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Existential therapy Essay

?“Your life is the sum result of all the choices you make, both consciously and unconsciously. If you can control the process of choosing, you can take control of all aspects of your life. You can find the freedom that comes from being in charge of yourself (Robert Bennet)” This quote captures the very essence of Existential Therapy. This theoretical orientation deviates from all the other theoretical orientation, due to it overarching theme which focuses on a “way of thinking” than methods and strategies (citation needed).

I believe in living life to the fullest and taking responsibility for my actions and choices. As we all know death is the only experience in life that does not render a choice, which makes it inevitable. For this reason, I make it a point to live life to the fullest at all times. Existential therapy is awesome for realist or people who believe in being responsible for their own destiny. It has three contributing parties; Viktor Frankl, Rollo May and Irvin Yalom. There are also six propositions and many key concepts that will be thoroughly examined and explained throughout this paper.

Viktor Frankl was born in Vienna in 1905. He was a prisoner in a Nazi concentration camp from 1942-1945. Frankl started developing Existential therapy long before he was imprisoned, but the experience as a prisoner confirmed his beliefs in Existentialism. Experientially he knew that everything can be taken away from a human except “the freedom to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances. ” Frankl is internationally known as the founder of the third school of Vietnamese psychoanalysis whish existentialism (citation needed).

Rollo May was born in 1909 in the United States. His interest in psychology was sparked by his unhappy upbringing as a child. May also struggled with his own existential concerns due to two failed marriages (citation needed). He was noted as the American spokesperson for European existential therapy as it relates to psychotherapy (citation needed). He believed the psychotherapy should help people find meaning and deal with the problem of being rather than solving (citation needed). Irvin Yalom was also a contributor to Existential therapy.

He was born in 1931 in Russia but soon migrated to Washington D. C. He brought four major themes to Existential therapy; freedom and responsibility, existential isolation, meaninglessness and death (citation needed). Yalom is a strong believer in the “here and now. ” He also encourages other therapist practicing out of any theoretical orientation to examine the existential issues because they will emerge in any course of therapy. Existential therapy is a philosophical approach to being. It examines the freedoms that humans possess.

It encourages making decision and not wasting the limited amount of time we have here on earth. It stresses mortality, freedom, responsibility, anxiety and aloneness (citation needed). This therapy is reflective as a thought process or attitude towards the issues we face in life. It also looks at how we innately influence our own circumstances and accept defeat and surrender control to the things happening in our lives. One of the aims of existential therapy is to challenge people to people to stop deceiving themselves regarding their lack of responsibility for what.


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