Each issue of Human
Givens: promoting emotional health and clear thinking is packed full of fascinating stories, research findings, new insights, articles, interviews, case histories, research, book reviews and letters (we do not take advertising). The official journal of the Human Givens Institute and ETSI, it provides much of the best writing on human psychology and behaviour currently available.
Published biannually, Human Givens continually explores the
significance of new knowledge about human psychology, biology and behaviour wherever
it has an impact on peoples lives for instance, in the areas
of health, welfare, education, work, family life, communication, business and the
law and looks in detail at how people are using this knowledge to improve the effectiveness of their work, whatever their field of expertise.
Written in clear, non-jargonistic language, it provides a convenient easy way to keep up to date with the latest thinking and advances, and how this knowledge is being implemented across a wide range of areas.
can we best approach the psychological
pressures of living in our modern world... ?
There is currently much uncertainty among professionals and politicians
about the best way to approach the psychological problems of living in
our modern world: how best to educate our children; help unsocialised
young adults; treat the rising rates of anxiety and depression; work with
addicts; and grapple with the chaotic consequences of broken families,
new organising idea
Whenever there is
widespread uncertainty like this, a new organising idea is usually needed,
to bring clarity and a wider perspective to the issues. An organising
idea plays an active role in shaping perception, thinking and research,
and is always big enough to encompass and create a context for earlier
ideas which may have tackled problems piecemeal.
The human givens approach is a new organising idea founded
on a solid basis of fundamental research. It is driven by our ever increasing
scientific knowledge about human biology, behaviour and psychology
and an interest in how best to put such knowledge to practical use.
are the human givens?
givens are what we are all born with: our essential biological and emotional
needs and the innate resources that we have evolved in order to fulfill
Our emotional needs include: the
need for security (stable home life and a safe territory to live in);
the need for intimacy and friendship; the need to give and receive attention;
the need for a sense of autonomy and control; the need to feel connected
to others and be part of a wider community; the need for self-esteem (achieved
through emotional maturity, successful learning and the effective application
of skills); the need for privacy; the need for meaning and purpose.
Our tools and resources include: curiosity; memory and the ability
to forget; the ability to problem solve; the ability to focus attention;
imagination; the ability to understand through metaphor (pattern matching);
self-awareness; resilience; the ability to empathise and connect with
others; a rational as well as an emotional brain.
mental and physical health
who are able to have their needs met in healthy and balanced ways and who have access to their innate
resources are more likely to be mentally and physically healthier, more
stable and better integrated. Those whose needs are not fulfilled, or
whose innate resources are damaged or used incorrectly, may suffer considerable
distress or develop, as a means of coping, antisocial behaviours which
are a burden to others or to society at large.
Givens is a magazine for those who wish to draw on a valuable body
of knowledge, derived from scientific findings and developed through experience,
for motivating and helping people most effectively.
are hundreds of different types of counselling and psychotherapy models
and whether they work or not always depends on how closely they are aligned
to what is known about biological, psychological and behavioural functioning
the human givens. In the same way, in the evolution of heavier-than-air
flying machines, the effectiveness of a new design i.e. whether
the machine flew depended on how closely it was aligned to the
givens of gravity, the laws of physics and aerodynamics.
ways to help people
The human givens
approach, by definition, encompasses all effective ways to help people
and shows us why some approaches are inevitably doomed to fail. Wherever
people come purposefully together in groups or communities, the fulfilment
and use of the human givens are basic to the achievement of joint aims.
The human givens approach therefore has equal relevance for the worlds
of education, work, law and social services.
insight into wider issues
We are living
in a time when more and more people seem to need help in dealing with
the rapid changes in society. Depression, anxiety, anger, addiction and
other mental and social problems are on the increase everywhere. Effective
help can only come from those who are coping well, and who are adaptable,
perceptive and informed about human nature. It is to those seeking greater
insight into the wider issues and a clearer view about how to really help people cost effectively that this magazine is dedicated.
Givens was the successor to The New Therapist which had an avid
readership as a multidisciplinary journal. Its strong reputation was built
upon its reliable and thought-provoking content and the willingness to
take an iconoclastic stance when necessary. However, as many of those
who would find the journal's content of interest do not regard themselves
as therapists, the editorial board decided upon a name change which both
acknowledges this and reflects the fast growing interest in the human
givens approach among health and education professionals, and increasing
numbers of the general public interested in psychology and human behaviour.
For more information about the human givens approach:
- Visit the Human Givens Institute's Website which has a wealth of information including an archive of articles about how the approach is being used in different fields
- Visit the Human Givens College website for details of training in a wealth of effective therapeutic techniques, all working in tune with the givens of human nature