PSY 1102 Lecture Notes - Personal Development, Bipolar Disorder, Active Listening
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History of Insane Treatment
Maltreatment of the insane throughout the ages was the result of irrational views.
Many patients were subjected to strange, debilitating, and downright dangerous
Philippe Pinel in France and Dorthea Dix in America founded humane movements to
care for the mentally sick.
Psychotherapy involves an emotionally charged, confiding interaction between a
trained therapist and a mental patient.
Biomedical therapy uses drugs or other procedures that act on the patient’s nervous
system, treating his or her psychological disorders.
An eclectic approach uses various forms of healing techniques depending upon the
client’s unique problems.
We will look at four major forms of psychotherapies based on different theories of
1. Psychoanalytic theory
2. Humanistic theory
3. Behavioral theory
4. Cognitive theory
The first formal psychotherapy to emerge was psychoanalysis, developed by
Since psychological problems originate from childhood repressed impulses and
conflicts, the aim of psychoanalysis is to bring repressed feelings into conscious
awareness where the patient can deal with them.
When energy devoted to id-ego-superego conflicts is released, the patient’s anxiety
Dissatisfied with hypnosis, Freud developed the method of free association to
unravel the unconscious mind and its conflicts.
The patient lies on a couch and speaks about whatever comes to his or her mind.
During free association, the patient edits his thoughts, resisting his or her feelings to
express emotions. Such resistance becomes important in the analysis of conflict-
Eventually the patient opens up and reveals his or her innermost private thoughts,
developing positive or negative feelings (transference) towards the therapist.
1. Psychoanalysis is hard to refute because it cannot be proven or disproven.
2. Psychoanalysis takes a long time and is very expensive.
Influenced by Freud, in a face-to-face setting, psychodynamic therapists understand
symptoms and themes across important relationships in a patient’s life.
Interpersonal psychotherapy, a variation of psychodynamic therapy, is effective in
treating depression. It focuses on symptom relief here and now, not an overall
Humanistic therapists aim to boost self-fulfillment by helping people grow in self-
awareness and self-acceptance.
Developed by Carl Rogers, client-centered therapy is a form of humanistic therapy.
The therapist listens to the needs of the patient in an accepting and non-judgmental
way, addressing problems in a productive way and building his or her self-esteem.
The therapist engages in active listening and echoes, restates, and clarifies the
patient’s thinking, acknowledging expressed feelings.
Therapy that applies learning principles to the elimination of unwanted behaviors.
To treat phobias or sexual disorders, behavior therapists do not delve deeply below
the surface looking for inner causes.
Classical Conditioning Techniques
Counterconditioning is a procedure that conditions new responses to stimuli that
trigger unwanted behaviors.
It is based on classical conditioning and includes exposure therapy and aversive
Expose patients to things they fear and avoid. Through repeated exposures, anxiety
lessens because they habituate to the things feared.
Exposure therapy involves exposing people to fear-driving objects in real or virtual
A type of exposure therapy that associates a pleasant, relaxed state with gradually
increasing anxiety-triggering stimuli commonly used to treat phobias.
A type of counterconditioning that associates an unpleasant state with an unwanted
behavior. With this technique, temporary conditioned aversion to alcohol has been
Operant conditioning procedures enable therapists to use behavior modification, in
which desired behaviors are rewarded and undesired behaviors are either
unrewarded or punished.
A number of withdrawn, uncommunicative 3-year-old autistic children have been
successfully trained by giving and withdrawing reinforcements for desired and
In institutional settings, therapists may create a token economy in which patients
exchange a token of some sort, earned for exhibiting the desired behavior, for
various privileges or treats.
Critics of behavior modification express two concerns:
1) How durable are the behaviors?
2) Is it right for one human to control another’s behavior?
Teaches people adaptive ways of thinking and acting based on the assumption that
thoughts intervene between events and our emotional reactions.
Beck’s Therapy for Depression
Aaron Beck (1979) suggests that depressed patients believe that they can never be
happy (thinking) and thus associate minor failings (e.g. failing a test [event]) in life
as major causes for their depression.
Beck believes that cognitions such as “I can never be happy” need to change in order
for depressed patients to recover. This change is brought about by gently
Stress Inoculation Training
Meichenbaum (1977, 1985) trained people to restructure their thinking in stressful
“Relax, the exam may be hard, but it will be hard for everyone else too. I studied
harder than most people. Besides, I don’t need a perfect score to get a good grade.”
Cognitive therapists often combine the reversal of self-defeated thinking with efforts
to modify behavior.
Cognitive-behavior therapy aims to alter the way people act (behavior therapy) and
alter the way they think (cognitive therapy).