Personal Theoretical Counselling Orientation

Personal Theoretical Counselling Orientation

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Personal Theoretical Counselling Orientation


Personality refers to typical personnel behaviour patterns, feelings, and thoughts, making an individual unique; the characteristic patterns originate from the person (Hampson & Goldberg, 2020). A person reacts to objects or people in their environment based on their personality; hence it causes behaviour to happen. The environment influences personality as an emergency makes a person take charge and be bold enough to face the situation (Hampson & Goldberg, 2020). Personality theories apply in the study of how a person develops their personality by addressing whether the character possessed by an individual develops through an individual’s interaction with the environment or a biological trait (Hopwood, 2018). Personality theories include; trait theory causes an individual to behave in various ways (Hampson & Goldberg, 2020). The humanistic approach emphasizes the importance of an individual experience and free will in personality development. Humanistic theory encourages the self-actualization concept of an innate requirement for individual growth and ways of motivating personal growth behaviour (Hampson & Goldberg, 2020).

Counselling is the advice or guidance to help an individual decide on complex situations or resolve difficulties (Savickas, 2019). According to Borelli et al. (2020), counselling theories are intellectual models purporting various ideologies about the underlying factors affecting interpersonal interpretations, interactions, feelings, opinions, and a person’s character. Counselling theories include; cognitive, humanistic, behavioural, psychoanalytic, constructionist, and systemic approaches. Psychotherapy theories offer a framework for counsellors and therapists to interpret clients’ feelings, thoughts, and behaviour, thus helping them navigate their post-treatment journey from diagnosis (Hamm et al., 2022). Cognitive counselling theory dictates that individuals experience emotional and psychological difficulties when they reach a point where their thinking gets out of synchronization with reality (Nor, 2020). Humanistic counselling theory reiterates that individuals have all the resources required to live active and healthy lives within themselves, and the problems result from unavailable and restricted problem-solving resources (Nor, 2020). Behavioural counselling theory reinforces that an individual is involved in behaviour and problem-thinking when their surroundings support the behaviour (Nor, 2020). The problems continue to occur when the surrounding encourages or reinforces them. The main aim of this paper is to produce a conceptual framework synthesizing the best aspects of more or two theoretical models with an assumption, indicating that the results are better than either of the theories. Humanistic and cognitive approaches are integrated to meet clients’ unique requirements during counselling. In theoretical approaches within counselling, one idea is chosen over the other based on the degree to which the theory best fits the presenting concern in a client.

Cognitive and Humanistic theoretical integration approaches in counselling

Counselling experience focusing degree on various individual aspects is influenced strongly by a counsellor’s theoretical orientation. Different counselling approaches focus on a specific client’s conditioning aspect.

Theoretical approaches

Key concepts and assumptions

Counselling theory provides a counselling process route to counselling participants to help them achieve specific goals. The theory is tool counsellors use to organize a client’s data into a meaningful framework to help identify the potential solutions for a client’s problem. Francis (2018) offered various central beliefs about individuals since they influence a counsellor’s work. The initial thought is based on actualizing, and the next on determinism. Cognitive/behavioural and Humanistic theories are centred on actualizing belief, and the two differ in the fundamental idea guiding their implementation. The mental/behavioural approach utilizes extra educational components and specific techniques within counselling activity that concentrates mainly on a client’s thought process. However, the humanistic theory focuses on an individual’s skill and the relationship illustrated by counsellors, such as warmth sensed by the client, genuineness, honesty, acceptance, and inviting attitudes the counsellor relays.

Both humanistic and cognitive/behavioural theoretical approaches are based on fundamental assumptions that; a person must initially look within themselves and then exercises free will for a transitional change to occur. A second assumption for both theoretical themes is that free will is a reality. Counselling within classical counselling literature links responsibility and free will (O’Connell, 2019). In humanistic and cognitive theoretical themes, responsibility becomes dominant for client change. For the client’s change to occur, the client has to choose to respond when the ability to respond is provided. Both the theoretical themes illustrated here integrate an individual’s essence and capability to change.

Humanistic Concepts

Appropriate Therapeutical goal

Hollin (2019) suggests that factual and person-centred theories constitute the humanistic counselling model. The primary focus of the humanistic approach is person-centred counselling since it consists of notions stemming from unconditional positive regard, empathy, non-possessive warmth, and congruence. Person-centred ideology concentrates on a therapeutical relationship where therapists assist clients in achieving independence and insights. The basic principle of person-centred methodology is that change occurs positively, provided the surrounding enhances the opportunity given.

Therapists’ role and the client’s role

The therapist’s role is to be with clients, give them a listening ear, encourage them and support them. The idea helps clients to develop their innate wholeness and growth drive. For insight and independent outcomes to be displayed by the client, they need to feel the counsellor’s authentic presence. They possess unconditional positive regard in the relationship, warmth, empathy, and honesty. Purswell (2019) proposed that the counsellor’s key reference point to person-centred counselling core is to try and concentrate on being present fully as a therapist with the client instead of only understanding the client.

The therapist’s role is to create admirable surroundings to improve the client’s potential to make healthy choices. The environment’s focus manifests a more effective relationship between the client and the counsellor than the actual physical environment of counselling meetings. Purswell (2019) suggested that goals are global through counselling as clients grow in personal ability and power to create healthy decisions for themselves. Purswell’s (2019) statement, “it is usually hypothetical that person-centred method possesses no goals for clients past that which clients have for themselves.” Purswell (2019) also suggests that a person-centred counsellor must remember that they are guests within their client’s experience world. In humanistic counselling, the therapist is authentic in representing who they are within a relationship. The client also feels validated and free to share their impressions honestly concerning who they are; through humanistic counselling, the client acquires true insight about themselves. The choice remains for the clients to accept the insights indicated and embrace who they are. The idea is that change cannot occur without first acceptance of the understanding by an individual. With foundational acceptance, honesty, and trust in counselling relationships, there is a solid base to build a better relationship between the client and the therapist. The purpose is that the client experiences feelings that are earlier denied to their awareness, after which a client moves towards increasing inner directedness, trust in oneself, spontaneity, and increased personality awareness (Barth & Moody, 2019).

Cognitive/Behavioral Concepts

An elementary idea of a cognitive/behavioural model is that an emotion or feeling results from cognitive thought processes affecting a person’s behaviour. A person’s sense about themselves determines individual thinking towards something. An individual’s reality perception becomes far much significant as a behavioural and emotional catalyst than itself as a reality. A change in a person’s thought process, the new cognitive processing, is substantial for behavioural and emotional changes. For actions and feelings to change, put thoughts have to change. Cognitive principles, activities, and emotions are not automatic, but due to cognitive processing, results either below the actual level of consciousness or consciously. The cognitive theory is always psychoeducational by emphasizing counselling as a learning activity, comprising of acquiring substantial effective ways of coping with problems, acquiring good practising and learning of new skills, and acquiring various ways of practising new skills, knowledge, and ways of thinking (Barth & Moody, 2019).

Mental counselling encompasses a cognitive restructuring process for clients. For a person not to feel anxious in open places, the person is advised to think differently concerning the problem. Hence, a phobia is fear of anything that often has a little factual basis. For example, when a person is afraid to go to the highest floor in an elevator, they have to think differently concerning the experience they are likely to encounter during the ride through an elevator to avoid experiencing anxiety. Cognitive restructuring, in behavioural terms, takes place for a person to ride comfortably in an elevator. Manzano Boulton & Davis (2021) thought of cognitive restructuring as where the therapist tries to change the client’s ways of constructing their worldviews and thinking patterns. A counsellor helps the client learn various reality-based thinking ways concerning whatever triggers their cognition, anxiety generations, and their faulty. According to the example illustrated above, internal dialogue change and how an individual thinks about riding on an elevator play a crucial role in a person’s behaviour.

Any client willing to accept their irrational beliefs/fear can ride in an elevator, reinforcing their reality-based thoughts. The significance of cognitive restructuring is clear when working with a suicidal client’s imagination. Cliffe et al. (2021) state that cognitive ideologies conceptualizing suicide emphasize how thoughts influence behaviours and emotions. A person’s interpretation situation impacting emotions and feelings develops into an individual belief system guiding a person’s memory and perceptions, influence, and guiding behaviours. The therapist’s primary focus in cognitive methodology is assisting clients in learning new reality-basing in various ways of thinking about anything triggering their faulty cognition, thus helping clients to reach specific goals. Moreover, consistent variables in affective counselling remain an ongoing strong relationship between the therapist and the client.

Cognitive/behavioural and humanistic integration approaches

Relationship issues

Theoretical models are discussed within the difference between the counselling profession and the difference between the clients. Arnold Lazarus’ introduced multiple integration strategies and techniques to meet unique clients. Under the integration process, a single methodology is pitted against the other approach, indicating how a single model is better than the next. In his suggestion, Arnold Lazarus’ multimodal approach concentrates on troubled clients with specific issues that must be dealt with by applying a broader specific method range. Concerning multimodal counselling, Barth & Moody (2019) suggested that a therapist’s versatility and flexibility predict clinical efficiency. Barth & Moody (2019) further reiterates; that multimodal therapists take great pains in determining what treatment strategies and relationships work best with every client under precise circumstances.

Multimodal therapists constantly adjust their procedures to achieve the client’s therapy goals. Thus, the counselling profession witnesses an increased convergence between the growing realization and theorists that no single approach explains. The outcome illustrates that theory is meant to serve users. When no theory supports the therapists’ requirements, blending compatible ideas is an acceptable practice showing an integrative and electric approach (Sriram & Bhargava, 2022). Theoretical integration refers to intellectual creation past a mere technique for blending. The main aim of the research is to produce a conceptual framework synthesizing the best aspects of more or two theoretical models with an assumption, indicating that the results are better than either of the theories. A survey led by Psychotherapy in 2007 indicates that respondents 4% aligned to a single counselling methodology, while the other 96% were integrative, showing that the researchers combined various methods in counselling practice. Interviewing motivational illustrates the theoretical integration approach, where Rochat (2018) links its development with the transtheoretical process.

Key techniques and methods

Using the motivational approach, the stage of change as a transtheoretical approach has played an integral role, where the client’s perception of no problem pre-contemplation categorizes the initial step. Stage two is the contemplation characterized by ambivalence; here, the client is not sure as they think without having an absurdity. According to Rochat (2018), the first and second stages, reflective listening and client-centred counselling skills related to the humanistic model, fits better with the client’s requirements in the stages. Counselling skills related to cognitive models are majorly directive compared to humanistic models that are non-directive. The non-directive skills are a relationship-enhancing therapist’s goal to empower clients, guiding and leading their individual growth. The directive skills help therapists and clients focus on specific problem-solving activities like cognitive client restructuring irrational beliefs. Integrating the above theoretical models through implementing the non-directive and directive skills enhances healthy counselling relationship development by focusing on specific instant changes in clients.

Client-therapist relationship foundation, a cognitive/behavioural counsellor accrues a more directive role in assisting clients in checking on ways of making changes. The changes involved house construction by reality checking and pointing at the faulty perceptions for clients to identify how a single house construction aspect affects the whole house. The cognitive counsellor illustrates to the client further by suggesting to them possible ways of changing their thinking, the so-called cognitive restructuring, to construct a better home. The humanistic counselling component’s foundation can strengthen the relationship between the client and counsellor. Utilizing the humanistic model, the client can build a better house when provided with counselling strengths.

Ethical Issues

Theoretical integration is associated with time limits, payment, and confidentiality, forming ethical boundaries. Counseling requires an adequate time when humanistic and cognitive approaches are integrated; both the client and the therapist must adequately provide time allocation limits. The therapist and the client should be confident during counseling sessions to provide the required information for the process. Confidentiality in both teams ensures proper information delivery, and time wastage is avoided. Clients should pay for the counseling work to motivate the therapist to work towards achieving the best. Paying is a mode of motivation for employers; hence, therapists also need to be rewarded.

Application to the multicultural population

The integration of humanistic and cognitive approaches is used by therapists daily and is being applied daily in treating personality disorders, anxiety, depression, and schizophrenia. The theoretical merits are that; they give individuals hope concerning their state and assist clients in gaining control over their thoughts by providing more rational process thoughts.  The academic integration of humanistic and cognitive approaches brings an advantage to clients as this approach emphasizes people’s responsibility and choice. Since the method values people’s self-fulfillment and individual ideas, it satisfies most of the client’s ideas.


Therapists traditionally operate from a theoretical framework by overlooking alternative potentials and conceptualizations of interventions that are superior. There needs to be a comprehensive approach to justify human complexity characters when clients’ type range with their specific complications considered (Barth & Moody, 2019). Since there is no approach containing all truth about human complexity and no single counselling technique set effective for working with varied client populations, interactive technique methods hold potential for counselling practices. Marquis (2018) upholds clinicians’ effective practice that requires integrative and flexible perspectives. Psychanalysis needs to be tailored flexibly to a client’s unique contexts and needs and not globally used as one size fitting all. Nation (2021), in his research suggestion, states psychotherapy be relational, strategy-based, multi-theoretical, multidimensional, and intentional. A skilful therapist is better equipped with cognitive/behavioural techniques systems by blending them with a conceptual humanistic framework approach, thus helping in various problem-solving skills among clients. When therapists build a solid therapeutic relationship with their clients through unconditional positive regard, they accelerate changes in clients and restructure their thoughts. Through empathy, warmth, and genuineness relationship, clients are modified to respond to characters, thus Recognition of pure-form contributions therapies and collaboratively registering their strengths respectively (Marquis (2018). Surveyors suggest that cognitive/behavioural and humanistic counselling methods do not require opposing views; instead, as skillfully integrated two, the approaches can complement one another, thus enhancing the applicability and efficiency of counselling.


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