Ch 6 Psychological Needs

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Read chapter 6. Summarize the chapter. What was the most surprising thing you learned? If you had to rate yourself as high, medium, low, on the various psychological needs, what would those ratings be? How do those various levels manifest themselves in your life? Choose one psychological need and discuss how it motivates some of your specific behaviors.

If you had to make a guess, what's the deal with the fish picture? How does it relate to this chapter?

Provide a list of terms at the end of your post that you used from the chapter.

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Chapter 6 talked about psychological needs. We have basic psychological needs such as our needs for water and food, and these psychological needs are what can direct and energize our behaviors. The organismic approach to motivation explains how our psychological needs are driven from our environment because our environment offers us various resources like food, water, and social support, and that we must learn how to adapt when there are changes in our environment. In a person-environment dialect, dialect is the relationship between person and environment that is reciprocal, meaning that the person acts on the environment and in return the environment acts on the person. There is a response from each side of the relationship. Organismic psychological needs means that people want to develop their skills because they emerge through opportunities from the environment. People have a natural motivation for learning, growing and developing. Autonomy is a lot like our independence and our need to be self-fulfilling, independent humans. We want to make our own decisions on how we spend our time and we want to create our own individual goals. We want to create our own direction when it comes to our various interests and preferences. Providing someone with a choice is one of the biggest ways to enhance someone’s sense of autonomy and their intrinsic motivation: when we are able to choose from a variety of options we get to make a decision that reflects upon us personally. Our autonomy is supported by a number of different factors. For example, many external environments and events can either support or disrupt one’s autonomy. When an environment is autonomy-supportive, it means that there are opportunities for one’s personal growth to increase. When one’s environment is controlling motivating however, one is pressured by their environment or by someone else towards a specific outcome. This made me think of Bobby Knight or another “controlling-type” person. People are also able to motivate others better if they have an autonomy-supportive style compared to those who may have a more controlling style by trying to push them in a certain direction (such as Bobby Knight). Other autonomous qualities include relying on informational language, providing explanatory rationales, acknowledges and accepts negative affect, and benefits from autonomy support. Studies show that children who have more autonomy-supportive conditions are more intrinsically motivated to do work that is more creative and of higher quality. Competence refers to our desire to interact effectively with our surroundings, which include a various number of situations such as school, work and relationships. One main condition that involves our need for competence includes flow. Flow is a state of concentration that depends on our psychological arousal and the difficulty of the task at hand. When one is overchallenged, their competence can be threatened. However, if a task is too easy then there is not enough challenge involved. We can support our competence through positive feedback, as well as supporting the competence of our peers. Praising others boosts competence. Our relationships are a big part of our competence and overall well-being. Relatedness refers to our need to belong. We go out of our way to form relationships that we desire, and at the same time we want others to go out of their way for us. Two key types of relationships that we may form with others are communal and exchange relationships. Exchange relationships are those between acquaintances or people who do business together, while communal relationships are those between persons who care about each other, such as family or a romantic relationship.

The most surprising thing that I read was about Interdependency between challenge and feedback. This section talked about how we are challenged every day, which in itself shouldn’t be surprising but it is a little bit when you think about it: we as humans are faced with different challenges every single day. The book listed such various things as exams, projects, and teamwork. This isn’t something that most people would find surprisingly interesting, but I just thought that when you think of the concept of being challenged on a daily basis it is somewhat surprising. Interacting with others and creating social bonds is a big part of supporting our relatedness.

I feel like if I had to rate myself on psychological needs I would rate myself as medium. I feel like physiological needs such as eating and drinking are a pretty high level for most everyone, but as far as psychological needs I am somewhat impartial. It is important for me (like many others) to have healthy relationships with peers, family and friends. However, I don’t feel it is 100% vital. It is important to have these relationships to survive, but having lower levels of these relationships would not kill me (at least that’s how I feel). I put myself at medium because I feel the need to have these personal contacts, but I am not overly dependent on them.
I think that relatedness motivates my behavior the most. I enjoy communicating with others, especially those who are close to me in my life. On the other hand, I also enjoy communicating with those who I don’t know as well. This concept of relatedness allows us to reach out of our immediate social circle and create new relationships. I think flow is also another concept that shapes my behavior in a big way on a daily basis. I am constantly looking for activities that are both challenging but also is in my comfort zone. These are the activities that we engage in when we are at our peak of thinking and are in our own personal “zone”.
I think that the picture of the fish relates directly to our psychological need for being associated with others and our need for interpersonal relationships. The fish is by itself in the bowl with no other social contacts (other fish). Relatedness is a natural need we have as humans, and interaction with others is the primary condition of relatedness. Our interactions with others provide warmth and happiness, so I think that the picture of the fish has to do with the fish’s desire for interaction with other fish.

Terms Used: Psychological Needs, Organismic Approach, Person-Environment Dialect, Organismic Psychological Needs, Autonomy, External Environments, Autonomy-Supportive, Controlling Motivating, Autonomy-Supportive Conditions, Intrinsically Motivated, Competent, Flow, Interdependency, Positive Feedback, Relatedness

“The underlying motivational cause of engaging our environment is to involve and satisfy out psychological needs.” The chapter starts with discussing the organismic and mechanical approach to motivation. Organismic approach focuses on how and organism interacts with their environment and how it adapts and grows as a function of the environment. In the mechanical approach the environment acts on the person and the person reacts. The person-environmental dialect is the relationship between the person and the environment is a two way street. This section ends with talking about how organismic psychological needs provide people with motivation for learning and development.

The next section discusses autonomy. Autonomy is the need to experience self directions and regulate one’s own behavior. We have a perceived locus of causality, which can be internal (we initiate our own behavior) or external (environment controls behavior). Volition is also part of autonomy also involves volition which is an unpressured willingness to engage in an activity. Perceived choice is also involved in autonomy and is the sense of choice that we have when we are in an environment that provides us with decision flexibility. The text then goes on to say that when choices have no strings attached and people truly make them freely and they express their values and goals, they feel autonomy. There is autonomy motivating style is when one person takes the others perspective and values personal growth. The environment can then promote motivation and a person can regulate their own behavior. There is also a controlling motivating style which is when one person pressures another toward a specific outcome. This style does not promote autonomy. Each style relies on different informational language. With autonomy supportive style, people provide rationales for behavior and also accept negative affect. Autonomy supportive style promotes competence and relatedness as well as development, learning, performance and psychological well-being.

The text then talks about competence, which is the psychological need to be effective in the environment as well as being able to promote ones skills and seek out optimal challenges. Optimal challenges match/relate the difficulty with your ability. Flow must take place in optimal challenges. Flow is a state of concentration that is total absorption into an activity. Structure must also take place in competence as well as failure tolerance. Positive feedback is also beneficial when promoting competence.

The next section talks about relatedness. We have a need for relatedness, close emotional bonds with others. Interactions with others are the main source of relatedness, and these interactions are usually desired to be emotionally positive. Relationships need to be caring, accepting and valuing to meet the need for relatedness. There are both communal and exchange relationships. Exchanges are between acquaintances and business partners while communal are between people who care about the welfare of the other. Internalization can take place which is the process when a person takes an external regulation and makes it an internally endorsed one.

I would rank myself relatively high on most of the psychological needs. I think my need for autonomy is at a medium due to the fact that most of my time is taken up by work or school so I cannot spend my time how I would like too. I also still depend on my parents for rent money so I am not completely independent like I would like to be. I think that fact that I am doing well in most of my needs makes me a happy person. I enjoy life and look forward to each new day. I am able to move past my failures and look towards the future while enjoying my present. I also think that I have motivation since my psychological needs are met. I would rank myself high in competence. Since this need is high I am able to tackle my school work with high motivation because I have confidence in my ability to do well. I also enjoy going to work because I know the system and like the tasks that they give me to do each day. The picture of the fish jumping out of the bowl illustrates the need for autonomy. The fish is tired of not being able to swim where it wants, not being able to control when it eats, etc. The fish is trying to escape to a place where it can be in charge of its own decision and will be more autonomous.

Key Terms: Autonomy, competence, relatedness, optimal challenge, internalization, communal, exchange, positive feedback, failure tolerance, structure, negative affect, rationale, informational language, controlling motivating style, autonomy-supportive motivating style, perceived choice, volition, perceived locus of causality, internal, external, organismic, mechanical, dialectic, psychological needs, flow

Chapter 6
We are interested in things that involves our psychological needs, and we feel enjoyment to things that satisfy our psychological needs. We do things that we enjoy because we need to as humans meet basic psychological needs by engaging in our environment. Organismic psychological needs are displayed in organismic theories, and these theories “acknowledge that environments constantly change and organisms need to adjust to those changes” such as a person who hangs out with friends to have some social time. Mechanistic theories state that the environment is what impacts the environment, such as a person sweating on a hot day. The person-environment dialectic states that the relationship between person and environment is reciprocating (the person acts on the environment and the environment acts on the person) and both change constantly. An example of this would be a person seeing a friend and going over and talking to them, and a friend seeing you and talking to you.
Organismic psychological needs help motivate a person to learn something new. For instance, a child at pre-school may move from one play station to another with no real reason for doing so. Autonomy is the psychological need to have direction and person drive to do a particular task. For instance, we decided whether or not to do a behavior before we do it. There are three parts to autonomy which are a person's understanding of their motivated actions, volition (an unpressed willingness to engage in an activity) or how badly a person wants to do or to avoid doing something, and perceived choice which is when we find ourselves in environments that give us opportunities to do what we want to do (ex. children on playground). Providing choices is the best way to get someone to do something. Changing the environment, the control of the motivational style and who the person would be with all effect the level of a person's need for autonomy and how much they will want to do something. People who support another person in a certain area of activity they become a autonomy-supporter. These people help another person get more involved (engagement), increase their self-worth, conceptual understanding, grades and most importantly, psychological well-being. Autonomy is important for many different reasons, but it allows a person to make decisions and motivating people to do a particular task.
Competence is the “psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment and it reflects the desire to exercise one's capacities and skills to seek out and master optimal challenges.” It is something everyone strives for in one form or another, whether its at work, school or in the gym. We all have goals we desire to reach, in by doing so we meet that psychological need. Flow is a “state of concentration that involves a holistic absorption and deep involvement in an activity”. For some people this occurs during physical activity (particularly running). The activity must involve concentration, involvement, and enjoyment rise in order to put a person in a flow state. A person will not want to do a challenge again if they do not get feedback from their performance. Positive feedback of this is when a person evaluates the task itself and compares it with a past performance of their own, and evaluating others. If they see that they are making progress and getting feedback they are likely to repeat the activity because they feel competent.
Relatedness is the need to belong and to have social interaction. It is the “psychological need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people and it reflects the desire to be emotionally connected to and and interpersonally involved in warm relationships.” We tend to hang out with people who we trust to care for our well-being and drift away from those who we don't trust. Relatedness is an important motivational construct because people function better, handle stress better and report fewer psychological difficulties when their interpersonal relationships support their needs. In order to be satisfying a social bond the person must feel like the other cares about their welfare and likes them. Communial relationships do satisfy the relatedness and exchange do not. An example of internalization would be a mother teaching a child why it is important to brush their teeth.
Vitality occurs when a person experiences having a good day. Engagement is a term used to show the intensity and emotional quality that people show when they do an activity such as studying for a test. When highly engaged a person shows behavioral engagement, emotional engagement and cognitive engagement. We need all three of these in order to meet our psychological needs and helps determine what we will do in the future and out state of well-being.
Key Words: Psychological needs, organismic, mechanistic, person-environment, autonomy, choices, volition, compete, flow, positive feedback, holistic absorption, relatedness, communial, vitality, engagement, well-being

Chapter 6 was all about psychological needs. Just like our physiological needs, when our psychological needs are met we feel enjoyment. Unlike physiological needs, psychological needs are energy generated. Psychological needs promote willingness to seek out in the environment to nurture our psychological needs. There are three psychological needs that the chapter talks about and those are autonomy, competence, and relatedness. These concepts were briefly stated in Chapter 5 but this chapter goes much more in depth about each one.

These three concepts are also referred to as the Organismic Approach to Motivation. The first of these terms that was covered is Autonomy. Autonomy covers things like making choices and decision-making. We as humans want to make our own choices and when we are allowed to make these choices for ourselves we are autonomous. Autonomy is broken down into three sub levels. These sub levels are Internal Perceived Locus of Causality (PLOC), Volition, and Perceived Choice over One’s Actions. PLOC refers to a persons understanding of the source of their motivated actions. Volition is not being pressured but willing to participate in activity. And finally Perceived Choice refers to our choice when our surrounding provides decision-making scenarios with many opportunities to choose from. There are certain populations that can have their autonomy taken away such as children, or mentally unstable people.

The second psychological need the chapter discussed was competence. Competence is needing to be effective in our interactions in the environment along with reflecting our desire to show off our skills and while doing so, we seek out optimal challenges. When we continue to develop our skills and capacities we feel a sense of satisfaction. In order to feel competent there is a component of feedback that must be included. In order for a person to feel competent or incompetent in the action they performed, it requires feedback from an evaluator.

The final section discusses relatedness. Relatedness is our wanting to establish relationships and emotional bonds along with attachments to other people. It is shown that people function better and have less stress and less psychological difficulties when the relationships held support our need for relatedness. Between autonomy, competence, and relatedness they all link to the extent of engagement we pursue. This includes behavioral, emotional, and cognitive engagement.

Overall this chapter was very interesting about how these psychological factors influence different aspects of our motivation. Autonomy, competence, and relatedness are things that every person experiences and play a huge role in our lives everyday. These three concepts all play hand in hand yet have their differences. Between physiological and psychological needs it really breaks down how we as humans function. I believe I personally rank different on all three I am probably medium on Autonomy and Relatedness but I think I rank high on competence. I feel the need for competence more than the other two.

Not only do these needs exist in my life but in everyone’s. Just like at the beginning of the chapter it states that when these needs are met then we as humans feel enjoyment. I think when these different needs are put into real life situations we benefit for the feeling of autonomy, competence, and relatedness. These three concepts related to the fish picture I have not quite figured out. The only thing that I could come up with when analyzing the picture was that the fish had the autonomy to choose to jump out of its bowl along with the fact it was competent enough to do so. It possibly jumped out because it did not experience relatedness because it was isolated in the bowl by itself without any other fish,

Key Terms: Psychological Needs, Autonomy, Competence, Relatedness, Feedback, PLOC, Volition, Perceived choice, Organismic Approach to Motivation

Chapter 6 dealt with the three psychological needs humans have, which include autonomy, competence, and relatedness. These needs are met due to the motivation we feel to be active in the environment. This chapter discussed that psychological needs are linked to the organismic approach to motivation, where there a person-environment dialect, assuming that humans are innately active. Meaning that the relationship is two-way, the person acts on the environment and the environment acts on the person, and both are always changing. Autonomy, competence, and relatedness are all important needs to humans because they provide us “natural motivation” to increase our “learning, growing, and developing” as beings. Autonomy itself is the need to feel empowered in one’s own decision making, and motivated behaviors, with three qualities that combine for this experience, an internal perceived locus of causality, volition, and perceived choice. Chapter 6 addressed that there are two motivating styles when dealing with autonomy, being autonomy-supportive motivating style and controlling motivation style. The major difference between these two is that the autonomy-supportive motivating style is when a person motivates others by “nurturing” their inner motivational resources, and allow for the others’ perspective to be valued. On the other hand, controlling motivating style is an approach where someone pressures another and uses social influences to make them do what they want. The second psychological need addressed was competence, the need to have effective interactions with the environment, and exercise skills to achieve goals. Flow experience, a state of concentration where a person is fully absorbed in their activity, is where enjoyment is felt and the need of competence is met. An important note about challenges, is that a person must receive performance feedback, before the experience of a challenge is acknowledged. The last psychological need was relatedness, which is the need to establish close, personal, fulfilling social relationships with others. For this need to be met, the relationship must be one that involves “caring, liking, accepting, and valuing” and where a person feels that their “true self” is shown and valued. This is what differentiates communal and exchange relationships, communal meaning relationships where people care for one another, and exchange relationships where is simply acquaintances. By fulfilling these needs daily, humans are more likely to be successful, to grow, and feel vital and energized.
The most surprising things that I learned in this chapter was about the different styles of motivation, autonomy-supportive motivating styles and controlling motivating styles. It was interesting because even though I had not know the actual names for these, I have seen them hundreds of times in my life. My mom for example used the autonomy-supportive motivating style all throughout my childhood, because she used noncontrolling and informational language when communicating and would always give me rationales as to why I would need to do something, even when it would seem unimportant or uninteresting to me. On the other hand, I would have other adults use the controlling motivating style, and tell me I needed to do things because “they said so”. The autonomy-supportive motivating style was definitely more useful, and motivated me more than the opposing style.
If I had to rate myself as high, medium, or low for these psychological needs, I would say high on autonomy, medium on competence, and high on relatedness. This manifests in my life because I am a tad bit of a control freak and like feelings that I hold the power to make my own decisions and regulating my behaviors. By feelings this way I feel more driven to increase my learning, and better my performance on a daily basis. I rated myself medium on competence, because I like being challenged and having a flow experience, but I find that I often over challenge myself. One example would be that I do not allow myself enough time to get ready in the morning, making me feel rushed and unprepared for the day because I thought I could challenge myself to do it in ten minutes. This sometimes leads me to avoid certain challenges because I do not like failing at all. Lastly, I rated myself as high on relatedness because I value my relationships so highly and find much enjoyment in these kinds of social bonds, and I feel that through my day-to-day interactions this needs is almost always met. This is manifested when I have makes plans to see at least one of my friends daily, or try to see and interact with those who I have communal relationships with.
One need that motivates multiple behaviors in my daily life is competence. I do love experiencing that flow state, when I am really involved mentally with a task, and when I am able to overcome a challenge. This need motivates my behavior to study, because I like to see exams as a challenge, and by seeing studying this way it allows me to actually enjoy what I am spending hours reviewing. Similarly, competence motivates my behavior to exercise. I am running a 5k this summer, and competence motivates my to continue training my body, and actually enjoy the training (maybe not all the time, but overall) because I am working towards a goal that I know I will be achieving in the near future.
The fish in the picture relates to this chapter because it describes the fish’s lack of fulfillment in regards to autonomy and relatedness. In the bowl the fish has no companions, no other fish, and has no quality social bonds with others, which is not meeting the need of relatedness. Also, this fish’s need for autonomy is not met. It has no choice in where it goes or what it is allowed to do because it is confined to that small bow. These needs were ignored for such a long period of time that the fish was motivated to leave the bowl and search elsewhere for its psychological needs to be met.
Terms: motivation, psychological needs, autonomy, competence, relatedness, flow experience, autonomy-supportive motivating styles, controlling motivating styles, communal relationships, exchange relationships, locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, challenge, performance feedback

If you had to make a guess, what's the deal with the fish picture? How does it relate to this chapter?

Chapter 6 of our text book is all about psychological needs. The chapter touched base on each of the three psychological needs: autonomy, competence, and relatedness. All three of these psychological needs play a large in maintaining a happy and healthy daily life. Starting first with autonomy, the psychological need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation of one’s behavior (Reeves p. 146). In other words, we want to be the ones to decide for ourselves, what we want to do, how we do it, and even if we do something at all. The chapter talked about the three different qualities that work together to define the subjective experience of autonomy. Perceived locus of causality, volition, and perceived choice. Something that all three of these qualities have in common is the idea of how much someone else influences our choices and behaviors. The most surprising thing I learned was during this section of the chapter. Even if someone other than yourself gives you different options to choose from, the person still will feel lack of autonomy. There is no different in the amount of autonomy a person will feel if you give them choices versus telling them what to do, as long as they are directed by someone else, autonomy is lacking.
Competence, the psychological need to be effective in interaction with the environment, and it reflects the desire to exercise one’s capacities and skills, in doing so, to seek out and master optimal challenges. Competence relies a lot on the ideas of optimal challenge and flow. Flow occurs when we are in a state of concentration that is enjoying and also has us deeply involved. Challenge and skill must be equally met. If something is too easy for someone it is boring, and if something is too challenging for someone, they tend to get frustrated and give up easily.
The last psychological need talked about in the chapter is relatedness. This psychological need has to do with establishing close emotional bonds and attachments with other people around us. There are two types of relationships that the book talks about, communal and exchange relationships. Exchange relationships are those between acquaintances or between people we do business with. Communal the relationships are those between the people who care about the welfare of others. These are the relationships we hold with our close friends, parents, and significant others.
If I were to rate myself on the following psychological needs I would say that I am medium in competence, medium in autonomy, and high in relatedness. I feel competent most of the time in my life, but especially in college there are times when I feel like I am not very capable, tests can be hard, assignments can be frustrating and these makes my level of competence feel low. Autonomy is medium also. I can make most of my own decisions but there are some decisions that just aren’t mine, such as how I spend my money…my parents handle that most of the time, because they want what’s best for me. Relatedness is high because I am such a people person. I have made a lot of close friends throughout my life.
Relatedness motivates my behaviors a lot especially on the weekends. I want to hang out with my friends in order to keep the communal relationships we have. If I distance myself from my friends, our relationships wouldn’t be as strong as they are. I also check in with my friends often to see how things are going and offer my help and support if they need it.
As far as my view on the fish, I think the fishy isn’t challenged in the bowl, he is lonely, and he has no reason to make choices so all of his psychological needs are low and he wants to get out!

Key words: autonomy, competence, relatedness, communal relationships, exchange relationships, violation, locus of causality, perceived choice, flow, optimal challenge


Chapter 6 was all about our psychological needs. Specifically the three main needs: autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Autonomy is our freedom of choice. We like to be in charge of when we’re going to do something, how we’re going to do it, etc. Competence is when our environmental challenges meet our skill-level. We like a challenge we just don’t want the challenge to be too easy or too hard. Relatedness is our social and intimate relationships with others.

One thing I enjoyed reading about and found surprising was how we can affect people’s autonomy by providing autonomy-supportive environments. This environment would include giving the person a sense of choice and by helping him or her internalize the importance of certain tasks. While I was reading about this I kept thinking about my future children and how I want parent them. Now that I know that autonomy is an important psychological need I think that I am going to work on giving my kids more of a choice and tell them why the boring chores are important.

I would rate myself fairly high on each of the psychological needs. I feel that I have a high volition (or a freedom of choice) in my life. I feel that as a young adult I can choose things like when I want to schedule classes, when I should do homework, and what I want my future career to be. I also understand why things like these are beneficial to my future so I feel more enjoyment out of completing tasks like those. I feel competent in my schoolwork. My classes are challenging but they match my skill level and I feel satisfied after completing an assignment or taking a test. I think that I have high relatedness because I have a good, close relationship with my boyfriend and I have a close small group of friends that satisfy my social and psychological need.

I think the psychological need for competence also motivates my exercise behavior. On some days I find it challenging but that’s what motivates me to go and exercise. I want to prove to myself that I can do it. When faced with an exercise that is new to me and may be a bit of a challenge I feel a strong interest and push to do the exercise and then I feel a strong satisfaction after I’ve completed it. Like running for example, I strongly dislike running so that’s a challenge that I have been gradually working myself up to. I’ve gotten to the point where I can run for at least five minutes at during a workout and actually enjoy it. When I got to that point it was a huge boost in my feeling of competence.

If I had to make a guess about the fish picture I would say that it’s playing on an organisms need for autonomy. The poor fish feels trapped in that fishbowl and what’s to be free! The fish is searching for a different choice; the choice to be in the fishbowl or not. By jumping out his (or her) psychological need for autonomy is being met!

Terms: autonomy, competence, and relatedness, volition, choice, psychological need, autonomy-supportive environment

Chapter 6 talks about our psychological needs. A psychological need is an innate human feelings of deprivation related to an individual's mental well-being. The book talks about 3 main ones, autonomy, competence, and relatedness.

Autonomy is the psychological need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of one’s behavior and it reflects the desire to have inner resources rather than environmental events, determine one’s action. As humans we like to be in control of what we do, we like to make the decisions and when we are in control of our decisions we are being autonomous. Autonomy is broken down into three additional categories, perceived locus of causality (PLOC), volition, and perceived choice. Perceived locus of causality refers to an individual’s understanding of the causal source of his or her motivated actions. PLOC has both internal and external sources, similar to internal and external motivation. Internal PLOC is behavior initiated by a personal source, while external PLOC is behavior initiated by environmental or outside source. An example is reading a book, if you are reading it for personal pleasure, which is considered internal PLOC, while if you are reading it for class, which is considered external PLOC. Volition is an unpressured willingness to engage in an activity. Perceived choice refers to that sense of choice we experience when we find ourselves in environments that provide us with decision-making flexibility that affords us many opportunities from which to choose.

Competence is the need to interact effectively with the environment. Competence is the psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment and it reflects the desire to exercise one's capacities and skills to seek out and master optimal challenges. Flow is a state of concentration that involves a holistic absorption and deep involvement in an activity. Flow often occurs when a person uses his or her skills to overcome a challenge. Flow is often a pleasurable experience that the person often wants to repeat the activity with the hop of experiencing flow again and again.

Relatedness is the psychological need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people and it reflects the desire to be emotionally connected to and interpersonally involved in warm relationships. Individuals enjoy and need to be around people that they can relate to, are accepting, and caring of the individual. It is important for an individual to be their true-self and for that person to be valued. This is why communal relationship are more important to an individual, rather an exchange relationships. Communal relationships are those between people who care about the welfare of the other, as exemplified by friendships, family and romantic relationships. Exchange relationships are those between acquaintances or between people who do business together.

For me the most surprising or interesting part of this chapter was when we were going over the Autonomy in class today and talked about when professors had their due dates, and I would have to agree that it does depend on when we have assignments and when they are do, when I determine how well I like or dislike the professor.

I would have to rate myself as a medium for autonomy because I like when my professor gives me a deadline, but I also like to know well in advance so that if I have time to do it I can and not wait till the last minute if I have something else going on. I would say I would be a low when it comes to competence because I don’t pay attention to how I interact with the environment, and I would say I would be high with relatedness because I do care about having friends and people to go to when I need someone to talk to.

Relatedness is extremely important to me because for me friends and the relationships you make because you never know when something is going to happen and you need one of those friends to help make it through. It also can be beneficial in the business world because a lot of times it’s who you know that will help advance up the ranks to where you want to be.

The picture of the fish relates to the chapter because the fish is lacking the psychological need of relatedness. The fish is in a bowl alone and has no one to interact with or connect with, so the fish is jumping out of the bowl in hope of finding another fish to connect with and create a communal relationship with.

Terms Used: psychological needs, autonomy, perceived locus of causality (PLOC), internal PLOC, external PLOC, volition, and perceived choice, competence, flow, relatedness, communal relationship, exchange relationships

This chapter examined the motivational significance of the three psychological needs autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Autonomy deals with the need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of one’s behavior. Competence is the need to interact effectively with the environment. Relatedness deals with the need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with others. When people find themselves in environments that support and nurture these needs, positive emotions, optimal experience, and healthy development often follow. This is an organismic approach to motivation which emphasizes the person-environment dialectic and is under the assumption that people are inherently active. So when the environment involves and supports peoples psychological needs, they possess a natural motivation to learn grow, and develop in healthy ways.

The most surprising part of this chapter came at the end in the section of what makes a good day. I thought it was surprising that on our good days, the events in our lives work to involve and satisfy our psychological needs and in doing this it promotes overall well-being and vitality. I hadn’t really thought about what make good days and bad days. In thinking about what makes a good day for myself, I would say things that would directly align with the psychological needs that were presented. I would want to be able to make choices about my day and the tasks I would need to do. I would want to do these things to the best of my ability and I would want to have people around me when I’m doing it. But when I’m placed in the situation of uncertainty or not being able to complete everything that I had wanted, it does place me in a bad mood.

If I had to rate myself on the different types of psychological needs I would say that autonomy and competence would be more important to me than relatedness. I would want the option of choosing what I’m doing and when I’m doing it. I don’t like to be told what to do unless I’m unfamiliar with the situation or events. This ties in with competence though. If I’m fully competent about what needs to happen within a situation then I, again, would want to control that situation. I think that I would rate myself high in these categories. Relatedness, although important, is not as important to me as the others. I would be ok with doing something that I had control over and was competent for over feeling close to someone. I would say I have a moderate rating in this category. This rating manifests itself well enough within my life. This holds especially true for my research assistant position with a professor on campus. In this, I was free to design an experiment completely and have had all licensure to work on this at will. I ensure my own competency through the readings I’ve done for the literary search. So far, there has been little in the way of relatedness occurring besides working with my team of students. I think that once I find myself in the career I want, this will play itself out a little more as well.

Autonomy is a big psychological need within my life. I like feeling in control of a situation and planning out everything. As I mentioned above, I don’t really like to be told what to do. This is a big part of my daily life. I often make checklists for homework, housework, and work related activities that I need to do. In these lists, I put the time that I will do each activity and plan around this. After accounting for these things, I often find myself dong other activities that I enjoy like reading books or watching movies. I’m not involved in any kind of classes outside of academia that would control what I do with my free time and this leaves me the opportunity to choose what I want to do that day. I think that the fish picture displays autonomy as well. He wants leaps out of the water because he can. It’s his choice to do so.

Key Words: Autonomy, Competence, Relatedness, Organismic Approach, Person-Environment Dialectic

Chapter 6 deals with our psychological needs, needs that can be broken into three different types of needs. These needs are sometimes referred to as “organismic psychological needs” (p.143), which are broken down into autonomy, competence and relatedness. They derive their name quite easily, from that of an organism, an “entity that is alive and in active exchange with its environment” (p.143). Organismic theories reject the idea that only the environment acts on the person, but sees it as environment acts on the person, and the person acts on the environment. This emphasis what is called a Person-Environment Dialectic, and shows us that the relationship between both us and the environment is reciprocal, or two-way (p.144). We affect the environment, and the environment affects us constantly as it never stops changing. In an essence, these needs are what motivate us to learn, grow and develop. While these needs allow that, it is also then up to the environment which will either assist us in our needs, or frustrate us in our expression of these needs.


Autonomy is the first of three needs, which is our need decide and do things for our own, under no one else’s direction or decision. The book defines autonomy as the “psychological need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of one’s behavior” (p.146). Our perceived locus of causality (PLOC) is the understanding of our casual source of motivation, or what was the cause for our motivation. Though we may know the source, we also have to have no pressure in engaging in an activity, and that is referred to volition. We do what we want freely without feeling coerced, or forced to do it. The third subset to autonomy is that of perceived choice, which “refers to that sense of choice we experience when we find ourselves in environments that provide us with decision-making flexibility that affords us many opportunities from which to choose” (p.147). It’s the feeling that we are doing something because we want to, and don’t have an obligation, or the opposite of perceived choice.


Competence is the second part of the organismic psychological needs, which is the psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment, and it reflects the desire to one’s capacities and skills and, in doing so, to seek out and master optimal challenges” (p.155). It is that feeling when what we are doing, we are prepared to do. Though sometimes we may run into things that are beyond are competence, we make progress on developing our skills which then causes us to feel a strong need-satisfying sort of satisfaction. Competence is something we all strive for, something we continue to work on throughout our life. We generally aren’t born being able to perfectly drive a car, it’s something we perfect and slowly become more competent by working on our skills.


The last part of the organismic psychological needs discussed in Chapter 6 is that of relatedness, or the “psychological need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people, and it reflects the desire to be emotionally connected to and interpersonally involved in warm relationships” (p.162). We all strive to feel that bond with someone else, that relationship with a close friends or group of friends. We all want to belong, and while some say they may not, we all desire social interactions and friends. We want to feel needed, and in general, want to offer that reciprocally by offering the exact same thing back. Relatedness is important, as many studies have shown relatedness “is an important motivational construct because people function better, are more resilient to stress, and report fewer psychological difficulties when our interpersonal relationships support our need for relatedness” (p.162). Not only do make connections, which are important socially, we also gain a better immune system. So all in all, relatedness can go a long way for someone, and may benefit them in more ways than one.


Something I found interesting is that even though you may have social interaction with others, you may not have relatedness. Like the book says, people who are lonely do not lack social interaction, but that of intimate relationships. While I guess I would have always assumed that, it kind of came to me as a surprise that that bond is truly what makes relatedness, not the fact that you may have a large group of friends. You can have as many friends as you want, but if you lack that connection, you can feel just as lonely as if you had no friends at all. Ranking myself, I believe I would rank autonomy and competence as high, and relatedness as low. I feel as if I have a need to be competent, to know what I am doing, and while of course I will make mistakes and fail, I have the motivation to do better each and every time. If I get a poor grade on an exam or an assignment, I will review my flaws and attempt to fix them moving forward. Just like most people, or so I would believe, I like to make the choices in my life on my own, for myself. I am of course not saying I do not wish to have close personal relationships, more that I’d rather have smaller and select relationships.


The fish lacks a few of the psychological needs, as it is confined to a bowl, a bowl that only itself is in. So from the start, it lacks relatedness, or the ability to have a relationship with another fish. It also lacks autonomy, as it’s home is where it was put. I doubt it had any choice in the matter, and will be there when someone else needs it’s time to move. It can swim in a circle and that’s about it, it lacks the ability to call its own shots.


Terms: Psychological Needs, Autonomy, Competence, Relatedness, Person-Environment Dialectic, Perceived Locus of Causality, Volition, Perceived Choice, Obligation, Competence, Relatedness

Chapter 6 is all about the study of the three psychological needs. These are autonomy, competence, and relatedness. This study is done in a few ways. The first approach is the organismic approach to motivation. In this approach, one looks at the capability of the organism and how it can deal with the environment. While this approach acknowledges the power of the environment over the organism by providing the organism with water, food, social support, and intellectual stimulation, the approach seems more focused on the ability of the organism to adapt with the environment. This approach is concerned with the organism’s ability to initiate and engage with the environment and its ability to adapt to a changing environment as well.
The book then discusses the opposite of the organismic approach; the mechanistic theory. In the mechanistic theory, one is concerned with how the environment acts on the organism and how the organism reacts. For example, if the environment so happens to be hot, the organism will then sweat, lose water, causing it to be motivated to search out water to drink.
The second approach to studying psychological needs is the person-environment dialect. This approach discusses how the relationship between the organism and the environment is reciprocal, having the environment act on the organism and the organism act on the environment, both of which are constantly changing.
The book then discusses autonomy. Autonomy is the need for self-direction and choice in regulating one’s behavior. Autonomy is derived from a person’s desire to rely on inner resources instead of environmental events to determine their actions. When a person is self-determined, they feel that they have an internal locus of control. This leaves them feeling free and giving them a sense of choice and authority over their own life. However, the level of autonomy someone can feel is highly determined by their relationships and their environment. If one lives in a supportive and nurturing environment capable of leaving a person feeling autonomous, they will show positive outcomes.
Competence is a person’s need to be successful in their interactions with their environment. Competence is a reflection of people’s need to engage in their skills and knowledge, hopefully leaving them feeling satisfied with themselves and their abilities. Competence also produces a need to improve oneself reach a level of confidence and satisfaction in ones skills. The environmental states that foster competence are optimal challenge, high structure, and high failure tolerance. When someone is experiencing “flow,” it is said that they are in a state where they have high enjoyment, concentration, and absorption in their behavior. Environmental events which foster competence are positive feedback and the perception of progress.
The last component to psychological need is relatedness. Relatedness is the psychological need to create close emotional bonds and attachments with other people. It reflects our desire to be emotionally connected to and interpersonally involved in warm relationships. It is good for us to merely interact with others, but it is not enough to satisfy our need for relatedness. For this satisfaction to occur, caring and liking need to be established in the bond with one or more people. Relatedness gains its importance from internalization. This is the process in where a person takes in the beliefs and values of another person, making it their own and broadening their way of thinking and feeling.
I found it rather interesting on how satisfying the three components of psychological needs would result in a “good day.” I’ve never really thought of the requirements of having a good day, but if I had to choose a set of them, the psychological needs would be what I would choose.
If I were to rank myself on the different psychological needs, I would give myself a 6 in autonomy, an 8 in competence, and a 9.5 in relatedness, all out of ten. I’d say a 6 for my autonomy because I feel that my life is relatively rigid in its structure and its plan and has very little wiggle room for my own decisions. While I did choose to take the path I am on now, I really didn’t feel there was a better path to be on than this one, a path that is rather unyielding and often stressful. I’d give myself an 8 in competence because I am fairly confident in my ability to do things. I took off a few points because I sometimes lack common sense, which leads me to mess things up from time to time. But otherwise I am pretty confident in my own ability to get things done. Lastly I’d give myself a 9.5 in relatedness because I have some of the best relationships I could ever ask for. I don’t have thousands of friends or anything like that, but the friends I do have are all really good ones. This goes the same for my family and my other loved ones. Also, I am pretty happy and confident being around other people and making new friends.
If any of the psychological needs affects my life the most, it is my need for relatedness. I do most of everything based on relatedness and what it means to me. My family, friends, and loved ones all mean the world to me, and I would do anything for them. Even people I don’t really know are important to me, especially when they are good people and need my help or sympathy. I think that is why I want to be a psychologist.
If I had to guess, the fish picture relates to how a person can not be confined to a tiny bubble of existence and be psychologically happy. Even though the fish is provided with food, shelter, and basic physiological needs, it is not challenged or given choices to stimulate itself, so it chooses to leave. Although a gold fish would be content with this sort of life, a human being would not be.

Terms: autonomy, competence, relatedness, organismic approach, mechanistic theory, person-environment dialectic

Chapter 6 was all about psychological needs and how these affect our daily life. These can coexist with physiological needs, but they are also motivators in themselves. Psychological needs coexist with physiological needs in the way that we feel a psychological craving for water or food when we are hungry or thirsty. Psychological needs motivate us on their own because, as human beings, we need to feel autonomous, competent, and related to others. Without these three things in our lives we will feel less daily satisfaction, more psychological troubles/distress, more anxiety, etc. I thought the most interesting part of the chapter the discussion of flow and optimal challenge. I had heard of these things in psychology of personality, and they are still very interesting to me. The moment of flow is when you are completely enveloped in the activity that you are doing because it provides enough of a challenge that you feel you are being pushed, but you know that you can overcome this challenge. Surgeons and athletes are two groups of people who feel this flow a lot, but they are not the only ones. I feel like I have flow moments when I’m taking tests because I get wrapped up in the test taking and lose track of time; I enjoy taking the test because I feel prepared, yet the test is still moderately or a high challenge, but it’s not too challenging. Finding the balance between not enough of a challenge and too much of a challenge is also interesting, because you have to learn how to push people and motivate them, but you also need to learn what is overwhelming for them and what will be too easy. Finding the optimal challenge and flow makes any task enjoyable.

I would say that I am high on autonomy, competence, and relatedness. I am a college student so I choose what classes I want to take (if I want to go to those classes everyday), if I want to work out, if I want to read, when I want to do what I want to do, how late I want to stay up, etc. Basically, because I am living on my own I can decide what I do every day, which satisfies my autonomy need. As I already mentioned, I feel like I have moments of flow and I am challenged in my classes and through my work, but it is not so overwhelming that I do not feel like I can’t accomplish it. Experiencing moments of flow satisfies my competence need. I work with a staff of 8 other people and we see each other at least 3 hours a week, this could be simply an exchange relationship because we meet for the purpose of work, but it is actually a communal relationship. We talk about more than just business and I do feel as if my staff cares about my welfare and that they like me as a person and not just a co-worker. This staff and my friends outside of the position satisfy my relatedness need.

I feel like the relatedness need motivates a lot of my behavior, it motivates me to make time for my friends even though they live off campus, across campus, or in other towns. I am motivated to make time to travel to have lunch with them or go to a movie with them even though I could eat lunch with other people on campus or watch a movie in my room with people who live closer to me. I am motivated to take those extra steps because I know that the friends I have to work to see have formed a communal relationship with me, which satisfies my need for relatedness.

I think the fish symbolizes that there is more to organisms than just physiological needs. Maybe the fish sees a relative or friend or a river and it is jumping out of the bowl to fulfill relatedness needs, or maybe the fish just wants to feel like it has the choice to decide which bowl it’s in so it jumps out to satisfy its need for autonomy. If organisms only lived according to their physiological needs then the fish would be content to keep swimming in the same boring, tiny bowl, but there are more to organisms than biological functions, so the fish is driven by some psychological need to jump out of the safety of the water into something else.

Terms: psychological needs, physiological needs, motivate, autonomous, competence, relatedness, flow, optimal challenge, exchange relationship, communal relationship

This chapter states that psychological needs are viewed as psychological growth, where as physiological needs are biological deficits. The energy created by psychological needs is proactive. The book discusses the three psychological needs: autonomy, relatedness and competence. These three psychological needs are also known as organismic psychological needs. Organismic theories know that environments change and organisms need to be able to adapt to those changes. The other approach to motivation is mechanistic theories. These types of theories indicate that the environment acts on the person and the person reacts. Organismic needs provide the motivation that supports initiative and learning as well as growth and development. Autonomy is the need for control and freedom to do what we want and when we want to do it. The books definition of autonomy is the psychological need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of ones behavior. Perceived locus of causality, volition and perceived choice make up the subjective experience of autonomy. There are two types of autonomy motivation, controlling motivation style and supportive motivating style. Competence is the need to perform better and make progress in our tasks, skills, and abilities. There are instances in our environment that can satisfy or frustrate our need for competence. The environmental condition that is the foundation to satisfying our need for competence is positive feedback and perception of progress. The need for relatedness occurs because we need, as humans, to have social interactions and relationships. We not only need relationships with family and friends but also with organizations, groups and communities.

The most surprising thing I took from this chapter was how much our surroundings can influence our moods and whether or not we have a good day. Psychological need satisfaction predicts and explains why we do or do not have a good day. Our psychological needs give us the psychological nutriments we need for positive well-being and to have good days.

When it comes to the need for autonomy I would rate myself as high. I do not like being told what to do and when to do it and how to do it. However, I know that in life I cannot control everything. Often times things that are out of my control stress me out. So I make sure to put aside time for myself to do things that are within my control. These things include working out, hanging out with friends, watching movies, or reading books. My need for competence I would rate as medium. I am pretty competent with most tasks I take on. But I am not perfect therefore I am not competent at everything I do. I try my best at school and at both of my jobs, but sometimes it does not turn out how I think it should. My need for relatedness I would rate as medium as well. I feel like I should have social interaction every day but there are definitely days where I do not want to see or talk to another person. I have a few close friends which to me is better than having 100 friends who I do not trust 100%. I am also very close with my family.

The psychological need for competence motivates a majority of my behaviors. I feel like i need to put forth my best effort at everything I do. When a task does not turn out how I want it to, or I do not do well on an assignment or exam I am very hard on myself and think of all of the things I could have done to do better. I am a server and at this job my income is based, almost solely, off of my tips. When I walk into work I know that I need to be positive, think positive, and be overall in a good mood. If I am not in a good mood my tables can tell and it will show on my tip they leave me. Throughout all of the years I have been in school I’ve tried very hard to do well in all of my classes and on all of my assignments. As I have gotten older I have discovered ways to help me achieve my academic goals, i.e. time management, saying no when my friends wanted me to go out and saying no to picking up extra shifts at work. When I am working out I have to, or feel like I have to, beat my previous times, reps, weights, and miles. I am constantly trying to progress and do better.

This fish represents the need for relatedness and autonomy. By jumping out of the bowl he is indicating that he is probably lonely and want to have friends. He feels disconnected. His decision to jump out of the bowl is his way of saying he will not live in that tiny container all by himself. He wants to be free to roam in a bigger area of water and not be trapped in a tiny bowl.

Terms: Psychological Need, Motivates, Behaviors, Relatedness, Competence, Autonomy, Psychological Nutriments, Positive Well-Being, Psychological Need Satisfaction, Psychological Growth, Physiological Needs, Biological Deficits, Proactive, Energy, Organismic Psychological Needs, Organismic Theories, Adapt, Environment, Motivation, Mechanistic Theories, Self-direction, Personal Endorsement, Locus of Causality, Volition, Choice, Autonomy Motivation, Controlling Motivation Style, Supportive Motivating Style, Needs, Positive Feedback, Perception of Progress

Chapter 6 discusses both Organismic Psychological needs as well as Autonomy. Organismic Psychological needs get their name from the fact that it is an entity that is active and alive with the environment. The environment is an important piece because that is where resources, such as food and water come from. The book also mentions mechanistic approach which is the opposite of Organismic in that is says that the environment effects the body, so for example the hot sun makes us sweat. Sweating then leads to a loss of water, which in turn causes thirst a biological need that arise automatically. The mechanistic approach believes that the relationship between a person and the environment is one way where the organismic approach sees the relationship as interactive. The organismic approach in a sense is very similar to intrinsic motivation, a term we learned in chapter 5. I saw this because it is based on a person’s interest and curiosity in the environment. The organismic approach also believes that people or the organism is already active or intrinsically motivated. The book shows a chart where the person is active, curious, and self-regulated. On the other half of the chart it shows the persons environment which challenges the person as well as provide natural rewards for behaviors. The persons environment makes it so that the person has to set goals , provides feedback, offers rewards and praise, as well as roles in the community and aspirations and expectations. We look at organismic psychology when we want to know what drives people to act in the ways that they do. One answer is that organismic psychology provides the motivation we need to get the incentive to learn and explore new things. The book uses the example of children exploring the world in the fact that the want to improve because of their need for competence.

The chapter continues by talking about Autonomy and its importance. Autonomy is our need for freedom and our need to make choices for ourselves. The three parts of autonomy are perceived locus of casualty, volition, and perceived choice. Perceived locus of causality is a person’s understanding of where their motivation comes from, it is a perception of one’s own behavior. Volition is a person’s unpressured willingness to participate in an activity. Volition is in essence the feeling of being free. Lastly perceived choice is how we feel when we are put into situations where we feel like we are in control and have choices we can make for ourselves. The chapter goes on to talk about the importance of choice and how a sense of autonomy increases people’s intrinsic motivation. However when you are given limited choice such as having to choose from a list given to you it can have the opposite effect and you can lose your sense of autonomy. The book uses the term positive post choice functioning to describe the feeling and effect on a person when they are actually given choice freedom and not an either or. The chapter continues to talk about different occasions when autonomy is important and how in some situations it is more important than in other situations.

Terms: Organismic Psychological, Autonomy, mechanistic approach, biological need, intrinsically motivated, self-regulated, perceived locus of casualty, volition, perceived choice

Psychological needs are needs which when satisfied provide us with enjoyment and satisfaction. In pursuing our psychological needs, we seek challenges and have an inherent interest in the activity. To understand psychological needs, we need to understand the difference between mechanistic and organismic theories of motivation. Mechanistic theories hold that the environment affects a person then the person reacts to the environment. Mechanistic theories will not be sufficient to understanding psychological needs; instead we will use organismic theories. An organismic approach to motivation recognizes the ever-changing environment and says that people are flexible and adapt to the environment. As humans we have three basic psychological needs that organismic approaches try to explain: Autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Autonomy is the need to control and self-direct your personal behavior. When our interests and wants drive our actions, our behavior is autonomous. Many things effect how autonomous we feel, but when our environment or supporting group restricts choices, impose actions, or control our behavior we feel less autonomous. Supporting autonomy helps motivate and engage people to a deeper extent. The next psychological need is competence, which is feeling that your actions are effectively received in the environment. Optimally matching your skill set to the challenges at hand (i.e. high skill/high challenge or low skill/low challenge) results in a positive flow and deep connection to the activity. The last psychological need is relatedness, which is the need to establish close relationships within our social group. We need communal relationships that are symbiotic in nature with each person reciprocating feelings and emotions. Supporting all three of these needs results in active engagement and leads to feelings of pleasure and well-being.

Rating myself on the three psychological needs is difficult due to the biased nature of my own self-concept. I think that I would rate my autonomous activity as low, as school and basketball drive almost everything I do. If those two things weren’t in my life I would almost be doing nothing the same. My competence need is high because I have to prove myself every single day to my teammates and coaches on the basketball floor. I think my relatedness need is also low because by the time classes and practice is over I don’t want to be around anybody for the rest of the night. Since during any given day I don’t do much of the tings that I truly want to do, I recently bought a guitar. I have always wanted to learn an instrument and playing guitar in the evenings is a way to pursue a persona interest. This is one activity that I want to do, which I think helps me to do all of the activities that I don’t want to do.

The fish (which I have named Jack) in the picture does not want to be constrained. Jack is jumping out of the bowl sort of as an autonomous act of rebellion. He has been told all of his life that he can only swim in that little area, but he wants to be autonomous and make his own decisions. His need for autonomy and freedom from control has reached such a deprived level that he has to jump out of the tank to make even a single, deathly autonomous decision in his life. Poor Jack.

Terms: Psychological needs, autonomy, competence, relatedness, mechanistic theories, organismic theories, flow, communal relationship

Chapter 6 focused on psychological needs. Psychological needs create an environment that pushes individuals to seek out and engage in an environment that will satisfy needs of autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Psychological needs are classified as “growth” needs and organismic needs. Growth needs motivate individuals towards challenge seeking and exploration rather than satisfying a physical deficit like physiological needs. The concept of organismic needs is that individuals initiate interactions with the environment and they also adapt and change their behavior to the changes in the environment (Reeve, 2009). The text then goes into detail about the 3 main psychological needs: autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Autonomy is the need for individuals “to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of one’s behavior” (Reeve, 2009). Perceived locus of causality, volition, and perceived choice all are important in autonomy. Perceived locus of causality means individuals know why and they have control over the certain behavior they are participating in. Volition is being unpressured to behave in a certain way, and perceived choice is the degree individuals feel when opportunities arise in the environment. The second psychological need discussed was competence. Competence is “the psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment, and it reflects the desire to exercise one’s capacities and skills and, in doing so, to seek out and master optimal challenges” (Reeve, 2009). Competence is a balance between one’s skills and opportunities for challenge. For example, if one has few skills and presented with high opportunities for challenge the individual would experience a high level of anxiety. On the flipside, if an individual has a large skill set and presented a low challenge then the individual would experience boredom. Lastly, the psychological need for relatedness was examined. Relatedness is “the psychological need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people, and it reflects the desire to be emotionally connected to and interpersonally involved in warm relationships” (Reeve, 2009). There are two types of relationships that exist: communal relationships and exchange relationships. Communal relationships are ones with very strong ties with strong emotional connects such as parents, boyfriend/girlfriend, and close friends. Exchange relationships are those of acquaintances or business partners without strong ties and emotional connections. Lastly, all three of these psychological needs come together to provide “psychological nutriments” that are necessary for individuals to have a good day or a bad day.

The part of the chapter that I found most interesting and surprising was the difference between environments in personal growth between autonomy support environments and controlled environments. Next year, I hope to work at a university as a Residence Life Coordinator and reading this section really provided me some insight on the best way to motivate staff even when the tasks seem insignificant or uninteresting. If I create an environment that sparks inner motivational resources, provides rationale, acknowledges and accepts negative affect the work environment would be much more positive and provide strong results than if I held all of the power and my staff felt they had no autonomy in the position.

If I were to rate myself on the three psychological needs they would be: autonomy: medium, competence: high, relatedness: high. The high degree of competence and relatedness is very known in the way that I live my life. I work very hard in the classroom and at my job to ensure that I look competent in every situation. Relatedness is also very important to me because I really value the time that I spend with people. I always try to make time for the communal relationships that I have formed with my family, boyfriend, and friends. I also work hard to develop the exchange relationships in a professional manner. Autonomy is still important to me, but the other two needs have taken more of a priority which I feel leads to the need of autonomy to become less important.

I have a very strong need to feel competent in every situation that I am in from the classroom, to my job, to the relationships I am a part of. The textbook discussed the importance of structure, failure tolerance, and positive feedback. I get very frustrated when I encounter tasks that the overall goals are not clearly laid out because I feel that I have the skill set to either show my teacher or my boss that I am capable of the task, but when the structure is unclear I become frustrated. I also find myself much more willing to speak in the classroom when the instructor provides room for failure. If the instructor doesn’t create this environment I become too shy to speak even when I am sure I have a correct answer. Lastly, I absolutely crave positive feedback from positive grades to my boss or other staff members saying that I am doing a good job.

If I were to guess how the picture of a goldfish jumping out of the bowl relates to the chapter I would say that the psychological need of relatedness of the fish became so extreme that he had to jump out of the bowl to satisfy it. The fish was tired of living in the bowl by himself, so he wanted to escape to have more fishy friends!

Terms: psychological needs, autonomy, competence, relatedness, growth needs, organismic needs, perceived locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, communal relationships, exchange relationships, psychological nutriments, autonomy supported environment, controlled environment, structure, failure tolerance, positive feedback.


Chapter 6 discussed psychological needs. Psychological needs are things such as hunger and thirst, but these psychological need motivate our behaviors. The organismic theory approach to motivation explains why psychological needs come from the environment because the environment provides resources like food, water, social support, and intellectual stimulation. The mechanistic theory, which is the opposite of the organismic theory, is when the environment produces certain affects which cause the person to react, such as heat. In person-environment dialectic, the environment affects the person and the person affects the environment. Psychological needs have three components: autonomy, competence, and relatedness. According to Reeve, autonomy is the “psychological need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement” (p. 146). In other words, it is a want to satisfy our own needs, wants, and dreams. We are not self-determining creatures, but behavior is autonomous. There are three qualities that define the subjective experience of autonomy: perceived locus of causality (PLOC), volition, and perceived choice. Perceived locus of causality (PLOC) is an individual’s understanding of the source of their motivation If we ask ourselves why do we read a book, we now understand it is from our internal PLOC. Volition is and unpressured willingness to engage in an activity. This means that we want to do the activity and there is no pressure from external factors. The third quality is perceived choice, which is our sense of choice we experience when we find ourselves in environments that provide us with decision-making flexibility that affords us many opportunities from which we choose. Providing people with choice is the most obvious way to support a person’s need for autonomy. They have their own want to satisfy their needs, wants, and dreams. The second psychological need component is competence, which according to Reeve, is “the psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment and reflects the desire to exercise ones capacities and skills, and in doing so, seeks out and master optimal challenges” (p. 155). We can either satisfy or neglect our competence in situations we find ourselves in. In order to support someone’s competence, it is largely when we offer informational feedback when someone makes progress and creates opportunities for people to enjoy the pleasure of optimal challenging. The last psychological need component is relatedness, which according to Reeve, is “the psychological need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people. It reflects the desire to be emotionally connected to and interpersonally involved in a warm relationship” (p. 162). To understand this better way, autonomy is providing support to one’s self, competence is providing structure, and relatedness is providing involvement.
If I had to rate myself on each of the components, I would rate myself pretty average on them all. I would give myself a medium on autonomy. I work a lot and go to school, so I don’t get to enjoy everything I wish I could. Although work is something I thoroughly look forward to going to each day, I would sometimes rather do other things such as: nap, read a book, hang out with friends, eat, or watch TV. I would rate myself high in competence, because I believe in myself and the ability to do well. At work, I believe that I can follow through with my various tasks and know that at the end of my shift, I have completed the work at hand with the best of my ability. I would also rate myself high on relatedness because I thoroughly enjoy finding new people to spend my time with. I like the fact that I have a close connection with my family and my select “best” friends. I think overall my high ratings in each of these components have led me to lead a very happy life.
I was most surprised with how high I rated myself in each of the components. As I was reading the chapter, I didn't really think how much I experienced each of the components. After reading other people’s blog posts and looking at examples in the book, I realized how much I experience these on a daily basis. I think the fish is escaping from the fish bowl because he wants to do his own thing and follow his own path. This shows he wants autonomy.

Key terms: relatedness, competence, autonomy, psychological needs, perceived locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, organismic theory, mechanistic theory, person-environment dialectic, internal, external.

Chapter 6 discusses all of the psychological needs associated with motivation. A person becomes interested when their psychological needs are met. Our psychological needs are what triggers our motivation. When our psychological needs are met we are more willing to go out and seek things that will interest us. There are two different approaches to motivation, an organismic approach and a mechanistic approach. Organismic approach says that the environment constantly changes and we need to adjust to the changes. Mechanistic approach is when the environment acts on the person and the person reacts. The person may act on the environment because of many different reasons, such as curiosity, interest, and an intrinsic motivation. Organismic psychological needs involve autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Autonomy is the desire of choice and decision-making flexibility. There are 3 qualities that work with autonomy and that would be internal perceived locus of causality, volition and perceived choice. Perceived locus of causality refers to an individual’s understanding of the causal source of his or her motivated actions. Volition is an unpressured willingness to engage in an activity. Lastly perceived choice refers to the sense of choice we experience when we find ourselves in environments that provide us with decision-making flexibility and this will allow us the ability to choose. People like the fact that they get the opportunity to make their own choices. This is what increases the sense of autonomy and intrinsic motivation. There are two different styles of motivating, autonomy-supportive and controlling. Autonomy-supportive motivating style differs from controlling motivation in the fact that it takes other’s perspectives into place and values personal growth during an activity where controlling motivation uses social influence techniques to achieve the targeted socialization outcome. Autonomy-supportive uses inner motivation resources, and controlling motivation using outer motivational resources. Autonomy-supportive relies on flexible, non-controlling and does not target on criticism. Each style will also react differently to negative effects. When a person develops or improves their skills they develop competence. Competence is the psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment. Everyone is going to experience failure. Failure allows a person to grow and learn because they are able to try new opportunities. Everyone has a need for relatedness and to belong to something and have social interaction. The book describes relatedness as the psychological need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people, and it reflects the desire to emotionally connect to and interpersonally involved in warm relationships. I thought that it was surprising that there were different styles of motivation. I guess I always knew that people were motivated differently, but after reading the chapter it was surprised me how right on the styles are. I am definitely an autonomy-supportive motivator. However, I know people who to a tee are controlling motivators. I would say that I would rate myself high on psychological needs. I need that autonomy and relatedness. Having all those things in my life helps me be motivated more. When I have competence in the things I do, it motivates me to do more things. However there are times when my psychological needs are low and I need that reinsurance to help me get motivated. For example I didn’t use to be a runner, but now that I have been doing it on a daily basis I have the competence that I can run more each day. Being able to do that motivates me to continue to run. I think that the fish has been restricted to this small bowl, and gets the confidence and motivation to go out and find bigger and better things. Once he got the courage to do so he leaped out of the bowl. This relates to the chapter on how the environment will motivate us and support us to do and try new things.

Terms: psychological needs, organismic approach, mechanistic approach, autonomy, competence, relatedness, internal perceived locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, autonomy-supportive, controlling motivation, Competence, failure

This chapter focused on psychological needs. Psychological needs can direct and energize our behaviors. When our psychological needs are fulfilled, we have energy to be motivated to complete our behaviors. The organismic approach to motivation explanis how our psychological needs are driven from our environment because the environment offers us various resources that are needed. For example, the environment offers the resources needed to provide us with the means to fulfill the needs of hunger. Another item from chapter six was the person-environment dialect, the relationship because a person and the environment. This relationship is reciprocal, meaning that the person reacts on the environment and the environment reacts on the person. Each part of this approach is responding to the relationship of the other. For example, humans are providing the environment with the effects of pollution and the environment is reacting to this. Another item that corresponds to this is the organismic psychological needs, people wanting to develop their skills because they emerge through opportunities from the environment. This can be related to how college students feel when they are ending their college careers, as I am. I have the desire to develop my skills in order to obtain a job, a job that will come from the environment of careers and the job world. This is something that is always on my mind so I can relate to this term from chapter six. When it comes to the job search, external environments and other events can support or disrupt my autonomy. My ability to make decisions and choices is affected by the external environment, the jobs that are open and the places in which I want to be. As well as my experiences that match with what the job is looking for. When it comes to the job search, challenges arise daily. These challenges we face affect the way behave and sometimes make me lose motivation to keep apply for jobs and to keep searching.
One thing that surprised me was how much we are challenged and how the flow of our motivation correlate. When we face a challenge, we must have a flow, a concentration to keep moving forward. I was surprised to see how many challenges we have a day. The book gave examples of exams and other school items. Although this should be common knowledge, exams have become apart of normal life therefore I forget that is it in fact a challenge. Another thing that surprised me was all the types of psychological needs and what was involved within them. When first reading the chapter title I figured I would know all about psychological needs due to the large amount of psychology classes I have taken in the past.
When rating myself of a scale of low to high I would rate myself as medium, maybe even medium to low. I do feel that I am high on the psychological needs of hunger and thirst, as many would. I feel that these are important and I do enjoy fulfill these needs. However, I am a person that enjoys spending time by myself and don’t enjoy large groups of people and loud settings. I could spend days by myself and feel completely fine and not desire the need to talk to someone. When I am social, I enjoy small and intimate groups. I would pick going out with my closest friends to a quiet bar than spend time at the busiest bar crowded with people. However, when I do thrive for social interaction, I thrive to be social with the people closest to me. If they’re busy, I feel fine without talking to anymore and dealing with issues on my own. Because I have a lower level of desire for social interaction, it sometimes affects my friendships. Although my closest friends know how I am and that I enjoy my alone time. People that don’t know me as well sometimes feel offended when I don’t want to be social with them or would rather spend time alone than be social with them. Because of this, I have had hindered friendships and lost friendships because of having different levels than others. I am most motivated by the person-environment dialect. Not only is the environment a motivated, but those in my environment affect my motivation. I am a competitive person so when the environment and those in my environment are doing something better than I am, I feel my motivation rising, driving me to do better or greater things.
I feel like the fist has to do with person-environment dialect, that the fish and the bowl are responding to each other. Another thing that could connect the two is the level of the fish. The fish may need his social psychological needs to be met and is leaving his environment, the bowl, to fulfill them.


Terms: psychological needs, organismic approach, needs, person-environment dialect, dialect, organismic psychological needs, external environment, autonomy, challenges, flow, drive

Chapter six discussed psychological needs. Similar to physiological needs, when psychological needs are met we feel the same sense of enjoyment. Physiological needs are required for survival and psychological needs promote willingness to seek out in the environment to nurture these needs. The three psychological needs discussed in chapter six was autonomy, competence, and relatedness.

First and foremost, if I had to guess why the fish is jumping out of the bowl, my thoughts would be because the fish has all of his physiological needs met; however, he is not in a stimulating environment. So, it shows him jumping out of a safe environment just to seek out psychological needs. Risking survival for stimulation. That would be my guess. In terms of the terms involved in chapter six, I think that would go along with relatedness.

The first term discussed in chapter six was autonomy. Autonomy covers decision making and life choices. When we are able to, people like to make our own decisions and when we are able to do so, we are autonomous. Autonomy is broken down further into three separate parts. These are Internal Perceived Locus of Causality (PLOC), Volition, and Perceived Choice Over One’s Actions (PCOOA). PLOC refers to a person understanding the source of their motivated actions. Volition is willing to participate in an activity without being pressured or forced. PCOOA refers to our choice when our surrounding provides decision making scenarios with many different choices to choose from. Certain ages and populations aren’t granted autonomy such as children.

Competence is the needing to be effective in interactions in the environment along with our desire to show off our skills. When we hone and develop our skills, we feel a sense of satisfaction. In order for this action or for the person to feel competent or incompetent, feedback is required from another person.

Relatedness is wanting to establish relationships and emotional bonds and attachments to other people. Studies have shown that people perform and are less stressed when they have support during difficult times.

The different terms this chapter discussed were very interesting to me and also how these psychological factors effect and influence different aspects of motivation. The three terms discussed in this chapter; autonomy, relatedness, and competence. These three concepts all play a role in our everyday lives, but they have their differences. I believe I would rank highest in relatedness. A strong support system from my close friends and family are very important to me. Also, I take a lot of pride in the hard work I put into different activities, such as playing drums and basketball, so competence is pretty important to me as well. Autonomy is also prominent. I mean its decision making and choices so obviously I value that a lot as well.

Terms: Autonomy, Competence, Relatedness, PLOC, PCOOA, Volition, Psychological Needs, Feedback

Chapter 6 was all about psychological needs. When an activity involves our psychological needs we feel interest and when an activity satisfy our psychological need we feel enjoyment. Because psychological needs motivate exploration and challenge seeking, they are understood as growth rather than deficit needs. In an organismic theory the environment and the organism are both acting and reacting against one another. In a mechanistic approach, the environment acts on the person and the person reacts. The person acts on the environment out of curiosity, interest, and intrinsic motivation to seek out and affect changes in it. The environment offers affordances, imposes structure, makes demands, provides feedback, offers need satisfying, need frustrating relationships, and offers a community and cultural context as the person strives to adjust and accommodate to it. There are three specific psychological needs the organism strives to complete. These needs are autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Autonomy is deciding what to do. We want to decide for ourselves how to spend our time. We want our behavior connected to our interests, preferences, wants, and desires. Three experimental qualities work together to define the subjective experience of autonomy. The first one is perceived locus of causality. This is an individual’s understanding of the casual source of his or her motivation. This can be internal or external. The second aspect is volition which is unpressured willingness to engage in an activity. It centers on how true versus coerced people feel while they are doing what they want and how free versus coerced they feel while avoiding what they want to do. The third aspect is perceived choice. This a sense of choice people experience when we find ourselves in environments that provide us with decision making flexibility that affords us many opportunities from which to choose. It is only when people have a true choice over their actions and when they are offered choices that are meaningful to their lives do not experience a sense of autonomy. External events, environments, social contexts, and relationship all vary in how much versus how little they support a person’s need for autonomy. One person’s willingness to take the others perspective and to value personal growth opportunities during an activity is known as the autonomy supportive motivating style. The other motivating style is known as the controlling style. This is when one person pressures the other toward prescribed outcomes and uses social influence techniques to achieve that targeted socialization outcome. How people go about creating and establishing autonomy-supportive environments for others involves four essential ways of relating to others. The first way is to nurture inner motivational resources. The second way relies on informational language. The third is to provide explanatory rationales. The fourth and final way is to acknowledge and accept negative affect. The motivating style people use have strong implications for the subsequent motivation, engagement, development, learning, performance, and psychological well-being of the people they are trying to motivate. Competence is the second psychological need. Competence is to be effective in interactions with the environment and it reflects the desire to exercise ones capacities and skills to seek out and master optimal challenges. Enjoyment can be traced to the flow experience. Flow is a state of concentration that involves a holistic absorption and deep involvement in an ability. Given optimal challenge, any activity can be enjoyed. Situations set the stage for challenge. Setting the stage for challenge is not the same things as creating the psychological experience of being challenged. The amount and clarity of information about what the environment expects the person to do to achieve desired outcomes is structure. Whether individuals perceive their performance to be competent or incompetent a performer needs feedback. Feedback comes from four sources. The first is the task itself. The second are comparisons of one’s current performance with one’s past performances. The third are comparisons of one’s current performance with the performance of others and the fourth and final are the evaluations of others. Relatedness is the third and final psychological need. Many times we go out of our ways to form and maintain close, affectionate, warm relationships with others. People seek emotionally positive interaction with partners and in doing so they gain the opportunity to involve the psychological need for relatedness. For relatedness quality is more important than quantity. Some relationships are more satisfying than others. Communal relationships are satisfying and exchange relationships are not. In communal relationships, people monitor and keep track of the other’s needs, regardless of any forthcoming opportunities for reciprocity or material gain. Internalization refers to the process through which an individual transforms a formerly externally prescribed regulation or value into an internally enforced one. Internalization flourishes in relationships that provide a rich supply of relatedness need satisfaction and clear and convincing rationale for why the other person’s prescriptions and proscriptions will benefit the self. Engagement captures the intensity and emotional quality people show when they initiate and carry out activities. When people are highly engaged they show behavioral, emotional, and cognitive engagement and voice. Such a spark of vitality is a clear signal that psychological needs function as growth rather than as deficit needs.
The most surprising thing I learned about from this chapter was the failure tolerance. I found it surprising that if intense the dread of failure can motivate avoidance behavior so that people go out of their way to escape from being challenged. I also was surprised to learn that we learn more from failure than success and that people prefer to seek out optimal challenges and feel greater competence and experience an emotional green light toward stretching oneself when they are in autonomy-supportive and failure-tolerant rather than in controlling and failure intolerant environments. To rate myself on my psychological needs I would rate myself as medium on autonomy, high on competence, and high on relatedness. For autonomy I don’t really mind if someone tells me what to do. Sometimes it puts me at ease to have medium autonomy. I prefer to have others help me with different aspects. I rate myself on competence because I love putting myself in challenging situations and making myself competent in many areas. For relatedness I rated myself as high because I value relationships with my friends and family. Many times I will do a lot for others to like me and to be able to relate to others. For relatedness it manifests itself in my daily life. I do a lot of things for other people so that they will like me. Many times I put others before myself which can sometimes be a huge problem. It motivates my behaviors to talk to strangers, put others wants before my own, and helping others. The picture of the fish in the bowl demonstrates its need for autonomy and relatedness. The fish is in a small bowl and cannot make its own decisions in the bowl so it jumped out so it could make its own decisions. It also demonstrates relatedness because the fish doesn’t have any other companion fish to relate to. It jumped out of the bowl so that it could relate to other fish and have the psychological need of relatedness fulfilled.
Terms: Psychological needs, organismic theory, mechanistic approach, autonomy, competence, relatedness, perceived locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, autonomy supportive motivating style, controlling style, flow, feedback, communal relationships, exchange relationship, and internalization.

Chapter 6 looks at psychological needs through the organismic approach to motivation. This method is centered on two basic assumptions: that people are active and that people use their psychological needs to interact in the environment, but sometimes the environment agitates these needs. This approach to looking at motivation demonstrates that individuals have an innate motivation to learn and develop and this motivation is most successful in situations in which their psychological needs are being met. Autonomy, competence and relatedness are the three psychological needs that make up this approach.

Autonomy is essentially free will—as humans we enjoy and have a psychological need to make our own decisions. It is important to consider this need when attempting to motivate others to do something. Giving someone choices usually improves their feeling of autonomy, but for this to actually be effective the individual has to have a choice that legitimately reflects his/her personal interests or values. Competence is the psychological need to effectively interact with one’s environment and exert their abilities. Competence is needed in situations involving challenges. In order to fulfill this need, individuals must receive praise and positivity and have a sense of their success and progress being made. Relatedness is the need to interact and belong; we need others to accept and understand us as means of helping us fulfill our needs. This need is what relationships—whether with individuals or groups—grow from. In order for a relationship to truly sate this need the individual must feel as though the other person genuinely cares about and likes them. The engagement approach to motivation looks at how relationships and social situations meet or neglect these psychological needs of autonomy, competence, and relatedness.

I would rate myself high on autonomy and competence, but medium-low on relatedness. I’m at an age now where I am more independent than I have ever been before. I have a great need for autonomy as I discover myself and make important decisions about my future. Though I will seek advice from others (like my mom) I often do not like what I hear. Competence is important in my life because I am always looking to succeed and measure my progress, whether it is in school, at work, or at the gym. Without praise or visible steps forward in these areas I become disheartened and upset. I rated myself moderately low on relatedness because I enjoy spending time by myself and don’t keep a great many friends. It’s much more important to me to have a close circle of friends to rely on, so I don’t waste much of my time getting to know people in classes or the organizations that I’m involved in.

It’s easy to use competence to explain some of my motivations. I enjoy working out because it is challenging and a good way to relieve stress. If I ever get down on myself or start feeling like I don’t want to go all I have to do is compare where I am now in terms of strength, muscle mass, etc to remind myself how far I’ve come. Seeing those results gets me excited and motivated to keep going. I’m also in a challenging class this semester. I didn’t think I was doing super well in it and I wasn’t very confident in my work thus far until I checked eLearning today and realized that I have nearly 100%. Being able to see this motivates me to continue what I’m doing and not let my fear of failure allow me to slack off.

I would guess that the fish is jumping out of the water because his psychological needs are not being met. He’s confined to the fish bowl, probably not by choice, so to go against that he decides to jump out to exercise free will and his need for autonomy. The jump out of the fish bowl is a pretty big challenge for the little fish, so in that sense he is attempting to fulfill his need for competence. He’s also all alone, making it impossible to fulfill his need for relatedness. He probably hopes that if he can make it out of the fish bowl he can engage with other fish.

Terms: psychological needs, organismic approach, environment,autonomy, competence, relatedness, challenge, engagement, choices

Chapter 6 was about the three organismic psychological needs- autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Dependent on how much these needs are met, varying levels of natural motivation can occur. In this case, autonomy is the freedom to make one's own choices, specifically regarding how we spend our time/what we find worthy of our time. We have this psychological need to support the initiation and continuation of our behaviors and actions. Autonomy can further be broken down into three main experiences- Perceived locus of causality, volition, and perceived choice. Perceived locus of causality describes the source of a person's motivated actions, and can be either internal or external. Volition is how free versus how coerced people feel while doing an activity. Perceived choice occurs when people are given the opportunity to make decisions regarding the activity they have to do. When looking at perceived choice, however, it is important to note it only truly promotes autonomy when they have a true choice over their actions, not in situations where they are choosing “either/or”.

The second psychological need covered in this chapter is competence. Competence is the need for a feeling of adequacy in interactions. When a person's skill set is challenged appropriately, that person may experience a strong interest and perhaps even reach “flow”. Flow is a state of complete absorption in an activity that occurs when skill and the challenge of the activity are matched. The section suggests the alteration of activities to better match a person's skill set to optimize the possibility of reaching flow. The structure of the activity/event itself influences competency. If the activity presents clear goals and expectations, the need for competence will be strong.

The third psychological need discussed in this chapter is the need of relatedness. The need for relatedness, in this case, is the need for meaningful relationships. People who maintain relationships that meet this need can “function better, are more resilient to stress, and report fewer psychological difficulties” (p162). To fulfill this need, relationships must involve caring, liking, accepting, and valuing on both ends. The chapter classifies two types of relationships, exchange relationships and communal relationships. Exchange relationships are classified by their lack of care towards the needs and welfare of the members. Business contacts and acquaintances are examples of exchange relationships. In communal relationships, both sides care about each other, regardless of reciprocation. These types of relationships facilitate relatedness.

The chapter concludes with the idea that people succeed or fail at meeting these psychological needs is often the determining factor when people have “good or bad” days.

Honestly, I would rate myself as high need for all three psychological needs. To chose one, I have an extremely high need for autonomy. One of my constant complaints in life is how much I dislike school, and the majority of my reasoning is having little control. Yes, I can choose which classes to take, but they're the “either/or” variety of choices. Specifically, in many of the liberal arts classes I'm currently enrolled in, there are little to no opportunities for autonomy needs to be met. You're simply expected to do the work, know the predetermined material, by the deadline, no questions asked. I couldn't care less about my non-western culture class, yet I am forced to attend, do the work, and struggle to convince myself that it will pay off in the end just because it will be done.

I would guess the fish is trying to escape his bowl to fulfill his psychological need for relatedness. Leaving his bowl in search of reciprocal meaningful relationships to better his overall experiences.


Key Words: organismic psychological needs, autonomy, competence, relatedness, motivation, needs, behavior, actions, perceived locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, internal, external, adequacy, flow, skill, challenge, exchange relationships, communal relationships

As the chapter six title explains, it was all about psychological needs, much different from the previous chapter about physiological needs; such as the need for water, food, and sex. Psychological needs are different because these needs have more to do with your personal enjoyment, enhance your exploration and challenges yourself mentally, it is thought more as of a growth than something that you need in order to survive. The text book explains two different approaches when it comes to motivation; organismic and mechanistic. Organismic theory is acknowledging that the environment is constantly changing, so your organisms need to have that same flexibility to adapt and change with the environment. Mechanistic theory is acknowledging that the environment acts on the person and then the person reacts to the environment. Autonomy is when a person wants to be in total control over what they are doing and all of the decisions that they make. It is important to have autonomy because if you are not in control of what and when you are doing things and making everyday decisions for yourself, then how can you motivate yourself to do things on your own? Autonomy is one of the three very important components of everyone’s psychological needs.

The second very important component to a person's psychological needs is competence. What is competence? “Competence is the psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment, and it reflects the desire to exercise one's capacities and skills and , in doing so, to seek out and master optimal challenges.” In lamens terms, competency is what allows us to grow and develop as a person, without this quality, we would not have the internal motivation to strive as a person and get closer to self actualization. The third and equally important component to individual psychological needs is relatedness. Relatedness is the feeling that we need to belong, we need to interact with other individuals or you could literally go insane from having no human connections to one another. What would we be if we did not have intimate bonds with other individuals? We would have no one to comfort us, no one to confide in, no one to support our decisions, no one to give us advice and no one for us to give our advice to others. This chapter was a great representation on what our psychological needs are and how to accommodate them accordingly.

The most surprising thing about this chapter to me were the benefits from autonomy support. When you are rightfully being supported by loved ones or by people you hold intimate relationships with; you will feel more engaged within the activity (such as you will try harder to succeed), you will develop more efficiently (you will feel better about yourself), you will learn better (you will understand more and understand it faster), you will perform better (you will do better at whatever you are doing), and you will have a higher psychological well-being (you will be healthier and you will feel better about your life and how you are living it).

If I had to rate myself on the psychological need of autonomy, I would rate myself with a medium level of an autonomy satisfaction. Yes, I make my own decisions and I decide how I want to spend my time and how I actually spend my time and I make my own goals. However, I like to consider myself a “people pleaser” I like to do things and base my decisions on what will make other people happy as well as myself. I know that this is not necessarily the best thing about myself but I don't see what's wrong with everyone being happy! Even when it comes to homework assignments, yes, I want to complete them how I want to answer them and complete them, however, how I write certain assignments is based off of what my professor is looking for! As for competence, I would also rate myself as having a medium level of competence. I like to challenge myself, but as I am becoming more and more busy in my everyday life, sometimes I have to do things just to get them done for the points or for the money, etc. Finally, for relatedness, I would confidently rate myself on a high level of relatedness. I am always wanting to be around people, it is literally a need to have interactions with other human beings and if I do not get this interaction I become very sad and lonely and I seek out interaction with anyone around me. If I was to pick one of these psychological needs that motivates my behavior on a day to day basis, I would have to say that relatedness motivates me the most. Sometimes when working on homework assignments, I will reward myself with a break and call a friend or family member on the telephone or ask a friend to come over and keep me company. When friends ask me to go work out with them, it is a whole lot easier to go along when it is with friends. I choose to work at jobs where I get to interact with all kinds of people and I continue to go to work for these interactions, I want to belong with people and have a place in society.

As for the fish picture....if I had to guess what relevance it has with this chapter, I would guess that it is representing that fish like humans have psychological needs as well. The fish may have autonomy needs such as wanting more in their lives and wanting to make a decision for themselves as to what they do with their life and what they want to do is escape from the fish bowl! As for competency, the fish may want to improve on their life skills, such as; learning to breath outside of the water or swimming in a bigger area than just the fish bowl provides. Finally, the fish may need to fulfill relatedness needs, this meaning that the fish is lonely and wants interaction with other organisms rather than swimming in this fish bowl all by himself. He is probably jumping out of the fish bowl to find some interaction and feel like he belongs somewhere and that he is loved and wanted. Who knows, just a guess really!

Motivation and Emotion Terms: Psychological Needs, Physiological Needs, Organismic Theory, Mechanistic Theory, Autonomy, Competence, Relatedness, Autonomy Support, Engagement, Learning, Development, Performance, Psychological Well-being.

This chapter talked about psychological needs. It started with discussing the organismic vs mechanical approach. The organismic approach focuses on how an organism interacts with and adapts to its environment. The mechanical approach involves the environment acting on the organism and the organism reacts. Lastly, there is the person-environmental dialect that states that the relationship between the organism and environment goes both ways. This one is makes the most sense to me because I believe that it’s very difficult to determine causation definitely.

The book then moves on to autonomy. Autonomy is the need for independence and self-direction. People generally have two different loci of control/causality. An internal locus of control means that people tend to initiate their own behavior and hold themselves responsible for their behavior. An external locus of control is the opposite; the person believes that the environment controls their behavior. Next, the book talks about volition. Volition is the idea of being of doing things on your own accord. Perceived choice is incredibly important when it comes to decisions about behavior.

Competence is the second psychological need that the textbook talks about. This basically means that we need to feel like we are able to perform our skills well. Relatedness is the last psychological need. This focuses on emotional bonds with others. Friendships, familial bonds, and romantic relationships are the main sources of this. For relationships to increase relatedness they must be caring, accepting, and valuing.

I would rank myself as overall high on psychological needs. My need for autonomy is high especially at this time in my life. Society places a high value on autonomy during the college years which can put a lot of pressure on students. Competence is also highly valued in college. I have a high need to feel both challenged and accomplished. Relatedness is incredibly important for me as well. Friendships are vital for me to continue functioning normally.

I believe that the picture relates to this chapter in that a fish is leaving its home where it is safe for unknown waters. Autonomy clearly plays a role in this situation. The fish is also placing psychological needs over physiological. The need for safety and water is less important than the need for autonomy.

Terms: Competence, relatedness, autonomy, psychological needs, organismic approach, mechanical approach, person-environmental dialect, internal and external locus of causality

Chapter 6 in our textbooks talked about psychological needs. Psychological needs are essential to analyzing motivation. There are three psychological needs: autonomy, competence, and relatedness. First, there is the organismic approach to motivation. These theories say that our environments are always changing, so organisms have to be able to adapt to these changes. In order to successfully adapt to the new environment, these organisms must be able to replace old ways of responding with new ways. In retrospect, there is a mechanistic approach. In this approach, the person is forced to react in some way because the environment acts on a person. These theories specifically stress the person-environment dialectic. This means that the person and the environment are always changing in some way. Organismic psychological needs specify the motivation that helps support learning.

The next thing the book explained was the need for autonomy. If our preferences, interests and wants influence our decisions and help us decide to do or not to do something, then our behavior is autonomous. It is the aspiration to have internal resources. There are three things that help define if someone is experiencing autonomy: causality, volition, and perceived choice. Perceived locus of causality is if someone understands the source that is causing their motivated actions. Volition is someone’s willingness to participate in an event, and they are not pressured to do this. Perceived choice what we experience when we are allowed to choose different opportunities and we have flexibility in deciding what to do. It is critical for people to satisfy their need for autonomy, and this depends on if their relationships and environment are seen as supportive or controlling. People who do not show behavioral signs of autonomy don’t have as positive of outcomes as people who are autonomous. They improve immensely in motivation, learning, performance, and mental well-being.

Competence is the next psychological need the book explains. Competence is our psychological need to interact successfully with the environment. Our psychological need for competence is what develops the motivation for developing, improving, and enhance our talents and abilities. The key conditions that engage our need for competence are optimal challenge, helpful structure, and high failure tolerance. The key condition that pleases our need is positive feedback and the perception of progress. When someone is faced with a challenge and they have high environmental skill, that person will experience flow, which is when that person is extremely concentrated, they are enjoying what they are doing, and they are fully interested in the task at hand. The important events that will satisfy the need for competence are positive feedback and the perception of progress. The more that people’s needs for competence are satisfied, the more eager people are to allow themselves to mature and develop, and to dominate challenges.

The last psychological need the book talks about is relatedness. Relatedness is the need to be close to other people. This means forming bonds emotionally and having people in your life that care about you. It doesn’t have to be anyone really close, but simple interaction with another person can satisfy the psychological need for relatedness. This interaction must be positive bonding, however, and they must like and care for each other.

These three psychological needs are critical in life. Satisfying them makes a person actively engaged and ensures them to have a better day. These needs are a vital part in happiness and well-being. The most surprising thing I learned was in the part about relatedness. I thought it was very interesting to find out that just interacting with someone positively can have a huge impact on a person’s relatedness. In fact, this satisfies their relatedness. I would have assumed someone has to be around their friends to be put into a better mood. This is because their friends definitely like and care about them. As far as rating myself on all of the psychological needs, I would say I have high autonomy, competence, and relatedness. I am very content with my life and how things are going. In my opinion, the fish is demonstrating its psychological need for relatedness. The fish was in the bowl all by itself, and it is trying to get out to seek interaction of some sort. This shows that psychological needs such as relatedness don’t just apply to humans, but animals as well. Animals can get lonely just as easy as people can.

Terms used: psychological needs, relatedness, competence, autonomy, organismic approach, person-environment dialectic, positive feedback, perception of progress, environment, optimal challenge, high structure, high failure tolerance


Chapter six of the textbook was about psychological needs. Psychological needs motivate exploration and are understood as growth needs rather than deficits like physiological needs. The three things that make up our psychological needs are autonomy, competence, and relatedness. These three needs can also be referred to as organismic psychological needs. The main idea about the organismic approach is that the person and the environment interact together and cause each other to continually change. This can be known as the person-environment dialectic.

Autonomy is the first of the psychological needs. This is the need that explains that people need to be able to make their own choices based on their personal desires. Our choices are autonomous when we choose to partake or avoid in different activities or situations based on our interests, preferences, and wants. The perceived locus of causality (PLOC) is the ability of a person to understand wether they are experiencing personal or environmental motivations. When we do not feel pressured to engage in an activity it is called volition. We have high volition when we have an internal PLOC. The conundrum of choice was the most interesting section in this chapter to me. It talked about how if we do not truly get to make our own decision about something then it does not actually satisfy our need for autonomy. This could be any situation where someone gives an alternate choice. For example if someone asks if I want pepperoni pizza or sausage pizza it will not benefit my autonomy. I need to be able to choose if I even want pizza, and then choose whatever topping I want in order for it to benefit my autonomy.

The next psychological need is competence. Competence is the ability to develop our talents and skills to successfully complete a task. Any task can affect our need for competence in one of two ways. It can either fulfill our need for competence, or it can frustrate it if we are unable to be successful at the task. Failure tolerance is important for the need of competence. Because each activity can either satisfy competence by successfully completing it, or hinder it by struggling and failing at it, it is important to be able to develop a tolerance to failing.

Relatedness is the third psychological need. This is the need to have relationships with other people. There are some different things that are important to satisfy this need. We want the relationship to be reciprocal and honest.

I would rate myself as high on autonomy, high on competence, and medium on relatedness. I like to be able to make my own choices on things rather than be forced to do things that do not reflect my personal position. If I do not have autonomy I usually have much less enjoyment for the task assigned. I have high competence because I like the feeling of being successful at things. I like to practice things until I am confident in my ability to do the task well. This helps me complete my school work and prepare for tests. I think I am medium on relatedness because I am not really an outgoing person. Although I enjoy being around other people I am perfectly fine being at home alone. I can keep myself entertained when I am alone.

I think the fish picture relates to the chapter for the section talking about autonomy. The fish could be tired of not having any autonomy over its life. It does not get to make any choices because it is stuck in a small fish bowl. It can make its own choice by leaving the fish bowl. Sadly the fish must not realize the its physiological need to stay in the water. Also by jumping out of the fish bowl it could be seeking relatedness. It is probably lonely being stuck in a fish bowl all by itself, I know I would feel the need to find some other fish to talk to and swim with.

Terms: autonomy, competence, relatedness, organismic approach, person-environment dialectic, perceived locus of causality, volition, conundrum of choice, and failure tolerance.

Chapter six was about psychological needs and focused on three main psychological needs of autonomy, competence, and relatedness. These needs are growth needs, rather than deficit needs like physiological needs. These three needs are sometimes considered organismic psychological needs because it focuses on how organisms initiate interactions with the environment and how they change, grow, and adapt over time. Autonomy was the first psychological need covered in the chapter. This is the need to experience self-directed and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of one’s behavior. Examples include: choice, decision-making, flexibility, and freedom to do what we want. Perceived locus of causality, volition, and perceived choice, work together to create autonomy. The second psychological need was competence. This is the need to be effective in interactions with the environment and reflects the desire to exercise one’s capacity and skills, and in doing so, to seek out and master optimal challenges. In short, this need helps to develop skills, and improve capacities, talents, and potentials. The ideal state is to be in the optimal challenge and flow frame. Flow is the state in which someone is in deep involvement and holistically absorbed in an activity. The last of the psychological needs discussed was relatedness; the need to belong. This is the need that underlies our social interactions, affectionate relationships, friends, and want to be accepted and valued. Together these three psychological needs can highly effect how good of a day a person has. Studies show that the more autonomy, competence, and relatedness present in a day, the better chance of having a good day.

I thought it was interesting that not all choices provide autonomy. Having the option of making my own choices, I would think would satisfy my need for autonomy. According to our book though, there are circumstances in which the presentation of choice can alter the satiated need for autonomy. For example, if someone had to make a choice between chocolate or strawberry ice cream but did not enjoy either kind, this would not satisfy need for autonomy. To reach autonomy we need a true choice over options that are meaningful to our lives. It was also interesting to see how many benefits there were from autonomy-supportive motivation compared to the controlling-motivation style. I can make many connections in my life that support the evidence found in studies of motivation style. Throughout school, I always learned most and had the most respect for the teachers who listened, encouraged, acknowledged others’ perspectives, and provided rationales that made sense in the classroom. These are all traits of a person who uses autonomy-supportive motivation. This also correlated with how much I enjoyed school, retained academic knowledge, and ended up receiving a higher grade. If I rated myself on the psychological needs I would rate as follows: autonomy-medium, competence-high, relatedness-high.

I rated autonomy at medium because I am a person who works best when I have a set schedule and am always keeping busy. Due to this I am very used to the idea that I can’t always have time for everything or to do the things I sometimes want to do. I think this has definitely improved my time management skills and ability to make the best out of each situation, even if the volition of the situation is low. I do have flexibility in many of my activities I enjoy such as, Camp Adventure, Alpha Phi, traveling, working out, and being with friends and family.

I would rank myself high on competence because being well educated, working hard, and having new experiences, are very high on my values list. I really enjoy learning new things, challenging myself, and pushing myself to go outside of my comfort zone. I think being confident in yourself and keeping your goals in mind is one way I keep my competence high and I take pride in knowing that I want to set myself up for a bright future.

The psychological need that is highest for me personally is the need for relatedness. I have always been one to be very reliant on others for advice, support, and help. Although I like to challenge myself and overcome obstacles on my own, nothing motivates me more or pushes me to go further, than knowing I have others cheering me on, or there to catch me when I fall. Close emotional bonds are very important to me and within my family, Alpha Phi, Camp A, my boyfriend, and meeting new people, I have had the chance to experience some of the most meaningful bonds I could ever imagine. From time to time alone time for me is good but if I have too much of it I know my mood drops and only gets better when I have the feeling of relatedness again.

The psychological need of relatedness is perhaps my strongest motivator. I am intrinsically and extrinsically motivated to have social interaction and bonding experiences with others. I would say many factors in relatedness motivate me through the difficult times in life such as stresses of school, returning back from a summer in Europe, and other personal issues. Being around my roommates, talking to my family, skyping the families I met over seas, or talking my boyfriend, all give me hope to work through tough situations and even reciprocate into competence and autonomy. These are considered communal relationships because there is not an extrinsic motivator, these relationships give without the intent of receiving or reciprocity.

I think the fish jumping out the bowl symbolizes a characteristic for each of the psychological needs. First off, the bowl is empty, no obstacles to swim through or rocks to swim behind. This could cause a lack of autonomy. Next, the fish has nothing in the bowl to challenge himself or improve his way of life. He also doesn’t receive any positive feedback to receive from others, so jumping out of the bowl (the task itself) was a way to challenge and test him. Relatedness was completely absent from the scene. No other fish friends, objects, or creatures were there to foster a relationship with, so jumping out of the bowl to try to find other’s that cared about him show a desperate attempt to fulfill a psychological need, which in reality some people go to great lengths for relatedness.

Terms: autonomy, competence, relatedness, perceived locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, autonomy-supportive motivation, controlling motivation style, communal relationships, positive feedback

The chapter begins by talking about the organismic approach versus the mechanistic approach. The organismic approach is based off the knowledge that the environment and the people inside that environment are always changing. It runs off the basis that the person and the environment act on each other and they are both always changing. This is called the person-environment dialectic. The mechanistic approach, the opposite of the organismic, is the position that the environment acts on the person and the person reacts. The example given by the book was that the environment is hot, so the person reacts to the heat by sweating. The author argues that the organismic approach is the most reasonable when looking at motivation because, as stated earlier, both the environment and the people in the environment are always changing.
The organismic psychological needs of autonomy, competence, and relatedness provide individuals with a natural motivation to learn, grow, and develop. The first need discussed was the need for autonomy, or the need to be flexible and the desire for choice. The perceived locus of causality (PLOC) refers to an individual’s understanding of the causal source of his or her motivated actions. There are two different types of PLOC: internal (coming from within oneself) and external (coming from the environment). Volition, unpressured willingness to engage in an activity, is a type of internal PLOC. The environment may appear to be giving this person a choice, but in reality, it does not satisfy the need for autonomy, and does not boost performance or intrinsic motivation. People feel they have satisfied the need for autonomy when they have been given a decision based on their values and interests. This type of decision is what boosts autonomy, performance, and intrinsic motivation.
There are two types of motivational approaches. The first is autonomy-supportive. This is when a person is willing to take another’s perspective and value personal growth opportunities during an activity. The second is the controlling motivating style. This approach involves one person pressuring another toward a specific outcome. They often use guilt, and operate on a “Because I told you so” attitude. On the other hand, autonomy-supportive motivating style relies on a person’s inner motivation. People who use this approach often say things like “How do you think you can improve?” and rely on non-controlling informational language, giving a reason why, to encourage an individual to motivate themselves rather than pressuring them to do so.
Competence is the psychological need to be effective at challenging opportunities. This need is satisfied by seeking out opportunities where there is risk of failure and it is challenging. People often do better in situations where there is a failure-tolerant and autonomy-supportive attitudes. To encourage people in these situations, positive feedback is crucial to success.
Finally, the author discussed our need for relatedness. We need relationships to satisfy our need for relatedness. There are two different types of relationships. The first is the exchange relationships. These are acquaintances and business partners. These relationships are based off the idea “What’s in it for me?” The communal relationships are the ones you have with close friends, family, and romantic partners. Only communal relationships completely satisfy the need for relatedness. In order for you to satisfy this need, there needs to be a perception of a social bond. Not only do you need to feel the bond with the individual, it needs to be reciprocated.
The most surprising thing that I learned in this chapter was the section on competence. As I look back at my own experience with my managers, it seems really obvious to me now. I was only satisfied with my decision if I was given positive feedback on my competence in the situation. For example, in order to keep my trainer status, I need to complete a project. I could choose whatever I wanted. When I finished my project, it was sent in to the corporate office. When my project came back, even though they said they loved it, everything was changed. Even though I was given the decision to change something in our home store, it was ignored by my management team. My need for need for competence was not satisfied.
I would say that I rate pretty high on relatedness and competence. I put a lot of emphasis on feeling like I belong in my organization, and a little reassurance from my bosses that I actually am good at my job is something that I strive for every day at work. With autonomy I rate pretty low. I am a rule follower. I like to make decisions, and there are some areas where I am sure I rate higher than others, but for the most part, I like to follow rules and help make the decisions rather than make them on my own.
With relatedness specifically I feel that is a driving factor in almost everything that I do. I love to feel like I belong. I’m not a very social person, but I am a people pleaser. I like to go out of my way to do things for other people just so I feel like they accept me. Earlier in my college career, I would often put off homework, or not do it at all, if a coworker or a friend from outside of work wanted to hang out with me. I want to be around people. That drives me to make most of the daily decisions that I make.
I think the fish picture relates to all three psychological needs. It relates to autonomy because that fish has the freedom to choose that he wants to leave his bowl. It relates to relatedness because maybe he is tired of being all alone in that bowl and just wants to hang out with other fish and talk about fish stuff. Lastly, it relates to competence because obviously that fish does not know that if he is out of his tank for too long, he will suffocate. The fish is not very competent.
Terms: psychological needs, needs, organismic approach, mechanistic approach, autonomy, relatedness, competence, Perceived Locus of Causality (PLOC), volition, perceived choice, environment, performance, intrinsic motivation, Autonomy-supportive, Controlling Motivating Style, informative language, positive feedback, desire, Perception of a social bond, exchange relationships, communal relationships

Chapter six dealth with psychological needs. Those needs are autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Like our phsyiological needs, the psychological needs help us ensure our day to day life runs smooth and we can be happy. First there's autonomy, which is the need to have self direction and be able to control your own decisions. So for example someone that has a high need or drive for autonomy wouldn't be happy working on a factory line lets say. They have to do the same thing day in, day out with little room to explore their options or be creative because they have to do things the same way because of efficiency. So someone that wants autonomy would probably fit better being a professor, where as long as they show up to teach they are given free reign (reasonably anyway). A fact I found surprising was that even when given a choice, that still isn't autonomous because someone gave your those options and you did not just “think” of them.
Next we have competence, which is the need to be useful in an environment and to be able to use your skills to accomplishe tasks etc. A key component of Competence is the tasks “flow”. Flow is a state of being deep into a task, kinda like being in the zone, and also involves someone enjoying the task. If it's too simple of a task or challenge then it gets boring. While if its too complicated then someone usually gets very angry or irritated. An example of this would be my brother trying to put together a crib. He's rather good with tools and construction and is even an engineer, so it should have been a cake walk right? Nope for some reason a task he should have excelled at was rather difficult and he eventually had to take a break. So having competence is good for our motivation, because sometimes a goal requires a skill for a task to achieve it; and if we got irritated all the time our persistance would decrease and soon enough nothing would get done.
Finally we have relatedness, which is our close emotional bonds with others. The book told of two types of bonds Exchange and Communal. Exchange is where we do business with others, so you agree to mow Mr. Magoo's yard in exchange for him to pay you ten dollars to do it. While Communal are the relationships you have with those you care about. I guess I would rate medium to high on relatedness because I like to keep in contact with those I care about, but only for a select few and family. While I do like socializing with people I hate crowds so I guess thats why I'm a little unsure of where to rate myself haha. I would say competence is high for me because I like a challenge and I like to feel like I know what I'm doing. There are moments that I don't though like test days I feel really anxious and worry about forgetting things or second guess myself. Autonomy for me I would say is medium, I tend to do what I want and feel is best, yet there are many things that I still ask for guidance or help with from my dad. I think that Relatedness is the thing that motivates me the most because I'm going into HR and currently work retail so that deals with a lot of human interaction. If I hated it I would be going into a different career and might not be writing this blog!
The fish I believe wants out of the bowl because it's all alone and it can't swim where it wants too, so its rather deficient in two of the major psychological needs.

Terms: Motivation, Phsyiological, Psychological needs, Competence, Relatedness, Autonomy, Exchange/Communal Relationships,

Chapter six talks about psychological needs. It covers a lot of different things but one area in much more detail than the rest. In chapter six it talks about the Organismic Approach to Motivation on a much deeper and detailed level then the mention of it in chapter five. This area is split up into three separate sub-sections including autonomy, competence and relatedness. The first, autonomy, is defined as “a psychological need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of one’s behavior.” The text continues to break it down further into three more sections only this time of experimental qualities of autonomy: perceived locus of causality, volition and perceived choice. Autonomy is a term I had recently heard in another of my classes but I really wasn’t familiar with so through that and this reading I feel as if I have a far better understanding of what it means and how it can be related.

The next sub-section is labeled competence. This term is defined as “the psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment, and it reflects the desire to exercise one’s capacities and skills and, in doing so, to seek out and master optimal challenges.” The texts talks about competence as something that everyone wants and strives for. I don’t believe I have ever overheard someone saying “If only I were less competent I would be better off.”

The final sub-section is referred to as relatedness. Relatedness is defined as “the psychological need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people, and it reflects the desire to be emotionally connected and interpersonally involved with warm relationships.” I think relatedness might be the most important of the three to me. I value my relationships very much so and I believe that they are a very important psychological need.

Overall I believe that my autonomy and competence scores would range around the medium level while relatedness, for me personally, would be higher. I believe these are each important to my life in their own ways. However, there are some things that I am just better at or I value higher than other things. I chose relatedness to discuss in comparison with my behaviors. I believe that I am a very social person and I like to get coffee or hang out with friends a lot during my week. These relationships are important to me and help to make me who I am.

Lastly, as for the fish picture, I believe it could have numerous tie ins to this chapter’s content. The fish could be representing autonomy with only having a limited space to swim in so it is trying to get out. It could also be representing relatedness by showing that it is tired of being in an isolated area with no other fish, or anything for that matter.

TERMS: autonomy, competence, relatedness, psychological needs, choices, flow, feedback

It was interesting to read this chapter after learning about physiological needs. Physiological needs are usually thought of first and sometimes I think psychological needs get looked over. The book said that psychological needs motivate exploration and challenge-seeking behavior and they are understood as growth needs whereas physiological needs are known as deficit needs. Organismic theories demonstrate how psychological needs are understood. Organismic theories acknowledge that environments constantly change and organisms need flexibility to adjust to and accommodate those changes. These theories take a person-environment dialectic approach. This means that the relationship between the person and the environment is reciprocal. The environment acts on the person and the person acts on the environment. There were three main organismic psychological needs mentioned, autonomy, competence, and relatedness.

Autonomy is the psychological need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of one’s behavior. Our behavior is considered autonomous when we make decisions relating to our interests, preferences, and wants. There were three main qualities mentioned that work together to make an individual feel autonomous. The first was perceived locus of causality. This is the individual’s perception that his or her behavior is initiated by a personal or environmental source. If the behavior is initiated by a personal source, the level of autonomy is higher. This concept was easy for me to relate to. I know that if I choose to do something, I am going to want to pursue that behavior more often than if I feel like something or someone else is controlling my decision to engage in that behavior. The second quality was volition, which is an individual’s unpressured willingness to engage in an activity. This quality is high if a person is engaging in an activity and feels that they are freely engaging in the activity because they want to. The last quality is perceived choice. This is a sense of choice we experience when we find ourselves in environments that provide us with decision-making flexibility that provides us with many opportunities to choose from. One example that was mentioned in the book was “either-or” choices. In this case a person would be offered more than one choice, but the choices are still controlled on restricted so these choices would lower persons autonomy. I think that my levels of autonomy vary depending on the situation but I mostly have high autonomy. I am to the point in my life where I can make the majority of my decisions on my own and there aren’t a lot of people controlling me. Although, I have a lot of environmental situations that control my behavior such as writing this blog post. I didn’t have the choice to sleep in this morning because I was controlled by having to get up and complete this assignment. This occurs often when dealing with school work. At my job I feel like I have high autonomy because I get to set my schedule and choose when to work with each of my clients.

Competence was the next psychological need discussed. This need was more obvious to me. I struggle with feelings of competence on a daily basis and I think my competence levels are low. This is due to the fact that I am put into new and challenging situations that I have never faced before and I want to feel like I am being successful and doing things right. I always want to improve my capacities, talents, and potential. This becomes apparent when I think about all the certifications I am looking to obtain within the next 8-9 months. I want to improve my potential for getting a job so I am trying to become educated and certified in as many as possible activities. The book states that competence is the psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment, and it reflects the desire to exercise one’s capacities and skills and, in doing so, to seek out and master optimal challenges. It is this psychological need that generates the willingness to seek challenges. I found the section about supporting competence rather interesting. In order to support someone’s competence, you must provide informational feedback when people make progress and create opportunities for them to enjoy the pleasure of challenge. I can relate to this because it helps me understand how to support the competence of my personal training clients. When they make progress they need to know that they did well but I also need to continue to challenge them even when they take steps forward.

The last need mentioned was relatedness. According to the text, relatedness is the psychological need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people, and it reflects the desire to be emotionally connected to and interpersonally involved in warm relationships. The part that I found interesting in this section is because we have this need, we gravitate toward people who we trust to care for our well-being, and we drift away from those who we do not trust. This was interesting to me because I see some people who don’t do this. In my opinion, some people have such a high need for relatedness that they gravitate toward people who they trust and even toward some people that they know might harm them. I think this has a lot to do with the support a person has in their life. I think of my personal life, and I have a low need for relatedness because I feel like I already have enough people around me that I trust to look after me. I have a very supportive family and group of close friends, and I feel like I belong. I also found it interesting that relatedness is the psychological need that is responsible for supporting individual internalization. It supports the process where a person takes in and accepts his or her own personal belief, value, or way of behaving. If I had to make a guess, I think the fish picture has to do with relatedness. I think the fish is jumping out of his water because he feels lonely and doesn’t feel like he belongs or can relate to anyone (or any fish?) and wants to find someone he can trust with his well-being.

Terms Used: Organismic theories, psychological needs, competence, relatedness, autonomy, perceived locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, person-environment dialectic approach

Chapter six discusses the psychological need of a person which include; autonomy, competence, and relatedness. These three psychological needs all rely on the core assumption that people are one, inherently active and second, the person possess a natural motivation.
Autonomy would be described as a need to experience self-direction. That person would need to determine their own actions rather than have environmental events determine them for them. So basically we want to be the ones who decides what to do, when to do it, how to do it, when to stop doing it, and whether or not to do it at all. Three qualities work together to determine the subjective experience of autonomy. Perceived locus of causality which is and individual’s understanding of the causal source of his or her motivated actions. Volition refers to an unpressured willingness to engage in an activity. And finally perceived choice is when we find ourselves in environments that provide us with decision-making flexibility that affords us many different opportunities that allows us to choose from.
Competence is when you would want to interact effectively with your surroundings. Your need to be effective in interactions with the environment, and so you can reflect the desire to exercise your capacity and skills. Flow is a state of concentration that involves a holistic absorption and deep involvement in an activity, which is pleasurable for the person. It happens whenever a person uses their skills to overcome some challenge and if challenges and skills are perfectly matched, the experience is one of flow.
Relatedness is the need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people. Everyone has some need to belong, have social interactions, wants friends. It is an important motivational construct because people function better, are more resilient to stress, and report fewer psychological difficulties when their interpersonal relationships support their need for relatedness. Since we need forms of relatedness this is why we form social bonds easily. It is important for an individual to be their true-self and for that person to be valued. This is why communal relationship are more important to an individual, rather an exchange relationships. Communal relationships are those between people who care about the welfare of the other like; friendships, family and romantic relationships. Exchange relationships are those between acquaintances or between people who do business together.
I found it to be interesting that with relatedness you have so many more benefits to you. How to book discussed the person in going to overall function better and not stress as much really intrigued me. I would have thought that having to worry about other people in your life would cause you more stress not help you fight it in a way.
If I had to rate myself on the psychological needs I would consider myself to be pretty average I would think. For autonomy I would be at about a medium. I work a lot and I go to class. So it’s not like I do much for pleasure. Except I love kids and I get to hang out with them at work and on weekends I do get to hang out with friends. For competence I would say I am medium high. I pick up on new skills pretty quickly and I put in the work if a new skill is a little more difficult for me. I like to be able to adapt to my surroundings. As for relatedness I would consider myself low. I don’t hang out with a lot of people. I consider myself pretty A social. I don’t go out of my way to strike up conversation with random people or make new friends. I keep to myself a lot. It’s not that I can’t, I just typically chose not to. I’m a home body and a family person. I stick with the people that I know. Many times I put those that I care about before myself which gets me into trouble. My mom even says since I was little I’ve had the white knight syndrome that I can’t ever let my friends or family fight their own battles that I have to be the one who does it. Which motivates my behaviors to be the best that I can be for my family and not disappoint them in anything that I do.
I think the little fish it demonstrating autonomy and competence. He is like I can do what I want when I want. You are trying to keep my confined to this bowl well guess what not happening. I am making the decision to jump out of this here bowl. Which is a great challenge for the little fish.
Terms: Psychological needs, organismic theory, mechanistic approach, autonomy, competence, environment, relatedness, perceived locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, flow, communal relationships, exchange relationship.

Chapter 6 is about the three psychological needs: autonomy, competence and relatedness. The chapter spends a good amount of time talking about each need individually and starts off by describing autonomy. Autonomy is the desire to determine our own actions rather than have someone else dictate what we do. The chapter breaks autonomy down further into three experiential qualities. The first of these qualities is perceived locus of causality. This refers to an individual's understanding of the causal source of his or her motivated actions. The second quality is volition. Volition is an unpressured willingness to engage in an activity, which is how I traditionally viewed autonomy before I read this chapter and found out it encompasses more than that. The third and final quality is perceived choice. According to the book, this refers to the sense of choice we experience when we find ourselves in environments that provide us with decision-making flexibility that affords us many opportunities from which we choose. After defining these qualities, the chapter goes into autonomy in more depth but it's too much to explain here. It is all very interesting though. Next is the section of the chapter discussing competence. This section was also very interesting as it brings up many things that haven't been addressed in other classes and expands upon things that have, such as the topic of flow. I found the part about failure tolerance to be particularly interesting as it outlines a reason why people tend to be hesitant to try new, difficult tasks. Lastly, the section on relatedness explains why people have a need to interact with others. This section was fairly short and straightforward, with much of its information being easily relatable to everyday interactions and relationships with other people. I found the distinction between communal and exchange relationships to be interesting however.

If I had to rate myself on the three psychological needs outlined in this chapter it would likely be high in autonomy and competence and somewhere between low and medium for relatedness. I like to determine exactly how I'm going to structure my activities throughout the day, with most of my work occurring at night since I'm a night owl. I also have a high level of competence as I strive to do my absolute best at everything I do, even if I have never done something before. I would say that failure tolerance doesn't have too much of an impact on my willingness to try new and difficult things. I'm lower on relatedness because I typically spend a fair amount of my free time alone and tend to be the definition of an introvert. When it comes to the picture of the fish, I feel that it relates to both the need for autonomy and relatedness. The fish could potentially be jumping out of the bowl in defiance to whoever put it in there, as it wants to dictate where it swims instead of being isolated within a small container at all times. It could also be seeking other waters where it could interact with other fish.

Terms: autonomy, competence, relatedness, locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, flow, failure tolerance, communal and exchange relationships

Chapter 6 discussed psychological needs. Psychological needs are referred to as growth needs as opposed to deficit needs. There are a few different views about psychological needs and how we relate with the world. The Organismic approach to motivation acknowledge that environments constantly change so we as humans need flexibility to change with our changing environment. In the person-environment dialectic the person and the environment both act on each other and both the person and environment constantly change. The organismic psychological needs discussed in this chapter are autonomy, competence and relatedness. These “provide people with a natural motivation for learning, growing, and developing. Whether they experience such learning, growing, and healthy development depends on whether the environments support or frustrate the expression of these needs.”
Autonomy describes the personal freedom to choose, to choose what we want to do, what we don’t want to do, how we want to do something etc. It is the psychological need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of one’s behavior. Perceived locus of causality, volition and perceived choice all have an impact on feelings of autonomy. Perceived locus of causality (PLOC) refers to an individual’s understanding of the causal source of his or her motivated actions. If the source of motivation is internal it is considered an internal PLOC, if the source is external it is considered an external PLOC. Volition is an unsupressed willingness to engage in an activity. This is expressed by feeling free in a behavior versus feeling coerced or pressured. Perceived choice refers to the sense of choice we experience when we find ourselves in environments that provide us with decision-making flexibility. But within this choice, there is a difference between true choice and being forced to choose between offered options. Our psychological needs are best met when it is a true choice.
Competence is the psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment, and it reflects the desire to exercise one’s capacities and skills and, in doing so, to seek out and master challenges. This is seen in life through optimal challenge and flow. Flow is a state of concentration that involves a holistic absorption and deep involvement in an activity. Flow is the best when high levels of personal skill and competency are paired with high opportunity for challenge. This can also be challenged by failure tolerance. In some highly structured perfectionistic environments the dread of failure can even initiate avoidance behaviors to avoid the chance of failure.
Relatedness is the psychological need to establish close emotional bonds and attachments with other people, and it reflects the desire to be emotionally connected and interpersonally involved in warm relationships. This can be done through different types of relationships, but it is best achieved when not only the other person cares about your well being and likes you but that you are able to be your true self and have that be accepted and important to the other person in the relationship.
I thought flow was the most interesting thing I learned in the chapter, though I knew something like that existed, I had no idea it had a name. I thought it was very interesting how a change in either opportunities for challenge or personal skills and competencies could change the flow model so much. I found it very interesting how it described why we seek out challenging and worry/anxiety provoking tasks.
I would rate myself relatively high on the psychological needs for competence and relatedness. I have a high need to feel that I can do whatever I set my mind to well and efficiently. I also have a high need for interpersonal interaction. I have 3 roommates and I tend to hate being in our house alone. Not only is it a big scary house (especially at night), but it’s nice knowing that someone else is around to talk to or hang out with. Though I know I have a fairly high need for autonomy, I tend to give in often to pressure or coercion to things I may necessarily not want to do. A perfect example for this is at work. I am a nanny to a two-year-old little boy and 9-year-old little girl and their mom, though I really like her, tends to be a little overbearing. There are many times when she has extra things she would like me to do that go above and beyond my usual duties and even though I really don’t want to do them I agree because I feel pressured. For example, a couple weeks ago she called me at 6 a.m. to see if I could come watch the kids because she wanted to get some stuff done. I really did not want to get out of my warm bed, but I did anyway because I felt pressure to help her out. Lately I am consciously trying to make more autonomous decisions. A few days ago I realized that I don’t really like some of the things I do, I simply do them out of habit or because I feel as if I am expected to do them. This has involved saying no a lot more than I ever imagined. I’m still not very good at it, but I’m getting better.
The fish picture could apply to all three of the psychological needs discussed in the chapter. The fish could have a need for autonomy, it no longer wants to be forced to be in the bowl so it is making its own decision and jumping out. The fish could also have a need for competence and he wants to know how high he can jump. The fish may also have a need for relatedness. He is in the fish bowl alone and may see another fish bowl with fish in it not far way so he uses his competent jumping skills to seek out interpersonal fish relationships.

Terms: organismic approach, person-environment dialectic, autonomy, competence, relatedness, perceived locus of causality, volition, perceived choice, flow, avoidance behaviors

Read chapter 6. Summarize the chapter. What was the most surprising thing you learned?
Chapter 6 is all about the psychological needs autonomy, competence and relatedness. Autonomy is our desire for self-direction in our behavior, involving choice and autonomy support. Competence is our psychological need to balance an optimal challenge with sufficient skill. Flow is a highly engaged state of learning where we are deeply absorbed in the enjoyment of our activity. We may experience flow states when both the level of challenge and skill is either moderate or high. Relatedness is our psychological need to develop personal relationships that are emotionally meaningful, where each person cares about and likes the other for who they are. In order for these relationships to satisfy the need for relatedness, individuals must feel like their “true self” has been shown and validated by the other person. Chapter 6 also discusses the social contexts which foster or inhibit opportunities for our psychological needs to be satisfied. An autonomy supportive motivating style does four things: 1) nurture inner motivational resources, 2) rely on informational language, 3) provide explanatory rationales, and 4) acknowledge and accept negative affect. By demonstrating these four characteristics, we can create an autonomy supportive environment, allowing an individual to engage at a higher level and positively affect a number of other qualities. Structure provides the individual with a procedure to satisfy competence as well as support and guidance in conducting this procedure. Relatedness is important to our psychological well-being. Relationships which satisfy our psychological need for relatedness are known as communal relationships, those which do not satisfy relatedness needs are exchange relationships. Social context for relatedness is involvement, being emotionally connected to and interpersonally involved with another individual, group, or community. When relatedness is high, internalization occurs. Internalization is the process of transformation an individual internally validates previously external values. This occurs most where the psychological need for relatedness is satisfied, and persuasive reasoning for others’ values is provided. The chapter states human nature is motivated to develop and learn, and with more success when psychological needs are satisfied by the environment.
The surprising part of this chapter for me are the benefits of autonomy support which have been studied. The chapter states higher effort, positive emotion, enhanced development, learning, performance, and psychological well-being as aspects which are improved by autonomy support. To me, this indicates having an autonomy-supportive motivating style is very important, and crucial for managers, professors, or really anyone working with people.

If you had to rate yourself as high, medium, low, on the various psychological needs, what would those ratings be? How do those various levels manifest themselves in your life? Choose one psychological need and discuss how it motivates some of your specific behaviors.
I think my psychological needs range from medium to high. I would rate myself as high autonomy because I like to feel free to make my own choices in my daily activities, especially dieting choices. I am a fairly picky eater, and although I wouldn’t say I’m a health nut, I like to make healthier choices. I enjoy cooking and preparing my own meals, as well as grocery shopping and planning meals. I engage in these behaviors because I desire to control my eating habits and therefore satisfy my need for autonomy. I would rate myself as medium to high for competence. I think everyone likes to feel successful and intelligent, but I also enjoy a good challenge. Especially at work, I find myself most challenged and most engaged in learning. I receive positive feedback fairly consistently from my coworkers on various projects I’m working on. I am able to keep track of my progress and determine my competence because of this. My challenge level at work varies amongst different projects, however a project I recently started required I learn to use a new software package. This became a very frustrating task but now that I have mastered it, I am excited about the possibilities I now have, because I have diversified my skillset as an employee. I think I have a medium need for relatedness.

If you had to make a guess, what's the deal with the fish picture? How does it relate to this chapter?
The fish seems to be leaping out of the bowl. If I had to guess, the fish represents human nature, the bowl represents an environment without choice or self-direction (autonomy), opportunities to exercise skill with positive feedback and master challenges (competence), and develop emotionally meaningful interpersonal relationships. Obviously none of this is present in the fishbowl, so Nemo is motivated by his psychological need to find an environment with social contexts that help satisfy these needs. This environment (which the picture leaves to our imagination) is an entire ocean where he can swim all over, choose his daily activities, maybe master his game of hide and go seek, and just be himself and hang out with his fish buddies. This kind of environment would satisfy Nemo’s psychological needs.

Provide a list of terms at the end of your post that you used from the chapter.
Psychological need, autonomy, competence, relatedness, autonomy support, internal motivational resources, informational language, explanatory rationales, negative affect, challenge, flow, structure, internalization

Chapter six talked about psychological needs. The three psychological needs are autonomy, competence, and relatedness. These three psychological needs come from the organismic approach to motivation. The organismic approach says that people are active by nature, and in the person-environment dialectic, a person uses their natural psychological needs to interact within the environment and the environment either supports or neglects the inner resources. It says that people are born with a natural motivation to learn, grow, and develop, and they do these things when the environments support their psychological needs.
The first psychological need discussed is autonomy. Autonomy is basically the need to perform behaviors with a sense of self-direction. In autonomy, people want to have inner resources determine their actions instead of environmental events. A person’s level of autonomy depends on how supportive or neglecting they see their environment and relationships. People with autonomous behavior usually have gains in motivation, engagement, development, learning, performance, and psychological well-being.
Competence is the next psychological need, and it is the need to interact effectively with the environment. People with competence want to exercise their skills and master challenges. When a person experiences a high personal challenge and environmental skill during an activity, they experience a psychological state called flow, which is shown by high enjoyment, intense concentration, and full absorption in the activity. A person satisfies their competence need when they experience positive feedback and perception of progress. The more their competence need is satisfied, the more they are willing to try to master new challenges that help them grow.
The last psychological need discussed is relatedness. Relatedness is a need to be emotionally connected to and involved with other people in good relationships. The relatedness need is satisfied when a person believes that they are in caring and liking relationships. Internalization is a process where a person accepts another person’s beliefs, values, or way of behaving, and relatedness is important because it allows people to support internalization.
The most surprising thing I learned in this chapter is that when people feel autonomous, competent, and relatedness that they have a good day and experience feelings of vitality and well-being. I thought it was pretty cool that when all of the psychological needs are met, a person can feel energized and more alive. I think that I would personally rank myself as high for relatedness, medium for competence, and medium for autonomy. My relatedness need is met completely because I believe that I have awesome relationships with other people. My competence need is medium because I sometimes desire to improve my skills and challenge myself, but sometimes I do not really feel like it. My autonomy need is also medium, because I sometimes choose actions on my own, but at other times my actions are really influenced by others.
I think that my need for competence is mostly satisfied when I go to work out. I enjoy challenging myself to try and lift more weight than I previously could and run further than I previously could. I think that homework and studying should also fulfill my competence need, but I am not as engaged in these activities, so I do not think they satisfy my competence need as much.
I think that the picture of the fish shows the fish trying to fulfill its psychological needs. It wanted to fulfill its autonomy need for choosing its own actions, and it did not have a big choice while contained in a small bowl. The fish could not fulfill its competence need in the small bowl, so it was exercising its skills by jumping out of the bowl. The fish also could not fulfill its relatedness need in the bowl, because there was nothing else in there for it to form relationships with. The fish could have jumped from the bowl hoping to find someone to form a relationship with and fulfill its relatedness need.
Terms: psychological needs, autonomy, competence, relatedness, organismic approach, motivation, behavior, internalization

Chapter 6 details our psychological needs including autonomy, competence, and relatedness. These concepts are explained in terms of motivation. The end of the chapter gives social contexts that involve and satisfy those needs.
The three needs listed above are otherwise known as organismic psychological needs. These are fundamental components of the organismic approach to motivation. This approach holds the assumption that we actively exchange with our environment. In other words, we adapt, change, and grow based on how we initiate interactions with the environment. The environment can either help or hinder our needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness.
The most surprising thing that I learned was that making a considerable amount of errors is necessary for optimizing motivation. This implies that we learn more from failure than we do from success. We each have a certain failure tolerance necessary to achieve optimal challenge. One of my favorite mottos is, "It's only a mistake if you don't learn from it." I always try to find value in mistakes I make on a daily basis. Reading this chapter gave me a motivational understanding of why I probably feel that way.
I feel like I have a good grasp on my psychological needs. In regards to autonomy, I would give myself a high rating. I am in a significant transition between my undergraduate career and either graduate school or a professional career. I am about to be faced with plenty of opportunities for autonomy whichever path I choose. Right now in my internship, I have a high degree of autonomy. I have full control over my hours. I also supervise a large program and direct a smaller program mostly on my own, all of which I plan for by myself. It makes me feel accomplished and responsible. I have gotten past the initial discomfort.
As far as competence goes, I would also give myself a high rating. Although if I had fully applied myself throughout my college career I might have higher grades, I am not struggling to maintain a decent GPA. I am performing well at my internship maintaining a solid interest in our programs. I am not disappointed with my performance in any aspect of my life at this moment.
I would give myself a high relatedness rating as well. I have a stable circle of close friends, a stable relationship with my girlfriend, and healthy attachments with coworkers. I even have closer bonds with certain faculty members now than I ever have before in my academic career. I put my friends before anyone and place high importance on trust in friendships. I go to class, go to work, go to the gym with my bros, hang out with them and some others for a little while after, and come home to my lady. Everyone gets a fair amount of time, and I am a happy man.
Relatedness definitely motivates my behavior. I could never motivate myself to work out alone. This semester, I joined a group of buddies in a workout routine after a long break from the gym. Being around those guys motivates me to go and work out. We have a good time. Plus I look and feel better afterward.
The picture of fish leaping out of the bowl relates to psychological needs because we as people have the need for autonomy. The fish is illustrating how the fishbowl life is not fulfilling that need. He relies on someone for food and cleaning his home. He just wants to break free and do things for himself.

Terms: autonomy, competence, relatedness, organismic, failure tolerance, optimal challenge

There are three types of psychological needs; autonomy, competence, and relatedness. The chapter explains that autonomy is the desire for choice, making one’s own decisions, and the ability to be flexible with both. We want to be in charge of what, when, where, and who rather than be told by another person. When we are provided with choices and options experience more autonomy and our levels of intrinsic motivation are enhanced. The book also explains that autonomy is the psychological need to experience self-regulation, and increases our perceived locus of causality, or understand the reason behind our motivation. However, we are not the only factor that can increase our experiences of autonomy, positive social interactions and environmental influences can also enhance this by being supportive and satisfy our needs for autonomy. Autonomy support will increase various aspects of one’s life such as development, performance, learning, and psychological well being.
The second type of psychological needs is competence. Competence is explained as the psychological need to be successfully intertwined with the environment and exercise one’s skills though finding and overcoming challenges while doing so. Key components to competence is positive feedback and perception of progress. The book explains that positive feedback such as praise or a complement can increase a sense of competence, while negative feedback such as lecturing or bullying can and will decrease an individual’s sense of competence. However, though we seek to find and overcome challenges, this can hurt ones sense of competence. Being overchalleged can terrorize one’s competence, while being underchalleged will disregard one’s competence by causing boredom.
The third type of psychological need is relatedness. Relatedness refers to the involvement of everybody, or everyone seeks for social interaction. Interactions of all kinds imaginable. We all need some sort of social interaction in which we feel that the other person/people care about us and likes us. The book had a good explanation for this term that I liked a lot; relatedness is built more on quality than quantity. Hundred percent true in by book. It also explained two specific types of relationships which were Exchange relationships or what one would think of as business relationships, and the other being communal relationships or relationships built on trust, care or the others welfare, and emotional attachments. I would say this is one need that motivates me a lot of the time. I love being around people, have plenty of friends, and get extremely anxious when I let people down or come to the understanding that they simply just don’t like me. I like taking to others, learning about others, and feel good when I know someone actually cares enough to hear me out or even if a teacher at school can simply remember my name. Kind of dumb, but it says a lot.
When rating myself as high or low for these 3 needs, I would rate myself high on both autonomy and relatedness, however between low and high for competence. Which when thinking about it makes me feel like an idiot. I love making my own decisions and doing things done on my own time and do them my own way. As with relatedness, I’m extremely social and depend on my friend and family for a lot especially support. With competence, I never stick with a challenge long enough to overcome it, I always move on to something else and forget about the other thing I was doing. Such as this blog. I get bored easily and my attention span is stupid.
As far as the fish picture, I have been thinking about it for quite some time and I keep drawing blanks.
Terms: psychological needs, autonomy, competence, relatedness, intrinsic motivation, self-regulation, perceived locus of causality, psychological well being, positive feedback, perception of progress

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