Saturday, February 2, 2013

Applying Theory to Practice

            There are nearly a dozen theories that are available for psychologists to use in any therapy setting.  What type to use is decided upon by the therapist.  For example in my case, I think that using the psychodynamic theory, the humanistic theory, behavioral/cognitive theory and the systems theory would best work for my approach to mental health. 
Psychodynamic Theory
            In the psychodynamic theory, Sigmund Freud chose to look at problems facing human beings.  Today that theory has been modified to focus on the past, and one’s subconscious.  This is why many therapists use this as a foundation for therapy.  By using this theory, especially in the field with which I would like to venture,  this would help public service individuals to unlock possible areas of their lives that may have been repressed. 
            Incorporating Adlerian Psychotherapy uses holistic approach to help understand the individual.  Alfred Adler helped define psychotherapy a bit more by elaborating that most human beings are more conscious rather than unconscious as originally thought.  Adlerians feel that life problems are based from society.  Adlerian counseling seeks to correct mistakes in perception and logic that make people in their effort to fit into social relationships and to overcome feelings of inferiority" (Brown & Srebalus 1998).  
            Jungian theory also falls under the Psychodynamic approach.  It also can be referred to as ego psychology. Various adaptations of Jungian can be seen in use today, however most will see Adlerian and psychoanalysis. 
            Using the psychodynamic approach will be beneficial because it focus on the client and allows him or her to see the events from one’s past does not define him or her in their future as long as the or she is capable of change.  The psychodynamic approach is the most frequently used theory amongst therapists. 
Humanistic Theory
            The humanistic theory is defined as relationship orientated therapy.  In stark contrast to psychodynamic theory and its focus is on future and current functioning (Erford, 2010).  This theory relates deeply to the good that humans possess.  The humanistic approach assesses one’s choice and how it creates either negative or positive effects in ones life.  The humanistic theory also portrays how human beings allow other human beings to manipulate the value of one’s self worth.
            Humanistic theory  has also been criticized, because of its focus on the individual’s aptitude, which breeds the belief that humans are good which makes it more incomprehensible why some humans are capable of committing crimes. It makes it complicated to assess the client as clinicians only rely on his or her own opinion of their life experiences. 
            Using the humanistic theory in cooperation with psychodynamic can help the client see the changes that will lead to a more fruitful and productive life.  This theory resonates with me the most because it has been said so many times that a zebra never changes its strips, however if someone wants to change they will.  They have to find the courage to change.
Behavioral/Cognitive Theory
            Behavioral/Cognitive theory is based on information.  Cognitive theory relates to a person learning from his or her past.  Based on information provided by, (Conner, N.D.) “Behavioral instruction hinges on the use of observable, measurable, and controllable objectives.”.  Behaviorists feel that by changing our moods, improve relationships and decrease one’s stress and anxiety, we can change ourselves.  Behaviorists are endless optimistics always looking at a brighter world.    
            Behavior/Cognitive theory was selected because we are human beings and most of us learn from our past.  This theory can be beneficial to the client to help them see mistakes they may not have initially been aware of and strive to not make the same mistakes as before.  This too is a leader in the psychology field when asked what type of therapy is popular.
Systems Theory
            The systems theory is one that looks at how one cause can trigger a chain of events.  This can be something as simple and end up causing multiple effects.  This works in psychology very well.  A patient can see how one small event sends one down a road least traveled.  For example in my ideal job scenario; a police officer may be effected by an event he sees during his tour and while it doesn’t effect him at that moment six months to a year later, it could trigger him to have another associated event, and that event could eventually trigger another and so on until the officer is unable to preform his job duties.            
            Synergy is another aspect of the systems theory that is used in psychology.  It defined as when a group’s outcome is greater than its original members.  A great example of this was all of the federal agencies working together to achieve one common goal, which was to bring down Osama Bin Laden.  Along side synergy there is negative synergy.  Negative synergy is just the opposite where it has a negative effect on the group.  This could stem from one person that can lead to the entire group following the negative person.  An example of this could be a disgruntled employee bad mouthing a company which then leads to employee’s following the one negative person.  
            Lastly, using systems theory works very well in the profession I am seeking employment.  As officers they are a group and can be influenced by every day activities.  Everyday work events can trigger a landslide because of something they have witnessed. 



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