Deviation from ideal mental health - someone that does not possess the ability qualities to function correctly in society is 'abnormal'.
Jahodas six criterias for ideal mental health - Jahoda made six criterias for which mental health can be measured. These are;
- attitudes of an individual toward his own self
- growth, development, or self-actualization
- personality integration
- perception of reality
- environmental mastery
Some people argue it is difficult to measure the extent of these six catergories. It could also be said that it is difficult to pass all six catergories.
Example - going to work without the feeling of anxiety is a requirement of normal functionality.
Limitations - it begs the question who is normal. Most people will come to a point where they feel anxious before something important (a work meeting for example). Another limitation could be that someone takes joy from their abnormality, making it hard to define them as 'abnormal'. For example, a person who has the obsessive-compulsive disorder of hand-washing may find that the behavior makes him cheerful, happy and better able to cope with his day.
Strenghts - an advantage of this type of approach is that it does provide areas to target when treating depression, and it focuses on a positive approach to the problems.