Case Formulation Person-Centered Therapy Essay

Unformatted text preview: Running Head: PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY Person-Centered Case Study of Elsa A Conceptualization and Treatment Plan Scarlet Chancey Liberty University 1 PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 2 Abstract Person-centered therapy helps to build warm relationships between the client and therapist. If a client presents with trust issues the core belief of genuineness has a high success rate of developing a model of a trusting connection. This approach can assist the therapist in showing the client how to improve his or her self-image and better understand it is okay to feel emotions. It is important as a therapist that proper technique is used during therapy to ensure the core beliefs of person-centered therapy are being utilized. Viewing person-centered therapy from a Christian perspective has positive and negative effects. One positive impact of this approach is that the individual is shown that he or she is worthy of being loved unconditionally. Many individuals in this type of therapy have a very low self-image and do not feel worthy of the love of another. A negative impact of this approach from a Christian perspective is it tends to teach the individual to focus solely on one’s self. This can be challenging when wanting an individual to love others when they are being trained to focus on themselves. PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 3 Case Conceptualization of Person-Centered Elsa a single white female presents with periods of anger, high levels of anxiety and trouble maintaining family relationships. Elsa has been unsuccessful at managing her emotions and would like to better understand methods and techniques that help deal with emotions. With the insecurities Elsa presents, the person-centered therapy will be the best treatment route for her. This particular approach will be helpful in reducing Elsa’s anger and anxiety by helping her to understand how to trust others and to give her a better selfimage. With time and trust, a meaningful relationship can be developed between the client and therapist. By the therapist modeling the tools for a trusting relationship, Elsa can utilize this example into her personal connections. The developer of the person-centered theory is Carl Rogers and it took him more than 40 years to fully develop this particular theory (Murdock, 2013). As he spent time developing his theory, Rogers made a number of changes such as calling it nondirective therapy and client-centered therapy. It was not until the 1980s that his theory was called person-centered approach (Murdock, 2013). What led Rogers to a new approach in therapy is when the approach that was being used during the time of his works was not having a high success rate with his clients. Rogers set out to change the client-therapist relationship. He is known for giving an individual seeking therapy the term client (Murdock, 2013). He was also great at keeping records of his counseling sessions that was used during his research and presented in his books. Rogers approach to human nature is that a client needs to be able to trust the person they are seeking help from and the therapist should be warm and understanding towards the client. One basis for person-centered therapy is that the PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 4 therapist should help the client grow towards self-actualization and should emphasize the client focus on the hear-and-now (McLeod, 2015). Back during the 1950s, therapeutic approaches were not very empathetic and Carl Rogers was out to change that. Part of his development of the person-centered therapy technique involves a warm and cheerful type of therapy that is provided by psychodynamic therapists (McLeod, 2015). The three basic principles of this type of therapy are genuineness from the therapist, providing unconditional positive regard, and being empathetic with the client during therapy. This was a core belief of Rogers that with these principles the client could expand to his or her full ability. There has been extensive research on this particular theory, much of the attempts were to produce predictions rather than the results from research on the approach (Murdock, 2013). Rogers not only applied his approach to clients in therapy but also outside of therapy into many different interpersonal relationships. He felt that it was important to view the client as a whole and assisted in many different groups that involved marriage and education (Murdock, 2013). One extensive study performed to validate the effectiveness of person-centered therapy, found that a substantial number of clients who underwent this approach had a very high client satisfaction outcome after the therapeutic relationship (Kirschenbaum & Jourdan, 2005). A substantial study that was performed to support person-centered therapy was conducted to understand the core conditions by developing a test called Barrett-Lennard Relationship Inventory and is still used by many in the field today (Barrett-Lennard, 1959). Research was also performed to test the reliability of the theory and manipulations were made on by changing the empathy and positive regard levels with a small sample PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 5 group. This particular theory has faced great criticism and the ability to measure empathy, unconditional positive regard and congruence has deteriorated the empirical support (Murdock, 2013). Empathy has shown the greatest empirical support related to personcentered theory but the theory as a whole the research has been supportive of the theory. This theory has been shown to assist in reducing anxiety, depression, and improving self-regard. Person-centered therapy will be helpful by working on a more positive self-regard, which can reduce the amount of anxiety, and depression the client is experiencing. Working to rebuild Elsa’s self-structure can help to help her rediscover who she is on the inside. Using a positive view of the client can help to make the most of his or her potential and allow for more self-growth within the sessions (Murdock, 2013). When viewing the problems that Elsa presented at the initial interview, using person-centered therapy is appropriate due to the fact it will help for Elsa to gain trust in individuals and offer a great deal of empathy and understanding. Elsa is missing selfactualization and by giving her the opportunity to eliminate the negative self-images that have developed it can be a positive experience for Elsa. Working through sessions will give Elsa the tools needed to figure out who she is and build up her relationships as she learns to love herself. Being genuine with Elsa can help to build a trusting relationship with Elsa that she appears to have been missing most of her life. It will also be helpful to give Elsa a better understanding to discover different areas of herself that she might have missed due to her fear and anxiety. Some ethical issues that might arise using this theory would be making sure as a person-centered therapist practicing within the scope of your education is important. To avoid ethical issues it is important to make sure as a therapist you are practicing within PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 6 the limitations of your education and experience (American Psychological Association, 2010). When practicing person-centered therapy it is important to ensure that multicultural empathy is being utilized. This type of therapy requires a great deal of empathy and to be a multicultural therapist using this theory, a therapist must be sure to not be assertive with a particular view on various cultures (Quinn, 2012). This particular approach has been used around the world and can maximize potential by making a few cultural adjustments. By learning about the background of the client can help to discover any preconceived thoughts about a particular culture (MacDougall, 2002). Being aware of the best way to maximize cultural empathy can help in achieving multicultural competence in this particular approach with a variety of clients. Treatment Plan and Interventions Presenting Problems: Elsa presents herself having high levels of anxiety, feeling depressed and having a lack of self-esteem. Feeling neglected by her parents, Elsa has some resentment and anger towards her sister Anna. By staying isolated most of her life, Elsa feels that she has lost the ability to see the good in herself and have meaningful relationships with others around her. Elsa has been unsuccessful at managing her insecurities, which has led to her inability to maintain a stable job and meaningful relationships. As the interview continued Elsa stated her parents neglect led her to live such an isolated life. Goals for Counseling Utilizing a person-centered approach, the goal of therapy is to assist Elsa in having a better ability to control her anger outburst, work through her resentment towards PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 7 her sister Anna to rebuild that relationship and regain positive self-images to remove her insecurities within herself. By using this approach, the goal is to build a genuine and trustworthy relationship with the therapist to model how Elsa can have meaningful relationships with others. Interventions Genuineness. With the lack of nurturing from her parents, Elsa has lost her ability to trust in herself and others around her. By constantly running away from those around her she has shown that she needs to learn to not only trust herself but those around her as well. Having stressed to Elsa that I don’t expect her to trust me in the beginning, I want her to keep an open mind while we build rapport. Seeing Elsa being guarded and clamming up during sessions, I plan to integrate into our sessions, situations I may have experienced that had to deal with trusting others and how I overcome those thoughts. I need her to know that I trust her enough to share my insecurities with her and by doing this, it can aide in the process of Elsa feeling comfortable enough to start opening up to me. Building trust with Elsa will hopefully transfer into her relationship with Anna and restore other relationships around her as well. Positive Regard. The amount of insecurities that Elsa holds onto makes it difficult for her to see the good in side of her. By providing support and care for Elsa even when she is expressing her darkest thoughts and feelings can help to improve the way she views herself. I need Elsa to understand that she is worthy of love regardless of the amount of anxiety and depression she is feeling. Having Elsa explore her insecurities and work through the amount of fear she keeps inside can help her to learn how to better understand her feelings, and how her anxiety is connected to losing her parents at such an PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 8 early age. Providing Elsa unconditional acceptance can be a key factor in her success during therapy. Empathy. To improve the feelings of anxiety and fear Elsa is dealing with, showing her that I understand how she is feeling can help to improve her thoughts. Putting myself in her situation and then explaining how I might handle it could give Elsa a better understanding how to view certain feelings and situations. Not that I want Elsa to feel her views are inaccurate, it is important for her to get a better view on how to look at certain situations. Elsa has not been able to recognize or handle her feelings for so long that she has viewed herself as a danger to others for feeling angry. By Elsa understanding that I have not destroyed the life of another individual for feeling angry can show her that feelings are a normal part of life. Spiritual Applications Compatibilities: Person-centered therapy is compatible with Christian principles in a few ways. First, therapists that practice person-centered therapy are providing unconditional support, which is comparable with how we are viewed by Jesus [Jon11]. Selfactualization is important when submitting ourselves to repent to God. It is important to love others as we are loved by God. This approach shows the individual that no matter how bad our past is; we are loved and viewed as a child of God [Jon11]. Secondly, this approach focuses on the person and not the problem. By focusing on the person it is extensively tailored to model how Jesus and his disciples set out in the early development of the Church. Lastly, by proving such warm embracing to large parts of communities it shows how to effectively assist others who are in a time of need [Jon11]. PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 9 Incompatibilities: Person-centered therapy can be considered incompatible with Christian principles by the following ways. First, feeling angry with a parent or sibling could be viewed in the Christian principles as a sign of disrespect and could teach the individual it is not okay to feel and be who they are. Second, this particular principle can contribute to distorted selfviews, which can cause issues later in life [Jon11]. Lastly, person-centered therapy can be viewed as incompatible with Christian principles because it focuses against authority, freedom and focuses on one’s self. While it can be viewed as a good theory to use in therapy, comparing person-centered approach with Christian principles it can present issues when trying to teach an individual to show love and compassion to others. [Mur13]. Conclusions During the course of treatment, it is my goal that Elsa can become stronger at recognizing her anger towards her sister and work through her feelings linked to it. The lack of security Elsa faced as a child has resurfaced as an adult causing her to have a tremendous amount of insecurities that have impacted her daily life and relationships. It is important that during the course of her treatment, reassuring Elsa and offering her a sense of security can help her to overcome her feelings associated with the lack of security. Over time Elsa should be able to better understand why her parents did what they had to do in what they felt was going to protect her. By Elsa being able to understand the actions of her parents, she will be able to remove her insecurities and understand that she can accept herself as she is. PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 10 References American Psychological Association. (2010, June 1). Ethical Principles of Psychologist and Code of Conduct. Retrieved November 16, 2015, from American Psychological Association: Barrett-Lennard, G.T. (1959). Dimensions of perceived therapist response related to therapeutic change (Unpublished doctoral dissertation). University of Chicago. PERSON-CENTERED CASE STUDY 11 Jones, S. L., & Butman, R. E. (2011). Modern Psychotherapies: A comprehensive Christian appraisal (2nd ed.). Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic. Kirschenbaum, H., & Jourdan, A. (2005). The current status of Carl Rogers and the person-centered approach. Psychology: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 42 (1), 37-51. MacDougall, C. (2002). Roger's person-centered approach: Consideration for use in multicultural counseling. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 42(2), 48-65. McLeod, S.A. (2015). Person Centered Therapy. Retrieved from Murdock, N. L. (2013). Theories of counseling and psychotherapy: A case approach (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle Creek, NJ: Pearson. Quinn, A. (2012). A person-centered approach to multicultural counseling competence. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 53(2), 202-251. ...
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Person Centered Case Conceptualization

2395 WordsNov 5th, 201410 Pages

Person-Centered Case Study of Melissa
A Conceptualization and Treatment Plan
Liberty University

Person-centered therapy was developed over the course of approximately 40 years by a man named Carl Rogers. Rogers believed a person experienced dysfunction when they are unable to experience themselves as the individual they perceive themselves to be. This is a person-centered case study for Melissa Reed who views her ideal self as a mother and wife. A woman who is now on her fifth marriage and has relational discord with her two daughters struggles with a sense of self-worth. The therapist will attempt to help Melissa progress through therapy at her own pace while working toward congruency between her real self and who she…show more content…

This will allow her the freedom to explore all parts of herself; parts that have been denied or distorted as a result of her life experience. Therapy should offer her the opportunity to recognize conditions she has internalized that have caused feelings of unworthiness or conditions that are unrealistic that must be met for her to experience a sense of self-worth. Boontarika Narknisorn (2012) provides a list of qualities that person centered therapy can enhance through the goals of the therapy:
“enhancing self-awareness, recognizing values of ‘congruence, unconditional positive regard, and empathic understanding’, self-responsibility, understanding one’s feelings, awareness of one’s own perspective, being open to experience, being rational, living a fuller life, positive life-direction, acceptance of one’s and other’s uniqueness, prizing one and others, and living a moral and ethical life” (pg. 343).
Creating a Therapeutic Alliance. When working with Melissa via the person-centered therapy approach, I would work at creating a strong therapeutic alliance. Clinton and Ohlschlager (2002), provide four steps to creating a therapeutic alliance within the first few sessions: “suspending criticism and judgmental talk, listening actively, staying

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