Lesson 2: PRIMARY COUNSELING THERAPIES

Lesson 2: PRIMARY COUNSELING THERAPIES

When deciding on an appropriate counselor or psychotherapist, it can be useful to understand the different therapies they may use. Although all can be effective, you may find one approach more appealing than another, or find that some approaches are better for a certain area of counseling or psychotherapy than others. Psychological therapies generally fall into four categories. These are behavioral therapies, which focus on cognitions and behaviors, psychoanalytical and psychodynamic therapies, which focus on the unconscious relationship patterns that evolved from childhood, humanistic therapies, which focus on self-development in the ‘here and now’ and arts therapies, which use creative arts within the therapeutic process. This is a generalization though and counseling or psychotherapy usually overlaps some of these techniques. Some counselors or psychotherapists practice a form of ‘integrative’ therapy, which means they draw on and blend specific types of techniques. Other practitioners work in an ‘eclectic’ way, which means they take elements of several different models and combine them when working with clients. There are also a number of specific other therapies that can be used.

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