Compare and Contrast Psychoanalytic and Person-Centered Therapies

2452 Words Sep 24th, 2012 10 Pages
Running Head: Compare and Contrast Paper

Compare and Contrast: Psychoanalytic and Person-Centered Therapies

Leslie A. White

Central Missouri State University

` The purpose of this paper is to compare and contrast the differences and similarities associated with Carl Roger’s Client-centered theory and Sigmund Freud’s Psychoanalytic theory. The focus of the comparisons will fall into the three main topic areas: that of optimal personality development, that of the nature of problem formation, and that of the process of learning and change. The two theorists differ in approach in that Psychoanalytic theory is basically deterministic while Person-Centered therapy is rooted in humanistic and existential philosophies.
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Freud likewise believes that unconscious drives must be brought to a conscious level before the client can gain insight into past and present behaviors. Personality development, according to Freud happens during the first six years of life, with the development of the psychosexual stages. Rogers’s idea of personality development centered on the awareness of the OVS. When behavior is congruent and in harmony with the OVS, there is a movement towards self-actualization and the enhancement of being. When humans consciously or unconsciously behave in a way that goes against the OVS, behavior is a detriment to the being and hinders the self-actualization process.
Personality development is similar between the theorists in regard to the idea of bringing the unconscious to a level of awareness. Freud proposed that the client must develop an understanding of the balance of psychic energy between the id, ego, and superego. With this understanding, the client can gain insight into behavior and make changes accordingly. Likewise, Rogers proposed that awareness and trusting of the OVS must be present to enable the client to reconnect with the personal valuing system.
A point of difference between Rogers and Freud on the view of personality formation is this, Freud proposed that the foundation for personality is developed within the first six years of life. Personality development is a result of how the client deals with anxiety at each of the

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