Psychodynamic Theory Essay

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My essay is on the Psychodynamic theory based on the belief that people’s behaviour and emotions as adults are rooted in their childhood experiences.

I will focus on the Psychodynamic concept in relation to the unconscious mind. I will look at the concept of ‘Object relations’ and particularly I will look at what Freud called Transference. I will say how I can relate to these concepts in my own personal relationships with others and give some examples of how these can impact in my client work.

Sigmund Fraud (1856-1939) was an Austrian neurologist who founded the psychoanalytic school of psychiatry. Some of the theories that Freud is best known for are the unconscious mind, defence mechanisms, free association, transference, and the three parts of the psyche that he termed as the id, ego and superego. Psychodynamic counselling originated from Freud’s psychoanalysis theory with the belief that most emotional problems originate in our childhood and that all experiences we have will have some kind of subsequent unconscious effect on us. (Wikipedia, Date accessed 21/2/11).

The unconscious mind might be defined as that part of the mind which gives rise to a collection of mental phenomena that manifest in a person's mind but which the person is not aware of at the time of their occurrence. These phenomena include unconscious feelings, unconscious or automatic skills, unnoticed perceptions, unconscious thoughts, unconscious habits and automatic reactions, complexes, hidden phobias and concealed desires. (Wikipedia, Date accessed 21/2/11).

The role of the counsellor is to interpret unconscious mental content to enable the client to achieve insight. (McLeod, 2003. p119). The psychodynamic counsellor or therapist, therefore, is always looking for ways of getting ‘beneath the surface’ of what the client or patient is saying – the assumption is that what the person initially says about himself or herself is only part of the story, and probably...
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