At psychoanalysis , the drive is the deep psychic energy that directs the action towards an end, discharging when it is achieved . The concept refers to something dynamic that is influenced by the subject's experience. This makes a difference between the drive and the instinct , which is congenital (inherited by the genetics ).
The instinct is characterized by leading us to seek immovable objects to achieve satisfaction. The drive, on the other hand, does not have a predetermined object; on the contrary, it is linked to forces that derive from somatic tensions of the human being , with different sources and possible forms of manifestation.
The notion of drive was developed by the Austrian Sigmund Freud at the end of XIX century when he began to reflect on human behaviors that exceed the instinctive and that can even contradict him.
In this way, Freud established that the drive is the body tension that tends towards different objects and that is discharged when accessing them, although momentarily, since the drive is never completely satisfied.
The father of psychoanalysis distinguished several moments of the drive, such as source (the origin that lies in the somatic), the effort or drang (the tension that translates into the drive), the goal (in passive or active state) and the object (which temporarily decreases tension).
For some psychoanalysts, the drives originate from the original lack of an instinctive object. This lack makes the wish It translates into drives, which target momentary goals. Once this moment is reached, the drive restarts the process.
According to theory Freud's classic every drive is conceived as a derivative of a call basal, which touches the instinctive; such is the case of the life drive, which has as its object the conservation of its own existence. As the nervous system of each person matures, a series of phases or pulsional stages takes place, in each of which there is a well-defined neurological development in areas that will later be erogenous (those that have more sensitivity and are looking for sexually stimulate the subject).
Let's look at the first six phases, recognized by Freud through his studies:
1- Oral: takes place between birth and the first year and a half of lifetime. The mouth is practically the only erogenous zone, since the subject begins to orient his psyche in a very clear goal: to nourish himself;
2- Anal: from a year and a half to three years, and as a result of the increasing control of the sphincters of the anus, the child feels pleasure at the possibility of controlling his own body, which he achieves in this case through deciding to retain or let out the fecal matter;
3- phallic: also called urethral, takes place between three and six years of age. During this phase, the individual acquires the control of its urethral sphincters and this represents an advance of what, later, will be the genital phase. According to Freud, it is at this stage that the oedipus of each person is constituted, although this does not mean that it is over, since it is an active element present throughout life;
4- Castration and burial complex of the Oedipus complex: At this point a break is likely to take place, which is why it is a very important moment for the developing of the psychic apparatus. It is a process that serves to reorganize experiences and roles, as well as the drives themselves;
5- Latency period: until reaching puberty, and from the age of six, there is an intense and spontaneous sublimation of the feelings of libido, which facilitates integration into the culture;
6- Genital: from the puberty, once the Oedipus was configured, the sexual interests (part of which is the sexual inclination) begin to develop.