What Is It?

Choice Theory, as proposed and expanded by Dr. William Glasser, supports the view that people are internally, not externally, motivated. In other words, we choose how to respond to the world around us. All our behaviour is our best attempt to satisfy five needs (survival, love and belonging, power, freedom, fun). These needs motivate us in varying degrees throughout our lives to want things that will be satisfying to us. There is often a difference, however, between what we choose to want (a new Porsche, for example) and what we choose to believe is realistic (a used, five-year-old Honda).

Reality Therapy is a method of counselling based on Choice Theory. It helps us understand that what we have control over is what we choose to do in the present, regardless of what we have done in the past. Reality Therapy helps us clarify what we want in our lives and explores responsible ways of getting what we want. It teaches us that we can choose behaviours that will improve our relationships with others and that will help us deal more effectively with the stresses in our lives. Reality Therapy is an appropriate process for people with behavioural and emotional problems as well as for people who have no problems but who seek greater control over their lives, or who wish to help others toward the same goal.

7 Habits for Maintaining Relationships:

  • Listening
  • Supporting
  • Accepting
  • Encouraging
  • Trusting
  • Respecting
  • Negotiating Differences

7 Deadly Habits that Destroy Relationships:

  • Criticizing
  • Blaming
  • Complaining
  • Nagging
  • Threatening
  • Punishing
  • Rewarding/Bribing to Control

For more information on Choice Theory and Reality Therapy, please check out the Glasser Canada website.