscious. The latent, or unremembered, dream consists of three things: the sensory impressions during the night of the dream, the residues left from the day before, and the id’s drives that are already part of the dreamer. According to Freud, studying dreams provides the insights and helps understand the unconscious activities of the mind.

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