Who Am I?: The 16 Basic Desires That Motivate Our Behavior and Define Our Personality

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9781585420452: Who Am I?: The 16 Basic Desires That Motivate Our Behavior and Define Our Personality

On June 15, 1998, Ohio State University professor and psychologist Steven Reiss issued a press release announcing his most recent research results. The headline-making story was instantly picked up by Reuters and UPI, and spread to newspapers and magazines all over the world. Dr. Reiss had discovered scientific proof that our general understanding of why people act as they do is, for the most part, wrong.

Experts have theorized that human behavior is driven by everything from the search for truth to the wish to maximize pleasure and minimize pain. But through exhaustive documented surveys, Dr. Reiss proved that nearly all of our thoughts and actions are motivated by sixteen basic desires and values. Reiss's system revolutionizes current behavioral theory. His book challenges our definition of who we are, how we interact with others, and what will really fulfill us in life.

Offering practical applications for achieving greater personal and professional success, Who Am I? has deep relevance for all those who need to know what makes people tick-from corporate executives and advertising copywriters to salespeople, educators, therapists, and coaches. This important book changes the way we look at the world.

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Review:

What motivates you? Status, money, love, a thirst for knowledge, the need for order, or a fabulous meal? Experts have theorized that our behavior is driven by everything from the search for meaning to the desire to increase pleasure and avoid pain. But according to Steven Reiss, Ph.D., a professor of psychology and psychiatry at Ohio State University and author of Who Am I?, there are 16 desires that determine our actions and define our personalities. After conducting years of research and thousands of interviews, Dr. Reiss broke new ground discovering that nearly everything we do can be traced to these 16 fundamental desires, from power (the desire to influence others) to tranquility (the desire for emotional calm).

In Who Am I? Dr. Reiss gives a detailed description of the desires that drive and define us. He explains how to create your own personal desire profile and tailor your home life, work situation, leisure activities, and relationships to better suit your desires. For instance, your family can satisfy curiosity (one of the 16 desires) by traveling together and learning about new places. Or, if you have a strong need for social contact (another of the desires), you should look for jobs that provide opportunities for interactions with others, such as sales, receptionist positions, or teaching. Reading Who Am I? will show you how to increase happiness, transform work into play, and enhance communication skills. You may not agree that Reiss's theory is the definitive word on human behavior, but it will help you gain valuable insight about yourself and your friends, family members, and coworkers. --Ellen Albertson

About the Author:

Steven Reiss, Ph.D., is a professor of psychology and psychiatry at Ohio State University, as well as the director of the Nisonger Center for Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities. His internationally acclaimed, influential research has been translated into more than a dozen languages and widely adopted by professionals and educators. Dr. Reiss lives in Columbus.

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