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Choice Theory: A New Psychology of Personal Freedom

4.04  ·  Rating details ·  2,486 ratings  ·  258 reviews
Dr. William Glasser offers a new psychology that, if practiced, could reverse our widespread inability to get along with one another, an inability that is the source of almost all unhappiness.

For progress in human relationships, he explains that we must give up the punishing, relationship–destroying external control psychology. For example, if you are in an unhappy relatio
Paperback, 368 pages
Published January 6th 1999 by Harper Perennial (first published 1998)
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زیبایی خاص گردنبند های رزینی همیشه جذاب و مورد استقبال همه بوده است.

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Kater Cheek
Nov 10, 2013 rated it liked it

My best summary of Choice Theory is that unhappiness almost always results from an unsatisfactory relationship, and unsatisfactory relationships almost always involve one person trying to control the other. You can't control another person, you can only give them information.* This book expands this to discuss how to use this knowledge to become a better spouse, parent, employer, teacher and friend, though he assumes you don't try to control your friends.

I've read a lot of self-help type books,
Apr 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
After years of hearing about "powerlessness" how refreshing to recover my own innate voice that said, "you always have a choice" ...more
Victoria Drob
Apr 13, 2018 rated it liked it
I'm a big proponent and advocate of this theory, employing it daily in my psychotherapy practice and personal life. However, the book is tedious, repetitive, and unnecessarily lengthy for a relatively simple concept. The author is self-aggrandizing and insists that this is a catch-all/cure-all, which it is most certainly not. He discusses multiple examples of how he used the theory with his therapy clients, including a hypothetical one based on a fictional character from The Bridges of Madison C ...more
Azita Rassi
Sep 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Some chapters were great and merited five stars, but overall it had lots that could be trimmed. I fully agree with the theory and hope I can put it to practice more often.
Jan 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Todos
Choice Theory as created by Glasser is really extraordinary. Basically humans choose everything that we do, we are in control directly or indirectly of everything.

Hold up there, then why are so many people depressed and miserable, you ask? Well, a person would not intentionally choose to be miserable, but they may choose behaviors and thoughts that make them so. See, the way Glasser puts it (as I understand it) is to say that humans have 5 needs: 1) Love and belonging, 2) Power 3) Survival 4) F
Arezou Keshavarz
Jun 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
I liked the idea that you can feel empowered if you know that your feelings and even to a great level, your pain, is under your own control. Even though I felt some parts of the book were hard to relate to (especially the very beginning and the end), the parts I liked about the book were the parts where the author explains how he actually applies this theory to patients in therapy, and how this can strengthen relationships and lead to better and more fulfilling lives and even more productive wor ...more
Gerald Thomson
Jun 01, 2015 rated it liked it
Very interesting ideas put forth by Dr. Glasser. The main assumption is that you can only deal with what is happening right now, and what your actions will be in the future. You can’t change the past. This is a refreshing idea in a world that insists on digging up the past, or opening up old wounds, to help them heal. In most cases, wounds heal best when left alone. Glasser also emphasizes actions to feeling. You may feel that you want to kill yourself, but what are you going to do that is produ ...more
Naser Farkhideh
Jul 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book opened a door to personal freedom for me. The simple way of explaining such wonderful ideas leave you speechless for hours while you are going through pages like a thirsty wanderer in search of water. The book talks about how easily relationships could be more and more relaxing, fruitful and for god's sake more sensible. After reading this book, relationships are more realistic to me and in more control. The word "control" is not the best one to define anything about this book though s ...more
Feb 07, 2020 rated it did not like it
Some words are better left unsaid, and some books are better left unwritten. Choice Theory is a textbook example of such literature. The content is not unlike most people’s lower intestines: stinky, and loaded with danger. I’m at a complete lack of words for describing just how disgusting this capitalistic gospel of opportunism really is, but I will try my best.

One way to think about Choice Theory is that it bears some resemblance to what I would imagine it’d be like to be the victim of an abusi
Feb 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: psychology
Glasser argues human misery comes from unsatisfying relationships. We need to abandon external control psychology, where we seek to control others and believe others control us, in favor of choice theory where we focus on only what we can control: our own behavior. In truth, all we can give one another is information, and it's up to us to choose what to do with that information. This can be a difficult thing to accept, but once we focus on what we can do in the present, and that's what matters. ...more
In Choice Theory, William Glasser puts aside the traditional way of psychotherapy. (Something that I've always had problem with). He criticizes what he calls External control psychology.
The book contains three main parts that describe how this theory would adjust to different situations and how can we be able to make use of it in different parts of the society from household to school, working places, neighborhoods and prisons.
What I really liked about the book is the fresh perspective that is
May 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Okay, guys, this is a MUST read for everybody!
I was at my most vulnerable point in life when I piked up this book, and I still can't believe how it healed me down to my bones. This book is a manual for being a human being. Do you want to know where your feelings come from? Why you feel and do things? William Glasser explains in the simplest chopped-down form, what it is to be human and how we can try to get along with each other better. If we feel unhappy at any time in our lives, it can be tra
Jul 11, 2013 rated it it was ok
I will admit to some skimming and choosing certain parts to skip, but overall I thought the book had some excellent key ideas that could help improve the relationships of many that I know. His tone is a little self-righteous and most of his examples are presented in a case-study style from people he has treated. However, I do feel I have a broader language of expression in terms of my own needs and how I can serve those needs without using them to attempt controlling others. Give it a perusal, a ...more
Deane P.
Apr 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Nothing new about the information presented - what is new and dazzlingly brilliant is the way the information is connected, and the implications for lasting peace and happiness in all levels of society from the most personal to the most global. There are few books I would consider to be "life changing". This is one of them. ...more
Chris Weaver
Aug 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
I found this to be one of the two most helpful theories to follow when dealing with teen-age students, helping them to guide their decisions to get the results they desire. Great help to my counseling profession.
Pedram Lajevardi
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed reading this book. Too often we blame a conflict or a stressful situation on others, and forget about the impact we can have. Many examples in the book make it easier for the reader for the reader to understand the concept.
Romeo Verga
Mar 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: self-development
William shows a shift if focus from placing blame on external things and empower yourself to make different choice if not better by shifting your thoughts and actions
Bjorn Sorensen
Nov 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: self-improvement
It comes down to this-would you consider a talk with a friend or a session with a counselor as productive if they never brought up the past? This could leave you in a conundrum-you can't talk about your upbringing, and, by extension, you can only talk about your actions and relationships in the present. Yes, this flies in the face of a lot of psychology, that we are a product of our upbringing and our environment.

Glasser says that relationships are paramount, that you should do something with s
Lilly J
Jan 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing
The kind of book that everyone must read at least once and should read several times in there life.

“A choice theory world is a tough, responsible world; you cannot use grammar to escape responsibility for what you’re doing.”
Aug 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great book, one of my first books that I didn't feel time while reading it.
although chapters 10 and 11 were a bit dull to me.
Kruno Stjepanović
Oct 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
A refreshing view on human psychology and relationships. While not a self-help kind of a book, it is certainly very useful and with advice everyone should incorporate in their lives.
Nov 19, 2018 rated it liked it
An okay choice, a review of Choice Theory by William Glasser M.D.

Throughout my life I have read many nonfiction books, but few have presented such a contrast of astounding conceptualization and minimalist writing as Choice Theory. The author William Glasser, M.D. is clearly a master of the mind, but a novice when it comes to pen and paper. Personally I believe that due to this contrast the book can be considered as fulfilling neither the qualifications of true excellence nor those of mediocrit
Abolfazl Kakaey
May 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Most of the books and authors talk about same things with different languages and don't have a new mindset. But this book is totally different in regard to mindset and method.
Mr. Glasser learns new beneficial concepts that can lead to change our lives, if master them, even when just know them
Kao Narvna
Feb 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Choice theory helped me--to some degree--take control of my life. Everything in our life happens because of a decision, and people make thousands of decisions each day. The sections of this book regarding dealing with people was especially helpful to me, recognizing types of harmful people based off the evident decisions they keep making time and time again. I have a copy covered in sticky notes with especially fantastic portions sitting around somewhere.

I fully recommend this to anyone who feel
Arlene Yanxiang
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
This book is trying hard-sell too much. It is slow, rumbling, jammed with irrelevant (and misleading) thoughts (human is the only animal that care about strangers?! Hey have you heard of penguins?). The author has a tremendous amount of confidence in believing the book is revolutionary. I can't tell the difference between his "revolutionary" theory and the most widely-used cognitive behavior theory. His theory is right and I believe he is a good counselor, but this book is just annoying to liste ...more
Jeremy Cox
Aug 26, 2019 rated it it was ok
The basic idea of choice theory is pretty interesting; people respond more thoughtfully to choices than controlling edicts. The author spends too much time discussing examples of this simple idea, and hardly any time on the justification or empirical support for this idea. The author uses the phrase "quality world" excessively and does not offer justification for this phrase. It strikes me as an ambiguous phrase and even in the context of use, it was impossible for me to derive its intended mean ...more
Feb 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: self-improvement
Some phenomenal concepts that might lead us towards a perfect world. Some good examples of practice & some a little far from my willingness to try. I once had a psychologist talk to me about the balance between connection & control & think this book contributes to me understanding this. I think this book is about finding peace - is it a peace we can find in this world?
A great book that walks a different path to current society.
Sep 25, 2008 marked it as to-read
This book is great. I can only read so much at a time, then I have to process for a while.
Jan 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
Required reading for my graduate level counseling class. Helps readjust your perspective and improve your daily thought process.
Sep 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Liberating. We all have a choice.
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“It is no kindness to treat unhappy people as helpless, hopeless, or inadequate, no matter what has happened to them. Kindness is having faith in the truth and that people can handle it and use it for their benefit. True compassion is helping people help themselves.” 12 likes
“To achieve and maintain the relationships we need, we must stop choosing to coerce, force, compel, punish, reward, manipulate, boss, motivate, criticize, blame, complain, nag, badger, rank, rate, and withdraw. We must replace these destructive behaviors with choosing to care, listen, support, negotiate, encourage, love, befriend, trust, accept, welcome, and esteem. These” 5 likes
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