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Research Paper - Person Centered Therapy

             Person centered, or client centered, therapy is a therapeutic approach that places significant focus on the client. The benefits of this therapeutic approach are that the client learns to play an active role in their therapy, take responsibility for actions and thoughts that will usher in success in their lives as well as having a greater respect and understanding of others. It has been suggested that this mode of therapy is the most demanding upon the therapist. The ability of the therapist to be genuine, accepting and empathetic is essential for clients' success as well. .
             There were four (4) marked periods of person centered therapy development. The first (1) period was during the 1940's where psychologist Carl Rogers developed what was known at the time as nondirective counseling. The nondirective approach was in reaction to the traditional approaches that were prevalent at the time. Roger's theory emphasized the counselor's creation of a nondirective attitude and climate. Rogers constantly challenged the validity of the commonly accepted therapeutic procedures like suggestion, teaching, diagnosis, interpretation and persuasion. Rogers did not agree with the ideology of the nondirective counselors who did not believe in sharing information about themselves with their clients as well as their focusing on the verbal and nonverbal communications aiming at gaining insight into feelings expressed by clients. The second (2) period was during the 1950's where Rogers gave this therapeutic approach its new name, which it holds today, client or person centered therapy to emphasize the importance of the client. It was assumed that the best way to understand how people think and behave is to see things from their perspective. Rogers believed that focusing more on the tendencies of clients would actuate a more definitive change in them.

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