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Alla ricerca delle coccole perdute
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Learn the key ideas of the book by Giulio Cesare Giacobbe

Alla ricerca delle coccole perdute

Get to know yourself (and couples) better

Giulio Cesare Giacobbe is a psychologist and writer, as well as the founder of developmental psychology theory. He became known for the simple and direct style of his books, used here in an easy-to-follow explanation of the impact that evolution has had on people’s personalities,  highlighting their good qualities and limitations. Each one of us has three personalities – that of a child, a parent, and an adult. If they are properly developed, they allow us to enjoy healthy and fulfilling relationships with those around us. If not properly developed, on the other hand, they result in neurosis and other issues. In Alla ricerca delle coccole perdute the author’s explanation of the characteristics of each personality type and the problems that they may run into when they do not follow a linear development, drawing comparisons between the different types of personality and showing us how to solve any problems caused by neurosis. He then goes on to outline an identikit for the ideal personality – the fourth personality, emulating that of the enlightened Buddha, who accepts reality as it is, with wisdom and awareness. 

Alla ricerca delle coccole perdute
Read in 24 min.
Listen in 30 min.

We each have three personalities that need to be developed: child, adult, and parent

Each of us has three different personalities, which are automatically "activated", depending on the context and the people with whom we are dealing: different situations involve different kinds of interactions. 

Known as natural personalities, we each develop the personalities of a child, an adult, and a parent: each of them corresponds to the psychological and biological development that we gradually undergo, as a result of interactions with our surrounding environment. Obviously, this development is not linear, which is why anxiety-depressive neurosis can occur: in Western society, adults remain "children" for longer, and do not learn to fully cope with adulthood, to survive, and to fight for what they want, as there is no longer a need for it.

When we look to the animal world, however, we can find many similarities when it comes to the evolutionary stages that we go through. The three personalities are each characterised by a different attitude: the child, like a puppy, is not self-sufficient, the adult is self-sufficient, and the parent is dedicated to their offspring. Each of the three personalities also has a corresponding behaviour that defines it: the child asks, the adult takes, and the parent gives.

The pup experiences constant stress and fear as a result of their dependence on the parent and their inability to look after themselves, while the adult animal only experiences fear when its life is truly in danger or its territory is threatened. The parent, on the other hand, is able to overcome fear and is self-confident, as they are entirely devoted to ensuring the well-being of their offspring.

Regression may occur at any given time throughout a person's existence, which will result in them shifting among the three phases, each of which has a corresponding behavioural pattern that the individual can assume at any given time throughout their existence. Compared to animals, in which these behavioural patterns are activated spontaneously, this process is different in humans, in whom the cerebral neocortex plays an essential role, when we include the variable of affection to human behaviour.


The key ideas of "Alla ricerca delle coccole perdute"

We each have three personalities that need to be developed: child, adult, and parent
Children are dependant on their parents, possessive, and jealous, but they know how to ask for help and play in harmony
The adult has earned their space and their freedom, but they are selfish and incapable of altruism
The parent's personality is the only one who knows how to love, but it can be biased
Natural psychological development requires passing through every phase of each of the personalities
The development of the adult personality occurs as a result of having gone through the necessary phases, and is based on detachment and loneliness
Dedication helps structure the parental personality
Neuroses occur when the adult and parental personality is not structured
Neurosis is the inability to relate to situations with the right attitude
The neurotic child, adult, or parent is confined to the attitudes of the phase they are in
Neurosis and relationships: the only healthy couple is one formed by people who have undergone all of the necessary developmental stages
The fourth personality is that of the enlightened and self-aware Buddha
Take-home message
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