Counseling Models

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Contemporary counseling models

Psychoanalytic theory

key figure: Sigmund Freud: Theory of personality development, a philosophy of human nature, and a method of psychotherapy that focuses on unconscious factors that motivate behavior. Attention given to first 6 years of life as determinants of later development of personality.

Adlerian therpay

key figure: Alfred Adler: and then Rudolph Dreukers. This is a growth model that stresses assuming responsibility for creating one's own destiny, and finding meaning and goals to create a purposeful life. Key concepts of this model are used in most current therapies.

existential therapy

key figures: Viktor Fankl, Rollo May, Irvin Yalom. Reacting against the tendency to view therapy as a system of well-defined techniques, this model stresses building therapy on the basic conditions of human existence, such as choice the freedom and responsibility to shape one's life, and self-determination. It focuses on the quality of the person-to-person therapeutic relationship

person-centered therapy

founder: Carl Rogers key figure: Natalie Rogers. This approach was developed during the 1940s as a nondirective reaction against psychoanalysis. Based on a subjective view of human experiencing, it places faith in and gives responsibility to the client in dealing with problems and concerns.

Gestalt therapy

founders: Frtiz and Laura Perls. Key figures: Miriam and Irving Polster. An experiential therapy stressing awareness and integration, it grew as a reaction against analytic therapy. It integrates the functioning of body and mind.

Behavior therapy

Key figures. B.F. Skinner, Arnold Lazarus, and Albert Bandura. This approach applies the principles of learning to the resolution of specific behavioral problems. Results are subject to continual experimentation. the methods of this approach are always in the process of refinement.

Cognitive behavior therapy

Key figures: Albert Ellis founded rational emotive therapy, a highly didactic, cognitive, action-oriented model of therapy that stresses the role of thinking and belief systems as the root of personal problems. A.T. Be4ck founded cognitive therapy, which gives a primary role to thinking as it influences behavior.

reality therapy

founder: William Glasser. Key figure: Robert Wubbolding. This short-term approach is based on choice theory and focuses on the client assuming responsibility in the present. Through the therapeutic process, the client is able to learn more effective ways of meeting her or his needs.

feminist therapy

This approach grew out of the efforts of women, a few of whom are Jean Baker Miller, Carolyn Zerbe Enns, Oliva Espin, and Laura Brown. A central concept is the concern for the psychological oppression of women. Focusing on the constraints imposed by the sociopolitical status to which women have been relegated, this approach explores women's identity development, self-concept, goals and aspirations, and emotional well-being.

postmodern approaches

A number of key figures are associated with the development of these various approaches to therapy. Steve de Shazer and Insoo Kim Berg are the c0-founders of solution-focused brief therapy. Michael White and David Epston are the major figures associated with narrative therapy. Social constructionsim, solution-focused brief therapy, and narrative therapy all assume that there is no single truth; rather, it is believed that reality is socially constructed through human interaction. These approaches maintain that the client is an expert in his or her own life.

Family systems therapy

A number of significant figures have been pioneers of this approach, including Alfred Adler, Murray Bowen, Virginia Satir, Carl whitaker, Salvador Minuchin, Jay Haley, and Cloe Madanes. This systematic approach is based on the assumption that the key to changing the individual is understanding and working with the family.

Anal stage

The second stage of psychosexual development, when pleasure is derived from retaining and expelling feces.

analytical psychology

An elaborate explanation of human nature that combines ideas from history, mythology, anthropology, and religion.

Animus (anima)

The biological and psychological aspects of masculinity and femininity, which are thought to coexist in both sexes.

anxiety

A feeling of impending doom that results from repressed feelings, memories, desires, and experiences emerging to the surface of awareness. From a psychoanalytic perspective, there are three kinds of anxiety: reality, neurotic, and moral anxiety.

Archetypes

The images of universal experiences contained in the collective unconscious.

blank screen

An anonymous stance assumed by classical psychoanalysts aimed at fostering transference.

Borderline personality disorder

A disorder characterized by instability, irritability, self-destructive acts, impulsivity, and extreme mood shifts. Such people lack a sense of their own identity and do not have a deep understanding of others.

Brief psychodynamic therapy (BPT)

An adaptation of the principles of psychoanalytic theory and therapy aimed at treating selective disorders within a preestablished time limit.

Classical psychoanalysis

The traditional (Freudian) approach to psychoanalysis based on a long-term exploration of past conflicts, many of which are unconscious, and an extensive process of working through early wounds.

Collective unconscious

From a Jungian perspective, the deepest level of the psyche that contains an accumulation of inherited experiences.

compensation

An ego-defense mechanism that consists of masking perceived weaknesses or developing certain positive traits to make up for limitations.

Contemporary psychoanalysis

Newer formulations of psychoanalytic theory that share some core characteristics of classical analytic theory, but with different applications of techniques; extensions and adaptations of orthodox psychoanalysis.

Countertransference

The therapist's unconscious emotional responses to a client that are likely to interfere with objectivity; unresolved conflicts of the therapist that are projected onto the client.

crisis

According to Erikson, a turning point in life when we have the potential to move forward or to regress. At these turning points, we can either resolve our conflicts or fail to master the developmental task.

Death instincts

A Freudian concept that refers to a tendency of individuals to harbor an unconscious wish to die or hurt themselves or others; accounts for the aggressive drive.

denial

In denial there is an effort to suppress unpleasant reality. It consists of coping with anxiety by closing our eyes to the existence of anxiety-producing reality.

Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)

A blend of cognitive behavioral and psychoanalytic techniques that generally involves a minimum of one year of treatment.

displacement

An ego-defense mechanism that entails redirection of some emotion from a real source to a substitute person or object.

dream analysis

A technique for uncovering unconscious material and giving clients insight into some of their unresolved problems. Therapists participate with clients in exploring dreams and in interpreting possible meanings.

dream work

The process by which the latent content of a dream is transformed into the less threatening manifest content.

ego

The part of the personality that is the mediator between external reality and inner demands.

Ego psychology

The psychosocial approach of Erik Erikson, which emphasizes the development of the ego or self at various stages of life.

Ego-defense mechanisms

Intrapsychic processes that operate unconsciously to protect the person from threatening and, therefore, anxiety-producing thoughts, feelings, and impulses.

fixation

The condition of being arrested, or stuck, at one level of psychosexual development.

Free association

A primary technique, consisting of spontaneous and uncensored verbalization by the client, which gives clues to the nature of the client's unconscious conflicts.

genital stage

The final stage of psychosexual development, usually attained at adolescence, in which heterosexual interests and activities are generally predominant.

id

The part of personality, present at birth, that is blind, demanding, and insistent. Its function is to discharge tension and return to homeostasis.

Id psychology

A theory stating that instincts and intrapsychic conflicts are the basic factors shaping personality development (both normal and abnormal).

Identification

As an ego defense, this may involve individuals identifying themselves with successful causes in the hope that they will be seen as worthwhile.

Identity crisis

A developmental challenge, occurring during adolescence, whereby the person seeks to establish a stable view of self and to define a place in life.

Individuation

The harmonious integration of the conscious and unconscious aspects of personality.

Interpretation

A technique used to explore the meanings of free association, dreams, resistances, and transference feelings.

Introjection

A process of taking in the values and standards of others.

Latency stage

A period of psychosexual development, following the phallic stage, that is relatively calm before the storm of adolescence.

Latent content

Our hidden, symbolic, and unconscious motives, wishes, and fears.

Libido

The instinctual drives of the id and the source of psychic energy; Freudian notion of the life instincts.

Life instincts

Instincts oriented toward growth, development, and creativity that serve the purpose of the survival of the individual and the human race.

Maintaining the analytic frame

Refers to a range of procedures, such as an analyst's anonymity, regularity, and consistency of meetings, as a structure for therapy.

Manifest content

The dream as it appears to the dreamer.

Moral anxiety

The fear of one's own conscience; people with a well-developed conscience tend to feel guilty when they do something contrary to their moral code.

Multiple transferences

A process whereby group members develop intense feelings for certain others in a group; an individual may see in others some significant figure such as a parent, life-partner, ex-lover, or boss.

Narcissism

Extreme self-love, as opposed to love of others. A narcissistic personality is characterized by a grandiose and exaggerated sense of self-importance and an exploitive attitude toward others, which hides a poor self-concept.

Narcissistic personality

Characterized by a grandiose and exaggerated sense of self-importance and an exploitive attitude toward others, which serve the function of masking a frail self-concept.

Neurotic anxiety

The fear that the instincts will get out of hand and cause one to do something for which one will be punished.

Object relatedness

Interpersonal relationships as they are represented intrapsychically.

Object relations

Interpersonal relationships as they are represented intrapsychically.

Object-relations theory

A newer version of psychoanalytic thinking, which focuses on predictable developmental sequences in which early experiences of self shift in relation to an expanding awareness of others. It holds that individuals go through phases of autism, normal symbiosis, and separation and individuation, culminating in a state of integration.

Oral stage

The initial phase of psychosexual development, during which the mouth is the primary source of gratification; a time when the infant is learning to trust or mistrust the world.

persona

The mask we wear, or public face we present, as a way to protect ourselves.

Phallic stage

The third phase of psychosexual development, during which the child gains maximum gratification through direct experience with the genitals.

Pleasure principle

The idea that the id is driven to satisfy instinctual needs by reducing tension, avoiding pain, and gaining pleasure.

Projection

An ego-defense mechanism that involves attributing our own unacceptable thoughts, feelings, behaviors, and motives to others.

Psychodynamic psychotherapy

Psychoanalytically oriented psychotherapy involves a shortening and simplifying of the lengthy process of psychoanalysis.

Psychodynamics

The interplay of opposing forces and intrapsychic conflicts that provide a basis for understanding human motivation.

Psychosexual stages

The Freudian chronological phases of development, beginning in infancy. Each is characterized by a primary way of gaining sensual and sexual gratification.

Psychosocial stages

Erikson's turning points, from infancy through old age. Each presents psychological and social tasks that must be mastered if maturation is to proceed in a healthy fashion.

Rationalization

An ego-defense mechanism whereby we attempt to justify our behavior by imputing logical motives to it.

Reaction formation

A defense against a threatening impulse, involving actively expressing the opposite impulse.

Reality anxiety

The fear of danger from the external world; the level of such anxiety is proportionate to the degree of real threat.

Reality principle

The idea that the ego does realistic and logical thinking and formulates plans of action for satisfying needs.

Regression

An ego-defense mechanism whereby an individual reverts to a less mature form of behavior as a way of coping with extreme stress.

Relational analysis

An analytic model based on the assumption that therapy is an interactive process between client and therapist. The interpersonal analyst assumes that countertransference is a source of information about the client's character and dynamics.

Relational model

A model that characterizes therapy as an interactive process between client and therapist in which countertransference provides an important source of information about the client's character and dynamics.

Repression

The ego-defense mechanism whereby threatening or painful thoughts or feelings are excluded from awareness.

Resistance

The client's reluctance to bring to awareness threatening unconscious material that has been repressed.

Self psychology

A theory that emphasizes how we use interpersonal relationships (self objects) to develop our own sense of self.

Shadow

A Jungian archetype representing thoughts, feelings, and actions that we tend to disown by projecting them outward.

Sublimation

An ego defense that involves diverting sexual or aggressive energy into other channels that are socially acceptable.

Superego

That aspect of personality that represents one's moral training. It strives for perfection, not pleasure.

Time-limited dynamic psychotherapy (TLDP)

Through this form of psychoanalytically oriented therapy, clients gain a sense of what it is like to interact more fully and flexibly within the therapy situation. They are helped to apply to the outside world what they are learning in the office.

Transference

The client's unconscious shifting to the therapist of feelings and fantasies, both positive and negative, that are displacements from reactions to significant others from the client's past.

Transference relationship

The transfer of feelings originally experienced in an early relationship to other important people in a person's present environment.

Unconscious

That aspect of psychological functioning or of personality that houses experiences, wishes, impulses, and memories in an out-of-awareness state as a protection against anxiety.

Working through

A process of resolving basic conflicts that are manifested in the client's relationship with the therapist; achieved by the repetition of interpretations and by exploring forms of resistance.

Adlerian brief therapy

An intervention that is concise, deliberate, direct, efficient, focused, short-term, and purposeful.

Basic mistakes

Faulty, self-defeating perceptions, attitudes, and beliefs that may have been appropriate at one time but are no longer useful. These are myths that are influential in shaping personality.

Birth order

Adler identified five psychological positions from which children tend to view life: oldest, second of only two, middle, youngest, and only. Actual birth order itself is less important than a person's interpretation of his or her place in the family.

Community feeling

An individual's awareness of being part of the human community. Community feeling embodies the sense of being connected to all humanity and to being committed to making the world a better place.

Early recollections

Childhood memories (before the age of 9) of one-time events. People retain these memories as capsule summaries of their present philosophy of life. From a series of early recollections, it is possible to understand mistaken notions, present attitudes, social interests, and possible future behavior.

Encouragement

The process of increasing one's courage to face life tasks; used throughout therapy as a way to counter discouragement and to help people set realistic goals.

Family atmosphere

The climate of relationships among family members.

Family constellation

The social and psychological structure of the family system; includes birth order, the individual's perception of self, sibling characteristics and ratings, and parental relationships. Each person forms his or her unique view of self, others, and life through the family constellation.

Fictional finalism

An imagined central goal that gives direction to behavior and unity to the personality; an image of what people would be like if they were perfect and perfectly secure.

Goal alignment

A congruence between the client's and the counselor's goals and the collaborative effort of two persons working equally toward specific, agreed-on goals.

Guiding self-ideal

Another term for fictional finalism, which represents an individual's image of a goal of perfection.

Holistic concept

We cannot be understood in parts; all aspects of ourselves must be understood in relation to each other.

Individual Psychology

Adler's original name for his approach that stressed understanding the whole person, how all dimensions of a person are interconnected, and how all these dimensions are unified by the person's movement toward a life goal.

Inferiority feelings

The early determining force in behavior; the source of human striving and the wellspring of creativity. Humans attempt to compensate for both imagined and real inferiorities, which helps them overcome handicaps.

inshght

A special form of awareness that facilitates a meaningful understanding within the therapeutic relationship and acts as a foundation for change.

Interpretation

Understanding clients' underlying motives for behaving the way they do in the here and now.

Life tasks

Universal problems in human life, including the tasks of friendship (community), work (a division of labor), and intimacy (love and marriage).

Lifestyle

The core beliefs and assumptions through which the person organizes his or her reality and finds meaning in life events. Our perceptions of self, others, and the world. Our characteristic way of thinking, acting, feeling, living, and striving toward long-term goals.

Lifestyle assessment

The process of gathering early memories, which involves learning to understand the goals and motivations of the client.

Objective interview

Adlerians seek basic information about the client's life as a part of the lifestyle assessment process.

Phenomenological approach

Focus on the way people perceive their world. For Adlerians, objective reality is less important than how people interpret reality and the meanings they attach to what they experience.

Private logic

Basic convictions and assumptions of the individual that underlie the lifestyle pattern and explain how behaviors fit together to provide consistency.

Reorientation

The phase of the counseling process in which clients are helped to discover a new and more functional perspective and are encouraged to take risks and make changes in their lives.

Social interest

A sense of identification with humanity; a feeling of belonging; an interest in the common good.

Striving for superiority

A strong inclination toward becoming competent, toward mastering the environment, and toward self-improvement. The striving for perfection (and superiority) is a movement toward enhancement of self.

Style of life

An individual's way of thinking, feeling, and acting; a conceptual framework by which the world is perceived and by which people are able to cope with life tasks; the person's personality.

Subjective interview

The process whereby the counselor helps clients tell their life story as completely as possible.

The question

Used in an initial assessment to gain understanding of the purpose that symptoms or actions have in a person's life. The question is, How would your life be different, and what would you do differently, if you did not have this symptom or problem?

Aspirational ethics

A higher level of ethical practice that addresses doing what is in the best interests of clients.

Assessment

Evaluating the relevant factors in a client's life to identify themes for further exploration in the counseling process.

Confidentiality

This is an ethical concept, and in most states therapists also have a legal duty not to disclose information about a client.

Diagnosis

Identifying a specific mental disorder based on a pattern of symptoms that leads to a specific diagnosis; sometimes part of the assessment process.

Dual or multiple relationships

A counselor assumes two (or more) roles simultaneously or sequentially with a client. This may involve assuming more than one professional role or combining professional and nonprofessional roles.

Ethical decisions

To make ethical decisions, consult with colleagues, keep yourself informed about laws affecting your practice, keep up to date in your specialty field, stay abreast of developments in ethical practice, reflect on the impact your values have on your practice, and be willing to engage in honest self-examination.

Evidence-based practice (EBP)

Psychotherapists are required to base their practice on techniques that have empirical evidence to support their efficacy.

Informed consent

The right of clients to be informed about their therapy and to make autonomous decisions pertaining to it.

Mandatory ethics

The view of ethical practice that deals with the minimum level of professional practice.

Nonprofessional interactions

Additional relationships with clients other than sexual ones

Positive ethics

An approach taken by practitioners who want to do their best for clients rather than simply meet minimum standards to stay out of trouble.

Practiced-based evidence

Using data generated during treatment to inform the process and outcome of treatment.

Privileged communication

A legal concept that generally bars the disclosure of confidential communications in a legal proceeding.

Psychodiagnosis

The analysis and explanation of a client's problems. It may include an explanation of the causes of the client's difficulties, an account of how these problems developed over time, a classification of any disorders, a specification of preferred treatment procedure, and an estimate of the chances for a successful resolution.

Aspirational ethics

A higher level of ethical practice that addresses doing what is in the best interests of clients.

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