Glasser's Choice Theory

William Glasser, a former engineer, converted psychiatrist, and counselor, is a major player in educational theory and practice evolution. He has established a global network to spread and execute his ideas and approaches. The California-based " William Glasser Institute" he founded rapidly expanded into international locations. He has written twenty volumes, at least a handful focused on teaching and learning. Carleen Glasser, his spouse, has created many student activity booklets to help teach Methodological Individualism. Colleges that adopt Glasser's pedagogical tenets can apply for Good School status from The William Glasser Foundation. To grasp Glasser's methodological approach, one must first become versed in the fundamentals of Behavioural Economics, Realism Psychotherapy, and Excellence.

What does Glasser's Choice Theory Explains?

Every decision is motivated by the hope of alleviating the distress caused by unmet wants and gaining satisfaction from meeting those needs. He lists five fundamental requirements: existence, power, enjoyment, independence, and belongingness. All actions are based on the desire to meet these requirements and, as such, are intentional, adaptive, and innovative. According to Glasser, the habit has four parts: actions, cognitions, emotions, and physiological. It is possible to alter one's feelings and physiological state by altering one's habits and outlook. When deciding, a person strives to create harmony between their inner, distinctive Quality Reality and the outward, actual world. This Wonderful World comprises snapshots of the individuals, pets, flowers, and locations that have brought the person joy since they were born and continue to evolve as new thoughts are added.

Example of Glasser's Choice Theory

Take the scenario of two persons discussing their vacation plans together. Francis longs to relax on a tropical beach with a good book, some suntan lotion, and a seashell collection. On the other hand, Asha is not a fan of the sand and surf and would rather go backcountry camping or rock climbing. Francis spent his childhood vacations at the seaside with his parents and has fond memories of those times. In addition, Francis has only been bushwalking once, and it was a family holiday when it poured the whole time, and leeches needed to be extracted at the conclusion. While Asha associates coastlines and burning, she has fond childhood memories of hiking trips with her parents in the mountains.

According to Glasser's concept of rational choice, Francis's desires for affection, connection, and enjoyment were met by his family's frequent excursions to the beach when he was a kid. Thus, the seashore is an integral element of his Quality World. Similar considerations led to the inclusion of backcountry camping in Asha's Quality World. They ought to find a way to spend the holidays together, but it satisfies each one of our Quality Realms if they desire a good day.

Axioms of Glasser's Choice Theory

Following are the major axioms of Glasser’s choice theory −

  • Control − Only our actions are under our power.

  • Information − Only data may be really helpful to another individual.

  • Emotional health − Family issues underlie all persistent mental health issues.

  • Present − The troubling connection is always here, right now.

  • Thinking − The past events have shaped us into the person we are now, but all we can do is focus on meeting our most essential needs in the here and now, and we intend to do so in the foreseeable future.

  • Category − As long as the images in our Data Are categorized under global are satisfied, so are our wants.

  • Existence − Our whole existence consists in acting properly.

  • Basics − Everything a person does may be broken down into four categories− habit, cognition, emotion, and physiological.

  • Method − While we have some say in every aspect of our Total Conduct, we can most easily influence our thoughts and habits. We can exert any degree of influence on our emotions and internal physiological processes through deliberate action and thinking.

  • Usage − Verbs are used to label every aspect of Total Conduct, while the most obvious feature gets the name.

Quality of World

The Quality Realm is central to William Glasser's views. A person's values and priorities are represented in the brain as mental images in a space called the Superior Realm. Photographs of significant people, locations, ideas, and convictions could be filed away in their minds. According to Glasser, the pictures in a human's Supreme bring them joy and fulfill some fundamental needs. Such images are personal and not subject to any societal norm checking. The Quality Planet is our ideal utopia.

Working of Glasser's Choice Theory

Clients' emotions and physiological reactions to stress may be improved via habitual and cognitive modification instruction. The educational field is a perfect illustration of this. Disappointed pupils who are unable to master particular ideas as well as acquire particular talents may be instructed to rethink what they consider a high-quality universe. Some changes can be implemented to emphasize the company's history of problematic habits and encourage them to identify and address the underlying causes of that habit to prevent a recurrence. An essay on Schema Therapy states that both Theory and its subset, Reality Psychotherapy, do not focus on the past. Customers are urged to live in the now. They encourage people to consider alterations to their routine that could bring about more satisfying outcomes.


Glasser's original version of the Choice Theory posits that at our most fundamental level, choices are made to satisfy a set of requirements. It is hypothesized that people want to choose the option they believe would be best for them, which does not imply that bad judgments will not have negative results. It has been shown, meanwhile, that Psychodynamic Approach may aid individuals in developing more effective approaches to managing issues. Choice Theory originates in traditional habits and has contributed greatly to many academic disciplines.