Carl Jung - Psychology and Personality
Carl Jung (1875-1961)
Swiss psychiatrist (pictured right).
Behind only Sigmund Freud (pictured
right below) in psychiatry’s hall of fame.
Famous for inventing the terms introvert and extrovert.
His most famous books are...
Psychology of the Unconscious (1916)
Psychological Types (1921).
What did he teach us about psychology and personality?
1. Continually seek improvement from within
Your aim in life should be “individuation” (or self-fulfilment) through:
- knowing and working on your weaknesses.
- learning from the real you, particularly your conscious and unconscious mind (or
psyche) -see points 2 and 4.
- interpreting your dreams (to discover your unconscious, enabling you
to overcome its conflicts with your conscious mind).
So Jung described himself as a “healer of the soul”.
2. Get closer to the real you
Reveal the real you by removing your “persona”, the mask that comes from the
roles you play in your work and leisure.
For example, your rebelliousness may be hidden by the conformity of your job.
Even if it’s painful, accept and understand your “hidden self” (the thoughts and feelings
you’ve forgotten or suppressed in your unconscious) – see point 3.
“We cannot change anything unless we accept it”, Jung said.
3. Conquer your demons
Face up to your bad side and dark secrets (your “shadow”) with honesty, resolution and
Jung's “principle of equivalence” says you should pay as much
attention to your bad side as your good side.
4. Your mind (or the
This does four things:
- sensation (perception by the senses) .
- intuition (your gut feeling about
People are particularly influenced by one of these which, together with their
personality type, affects their behaviour e.g. introvert or extrovert thinkers.
5. Don’t be afraid of tomorrow
Accept your problems and overcome them, remembering that
Don’t be afraid of the future by
- taking full advantage of your opportunities.
- continuously trying new things.
Dealing with difficulties makes you happy.
6. Love others and love yourself
You need self-respect to
- avoid an inferiority complex.
Love and kindness make you much happier than sex.
Fear and self-hatred are the opposite of love.
“I cannot love anyone if I hate myself”, Jung said.
Your relationships with the opposite sex are affected by your:
- previous relationships with them (especially your parents).
- image of them in your unconscious.
7. Satisfaction from the soul
Spiritual fulfilment makes you happy.
This comes from:
- good relationships with others (see point 6).
- appreciating the beauty of art and nature.
- enjoyable work - have a reasonable standard of living but don’t sacrifice your soul
- philosophy, ethics and
religion - be true to yourself and your
If you believe in something (like God), you must know and
8. Motivation and continuous learning
To motivate people, you must satisfy their needs for:
- survival (warmth, air, food and drink).
- personal fulfilment and happy relationships - see point 6.
- self-improvement (learning and creativity)
9. Your personality
- introvert (quiet and introspective).
10. Influence of parents
Nothing has a bigger effect on children than the “unlived life of the parent” i.e. getting
children to do what the parents didn’t do themselves.
Parents should think more about changing themselves than imposing change on their
11. The power of opposites
Like the Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, Jung
- everything turns into its opposite (like life into death and creation into
- we must accept both opposites.
12. Society can be sick
A society has a collective mind that is affected by its culture, ethics and science.
Evil societies are shrouded in moral darkness (a “collective shadow”).
Key quotes on stress and
The foundation of all mental health is the avoidance of true suffering.
Man needs difficulties; they are necessary for health.
I have never encountered a difficulty that was not truly the difficulty of myself.
Key quotes on peace of
Your vision will become clear only when you look
into your heart... Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens
The sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being.
Solitude for me is a fount of healing.
A man who has not passed through the inferno of his passions has never overcome them.
Key quote on change
We cannot change anything unless we accept it
Key quotes on
I cannot love anyone if I hate myself.
Where love rules, there is no will to power, and where power predominates, love is lacking.
Key quotes on success and
It is only our deeds that reveal who we are.
We need more understanding of human nature, because the only real danger that exists is man himself.
The least of things with a meaning is worth more than the greatest of things without it.
Show me a sane man and I will cure him for you.
Key quote on
The true leader is always led.
Key quotes on God and
I do not believe...I know (about his belief in God).
The pendulum of the mind swings between sense and nonsense, not between right and wrong.