Monday, October 20, 2014

Experiential Therapy

Experiential Therapy


Theory Foundation

■ Modern person has means to live but often has no meaning to live for- this is the malady of our times, meaninglessness or existential vacuum

■ Purpose of therapy is to challenge people to find meaning and purpose through suffering,
work and love

■ It takes courage to BE 

  • Our choices determine the kind of person we are
  • We are in constant struggle with:


  1. Our want to grow toward maturity and independence
  2. Realizing expansion and growth is often a painful process
  3. Struggling between security and dependence and delights and pain of growth


■ Phenomenological approach

  • People’s perceptions or subjective realities are considered to be valid data for investigation
  • Phenomenological discrepancies
  • Two people perceiving the same situation differently

■ Non-Deterministic approach
o Existentialist argue that it is an oversimplification to view people as controlled by fixed physical laws
o Encouragement of theories that consider individual initiative, creativity, and self fulfillment
o Focus on active, positive aspects of human growth

I-Though dialogue vs. I-It Dialogue
o I-though

  • human confirms the other person as being of unique valued
  • Direct mutual relationship

o I-it

  • Person uses others but does not value them for themselves
  • Utilitarian

o Self disclosing of therapist emotional response to client’s demonstration of valuing of client’s feelings and perspective.




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