Alfred Alder, a contemporary of Freud, chose to distance himself from Freud and his theories of human behavior. Alder developed his own approach to therapy based on his belief that people’s behaviors and skills are a result of their experiences and emotions. This belief led to the development of the Adlerian Theory, also known as Individual Psychology (Seligman & Reichenberg, 2014).
Core Constructs of Adlerian Theory
Adler believed that people have a self-image that guides their decisions, and that their self-image is a direct result of their childhood. Adler also believed that people are socially motivated and that a person’s actions are purposeful and aimed at ...view middle of the document...
Carlson is restating the life tasks she listed as being important to her happiness; her career, a future relationship, and her children. Through this brief discussion, Dr. Carlson was able to continue to build upon the therapeutic relationship with Gina and establish potential goals for her to focus on.
Adler’s Holistic Approach
When Adler disassociated from Freud, it was largely due to Freud’s narrowed focus and Freud’s lack of interest in considering the whole person (Seligman & Reichenberg, 2014). Adler’s approach was holistic. Adlerian therapy does not focus on the specific issue a person is having. Instead, it concentrates on the relationship the client has with the world and how that relationship is expressed in their behaviors, thoughts, and feelings. Adler believed that by understanding how early influences, birth order, family constellations, role in the family, and relationships within a family affected a client, a therapist would be able to interpret how the client sees the world and how that affects their relationships and interactions with others. It as Adler’s belief was that by acknowledging how their past affects their current lifestyle, a client will be able to better address their issues.
Holistic Approach in Action
In the counseling lab video, Dr. Carlson learns from Gina’s early recollections that Gina’s private logic is that no one is going to help her and she needs to do things on her own. By her feelings that no one will help her, Gina has developed a selfishness that prohibits others from the possibility of helping her. She doesn’t appreciate when someone helps her because her private logic is that she doesn’t need help and therefor she doesn’t need to appreciate when she is helped. Dr. Carlson guides her to think about possible ways she can address her selfishness and work towards appreciating others.
Adlerian Therapeutic Techniques
The foundation of Adlerian therapy is knowing the client as a unique individual. At the beginning of therapy, the therapist and client will establish treatment goals and establish a therapeutic relationship. The second step in Adlerian therapy is to gain an understanding of the client as a unique person. This is done through a...