Walden University Week 8 Existential Humanistic Therapeutic Perspective Discussion

Walden University Week 8 Existential Humanistic Therapeutic Perspective Discussion

Walden University Week 8 Existential Humanistic Therapeutic Perspective Discussion

Directions: Respond to at least two of your colleagues by providing feedback based on an existential-humanistic therapeutic perspective. Support your feedback with evidence-based literature.

2 references each

2 paragraphs for student #1

2 Paragraphs for Student #2

5-6 sentences each paragraph


Week 8 Student #2

Psychotherapy is a collaborative enterprise where patients and clinicians negotiate ways of working together that are mutually agreeable and likely to lead to positive outcomes. American Psychological Association [APA]Presidential Task Force on Evidence-Based Practice, 2006). Psychotherapy is a method of working with patients and clients to assist them in modifying, changing, or reduce factors that interfere with practical living. Psychotherapy provides corrective emotional experiences, allowing patients to behave in ways that they may have avoided in the past, to experience that feared consequences do not occur (Nagi, 2011). Existential and humanistic approaches to studying human behavior are often integrated into one, The Existential-Humanistic Approach, primarily because the two methods are phenomenological in their orientations. Humanistic and existential psychotherapies emphasize the understanding of the human experience and a focus on the client rather than the symptom. Existential therapy can alleviate anxiety, shame, and guilt through honest self-evaluation (Winston, 2015). Existential-humanistic psychology doesn’t promise the answer to that question. Still, it can help clients, and other psychologists frame their questions about the broader issues at work behind depression, anxiety, and other causes of mental angst and dissatisfaction with life (Price, 2018). Humanistic and existential therapies strive to help you take responsibility for your actions by accepting your behavior and the consequences associated with your activities. Essentially, it means that you control how you react and behave, regardless of the outside influences that impact your life. (Sylvia Brafman Mental Health Center, 2015).

The type of psychotherapy that I have chosen is cognitive-behavioral therapy, specifically exposure and response prevention (ERP). ERP is a specific form of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that ERP is a component of cognitive-behavioral therapy that is commonly used to treat mental health conditions such as phobias, obsessive-compulsive disorder, generalized anxiety, eating disorders social anxiety (Rogers, 2020). ERP works by gradual and repetitive exposure to the feared situation and avoiding the impulse to use a compulsive behavior. ERP has two significant components: exposure and response prevention. The exposure component of treatment involves a process in which a therapist guides a person through imagined or real situations exposed to anxiety triggers. Triggers for anxiety might include specific thoughts, images, memories or could consist of actual feared objects or situations. The exposure process is gradual and progressive, starting with less anxiety-provoking exposures and gradually moving up towards exposures that trigger higher anxiety (Shafir, 2020). With this form of treatment, the client is habituating to the fear causing the pressure to reduce.

Strengths and Challenges

The strengths of existential-humanistic therapy are that it can help evaluate one’s own beliefs and values. It can help a person develop a more effective way of communication and acknowledge a person’s limitations. There is little guidance for the practitioner; it is difficult and complex to master the process. The strength of ERP is that ERP is helpful to clients that have not had a positive response to medications (Rogers, 2020). The challenges of ERP is that it can be costly and hard to find a provider. Some of the exposures may be very frightening to a client, causing clients to drop out.

Fictional Client

For ERP, I think one of the best fits for this type of treatment would be a client that suffers from an anxiety disorder. We can reduce the level of anxiety we feel by facing our fears and acting in ways that promote our well-being. As we do this, we create a better, happier, more fulfilling life for ourselves through our positive actions. An example of how the ERP would work for this client will be if the client fears driving. Let’s say they fear that they ran over someone with every bump they go over while driving. The way the therapist would challenge this fear is by having the client drive down bumpy roads for longer intervals of time. Therapists can use existential-humanistic techniques to help people with a variety of mental health conditions. These include depression, anxiety, addictions, and PTSD that arise from life-threatening experiences such as combat or other forms of violence. Also, if you have fear, isolation, grief, or feel that your life has no meaning, existential therapy is an effective method for helping you deal with your life issues (Thomas, 2020). A client that would benefit from existential-humanistic treatment would be a client that struggles with relationship difficulties or that has had trouble building a rapport with the therapist in the past.


American Psychological Association [APA]Presidential Task Force on Evidence-Based Practice (2006). Evidence-based psychology practice. American Psychologist, 61(4), 271–285. https://doi.org/10.1037/0003-066x.61.4.271

Nagi, T. F. (2011). Ethics in Psychotherapy. Essential ethics for psychologists. A primer for understanding and mastering core issues (pp. 185 198). Washington, DC: American Association. Doi: 10. 1037/12345-010. Auth.Laureate.Net. https://web-a-ebscohost-com.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/ehost/detail/detail?vid=0&sid=29d81fce-6610-458a-a882-7b9f93011fab%40sdc-v-

Price, M. (2018). Existential-humanistic psychologists hope to promote the idea that therapy can change not only minds but lives. Apa.Org. https://www.apa.org/monitor/2011/11/meaning

Rogers Behavioral Health. (, 2020). What is ERP? Retrieved from https://rogersbh.org/why-choose-us/our/therapeutic…

Shafir, H. (2020). Exposure and Response Prevention Therapy: What It Is & How It Works. Choosing Therapy. https://www.choosingtherapy.com/exposure-and-respo…

Sylvia Brafman Mental Health Center. (2015, August 14). Humanistic and Existential Therapy in Mental Health Treatment | Sylvia Brafman Mental Health Center. Mental Health Center. http://www.mentalhealthcenter.org/the-role-of-huma…

Thomas, J. (2020). Existential Therapy: What It Is and How It Works | Betterhelp. Www.Betterhelp.Com. https://www.betterhelp.com/advice/therapy/existent…

Winston, C. N. (2015). Points of convergence and divergence between existential and humanistic psychology: A few observations. The Humanistic Psychologist, 43(1), 40–53. https://doi.org/10.1080/08873267.2014.993067