Observation of Theory Applied to Practice. Free Essay on Psychology.

Published: 2019-12-09
Observation of Theory Applied to Practice. Free Essay on Psychology.
Categories:  Psychology
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1183 words
10 min read

Clearly conceptualized within the first video, psychotherapy is a process that is very efficient in helping individuals deal with both past and present psychological stress. The two therapeutic processes discussed in the second and third video respectively are psychodynamic theory and cognitive behavioral therapy. The striking difference between the two is that the former tends to dwell more on past issues to correct current problems while the latter is principled to dwell in the present only. Regardless of their perceived efficacies, the most significant aspect is the relationship developed between the worker and the client. Strong worker-client correlations promise better session outcomes while the vice versa acts as the harsh reality. Through analysis of the videos provided, this discussion identifies relationship-linked behavioral approaches considered by therapists under psychodynamic theory and CBT to make patients open up.

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Psychodynamic Theory

Doctor Cooper as psychodynamic therapist takes a rather deemed personal and efficient approach to make Tom feel at home and open up about the past that is hounding him. Vividly covered in psychodynamic theory by Freud, the first aspect is making the patient feel free to talk anything, an aspect that Dr. Cooper clearly adheres to. Free association in psychodynamic theory is a fundamental approach that social workers need to capitalize on. Tom goes to Coopers office because of the physical pains he has been experiencing due to relatable stress. Cooper uses this as an anchor to locate the problem and shows absolute support to encourage free association. This is exhibited when Dr. Cooper signals Tom to tell him concerning the rest of his life. That question alone is enough to motivate Tom to open up about family issues which are directly linked to his current predicament. The first worker behavior that Dr. Cooper shows to adhere to free association and develop a stronger relationship with the client is being supportive and sensitive to the emotional factors that torment Tom. Tom begins with work issues but Dr. Cooper finds a way to link the current stress to unresolved past family issues.

The second worker behavior that Cooper exhibits is being attentive and closely following or encouraging the client to further his story. Coopers facial expression as Tom is talking shows the client that the worker is more concerned with his situation. When Tom begins mentioning the past family issue such as the death of his brother through suicide, Dr. Cooper pays close attention through nodding his head and asking the right questions to keep the conversation going. For instance, after Toms revelation concerning the demise of his elder brother, the question that cooper asks is when did you find out that he died and how did you know it was suicide? The question gives Tom a chance to explore deeper and locate the genesis of the problem. The picture of the mother and father is brought into the equation, pointing Cooper closer to the beginning of the problem. Such an attentive maneuver is a necessary step that every psychodynamic psychologists needs to take to boost the ego of the client. Similar to CBT, psychodynamic therapy as introduced by Freud functions with the capability of the worker making the client feeling masculine about opening up.

The issue of therapeutic transference is brought into play by Dr. Cooper when Tom mentions the suffering his mother underwent. This forced him under the directions of his father to postpone his emotions and deal with the mothers situation. From a psychotherapy point of view, transference acts as the beginning of solution formation (James & Gilliland, 2003). This is achieved when Dr. Cooper exhibits the behavior of interpretation. Interpretation is the act a social worker keeping quiet but occasionally interjecting with well though statements that help the client to realize the problem. Tom is able to locate the origin of unresolved family issues, an aspect that explains his current behavior of not being able to trust fully those above him in any hierarchical disposition.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Contrary to the above coverage of psychodynamic theory, CBT is fundamentally underpinned to dwelling with the present thoughts that are affecting an individual. CBT has two aspects which are covered by the cognitive part (faulty thinking) and behavioral aspect (the present). Tom goes to Dr. Morris with a similar issue that had been covered in the psychodynamic therapy. In developing a stable relationship with Tom, Dr. Morris displays several behaviors that are directly linked to the scope of CBT. To begin with, active listening is an aspect that Dr. Morris does not fail to uphold. Active listening involves the worker cheeping in and contributing to aspects that have been raised by the client. This is what Dr. Morris does and continues to expound on what is put across by Tom until he begins to see where the problem is and what could be the appropriate solution.

According to Cully and Teten (2008), active listening is usually brought in play in CBT after the three factors; empathy, genuineness, and positive regard have been strongly covered. The two scholars point out that empathy is significant in building a good rapport. It is also referred to as validating the experience of the patient, an aspect Dr. Morris perpetuates when she deals with Tom. Worker validation of the problem gives the patient the much needed courage to continue self-expressing. Dr. Morris asks Tom what he would like to say to his boss given a chance to do so. It is a move that gets Tom to spill out what is in his mind and he thinks about his boss. Cully and Teten (2008) also describe the factor of being authentic (genuineness). Dr. Morris exhibits this behavioral aspect while dealing with Tom. Genuineness encompasses attributes such as supporting nonverbal behavior, role behavior, congruence, and spontaneity. To encourage Tom to speak statements that are uncomfortable such as admitting the whole blame was on him is directly linked to the aspect of being authentic. Dr. Morris does not exhibit much toughness but she goes ahead to play a neutral position that makes Tom to continue sharing in the right context. The final behavioral approach that helps patients is having respect from social workers. Dr. Morris asks questions to Tom that are enlightening and respectful. Tom would have not continued sharing if he felt underappreciated.

In the end, it is clear that a solution is developed on the premise that Dr. Morris did not own the discussion but rather let Tom to deduce a perfect solution that is suitable to him. Carefully explained by Dr. Morris in the third video, CBT does not make any effort the past. It is through that analogy that Tom decides a complete movement from his current employer would be a well calculated initiative.


Cully, J.A., & Teten, A.L. 2008. A Therapists Guide to Brief Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Department of Veterans Affairs South Central MIRECC, Houston.

James, R. K., & Gilliland, B. E. (2003). Psychoanalytic therapy. http://s3.amazonaws.com/academia.edu.documents/45296041/psycho_therapy.pdf?AWSAccessKeyId=AKIAJ56TQJRTWSMTNPEA&Expires=1478618594&Signature=MhsbKd8ZdAPeUCZSpFZrmUSk3%2BQ%3D&response-content-disposition=inline%3B%20filename%3DPSYCHOANALYTIC_THERAPY_COMPANION_WEBSITE.pdf

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