The process of counseling requires extensive efforts on my part in order to attain desirable outcomes with the clients I work, as the personal values and spiritual beliefs I hold have helped me shape my specific approach to health policy options as a whole. The counseling theories that have influenced mostly my personality and professional attitude are the Adlerian Therapy and the Person-Centered Therapy of Carl Rogers. My goal of becoming a successful counselor reflects the necessity of adequate knowledge on philosophy and its basic assumptions regarding a relevant personal theory of counseling. The fact that I will work with a diverse group of individuals is indicative of the urgency to become sensitive to their culture in order to understand them and provide help to them (Carlson, Watts, Maniacci, & Ellis, 2005). In general, human beings are vulnerable and insufficient in the process of forming relationships. It is important to understand their unique points of view, emotions, thoughts, and behaviors. A thorough study of the different counseling theories led me to the conclusion that the counseling theories that have influenced me most are Adlerian Therapy and Person-Centered Therapy promoted by Carl Rogers.
The therapy of Adler is a specific growth model in its essence, and it had influenced my personal and professional principles significantly. It emphasizes a rather positive view of human nature and the fact that human beings are free to exert control over their own destiny rather than becoming victims to it. Adler argues that individuals create a unique style of life at an early age and that style remains constant throughout the lifespan. Moreover, Adler considers the importance of choice and responsibility, ensuring a sustainable meaning in life, and striving for meaningful goals and success (Carlson, Watts, Maniacci, & Ellis, 2005). The basic assumption that heredity and environment do not completely determine human behavior is leading. On the other hand, people rely on their potential and abilities to create and interpret events. The main requirement for understanding persons is to understand the systems of which they are an integral part. This implies that Adler’s life style assessment can be helpful for gathering important information about clients’ personal lives, their unique attitudes, beliefs, and values. Once realizing that their reality is quite negative, I would consider Adler’s model of encouragement perceived as a powerful tool for changing inappropriate personal beliefs.
I would rely on the extensive use of Adlerian Therapy to guide the way I counsel my clients. Likewise, I find Adlerian’s approach of emphasizing the goals for the future fulfilling and reliable. Even though negative childhood experiences can influence life, the client is free and flexible to choose the direction of his or her life (Rogers, 1965). I would definitely encourage my clients to understand themselves and find out their reinforcing purposes in life as well as help them make better choices. This can also happen through the implementation of the Person-Centered Therapy of Rogers. The basic assumption reflected in this model of therapy is that individuals are essentially trustworthy. They emerge with immense capacities to understand themselves, their place in the world, and their overwhelming problems without direct intervention of the counselor. Such fundamental trust in the person is perceived as an actualizing process of personal growth and development.
It is apparent that the value of the authority of the person emphasizes the internal view. I would view clients as going in their own ways, and this requires empathic understanding from the client’s internal frame. Although clients may be vulnerable and anxious, the psychological interaction with an empathic counselor will lead to positive outcomes (Rogers, 1965). I agree with Roger’s basic assumptions regarding the roles and responsibilities of the attentive counselor, who should avoid judgments and certain stereotypes when working with clients.
- Carlson, J., Watts, R. E., Maniacci, M., & Ellis, A (2005). Adlerian therapy: Theory and practice. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.
- Rogers, C. R. (1965). Client-centered therapy. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin.