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Psychotherapy Essay

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My preferred theoretical orientation is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). The main assumption of CBT is that events and situations in life do not cause emotional problems (e.g., guilt or depression); rather problems are a by-product irrational beliefs and perceptions about the situations (Corey, 2009). The goals of CBT focus on correcting the client’s automatic and self-defeating thoughts, which should ultimately help them to develop a more adaptive philosophy of life (Corey, 2009). CBT focuses on putting insight into action, so by creating insight and changing thoughts the client should be able to understand and modify their behaviors and emotions. I like that this approach focuses on challenging and changing the client’s cognitive distortions, core beliefs, automatic thoughts, and schemas. Another positive aspect is that this approach focuses on the cognitive triad, which consists of how one views the self, the world, and the future (Corey, 2009). Furthermore, CBT places responsibility on the individual to take an active role and make the changes to their thoughts and behaviors, both in and out of the therapy sessions (Corey, 2009).
In order to bring about change, the client needs to understand that the primary source of difficulty lies in their belief system and how they perceive events (Kellogg & Young, 2008). CBT has manualized treatment techniques, is short-term, and teaches the client skills to change their thoughts or beliefs in the future (Kellogg &Young, 2008). CBT is open to using techniques from other approaches that fit the needs of the client, and the empirically validated techniques of CBT, when individualized for the client, work well in other approaches (Corey, 2009). Overall, CBT is a structured approach th...


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...to aspects of the disorder (Scaturo, 2001). It is rare for a client to come into therapy with only one disorder that has the outlined symptoms of the diagnosis that calls for a particular treatment. Therefore, following the manual stringently may not help the client improve, but making slight deviations depending on the client’s characteristics and circumstances may allow the technique to be successfully adapted and useful for the individual. It is also likely that clinical psychologist add their own individual preferences to therapy no matter what therapeutic approach or technique they use (Scaturo, 2001). A balance between the use of manualized treatments and clinical judgment to formulate the case conceptualization need to be used in order to gather enough information on the client to successfully use any necessary treatment techniques (Craske & Zucker, 2001).



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