Describe Some of the Ways That the Person-Centred Approach Differs to Cognitive Behavioural and Psychodynamic Approaches to Counselling.

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Describe some of the ways that the Person-Centred Approach differs to Cognitive Behavioural and Psychodynamic Approaches to Counselling.

The good life is a process, not a state of being.
It is a direction, not a destination.
(Rogers, 1961, p.186)

The Mental Health Foundation (2012, Talking Therapies) refers to certain therapeutic approaches as talking therapies. These therapies include: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Psychodynamic Therapy and Person Centred Therapy (PCT). The Foundation says, ‘Talking therapies give people the chance to explore their thoughts and feelings and the effect they have on their behaviour and mood’. In attempting to describe some of the ways that the Person-Centred approach differs to Cognitive Behavioural and Psychodynamic approaches to counselling it may be helpful to acknowledge that that binds them. The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) identifies that, ‘there is evidence that the relationship between the counsellor and the client is more important than the approach the therapist uses. BACP (2011). This does not presuppose that counsellors working within differing paradigms practice in an entirely different way to their counterparts or that those working within each approach operate in exactly the same way either. Indeed, it is within the relationship between the counsellor and the client that many of the differences in the therapeutic approaches can be identified. Nelson - Jones (2011, p1) warns us to, ‘be careful not to exaggerate the differences between counselling and therapy schools since there are similarities and differences among them.

Worsley et al. (2011, p.125) believe that, ‘the Person Centred Approach is a basic philosophy of living, and not a technique for therapy’. Worsley’s view does highlight a potential schism between the Person Centred model and the Psychodynamic and CBT approaches; that of, ‘feeling over process’ (Bowyer 2011). Mearns and Thorne (2008, p. 9)...
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