Unit 9: Psychoanalytic, Adlerian, And Humanistic Theories Of Counselling Flashcards Preview

Introduction To Counselling > Unit 9: Psychoanalytic, Adlerian, And Humanistic Theories Of Counselling > Flashcards

Flashcards in Unit 9: Psychoanalytic, Adlerian, And Humanistic Theories Of Counselling Deck (46):

What is theory? Why is it important?

It is a guide to help counsellors hypothesize about formation of possible solutions to a problem, and help them organize clinical data, make complex processes coherent, and provide conceptual guidance for interventions.
Counsellors decide which theory or theories to use on the basis of their educational background, philosophy, and the needs of clients.

Important because it is the foundation of good counseling. It challenges counsellors to be caring and creative within the confines of a highly personal relationship that is structured for growth and insight. Has an impact on how client communication is conceptualized, how interpersonal relationships develop, how professional ethics are implemented, and how counsellors view themselves as professionals. Without it, counsellors would operate haphazardly in a trial and error manner and risk being both ineffective and harmful. 
Helps explain what happens in a counselling relationship and assists the counsellor in predicting, evaluating, and improving results.


What are the five requirements of a good theory?

1. Clear, easily understood, and communicable. It is coherent and not contradictory

2. Comprehensive. It encompasses explanations for a wide variety of phenomena

3. Explicit and heuristic. It generates research because of its design

4. Specific in relating means to desired outcomes. It contains a way of achieving a desired end product

5. Useful to its intended practitioners. It provides guidelines for research and practice


Using various theories and techniques to match their clients needs with an average of 4.4 theories making up their therapeutic work with clients


A strength is its ability to draw on various theories, techniques, and practises to meet client needs. It's drawbacks is that it can be hazardous to the counselling process if the counsellors not thoroughly familiar with all the aspects of the theories involved.
The unexamined approach of undereducated counsellors is sometimes sarcastically referred to as electric, these counsellors try any and all methods that "turn them on"

Syncretism- A sloppy, unsystematic process of putting unrelated clinical concepts together

Traditional-incorporates an orderly combination of compatible features from diverse sources into a harmonious whole

Theoretical integrationism- requires a counsellor master at least two theories before trying to make any combinations.

Technical eclecticism-procedures from different theories are selected and used in treatment without necessarily subscribing to the theories that spawned them

Trans-theoretical model-developmentally-based and has been empirically derived overtime. It is an alternative to technical eclectic approach is that tend to be inclusive to the point that various components are poorly held together. Model is direction focussed and proposes five stages of change from precontemplation to maintenance and five levels of change


A mind that is attuned to an awareness of the outside world

Conscious mind


A mind that contains hidden memories or forgotten experiences that can be remembered

Preconscious mind


A mind containing the instinctual, repressed, and powerful forces

Unconscious mind


A way of coping with anxiety on the unconscious level by denying or distorting reality

Defense mechanisms


Describe the view of human nature of psychoanalysis and the role of the counselor.

Freud's view of human nature is dynamic with the transformation and exchange of energy within the personality. People have a conscious mind a preconscious mind, and an unconscious mind and the personality consists of three parts, the ID, ego, and super ego. Built on stages of psychosexual development each focussing on a zone of pleasure that is dominant at a particular time. Excessive frustration or overindulgence in the first three stages are the main difficulties that can arise going to the stages

Role of the counselor: function as experts, encouraging their clients to talk about whatever comes to mind, especially childhood experiences. The analysts role is to let clients game inside by real living and working through the unresolved past experiences that come into focus during sessions.


Clients are encouraged to dream and remember dreams. The counsellor is especially sensitive to two aspects of dreams: the manifest content or the obvious meaning, and the latent content or the hidden but true meaning. Dreams are an avenue to understanding the unconscious, and an attempt to fill a childhood wish or express unaknowledged sexual desires

Dream analysis


Describe two techniques used in psychoanalysis

Free association: the client abandons the normal way of censoring thoughts by consciously repressing them and instead says whatever comes to mind, even if the thoughts seem silly, irrational, suggestive, or painful. Unconscious materials enter the conscious mind, and there the counsellor interprets it

Dream analysis: the avenue to understanding the unconscious, clients are encouraged to do dream and remember dreams and the counsellor interprets the manifest content or the obvious meanings, and the latent content the hidden but true meanings


What are the goals of psychoanalysis?

Focus mainly on personal adjustment, usually inducing a reorganization of internal forces within the person. The primary goal is usually to help the client become more aware of the unconscious aspects of his or her personality and to work through current reactions that may be dysfunctional

Help a client work through a developmental stage not previously resolved

Helping clients cope with the demands of the society in which they live


Identify two strengths and two limitations of psychoanalysis

Strengths: the approach stresses the importance of developmental growth stages
Emphasizes the importance of sexuality and the unconscious in human behavior, before this theory came into being, sexuality was denied and little attention was paid to unconscious forces

Limitations: time-consuming and expensive
Is deterministic. For example, Freud attributed certain limitations in women to be a result of gender-that is, of being female


This theory focuses on social interests as well as the purposefulness of behaviour and the importance of developing a healthy style of life

Adlerian theory


A feeling of being connected to society as a part of the social whole, an active interest in and empathy with others, as well as a need and willingness to contribute to the general social good

Social interest


A tendency for each person initially to feel inferior to others, and if this feeling is not overcome, the person develops an

Inferiority complex


A person who overcompensates for feelings of inferiority

Superiority complex


What is the view of human nature in Adlerian counseling?

People are primarily motivated by social interest, and that conscious aspects of behavior, rather than unconscious, are central to the development of personality. People strive to become successful or complete. People are influenced by future goals and past causes. There is a considerable emphasis on birth order.


What is the role of the counsellor in Adlerian counselling

Function primarily as diagnosticians, teachers, and models in the equalitarian relationships established with their clients. They try to assess way clients are oriented to a certain way of thinking and behaving and makes an assessment by gathering information on the family constellation and the clients earliest memories. The client is encouraged to examine and change a faulty lifestyle by developing social interest


What are the goals of Adlerian counseling?

Helping people develop healthy, holistic lifestyles. May mean educating or reeducating clients about what such lifestyles are as well as helping them overcome feelings of inferiority.

One major goal is to help clients overcome a faulty style of life, a life that is self-centred and based on mistaken goals and incorrect assumptions associated with feelings of inferiority


Describe two techniques used in Adlerian counselling

1. Confrontation: the counsellor challenges clients to consider their own private logic. When clients examine this logic, they often realize they can change it and their behaviour

2. Acting "as if": clients are instructed to act as if they are the persons they want to be


What are two strengths and two limitations of Adlerian theory?

Strengths: Fosters and equalitarian atmosphere through the positive techniques that counsellors promote. Rapport and commitment are enhanced by its processes, and the chances for change our increased. Counsellor encouragement and support our valued commodities.
Versatile over the lifespan. Counselling models have been developed for working with children, adolescents, parents, entire families, teacher groups, and other segments of society.

Limitations: lacks a firm, supportive research base. Relatively few empirical studies clearly outline it's effectiveness.
May be too optimistic about human nature, especially social cooperation and interest. Some critics consider the view neglectful of other lifetime dimensions such as the power and place of the unconscious.
Relies heavily on verbal skills, logic, and insight, and therefore may be limited in its applicability to clients who are not intellectually bright


As a descriptor of counseling, this term focusses on the potential of individuals to actively choose and purposefully decide about matters related to themselves and their environments. Help people increase self-understanding through experiencing their feelings. Encompasses counselling theories that are focussed on people as decision-makers and initiators of their own growth and development



What a person needs for a healthy self to emerge according to person-centered counseling, includes love, warmth, care, respect, and acceptance

Positive regard


When a person receives feelings of worth for only behaving in certain ways and for conforming to others wishes

Conditional regard


A deep and genuine caring for the client as a person, prizing the person just for being

Unconditional positive regard


The condition of being transparent in the therapeutic relationship by giving up roles and façades



What is the view of human nature in person-centered counseling?

People are essentially good. Humans are characteristically positive, forward moving, constructive, realistic, and trustworthy. Each person is aware, inner directed, and moving toward self-actualization from infancy on.
For a healthy self to emerge, a person needs positive regard. The person must come to terms with the ideal self and the real self


What is the role of the counsellor in person-centered counseling?

A holistic one where the counsellor promotes the climate in which the client is free and encouraged to explore all aspects of self. Focusses on the counselor-client relationship, described as one with a special "I-Thou" personal quality.
Neither the client nor the counsellor knows what direction the sessions will take or what goals will emerge in the process, each person directs his or her own therapy and the counselor's job is to work as a facilitator rather than a director. Patience is essential


What are the goals in person-centered counseling?

Centre around the client as a person, not his or her problem. Emphasizes that people need to be assisted in learning how to cope with situations and this may be accomplished by helping the client become a fully functioning person who has no need to apply defence mechanisms to every day experiences.
A client is help to identify, use, and integrate his or her own resources and potential


What are two techniques used by person-centered counseling?

There are three necessary and sufficient conditions of counseling: empathy, unconditional positive regard, and congruence

The counsellor must have empathy which may be subjective, interpersonal, or objective. Empathy is primarily the counsellors ability to feel with clients and convey this understanding back to them.

Counsellors must have unconditional positive regard, or acceptance, a deep and genuine caring for the client as a person.

Use other techniques such as limited to self-disclosure of feelings, thoughts, and values. Clients grow by experiencing themselves and others in relationships

Active and passive listening, accurate reflection of thoughts and feelings, clarification, summarization, confrontation, and general or open-ended leads


What are two strengths and two limitations of person-centered counseling?

Strengths: generated extensive research. It initially set the standard for doing research on counselling variables, especially those that Rogers deemed necessary and sufficient to bring about therapeutic change.
The approach has a positive view of human nature and it continues to evolve.
Effective in a number of settings

Limitations: may be too simplistic, optimistic, leisurely, and unfocused for clients in crisis or who need more structure and direction.
Deals only with surface issues and does not challenge the client to explore deeper areas, and because it is short-term, it may not make a permanent impact on the person.
Depends on bright, insightful, hard-working clients for best results. Limited applicability with the severely disabled or young children


What is the view of human nature in existential counseling?

Emphasizes the freedom that human beings have to choose what to make of their circumstances. Believe that people form their lives by the choices they make. Focus on free will of choice and the action that goes with it, people are the authors of their lives and people are responsible for any decision in life they make and that some choices are healthier and more meaningful than others.
Psychopathology is a failure to make meaningful choices and maximize one's potential. Choices may be avoided and potential's not realized because of the anxiety that is involved in action


What is the role of the counsellor in existential counseling?

There are no uniform roles, every client is considered unique, therefore, counsellors are sensitive to all aspects of their clients character.
Concentrate on being at the dick with their clients and entering into deep and personal relationships with them.
Serve as a model of how to achieve individual potential and make decisions. Concentrate on helping the client experience subjective feelings, getting clearer self-understanding, and move toward the establishment of a new way of being in the world. They also focus on ultimate human concerns such as death, freedom, isolation, and meaninglessness


What are the goals in existential counseling?

Helping clients realize the importance of meaning, responsibility, awareness, freedom, and potential. Existentialists hope that clients will take more responsibility for their lives


What are two techniques used in existential counselling

Has fewer techniques available than almost any other model of counseling. This allows counsellors to borrow ideas as well as use a wide range of personal and professional skills.

Most effective and powerful technique is the relationship with the client. The counsellor transcends his or her own needs and focusses on the client and is open and self revealing in an attempt to help the client become more in touch with personal feelings and experiences

Confrontation: clients are confronted with the idea that everyone is responsible for his or her own life


What are two strengths and two limitations of the existential approach?

Strengths: emphasizes the uniqueness of each individual and the importance of meaningfulness in their lives. It is a very humanistic way of working with others.
Recognizes that anxiety is not necessarily a negative condition but is part of human life and can motivate some individuals to make healthy and productive decisions.

Limitations: has not produced a fully developed a model of counselling and therefore lax educational and training programs. Because each practitioner is unique, it prohibits the systematic teaching of theory.
Difficult to implement beyond an individual level because of it subjective nature. It lacks the uniformity that beginning counsellors can readily understand.


Means whole figure



The process of being what one is and not a process of striving to become. It is centred in the present



A school of thought that stresses perception of completeness and wholeness. Arose as a reaction to the reductionist emphasis in other schools of psychology and counseling, such as psychoanalysis and behaviorism. Emphasizes how people function in their totality

Gestalt therapy


What is the view of human nature in Gestalt therapy?

Human beings work for wholeness and completeness in life. Each person has a self-actualizing tendency that emerges through personal interaction with the environment and the beginnings of self-awareness. Persons are more than a sum of their parts.
Anti-deterministic: each person is able to change and become responsible. Focusses on the present
Troubled individuals have an over dependency on intellectual experiences which diminishes the importance of emotions and the senses, limiting a persons ability to respond to various situations. Another problem is the inability to identify and resolve unfinished business-that is, earlier thoughts, feelings, and reactions that still affect personal functioning and interfere with living in the present
Healthy individuals are those who are most aware. People operate on the conscious level from being very aware to being very unaware.
A person may experience difficulty by losing contact with the environment and the resources in it, becoming over involved with the environment and out of touch with the self, failing to put aside unfinished business, becoming fragmented or scattered in many directions, experiencing conflict between the top dog and the underdog, difficulty handling the dichotomies of life, such as love and hate, masculinity and femininity


What is the role of the counsellor in Gestalt counseling?

To create an atmosphere that promotes the clients exploration of what is needed to grow. This atmosphere is provided by being intensely and personally involved with clients and being honest. Counsellors must be exciting, energetic, and fully human. Involvement occurs in the now, which is a continuing process.
The counsellor may help a client focus on blocking energy and using that energy and positive and adaptive ways, or helping the client recognize patterns in his or her life


What are the goals of the counsellor in Gestalt therapy?

Well defined goals such as an emphasis on the here and now and a recognition of the immediacy of experience.
A focus on both nonverbal and verbal expression, and a focus on the concept that life includes making choices. Concentrate on helping a client resolve the past to become integrated including the completion of mentally growing up.
The acceptance of polarities within the person.
Emphasize action, pushing their clients to experience feelings and behaviours and stress the meaning of the word now. The past is no more in the future not yet, only the now exists.


What are two techniques used in Gestalt therapy?

Exercises: ready-made techniques, such as the enactment of fantasies, role-playing, and psychodrama. Employed to evoke a certain response from the client, such as anger or exploration. Example, dream work messages that represent a person's place at a certain time but these dreams are not interpreted but clients present dreams and are then directed to experience what it is like to be each part of the dream, a type of dramatized free association so that the client can get more in touch with the multiple aspects of the self.
Experiments: activities that grow out of the interaction between counsellor and client. They are not planned, and what is learned is often a surprise to both the client and the counsellor.

The empty chair: clients talk to the various parts of their personality, such as the part that is dominant and the part that is passive. And empty chairs the focus. The client may simply talk to the chair as a representative of one part of the self, or the client may switch from chair to chair and have each chair represent a different part. Both rational and irrational parts of the client coming to focus and the client not only sees he sides but also becomes able to deal with the dichotomies within the self.

Confrontation colon cancer is point out to clients incongruent behaviours and feelings and involves asking clients what and how questions


What are two strength and to limitations of Gestalt therapy?

Strengths: emphasizes helping people incorporate and accept all aspects of life. An individual cannot be understood outside the context of a whole person who is choosing to act on the environment in the present.
Helps the client focus on resolving areas of unfinished business.
Is a flexible approach which is not limited to a few techniques.

Limitations: lacks a strong theoretical base. May be all experience and technique or too gimmicky.
Deal strictly with the now and how of experience and does not allow for passive inside and change, which clients are more likely to use.
Too self-centred


After carefully studying psychoanalysis, Adlerian, person-centered, existential, and Gestalt therapy, which one do you prefer and why? If you were working from an eclectic perspective, what would you incorporate from the other theories?

I prefer person-centered counselling because it has a positive outlook on life and focusses on how people can change. It also tends to focus on the whole person and helps assist people with learning how to cope with situations. I also find it standards for counselling helpful such as congruence, empathy, and unconditional positive regard because it gives counsellors direction.

If I was working from an eclectic perspective, I would incorporate the importance of the unconscious and defence mechanisms from psychoanalysis, The importance of social interest from Adlerian counselling and it's focussing on people develop healthy and holistic lifestyles, the free will and forward-looking view of human nature in existential counselling and how these counsellors focus on creating relationships with their clients, and how Gestalt therapy focusses on the whole person rather than splitting them up into a sum of their parts and also how it is forward-looking and I also think the techniques are interesting such as the empty chair technique.


A model that counsellors use as a guide to hypothesize about the formation of possible solutions to a problem. Help counsellors organize clinical data, make complex processes coherent, and provide conceptual guidance for interventions