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CSL 6805.01

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  1. CSL 6805.01 Chapters 10, 11, 12 &13

  2. Person Centered Group Approach Carl Rogers (1902-1987)

  3. Person-Centered Group Approach • The Person-Centered Approach Challenges: • The assumption that “the group leader knows best” • The validity of advice, suggestion, persuasion, teaching, diagnosis, and interpretation • The belief that group members cannot understand and resolve their own problems without active and directive intervention of the leader • The focus on problems over persons • The necessity of using techniques to get or keep a group moving

  4. Humanism • Overlaps with Existentialism, but focuses on human capacities aimed at growth: • Love, freedom, choice, creativity, purpose, relatedness, meaning, values, self-actualization, autonomy, responsibility • Carl Rogers, Rollo May, Abraham Maslow, Clark Moustakas, Sidney Jourard, Fritz Perls, James Bugental

  5. Humanism – Key Concepts • Self-awareness – people who are self-aware can make more life-affirming choices. • Phenomenological approach – understand reality from client’s perspective • Self-actualization - Innate process by which a person tends to grow spiritually and realize potential • Self-determining – although influenced by past, individuals determine who they become through choice • Respect for subjective experience of each person – that people are capable of acting in responsible and caring ways in interpersonal relationships

  6. Person-Centered Approach [PCA] PCA in group practice emphasizes: • Therapy as a shared journey • The person’s innate striving for self-actualization • The personal characteristics of the facilitator and the quality of the therapeutic relationships within the group • The facilitator’s creation of a permissive, “growth promoting” climate • People are capable of self-directed growth if the core conditions are present • Trust in the group process: Members can be trusted to move in a constructive direction

  7. Person Centered Approach • In nondirective counseling the therapist’s realness and empathy are emphasized, and the therapeutic relationship rather than the therapist’s techniques are viewed as the central factor in facilitating change. • Basic trust in the client’s ability to move forward if conditions fostering growth are present

  8. Therapeutic Conditions for Growth • Congruence—genuineness or realness • The greater the extent to which facilitators are real, the more members will change and grow • Unconditional positive regard and acceptance • Caring not contaminated by judgment • An attitude of receptiveness toward the subjective and experiential world of the members • Empathy • This is the ability to deeply grasp the member’s subjective world • Facilitator’s attitudes are more important than knowledge

  9. Congruence & Genuineness • Therapist is real, genuine, integrated & authentic during therapy; human being struggling for realness • Therapist has no false front; match of inner & outer expression of experience • Therapist can openly express feelings, thoughts, reactions & attitudes present in relationships with client

  10. Unconditional Positive Regard • Therapist communicates deep & genuine caring for client as a person • Caring is unconditional-no evaluation or judgment of client’s feelings, thoughts or behaviors • Caring does not come from need of reciprocal caring of therapist by client • Acceptance & recognition of client’s right to have own beliefs & feelings

  11. Accurate Empathic Understanding • Therapist understands client’s experience & feelings as revealed in interaction • Therapist tries to sense client’s subjective experience in here and now • Sense the other’s feelings as if my own • Capable of reflecting the experience of client back to client-encourages client to be more reflective • Encourages client’s own understanding & clarification of beliefs and worldviews

  12. Six Core Conditions Necessary and sufficient for personality changes to occur 1. Two persons are in psychological contact 2. The first, the client, is experiencing incongruency 3. The second person, the therapist, is congruent or integrated in the relationship 4. The therapist experiences unconditional positive regard or real caring for the client 5. The therapist experiences empathy for the client’s internal frame of reference and endeavors to communicate this to the client 6. The communication to the client is, to a minimal degree, achieved

  13. Process of Therapy • Client’s communications about externals & not self • Client describes feelings but not recognize or “own” them personally • Client talks about self as an object in terms of past experiences • Client experiences feelings in present-just describes them with distrust & fear • Client experiences & expresses feelings freely in present-feelings bubble up • Client accepts own feelings in immediacy & richness • Client trusts new experiences & relates to others openly & freely

  14. The Group Counselor • Focuses on the quality of the therapeutic relationship • Understands that the presence of facilitator is of the utmost importance • More concerned about personal qualities rather than techniques of leading a group • Serves as a model of a human being struggling toward greater realness • Is genuine, integrated, and authentic, without a false front • Can openly express feelings and attitudes that are present in the relationship with the group members • Understands the role of group counselor is that of a facilitator—using self as an instrument of change

  15. Techniques • Listening • Accepting • Respecting • Understanding • Responding

  16. Person-Centered Expressive Arts • Natalie Rogers • Principles of expressive arts therapy • Expressive arts as a multimodal approach to integrating mind, body, emotions, and spiritual inner resources through art forms • All people have the ability to be creative • The creative process is healing • Conditions that foster creativity • Openness to experience • Internal locus of evaluation • Some guidelines for creative expression in groups • Important to offer stimulating and challenging experiences • Essential to create a nonjudgmental and supportive climate • The facilitator’s “way of being” is more important than techniques used in expressive arts therapy

  17. Evaluation of PCA in Groups • Contributions and strengths of the approach • A good foundation for the initial stage of most groups • Value is placed on empathy and respect for members • Values and principles of PCA can be incorporated into many other approaches • This approach places prime emphasis on the group counselor as a person • The philosophy can be a basic part of working with culturally diverse client populations • Limitations of the approach • Many leaders want and need more structure than this approach allows

  18. Gestalt Therapy • Fritz Perls (1893-1970) Germany • Married Laura Perls in 1930 • US in 1946 • Founded New York Institute of Gestalt Therapy

  19. Therapeutic Goals in Groups • Existential and Phenomenological—it is grounded in the member’s “here and now” experience • Emphasizes how each member views the world • Initial goal is for group members to gain awareness of what they are experiencing and doing now • Promotes direct experiencing rather than the abstractness of talking about situations • Rather than talk about a childhood trauma, the group participant is encouraged to become the hurt child • As members acquire present-centered awareness, significant unfinished business emerges • Awareness is seen as curative and growth-producing

  20. Continuum of Awareness • Awareness involves staying with the moment-to-moment flow of experiencing • By staying with present-centered awareness, members discover how they function in the world • Group leaders ask “what” and “how” questions • What are you experiencing now? • How are you experiencing your anxiety in your body?

  21. Four Major Principles of Gestalt Therapy • Holism-interested in the whole person-emphasis on integration-thoughts, feelings, behaviors, body, & dreams • Field Theory-organism must be seen in its environment or its context as part of a constantly changing field; everything is relational, in flux, interrelated & in process • Figure Formation Process-tracks how some aspect of the environmental field emerges from the background and becomes a focal point of the individual’s attention • Organismic self-regulation-restore equilibrium or contribute to growth & change

  22. The Here-and-Now • Our “power is in the present” • Nothing exists except the “now” • The past is gone and the future has not yet arrived • The past is important, but only as it is related to present functioning • A here-and-now focus brings vitality to a group • For many people the power of the present is lost • They may focus on their past mistakes or engage in endless resolutions and plans for the future • The challenge is to come into closer contact with ongoing experiencing from moment to moment

  23. Unfinished Business • Feelings about the past are unexpressed • These feelings are associated with distinct memories and fantasies • Feelings not fully experienced linger in the background and interfere with effective contact and functioning • Result: • Preoccupation, compulsive behavior, wariness, oppressive energy, and self-defeating behavior • Unfinished business needs to be addressed so that we can move toward health and integration

  24. Contact and Disturbances to Contact • CONTACT– interacting with nature and with other people without losing one’s individuality • DISTURBANCES TO CONTACT – the defenses we develop to prevent us from experiencing the present fully • Gestalt therapist focuses on disturbances to contact • Five contact boundary disturbances: • Introjection • Projection • Retroflection • Confluence • Deflection

  25. Introjection-channel of resistance • Tendency to uncritically accept others’ beliefs and standards without assimilating them to make them congruent with who we are • Passively incorporate what the environment provides, spending little time on becoming clear about what we need or want

  26. Projection -channel of resistance • Disown aspects of self by assigning them to environment • Trouble distinguishing between inside & outside world • Disown attributes of self that are inconsistent with self-image & put onto other people • To avoid taking responsibility for our own feelings & person who we really are • Keeps us powerless to initiate change

  27. Deflection -channel of resistance • Process of distraction-keep difficult to sustain sense of contact with reality • Overuse of humor, abstract generalizations & questions rather than statements-results in emotional depletion • Diminished emotional experience-by speaking through and for others

  28. Confluence-channel of resistance • Blurring differentiation between self & environment • In relationships, it is a need to fit in, an absence of conflict, a belief all people feel & think same way • High need for acceptance, approval • Stay safe, never express own feelings

  29. Energy and Blocks to Energy • Unexpressed emotions create a blockage in the body • Energy • In a Gestalt group, the focus is on energy—within individuals and with the group as a whole • Gestalt leaders pay attention to where energy is located, how it is used, and how it can be blocked • Blocks to energy • These blocks manifest themselves in the body in various ways • Members may not be aware of their energy or where it is located • Experiments can be designed to assist members in becoming aware of the ways they may be blocking their energy

  30. Role of Gestalt Leader • Gestalt leaders encourage members to heighten their awareness • Gestalt leaders focus on contact, awareness, and experimentation • Gestalt leaders take an active role in creating experiments to assist members in gaining awareness • Main role of leader is to create a safe climate that allows members to feel free in trying out new ways of being and behaving • Central role of the relationship: • Contemporary Gestalt practice emphasizes a dialogic relationship (attitude) • Emphasis is on presence, authentic dialogue, gentleness, and self-expression by the leader

  31. Client’s Process in Gestalt Work • Discovery - Surprises for client • new realizations about self • novel view about old situations • new look at significant other • Accommodation • recognition they have a choice • try new behaviors in safety of group • expand awareness in real world • Assimilation • Learning to influence environment • Deal with surprises encountered daily • Confidence to improve and improvise

  32. Paying Attention to Language • To encourage self-awareness: • Change “It” talk to “I”-Ex. “I am frightened”, instead of “It’s frightening”. • Change “You” talk to “I” talk to take responsibility for feelings, opinions, etc. – “You feel hurt” to “I feel hurt” • Questions can put other members on the defensive. • Pay attention to qualifiers such as “but” because they diminish the power of statements. • Substitute “won’t” for “can’t” to be more honest and take responsibility. • Leaders should not challenge members’ language in the early stages when developing trust and safety.

  33. Therapeutic Experiments • Not a technique or exercise that is prescribed to bring about an action • Phenomenologically based and evolve out of what is occurring within members in the present moment • Members are encouraged to try new behaviors and pay attention to what they are experiencing • A creative happening, rather than a group exercise that the leaders might prepare prior to a group meeting

  34. Experiments • Internal dialogue exercise • Making the rounds • Rehearsal exercise • Exaggeration exercise • Staying with the feelings

  35. Internal Dialogues • Fantasy dialogues promote awareness • Dialogues between opposing sides of self • Dialogues with a parent or significant other • Can use the “empty chair” technique

  36. Making the Rounds • In a group, go up to each person in the group and speak to or do something with each one • Goal: confronting, take risks, disclose self, try new behaviors to grow and change

  37. Rehearsal Exercise • Behavioral rehearsal: role playing a planned for new behavior with a person or people in client’s environment • To reduce stage fright, anxiety or fear “not do the role right” • Encourages spontaneity and willingness to experiment with new behaviors

  38. Exaggeration Exercise • Exaggerate movement or gesture repeatedly to intensify feelings attached to behavior to make inner meaning clearer • Trembling hands or feet, slouched posture, bent shoulders, clenched fists, tight frowning, facial grimacing, crossed arms

  39. Staying with the Feelings • Keep client from escaping from • Fearful stimuli • Avoiding unpleasant feelings • Encourage to go deeper into feelings or behavior which they wish to avoid (“How are you…”) • Facing, confronting & experiencing feelings-to unblock and make way for new levels of growth-takes courage & pain • Leader avoids telling members the meaning of their gestures, postures, and body symptoms, so that members are more able to stay with what they are experiencing and eventually find their own meaning.

  40. Dream Work in Groups • Principles of Gestalt dream work • Dreams contain an existential message • Dreams are not interpreted by the leader • Members discover their own meaning of their dreams • Guidelines for working with a dream in a group • Relive the dream as though it were happening now • Members asked what interests them about the dream • Members are encouraged to become different parts of the dream • Create dialogue between the various aspects of the dream • Members suggest what they think a dream might be telling them • Other members can share with the person working with the dream how they are affected

  41. Evaluation • Strengths • Integrates theory, practice, research • Shown to benefit clients with various disorders • Limitations • Inept therapists may use powerful interventions to stir up emotions and not sufficiently help clients to work through and obtain closure.

  42. Transactional Analysis • Eric Berne (1910-1970) Canada/Us • TA evolved out of Berne’s dissatisfaction with psychoanalysis • Mary & Robert Goulding • Redecision therapy – combination of TA, Gestalt, psychodrama, behavior therapy

  43. Transactional Analysis • Transactional Analysis (TA) is an interactional and contractual approach to groups • TA is basically a psychoeducational approach to group work • TA is grounded on the assumption that people make present decisions based on their early experiences • Redecision therapy is a form of TA that assists group members in taking charge of their lives by deciding how they will change • The practice of TA is ideally suited to group work • Basic assumption of TA is that we are in charge of what we do, of the ways we think, and of how we feel

  44. Key Concepts of TA • People have a basic trio of Parent, Adult, and Child (P-A-C) ego states • Need for strokes • Injunctions and counterinjunctions • Decisions and redecisions • Games • Basic psychological life positions

  45. Ego States TA Ego States or Personality Aspects Parent Adult Child

  46. The Ego States • Members are taught how to recognize in which ego state they are functioning at any given time • The Parent ego state • This ego state contains the values, morals, core beliefs, and behaviors incorporated from parents • This ego state can be expressed in critical or nurturing behavior • The Adult ego state • This ego state is the objective part of personality and functions as a data processor • The Child ego state • This ego state consists of feelings, impulses, and spontaneous actions

  47. Ego States act and feel much as those who raised us. Parent Controlling Parent… follows rules, accepts slogans, holds opinions without thinking first of facts. Nurturing Parent… Supportive and protective toward others, offers help and guidance.

  48. Ego States Ways of Acting in the Parent Ego State … a frown or stern look. … tone of voice. … pointing of the index finger. … arms folded as to say “what are you doing?” … uses phrases like; “you should,” “you ought to,” “that is right!” … words such as; sympathizing, punishing. moralizing, judging, giving orders, criticizing.

  49. Ego States what we were when we were young. Child Adapted Child… Polite, sociable, recognizes the rights of others, adapts behavior to suit them, can resent the rights/demands of others, complies grudgingly, feels unsure about themselves, procrastinates . Natural Child… Open to life, spontaneous, filled with the sense of wonder and delight, self centered, aggressive, rebellious, does not consider the consequences of feeling or actions.

  50. Ego States Ways of Behaving in the Child Ego State … smiling, laughing, having fun. … tone of voice. … crying, having tantrums, getting into trouble. … childlike facial expressions. … uses words/phrases like; “Wow!,” “Gosh!,” “I wish,” “I feel.”