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Corey, G. (2009). Theory and practice of counseling and psychotherapy. Ch. 6, 8-9

According to Rollo May therapy should be aimed at...

helping people discover meaning of their lives rather than problem solving

Existential therapy is more of a way of...

thinking rather than style of practicing psychotherapy

Existentialism states we are...

free & responsible

A basic premise of Existentialism...

we are not victims of our circumstances

Yalom says 1st step is for the client to...

accept responsibility in creating their predicatment & only they have the power to change it

Existentialism basic task is to...

encourage client to explore options for creating meaningful exisence


which theory was not founded by any particular person or group


grew to help resolve life dilemmas like isolation, alientaion, & meaninglessness


Frankl developed "therapy through meaning"


I/thou approach were client isn't objectified...therapist/client relationship is what promotes change

Rollo May

key figure for bringing existentialism from Europe to U.S.

Irvin Yalom

which existential theorist focuses on 4 givens of existence: death; freedom & responsibility; existential isolation; and meaninglessness

Existential Psychotherapy

Born from a phenomenological philosophy of "humanness. Humans are in a constant state of transition, evolving and becoming and Clients are searching for meaning in their subjective worlds

Common questions/sources of existential angst for clients

"Who am I?" "I will die." "What does it all mean?" "Will I die alone?" "How am I going to get to where I want to be in my life?"


In existentialism, the terms We are finite--time is limited. We have the potential and the choice, to act or not to act. Meaning is not automatic--we must seek it. We are subject to loneliness, meaninglessness, emptiness, guilt, and isolation is called...


In existentialism "the courage to be," we must trust ourselves to search within and find our own answers is called...


Existentialism states, "At their best our ____ are based on our desire for fulfillment, not our deprivation."


according to existentialism what must be pursued obliquely and by finding it in life is a by-product of a commitment to creating, loving, and working


Existential therapists help clients develop a healthy view of ...


Existentialism states what can be a stimulus for growth as we become aware of and accept our freedom


Helping clients to accept their freedom and responsibility to act is a ____ of Existential therapy

The core of the existential therapeutic relationship

Respect and faith in the clients' potential to cope. Sharing reactions with genuine concern and empathy

Existential therapy

The person-to-person relationship is key. The relationship demands that therapists be in contact with their own phenomenological world...

Existential therapy

core of the therapeutic relationship is respect & faith in clients' potential to cope, sharing reactions w/ genuine concern & empathy

Existential therapy

Clients are responsible for their behavior in group, settings provide a mirror of how clients may act in the world. In feedback members learn to view themselves through another's eyes. Members learn how their behavior affects others

Limitation of Existential Psychotherapy

The individualistic focus may not fit within the world view of clients from a collectivist culture. Some clients prefer a more directive approach to counseling.

Limitation of Existential Psychotherapy

high focus on self-determination may not fully account for real-life limitations of those oppressed with limited choices. Limited empirical support.


Jean Sartre term for lacking awareness of personal responsibility for our lives & passively assuming our existence is controlled by external forces

Existential therapy

central task of therapist ask client to recognize how they have allowed others to decide for them, encourage them choose for themselves

Existential therapy

which therapy uses anxiety as a potential source of growth

Existential anxiety

unavoidable result of being confronted with givens of existence-death, freedom, choice, isolation & meaninglessness

Normal anxiety

appropriate response to an event being faced, can be used as a motivation to change & doesn't have to be repressed. We cannot survive without some anxiety

Neurotic anxiety

out of proportion to the situation, typically out of awareness tends to immobilize the person, being psychologically healthy means living with as little of this as possible

Existential therapy

a journey taken by therapist & client

Martin Buber's Existential therapy

relating in I/thou fashion means there's direct, mutual, present interaction therapist strives to create caring, intimate relationships with clients

I/thou fashion

means there's direct, mutual, present interaction therapist strives to create caring, intimate relationships with clients

Existential Brief Therapy

focuses clients on significant areas starting @ the initial phase, also makes therapy a catalyst for clients to be actively involved in ea session

Gestalt Therapy

Existential & Phenomenological - it is grounded in the client's "here and now"

Gestalt Therapy

Promotes direct experiencing rather than the abstractness of talking about situations...
client is encouraged to become the hurt child

Relational Gestalt Therapy

contemporary, stresses dialogue & relationship between client & therapist

Gestalt Paradoxical Theory of Change

we change when we become aware of what we are as opposed to trying to become what we are not.


full range of human functioning includes thoughts, feelings, behaviors, body, language and dreams

Gestalt Field Theory

The field is the client's environment which consists of therapist, client and all that goes on between them. Client is a participant in a constantly changing field

Gestalt Figure Formation Process

how people organize experiences from moment to moment & how aspects of the environment (background) become focal point of clients attn & interest (foreground)

Gestalt Theory

which theory says, Our "power is in the present" Nothing exists except the "now"
The past is gone and the future has not yet arrived

Unfinished Business

in Gestalt theory feelings about the past are unexpressed & are associated with distinct memories & fantasies. Feelings not fully experienced linger in the background and interfere with effective contact are called..

Gestalt Therapy

one aim of ___ ____ is to help clients become aware of their present experience


time when external support not available or customary way of being doesn't work

Boundary disturbances

the defenses we develop to prevent us from experiencing the present fully.


1 of the 5 major channels of resistance uncritically accept others beliefs & standards without assimilating to make them congruent to what we are


1 of the 5 major channels of resistance when we disown aspects of ourselves by assigning it to the environment, attributes of our personality inconsistent with self image blames on others


1 of the 5 major channels of resistance turn back on ourselves what we'd like to do to someone else or doing to ourselves what we'd like someone to do to or for us


1 of the 5 major channels of resistance distracting or veering off making it difficult to maintain a sustained sense of contact. Diffuse contact thru overuse of humor, generalizations, & questions instead of statements.

Confluence (enmeshment)

1 of the 5 major channels of resistance blurring the difference between self & environment. Strive to blend in & get along with everyone

Six Components of Gestalt Therapy Methodology

The continuum of experience; here and now; paradoxical theory of change; the experiment;
authentic encounter; Process-oriented diagnosis

Language that denies power

In Gestalt therapy when you ask a client to experiment by omitting qualifiers in their statements is called...

Unfinished business

suppressed internal dialogue represents what...


general orientation of Gestalt therapy is toward...

Gestalt experiments

what should be aimed @ awareness not @ simple solutions to a clients problem


termed in Gestalt therapy as ready made techniques used to make things happen in a session or achieve a goal, can be a catalyst for individual work or promote group interaction


termed in Gestalt therapy as growing out of interaction between client & therapist, emerge within dialogue, can be the cornerstone of experiential learning, whatever happens should be a surprise to both client & therapist

Get clients permission & they must trust you

for a Gestalt experiment to be successful you must first...

Traditional Gestalt Therapy

all about abrasive confrontation, theatrics & intense catharsis (purging of emotions)

Conventional Gestalt Therapy

confrontation can be done in a manner that clients cooperate especially when invited to examine their behaviors, attitudes, & thoughts

Internal dialogue exercise

1 of the 7 Gestalt Therapy interventions goal is to bring about functioning & acceptance of aspects of ones personality that's been disowned & denied. Main division is between the "top dog" and the "underdog."

Internal dialogue exercise

conflict between 2 opposing poles in personality is rooted in the introjection mechanism by incorp aspects of others, usually parents

Empty chair technique

Internal dialogue exercise way of getting the client to externalize the interjection..client role plays "top dog" in one chair and "underdog" in the other chair

Internal dialogue exercise

conflict is resolved when client accepts & integrates, rather than disassociates both sides

Internal dialogue exercise

in this Gestalt exercise aim is not to rid certain traits but learn to accept both polarities

Reversal exercise

certain symptoms & behaviors often represent reversals of latent or underlying impulses, this Gestalt exercise reverses clients typical style to accept their negative with their positive side

Reversal exercise

Gestalt exercise that helps clients to accept certain personal attributes they have tried to deny

Rehearsal exercise

Gestalt therapy sharing this with the therapist out loud gives awareness of preparatory means, how client tries to meet others expectations, degree they want 2b approved, accepted, liked, how far they go to attain these.

Gestalt Exaggeration exercise

consists of asking client to exaggerate a movement or gesture repeatedly to intensify feelings attached to behavior to make inner meanings clearer.

Gestalt Staying with the Feeling exercise

when client refers to an unpleasant feeling urge them to stay with it and go deeper into the feeling or behavior they wish to avoid, the goal to unblock & make way for newer growth

Gestalt Dream Work

does not interpret or analyze but brings these back to life & relive them as though they are happening now, become a part of it

Gestalt Dream Work

in this exercise you make a list of all details of the event, remembering each person, event & mood, become each part by transforming yourself & invent dialogue becoming more aware of the range of your feelings

Royal road to integration

according to Perls (1969) dreams are what as client acts out fight between opposing sides to accept & integrate their opposing forces

Perls says the dream is..

the most spontaneous expression for a human, it represents unfinished situations and contains existential message about oneself & current struggle

Making the Rounds Exercise

Gestalt technique has a group member go & speak or do something w/each group member

Making the Rounds Exercise

purpose of this Gestalt technique is for a person to confront, risk, disclose, experiment with new behavior, grow & change

Making the Rounds Exercise

Gestalt therapists do this after sensing a group member wanting to participate but holding back by asking, "are u willing to do something now to get yourself more invested to work on gaining trust & self confidence"


According to Perl (1969) what are the royal road to integration (wholeness)

Gestalt Group Therapy

Leaders actively design experiments for the group while focusing on awareness and contact, encourages direct experience and action for the members

Gestalt Group Therapy

Here-and-now focus allows members to bring unfinished business to the present.

Gestalt Group Therapy

This technique is also very effective in collective cultures because the attitude of respect, interest, compassion & presence

Limitation of Gestalt Therapy

approach has the potential for the therapist to abuse power by using powerful techniques without proper training

Limitation of Gestalt Therapy

approach may not be useful for clients who have difficulty abstracting and imagining

Limitation of Gestalt Therapy

emphasis on therapist authenticity & self disclosure overpowering for some clients

Limitation of Gestalt Therapy

high focus on emotion may pose limitations for clients who have been culturally conditioned to be emotionally reserved

BF Skinner

father of the behavioral approach to psychology

John B Watson

father of behaviorism

Behavioral Therapy

Primary emphasis on effect of environment on behavior

BF Skinner

a determinist e.g. didn't believe humans have free choice, stressed cause & effect links between object, environment, & behavior

Albert Bandura

pioneered work on social modeling/learning, prominent role of observational learning & social modeling in motivation, thought & action. Renamed his theory to Social Cognitive Theory

Behavioral Therapy

these practitioners focus on observable behavior, current determinants of behavior, learning experiences promoting change, tailor treatment strategies to indiv clients & rigorous assessment evaluation

Behavioral Theory

originated in the 50's & early 60's radical departure from psychoanalytic view in application of classical & operant conditioning principles (respondent & reward behavior)

Albert Bandura

60's developed social learning theory combined classical & operant cond with observational learning

Classical Conditioning

certain respondent behaviors (knee jerks, salivation) elicited passively

Operant Conditioning

actions operate on environment producing consequences if reinforcing increases chances behavior will occur again

Behavioral Therapy

key concept, view of human nature-person is the producer & product of their environment. Current trend is developing procedures that actually give control to clients to increase their range of freedom

(1 of the 6) Basic characteristics & assumptions of BT

based on principles & procedures of the scientific method, change maladaptive to adaptive behaviors

(1 of the 6) Basic characteristics & assumptions of BT

deal with clients current problems to help change maladaptive to adaptive behaviors

(1 of the 6) Basic characteristics & assumptions of BT

clients are expected to assume an active role by engaging specific actions to deal with their problems making this therapy largely educational

(1 of the 6) Basic characteristics & assumptions of BT

assumes change can take place without insight into underlying dynamics (different than existential & Gestalt therapies)

(1 of the 6) Basic characteristics & assumptions of BT

focus on assessing overt & covert behavior directly, id problem & evaluate change

(1 of the 6) Basic characteristics & assumptions of BT

treatment interventions are individually tailored to specific problems experienced by clients

Behavioral Therapy

In the therapeutic process goals are determined by the client, goals are also considered central importance in this therapy

BT's general goals

1.Increase personal choice, create new cond's for learning; 2. counselor assists to define specific treatment goals @ 1st session; 3. formal assessment target behaviors 4 change; 4. goals 2b clear, concrete, understood & mutually agreed upon by client/therapist; 5. all resulting in a contract guiding course of therapy adjustable thru out the process as needed

ABC Model

behavior (b) influenced by preceding events called antecedents (a) & events that follow called consequences (c)


elicit a certain behavior


increase or decrease a behavior

The assessment interview

id's particular antecedent & consequent events influencing the clients behavior

Behavioral Therapy

therapist assumes clients make progress because the technique works, not the relationship between client/therapist

Key principle in BT technique

use the least aversive means possible to change behavior

Positive reinforcement

known as the most powerful change agent according to BT Skinner

Applied behavioral analysis

BT OC technique effective in working with developmentally delayed people includes +/- reinforcement, extinction, & +/- punishment

Relaxation training

to cope with stress BT technique most commonly used for stress//anxiety, asthma, headache, hypertension, insomnia, irritable bowel syndrome & panic disorder

Systemic desensitization

one of the BT exposure therapies uses CC were phobias are paired with relaxation to extinct the fear

Systemic desensitization

BT technique used to treat phobias and other anxiety disorders by pairing gradual exposure to an anxiety provoking situation w/relaxation


portion of BT technique reducing fear or anxiety by repeatedly exposing a person to emotional stimuli while the person is deeply relaxed..exposure then relaxation, exposure then relaxation, exposure then relaxation..etc

Anxiety hierarchy

a rank-ordered list of what the client fears, from least to greatest.

In Vivo exposure

BT technique that involves client exposure to the actual anxiety-evoking events rather than simply imagining these situations.

In Vivo exposure

has been a cornerstone of behavior therapy for decades


in BT can be in vivo or imaginal prolonged & extensive exposure to stimuli that evokes high anxiety without the opportunity to avoid them

Interoceptive conditioning

Classical conditioning of panic attacks in response to internal bodily sensations of arousal

Eye movement desensitization & reprocessing (EMDR)

BT exposure based therapy involving imaginal flooding, cognitive restructuring & use of rhythmic eye movements & other bi-lateral stimulation to treat traumatic stress disorders

Social skills training

A BT designed to improve interpersonal skills that emphasizes shaping, modeling, and behavioral rehearsal.

Social skills training

Includes anger management and assertion training where clients are taught to replace maladaptive social skills with adaptive skills

Self modification (management) programs

giving psychology away, when psychologists are willing to share their knowledge so consumers increase self directed lives independently

Self modification (management) programs

teach people to use coping skills in problematic situations independently away from a counselors session

False hope syndrome

usually a result of repeated failure due to unrealistic expectations when using self modification programs

Multi modal therapy

begins with a comprehensive assessment of the 7 modalities of human functioning & interactions among them

7 modalities of human functioning

BASICID. Behavior, Affective response, Sensations, Images, Cognitions, Interpersonal relationships, Drugs

Multi modal therapy

therapist id 1 specific issue from each aspect of basicid as a target for change & teach clients a range of techniques to use for faulty thinking

Applied behavior analysis

training new behavior, effective in working with developmentally delayed people, aka behavior modification, the use of operant conditioning principles to change human behavior


becoming aware of ones own mind from one moment to the next with gentle acceptance

Dialectic behavior therapy (DBT)

learning emotional regulation & mindfulness, used for treatment of borderline personality disorder

Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT)

BT learning acceptance & non judgement of thoughts & feelings as they occur.

Mindfulness based stress reduction

BT meditation & yoga includes a body scan meditation help clients observe all sensations in their body

Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT)

focus allowing experience to come & go while pursuing a meaningful life

Behavioral therapy group counseling

treatments a) rely on empirical support. b) emphasize self management skills & though restructuring. & c) are typically brief

Behavioral therapy group counseling

Leader assumes role of teacher & encourage members to learn & practice skills in everyday living

Behavioral therapy group counseling

Leaders and members create collaborative precise treatment goals & objectively measure treatment outcome

Behavioral therapy strength

Doesn't generally place emphasis on experiencing catharsis (purging emotions)

Behavioral therapy strength

stresses changing specific behaviors & developing problem solving skills

Behavioral therapy strength

specificity; task oriented; focus on objectivity; cognition & behavior; action oriented; dealing with present > than past; brief interventions; & teaches coping strategies

Behavioral therapy strength

focuses on environmental conditions contributing to clients problems, takes into consideration social & cultural dimensions of the clients life

Behavioral therapy limitation

heavy focus on behavioral change may detract from clients experience of emotions

Behavioral therapy limitation

some counselors believe role of teacher de emphasizes the important relational factors in the client/therapist relationship

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