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The Strengths of Person-centered Psychotherapies

The client is assumed to be able to take on more and more of the leadership role in the therapy process, and in his or her own life. While psychoanalysis tends to vest power and expertise in the psychoanalyst, personcentered psychotherapies, while still representing unequal power relations, moves more rapidly toward encouraging the client to regain, or reclaim, power.

There is a quote in the chapter that really captures these different viewpoints. While psychoanalysis tends to view the psychoanalyst as having the answers, and the insights, and the patient who disagrees as being resistant, in personcentered psychotherapies, according to Rogers: "It is the client who knows what hurts, what directions to go in, what problems are crucial" (Rogers, 1961, p. 12).

Another important strength of the personcentered approaches is the emphasis on present situations, present experience, and present skills. The focus is not on figuring out why a problem has arisen, but on what the problem is, what keeps the client stuck, and how the client can more creatively respond in order to move out of the stuck place.

The chapter makes an important point in connecting the personcentered psychotherapies to the Roosevelt era, with its emphasis on an optimistic view of human nature. The personcentered approaches are very optimistic, in contrast to psychoanalytic approaches. The difference in approaches represents a


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The Strengths of Person-centered Psychotherapies. (2000, January 01). In Retrieved 21:00, October 25, 2014, from
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