In response 1, the student does try to explain how the author of the article approaches counseling. He is keen to note that the author somewhat adopts a holistic approach which incorporates a little bit of everything. However, Dr. Thomas does not necessarily adopt a holistic approach. Rather, he tends to employ different approaches in different settings. He observes “the approaches I employ include psychodynamic, cognitive behavioral, Jungian and other humanistic approaches” (Thomas, 2008). The author does acknowledge that not a single approach can work for everyone but rather approaches should be tailor-made to suit the different people. The response fails to capture that important aspect expressed by the author. In expressing his orientation, the student identifies cognitive behavioral therapy as his preferred approach though he does not explicitly state the reasons for this preference. The student also tends to agree with Dr. Thomas on not dwelling on the past. However, I tend to think that dealing with the past is a crucial aspect since it is concerned with stages such as denial and anger. By dealing with the past, one can transit to the present and future with ease.
This response is quite accurate in noting that Dr. Thomas’s theoretical approach is always evolving and tailor-made for the specific client. This is quite true considering that the different types of therapies have their strengths and weaknesses and thus are unique to different types of patients. The response also correctly identifies that the author has more of a humanistic approach but he is careful to observe that when an approach works well on one individual, it does not necessarily mean it will work well on others. The response also disagrees with the author’s view that dwelling in the past is not important by noting that the past is what shapes the present and future. While the student agrees with the author that theoretical approaches should be unique to different clients, he does not explicitly state the type of approach that he would prefer to use or employ in therapy. Rather, he generally talks about the essence of tailor-made approaches to therapy.
Response to Documentary
Sigmund Freud is regarded as the father of psychoanalysis, an aspect which examines how the unconscious affects behavior. Freud’s theories, treatments and innovations had much influence in psychotherapy (Haggerty, 2006). They created much controversy as they were useful in psychology. Freud’s psychoanalytic theory was founded on the unconscious, sexual desires as well as the power of dreams. In the documentary Sigmund Freud Documentary, the contributors talk much about Freud’s contribution to psychology as well as his downsides. What is clear is that they believe Sigmund Freud has probably the greatest influence on contemporary psychotherapy. For example, James Maas, a Professor of Psychology at Cornell University observes that “of all the great figures in psychology, Sigmund Freud was the most influential”. He is described as both a radical and revolutionary. This can be seen in his thirst for accomplishing great things. Elisabeth, the author of Freud’s daughter’s biography, notes that he had a questing of going after a problem and solving it.
The people interviewed in the documentary that it is his views about the unconscious, sexual desires and dreams that greatly influence contemporary psychotherapy to this date. For example, the talking treatment is still used by psychiatrists even to date whereby the psychiatrist lets the patient talk freely. This way, the patient is able to reveal suppressed emotions and things that exist only in the unconscious. This concept is described as groundbreaking in the field of psychology, according to Harold Blum, an Executive Director of the Sigmund Freud Archives. Also, the documentary acknowledges that Freud’s psychosexual stages have been greatly significant in explaining human behavior. Therefore, when the Id, ego and super-ego are used in modern psychology to explain behavior, this is evidence that Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalytic theory has greatly influenced contemporary psychotherapy.
Haggerty, J. (2006). Psychodynamic Therapy. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 12, 2013, from http://psychcentral.com/lib/psychodynamic-therapy/000119
Thomas , R. D. (2008). Theoretical orientation. Retrieved from www.rickdthomasphd.com/theoretical_orientation
YouTube. (2013) Sigmund Freud Documentary. YouTube, 2013.