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Limitations in Person Centered Therapy

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Psychology
Wordcount: 1635 words Published: 19th Apr 2018

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Group counseling

  • Baldev Singh

The person-centered counselor must always remember that the client is a guest within his or her own world of experiences. This first sentence encapsulates the essence of person centered counseling. The person centered therapy can be used in individual and also in group counseling.The therapy gives strength to client or groups to understand themselves and also gives them the opportunity to solve their own problems and see changes for themselves being valuable and worthy humans. Rogers, C.R. (1959)

The aim behind all person centered therapy is that under certain conditions the clients will be helped to find and to exercise more of his or her own personal power with regard to understanding and evaluating his actions in the past and present and in making decisions for the future. Furthermore, it is expected that this gain will help client to be more confident to more forward to be exercised by the client in his future life. If these conditions for his worth are particularly oppressive, inconsistent or ambiguous the roots will be laid for difficulty in adulthood as the clients attempt valiantly but in vain to live up to the conditions. Sometimes the difficulty which the person experiences in adulthood is only indirectly related to the conditions of worth but more to do with the way the young person adjusted his or her living to exist within the constraints of the conditions.The therapy techniques is to focus on client advancement towards self independence and overcoming any new presenting issues.These two factors: the conditions of worth and the ways in which the person has adjusted to the conditions of worth are the main ways in which ‘maladjustment’ is understood within the person-centered approach. Bohart, A. (1990)

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The way a person-centered counselor works will varied considerably according to the extent to which the client’s locus of evaluation is externalised or internalized.The aim of person-centered working is to help the clients to internalise his or her locus of evaluation. Helping another person to internalise his or her locus of evaluation is not achieved by exercising power over them but by creating a relationship in which the clients may take responsibility for themself. Carl Rogers, the founder of the approach, was in enunciating and evaluating the relationship conditions in which that client empowerment might be optimised. For constructive personality change to occur, it is necessary that these conditions exist and continue over a period of time in which is, the two persons are in psychological contact’ (Rogers,CR 1957: 96).During the session the counselor will identified whether the clients is in a state of incongruence, being vulnerable or anxious. Immediately the counselor should established concrete in congruent or integrated in the relationship building.During the counseling the therapist will experience unconditional positive regard for the client and showing empathic understanding to the client’s actual root cause that have been the underlaying cause experience to the client’s achievement and unhappiness.The counselor’s empathic understanding and unconditional positive regard is important to build trust and that counselor is actually listening and concern about their problems solving..Currently the most accessible account of these conditions is presented in Kirschenbaum and Henderson (1989: 221)

Benefits of the group counseling.

In the group therapy the members are expose and learning how one is perceived by others members problem.When in the session the client can experience a sense of belonging and acceptance with others in the group.The members can discovered that he is not the only finding solution to solve his problem but others members are also experiencing difficulties and are searching solution on how to resolve their issues too. Members can get some ideas from others when listening to their suggestion and this can enhance the client’s ability to resolve their problem and the root cause of their life difficulties.In group therapy members can express their ideas and rendered assistance to others members in the group therapy session.The group therapy session gives and built members positive encouragement when seeing the positive successes of others.Group therapy is cost effective for those having financial issue. Bohart, A. (1990)

Benefits of the individual counseling.

Individual counseling is beneficial for clients having disorders and also for those having serious rough time in their life journey.The counseling session is personalized and the environment is comfortable.The individual can focus on their difficulties and feel secure to exposed their problems to the therapist.In this situation their information are kept confidential by the therapist and they are governed by code of ethics.Even though in individual therapy the cost is more but it is worthy because client can take their time to reveal their difficulties and built up rapport,gain support with counselor working together.The individual acvtively participate and brainstorming with counselor to detect any blindspot to their problem.The environment is quiet and plenty of room to concentrate and the freedom for the client to express their feeling and ideas. In individual counseling the counselor can actively listen, understand and the counselor can list out some recommendations strategies to solve client problems. Bohart, A. (1990)

Compare, contrast and reasoning

In group counseling sessions the clients will sometime cover up their actual emotion. They will feel frightened and may also feel uncomfortable with the surroundings of others group members. Some client do not feel secure about talking their deep secret with others and rather not telling the truth about their problems. The group therapy is not suitable some individual who are very sensitive about their personal life issues. If this is the problems and the counselor will have a difficult time in resolving their problem.In group therapy the clients do not get one to one attention, there is no privacy and your problems is known to everybody in the group to talk about unlike in individual therapy client privacy is protected. Coffeng, T. (1996)

In individual counseling session you are seated in a comfortable environment with your counselor and there is no one else to listen to their private life problems. The individual will feel secure about talking their deep secret issues in their life and their information is protected by counselor and governed by code of ethics. In individual counseling sessions the counselor will have more time to concentrate with a client rather then in the group session. In individual counseling ,the counselor can have more time to interract and working together with the client. It also gives the client enough time to concentrate rather then in the group therapy with a lot of distortion and the concentration will not be there for some individuals.In individual counseling session the concentration will be better some client who wants privacy on how to resolve their distorted big picture and also solution on how the client can overcome to resolve their problems. Coffeng, T. (1996)


The limitations in person centered therapy is the based on therapist values and attitues and not skills. Next is the limitated understanding on client’s nonverbal indications and the therapy emphasize too much on the therapist being empathy, understanding and helping the client reflect themselves. The person centered therapy is a historical approach and not all clients actually knows what to achieve. The other limitations are the misunderstanding on the basic concepts and practical applications .The other limitations are some clients are not motivated just by caring and listening for any reform to begin with. (Bozarth, J. and Temaner Brodley, B. 1986)

The group therapy.

There are limitations on group therapy. They are not suitable if client is suffering from severe depression, mental illness and suicidal risk.Clients with these condition may not benefit from group counseling session. The group therapy members tend to be noisy, talkativeness and irritability which often becomes too difficult for the therapist to control the situation.There some limitations on the selection for the client suitability before they are allow for group therapy session. The others limitation are the clients problem must be mainly in the same relationship with other people and if not they are to find another group therapy offering the same problem and this is really time consuming and also not suitable with clients who needs urgent counseling for their problem solving.

Bozarth, J. (1984)

The individual therapy

There are limitation on individual therapy.The individual therapy may also unable to help any client who are involve in court cases and infact they should consult a lawyer instead.The individual therapy is suitable for clients depends upon certain situation and needs.The limitation is caused by client personal fear,individual differences,problematic behaviours,anxiety or emotional disturbance and the counselor may refer clients to psycharist for consultation and treatment.Not all client is suitable for individual therapy and the counselor needs to be alert and observance to check on clients limitation for the therapy. Bozarth, J. (1984)

To my conclusion the counselor play a important role model in providing the best and must be commited and the ability to remain authentic and truthful with what is really practical to daily human development. Boy, A.V. (1989)


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