Central to the book is the belief that many of our problems arise out of the essential paradoxes of human existence, rather than from personal pathology. From this perspective, the purpose of counselling and therapy is not viewed as problem-solving, but as a mean of enabling people to come to terms with living life as it is, with all its inherent contradictions.
Emmy van Deurzen, a leading existential philosopher and therapist, presents a practical method of working, using systematic observation, clarification and reflection to help clients rediscover their inner strengths. She shows how personal assumptions, values and talents, once acknowledged, can be turned to constructive use. Using wide-ranging case examples, the author also demonstrates the effectiveness of the existential appoach in many different situations - from crisis work to dealing with chronic unhappiness.
The existential approach is a well-respected form of psychotherapy, but most writing on the subject tends to be heavily theoretical. This book offers a practical and accessible alternative, which will be invaluable to those in training as well as to more experienced practitioners.
• New 'points of discussion and reflection' at the end of each chapter.
• More verbatim therapist/client dialogue
• More case examples will be more clearly set out from the text.
• New introduction on the, past, present and future of the approach, the role of training and research, and current challenges to existential therapy.
• New conclusion in which criticisms of existential therapy are addressed.