Concept of patterns is the basis for much of psychotherapy. If professionals described thinking and actions as patterns, it would be a simple and consistent way to explain therapeutic phenomena.
Below is a partial list of the theorists and researchers I feel discuss aspects of patterns.
I am constantly improving and revising this list. Any suggestions are welcome.
If an article is available, click on the link to read it.
Hans Selye, The Stress of Life.
Understanding the biology of stress and the stress reaction, Selye was the first person to look at stress from a biological point of view.
Eric Berne, "What Do You Say After You Say Hello": The Psychology of Human Destiny, 1973
Games People Play, 1964
This is the man who, had he lived, may have provided a clear direction for all psychotherapy. He had an innate feel for people and how they operated that he was able to articulate in his books.
"Each person has a preconscious life plan, or script by which he structures ...time and his whole life... based on childlike illusions which may persist throughout a whole lifetime... A script is an ongoing life plan formed in early childhood under parental pressure... Hence if we know some of the elements of the patient's script, we can predict with some confidence where he is heading, and head him off before he meets with misfortune or disaster. Even better we can get him to change his script or give it up altogether, which is curative psychiatry, or "getting well"....
Milton Erikson, Hypnotic Realities
Why would people in his weight study, who were doing well, quit? His team gathered information about the connection between physical healthy and early emotional trauma called ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences). What he found was a direct connection between the amount of trauma in early childhood and later physical and emotional problems in life. LINK1; LINK2; LINK3
Robert Kegen, The Evolving Self
"Being in another's presence (his young daughter) while she so honestly labors in an astonishingly intimate activity - the activity of making sense - is somehow very touching... The child's error is not something he or she is likely to catch and correct, because according to the terms of the child's present adaptive balance - or evolutionary truce - no error is being made... He is not individuated from them he is embedded in them... Something cannot be internalized until we emerge from our embeddedness in it... There is not one holding environment early in life, but a succession of holding environments, a life history of cultures of embeddedness... Neither comfort or stress is localized in an inside or outside. The issue has to do with living itself... It must hold on. It must let go. And it must stick around so that it can be reintegrated."
Robert Spolsky, Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers,
This book takes the early work of Selye and present researchers and offers a great overview of the pattern of stress, both physically and emotionally.
Gordon Allport, Pattern and Growth in Personality, Harvard University, 1957.
"Personality itself is a universal phenomenon science must study; but it cannot study it correctly unless it looks into the individuality of patterning... In the first place, it is a universally true statement, and therefor a law that the personal patterns of individuality are unique. The psychology of personality would do well to acknowledge this as its first law".
George Kelly, The Psychology of Personal Constructs: A Theory of Personality, V1, V2, 1955.
"Man looks at his world through transparent patterns of templates which he creates and then attempts to fit over the realities of which the world is composed... People continue to behave in maladaptive fashion because they continue making the secure, low risk choice. The person then knows what to expect... (In a Life Pattern process, this is why a person rarely changes their initial pattern).
John Bowlby & Mary Ainsworth, Attachment Theory in a paper by INGE BRETHERTON.
"It is not surprising that during infancy and early childhood these functions are either not operating at all or are doing so most imperfectly. During this phase of life, the child is therefore dependent on his mother performing them for him. She orients him in space and time, provides his environment, permits the satisfaction of some impulses, restricts others. She is his ego and his super-ego. Gradually he learns these arts himself, and as he does, the skilled parent transfers the roles to him. This is a slow, subtle and continuous process, beginning when he first learns to walk and feed himself, and not ending completely until maturity is reached. . . . Ego and super-ego development are thus inextricably hound up with the child’s primary human relationships. (Bowlby, 1951, p. 53)"
"All first-quarter interactive patterns were also related to infant behavior in a laboratory procedure known as the Strange Situation (Ainsworth & Wittig, 1969). This initially very controversial laboratory procedure for 1 -year-olds was originally designed to examine the balance of attachment and exploratory behaviors under conditions of low and high stress, a topic in which Harlow (1961) had aroused Ainsworth’s interest during meetings of the Tavistock group, but which also reminded her of an earlier study by Arsenian (1943) on young children in an insecure situation and of her dissertation work on security theory." READ ENTIRE PAPER
William Glasser, Reality Therapy
"Psychiatry must be concerned with two basic psychological needs" the need to love and be loved and the need to feel that we are worthwhile to ourselves and to others... to be worthwhile we must maintain a satisfactory standard of behavior,,, Learning to fulfill our needs must begin early in infancy and continue all our lives... we do not concern ourselves with unconscious mental processes... they are unnecessary to the essential process of helping a patient fulfill his needs, a process which we have found must be completely conscious to be effective... Responsibility... is the ability to fulfill one's needs, and to do so in a way that does not deprive others of the ability to fulfill their needs... we who practice Reality Therapy advocate dispensing with the common psychiatric labels, such as neurosis or psychosis, which tend to categorize and stereotype people... The therapist must accept him as he is at first...
Thomas Szasz, The Myth of Mental Illness
This thinker took on the whole culture of psychiatry. He was either foolhardy or courageous, but his point was brilliant. It goes like this. If hysteria was not a physical disease, why is it treated like one? He goes into great depth to explain how the original designers of mental illness treated it as a physical disease when there is no evidence to prove that it is one. In this way medicine has treated a social, relational issue as a medical one. He does a masterful job of explaining the difference. He is, of course right, but it never changed psychiatric thinking but it really twisted ther knicker. I found a recent article attacking him using the same logic he defeated in his book. The new brain research seems to make it biochemical, but think, does depression create biochemistry or does biochemistry create depression, or does each affect the other in a way that involves mind. Because the biochemical brain and the operational mind are different. Today, we understand the entire genome and brain structure, but we have yet to formulate a theory of function for the entire process.