Holistic Therapy & Personal Development Services
Occupational Standards &
Fellows of the Society of Holistic Therapists & Coaches
Qualified to real standards
Adhering to NOS
Dedicated to Ongoing development
Adhering to codes of ethics
Involved in training provision
Therapists with Supervision access
First established 1993
Welcome to Scotland's Premier Psychotherapy, Counselling, CBT, Psychoanalysis and Holistic Personal Development Site'Therapeutic care & Personal Development - The solution to your problems is in you'
Psychotherapy, Counselling, Coaching and Analysis in Edinburgh and Glasgow
The first thing to point out is that there is no universally accepted definition of what these are. Indeed there is no agreement as to whether they constitute the same thing or different therapies. This is increased as a problem in definitions when you consider that most therapists use a number of different styles and modalities according to their own style and practice. This further confuses the issue and muddies any boundaries when looking for clear definitions. Usually it is agreed that there are three main styles: Humanistic, Psychodynamic and Behavioural. There are also many specific industry styles such as pastoral, spiritual, crisis, short term and so on.
What is Humanistic psychotherapy and counselling?
Although many therapists have contributed to Humanistic therapy or counselling, Carl Rogers is perhaps the most important. Rogers was in effect the founder of person centred psychotherapy and his work helped to found the principles of other methods too. His own contribution however was based in humanistic principle, often referred to as humanistic or person centred therapy. Humanistic therapies now include humanistic coaching, humanistic psychology, humanistic counselling and humanistic psychotherapy.
Denise is a CCC, ISPC and NACHP registered counsellor, Stuart is a NCP (Senior Accredited) and NACHP registered psychotherapist and counsellor.
We adhere to appropriate National Occupational Standards, carry professional insurance and are subject to therapy regulation. Stuart is a CNHC registered hypnotherapist (voluntary regulation of hypnotherapy).
Who else contributed to Humanistic counselling theory?
contributors include Maslow and Egan. Psychotherapy began as
psychoanalytical in nature. Then behavioural rose in fashion, then
humanistic and now coaching ( a form of behavioural). Each has its
strengths and weakness and many therapists are eclectic (use more than
Theories of Humanistic psychotherapy
The main premise is that the person has an innate desire and drive for self improvement.
Rogers coined the term actualisation. The theory is that the human has the desire and drive to actualise their potential. If you like to be the best they can be.
Rogers believed that through providing empathy and a caring supportive environment, the therapist can assist the client to self actualise.
Empathy is the professional version of sympathy. Empathy involves understanding the client's viewpoint, but without associating to the emotions as one might with sympathy.
Through the use of empathy, a supportive environment and person centred counselling approaches the client is helped to "heal themselves".
Self Actualisation, Humanistic Counselling / Therapy
Rogers believed that people need to work through "fake" versions of themselves in order to reach the "real" self. Often it is a crisis that triggers the person into realising that they have not been living the true self. At these times the person may be triggered into getting in touch with the true feelings, needs and ambitions that may have been suppressed until that point. This explains both why clients often seek lasting change after a crisis event, and why personalities are often radically different after a crisis.
A major difference between the humanistic approach and more traditional psychoanalysis, is the focus on the positive sides of the client's character. Rogers refers to Unconditional Positive Regard. He believes this unconditional love is essential and is craved since childhood. This therefore requires an attitude of acceptance and non judgmental practice from the therapist. He believed that when provided with this nurturing and accepting environment, the client would be more likely to accept themselves and be self confident. He also believed truth and honesty were vital in the therapy approach. Rogers believed the core approaches therefore were Empathy, Unconditional Positive Regard and Genuineness.
Contributions of Maslow. Positive focus in Humanistic Therapy
Maslow (among others) built on this work. Maslow in particular was keen to emphasise focusing on the positive rather than the negative. Traditionally psychoanalysis focuses in the "problems" that exist in behaviour and conditioning. Maslow believed in focusing more on the positive. He believed that traditional psychoanalysis did not adequately explain what motivates people and what gives meaning to human life.
Maslow developed the
"hierarchy of needs" concept,
splitting the goals and needs of the person into categories:
He believed that the lower needs (e.g. physical) needed to be fulfilled before higher needs (e.g. esteem) could be completed. He acknowledged that his model was based on Western culture.
Maslow studied a range of "healthy" people and tried to ascertain what qualities made them happy and healthy. He wanted to focus on recreating these, rather than focusing in on pathology. His definitions helped to broaden humanistic counselling, and further define it's goals.
Maslow also acknowledged that person centred therapy in some form or other has been around for a very long time, and that "the helpers attitude" pre dates psychotherapy. Typical examples including clergy, shamans, wise women etc. From this we can perhaps conclude that person centred helping has a very established track record in helping people.
Is Person Centred therapy for everyone?
No, it can not really be justifiably said that any one therapy will suit everyone. To do so contradicts common sense. In the author's opinion Person Centred Counselling is a very useful basic system of counselling. It is potentially the safest and when adhered to it is very hard to do any harm. In it's safety however comes its flaw. Person Centred Counsellors are often critisised as being too "safe" and nondirective. Frequently the client wants more assistance, knowledge and direction. The concept that we all have what it takes to self-actualise means that in strict person centred counselling there are long gaps of silence where the therapist dutifully waits for "as long as it takes" for the "penny to drop". Many clients get annoyed with this delay, and others become disillusion with therapy generally. In some cases clients may decide they can not be helped. Many clients who have sought psychoanalysis from the author have previously had person centred therapy and become annoyed at what they perceive as the therapist being unhelpful. The standing joke is that all a person centred therapist ever says is "Well what do you think?".
In the author's opinion, person centred counselling is effective in assisting those clients who are already fairly self-aware, and have some ability to verbalise their feelings. These clients benefit from a caring environment and some support in healing themselves. Also where clients have been bombarded with negative comments, a caring person centred environment is very beneficial.
Inevitably however some clients have deep rooted issues to deal with, and in these cases, and those cases where clients are not already skilled at self-help, other forms of proactive psychotherapy are faster and more efficient.
What is involved and who to choose in Edinburgh / Glasgow?
In person centred psychotherapy and counselling, the overall guiding principle for the therapist is "you have one mouth and two ears, use them in that proportion". As a result the client does far more talking than the therapist. The therapist may encourage a topic for discussion, but with then assist the client by reflecting back information to them. The client speaks, often gushing information, the therapist acts as a mirror, enabling the client to analyse what they themselves said. It is true to say that when you hear something you said repeated back to you, perhaps in a subtly different form, it can take deeper meaning.
By discussion, and reflection, understanding is gained and the client is focused onto positive issues, feelings and outcomes. The client becomes more confident, self aware and strong.
The author does not believe that Person Centred Therapy is a "cure-all". Therefore he recommends that clients seek therapists with more than one modality (type of therapy) available. That way if person centred counselling/ therapy is not for them, or indeed if their needs change during the healing process, the therapist is equipped to adapt to their needs.
Stuart and Denise both hold counselling qualifications accredited by ASET at level 4 (ASET is an SQA and QCA approved awarding body). Both have completed accredited training in a number of styles, including humanistic counselling as well as the coaching and holistic therapy that is offered. Both are professionally registered therapists and are fully insured.
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From 2010 psychological therapy will also contain elements of mindfulness and CBT in order to increase client development between sessions.
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