Gestalt Therapy was founded by Frederick (Fritz) Perls and his wife, Laura Perls, back in the 1940s while living in Germany. Fritz was a psychoanalyst who was heavily influenced by psychology and philosophy. Laure Perls had a degree in psychology and a significant amount of the existential and phenomenological influences of Gestalt Therapy methods came from her knowledge. These particular studies helped to create the Gestalt Therapy framework and the underlying principles of the intervention approach. Gestalt Therapy became established in New York City as a work shop institute in the 1950s (Diedrich, 2002).
Although it is also known to be a form of psychotherapy, Gestalt therapy is a field theoretical approach to exploring, experimenting and determining how people develop a purpose and a sense of meaning through awareness and fundamental change. Gestalt therapy holds the viewpoint of field theory as a method of exploring and describing a whole which is made up of parts that are all in immediate response and relationship to each other where no part of the whole is uninfluenced by what goes on in the field. In Gestalt therapy, the field represents the life and environment of the person as well at the other people they have interaction with. Gestalt formation processes are started by the needs of the patient both physiological and psychological. The immediate experience of the patient serves as the foundation and starting point of the therapy. The therapy involves having the patient physically work as a collaborator to create self-awareness of the here and now and emphasizes that the patient’s experience is more reliable than what they assume they know about the problem they are facing (Yontef, 2007)...
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...n empirical research backing due to the complex nature of the framework and the skills that are required to effectively implement the intervention methods over a full range of problematic conditions. The recent gains in empirical research support has help Gestalt Therapy to resurface as an accepted method of intervention therapy. Gestalt Therapy is a unique and culturally sensitive alternative intervention approach to other commonly used therapeutic interventions in today’s social work practice. There is a high potential for great value and professional development for social workers who study Gestalt Therapy. Therapists that implement Gestalt Therapy intervention techniques are only limited by their imagination and creativity in developing different ways of utilizing these techniques to accommodate the needs of their clients in a non-biased model (Harman, 1974).
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- As stated in Encyclopedia Britannica, “Gestalt therapy is a humanistic method of psychotherapy that takes a holistic approach to human experience by stressing individual responsibility and awareness of present psychological and physical needs (Gestalt Therapy). Gestalt therapy was first introduced by Frederick, Fritz, and Laura Perls in 1940. Gestalt therapy teaches people to become aware of situations in them and to respond to those situations fully and reasonably (Gestalt Therapy).... [tags: Psychotherapy, Gestalt therapy, Psychoanalysis]
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Gestalt Therapy : An Existential, Phenomenological And Process Based Approach That Encompasses Choice, Awareness, And Responsibility
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