The environment of learning impacts

Theory and Practice of Counseling and Psychotherapy – 10 edition – by Gerald Corey

Chapter 10 – Rational-Emotive Behavior Therapy

As an aspiring psychotherapist, I used to think that all psychological problems, including addiction, are involuntary from brain changes or damages and, therefore, only controlled but not eliminated. However, the study on Rational Emotive Behavioural Therapy (REBT)people are the cause of their psychological problems such as anger and phobia when they form irrational beliefs (Corey, 2015). Irrational beliefs about a situation or event make people develop odd interpretations leading to issues like addiction. I concur with the new experience because when children who show fear in, for example, walking in the darkness get used, the fear disappears. It means that misinformation about events and situations makes people develop wrong interpretation patterns leading to behaviors and emotions which could not have been present under typical thinking pattern. The new experience expands my knowledge, whereby I have realized thatpeople with some common psychological problems have exposure to wrong learning patterns. The environment of learning impacts opposite beliefs, for example, that darkness is risky, and the subjects fail to reason out, leading to wrong ways of perceiving situations and events. 

I have come to realize that clients of some psychological problems like phobia are vital in their recovery process. My perception was that therapists take the overall charge to advise the clients about their problems. However, interaction with the REBT creates new knowledge that clients are the cause of their issues through irrational beliefs, and they are the only ones who can decide to change(Corey, 2015). Psychotherapist only comes in to assign activities that will help such clients develop rational thoughts. REBTis practical because clients cannot stop fearing through encouragement from the therapist unless they understand why they were fearing. The added knowledge changes my therapy approach to engage clients more because such interaction will help identify the underlying irrational thoughts.

Chapter 11 – Reality Therapy

I have never understood why people make choices, which they know will hurt them, claiming that it is a solution to their problems, such as having a cheating spouse. The reality therapy has opened up my mind to understand why people would hurt themselves with knowledge of the outcomes. According to the theory, people take actions which they believe, with the experience that will effectively deliver good feelings to counter deficit social needs(Corey, 2015). The approach resonates with most of the experience from other people for example, people who commit suicide because of losing their spouse to another person. At the height of social need, for example, love, people seek to maximize compensation. They do not care about the outcome as long as they satisfy the need to the maximum. People with extreme reactions such as taking alcohol or getting angry, as a result, have a problem in moving slowly in their decision to ensure minimal adverse impacts.

There has always been the perception that people with extreme negative behaviors do not need psychotherapy and always resulted in reading the bibleto impact good practices. My approach to such situations, like alcoholism, was to rebuke the individuals compelling them to follow moral principles. However, experience in reality theory has enabled me to realize that such people have a deficiency in making the right choice(Corey, 2015). People have many options for their relationship problems. However, some choose based on revenge due to the perception that they have lost. Others make choices to solve their relationship problems to punish themselves, for example, because of losing a partner to another person. The experience provides me with a new approach to therapy by helping people realize their flaws in making choices and hence, motivate decision making patterns.  

Chapter 12 – Feminist Therapy

Most people appear to have satisfaction in their social, political, and economic inequalities, but yet they develop psychological issues such as anger, depression, and even fear. I used to wonder why most poor people tend to drink so much and sing about their wealth, which is not present. Exposure to the feminist theory has made me understand that such people become satisfied because of their compensation with psychological issues such as isolation, fear, anger, and even addiction. The theory postulates that social, economic, and political inequalities make people give up their power,including aspiration, emotional control, goals and, self-concept unconsciously(Corey, 2015). Through the theory, I have realized that people take actions and emotions because they no longer value themselves or find happiness in their being. The inequalities make them believe about inabilities, and unattractiveness leading to stress and consequential negative actions and thoughts. Unlike before, I have learned that social disparities are stressors that impact actions and emotions negatively.

The experience from the feminist therapy also impacts by new knowledge on the approach to helping clients. Initially, I thought that people accept their states without any emotions or harmfulactions. People, according to the theoretical perspective on development, develop norms and expectations trough socialization, and when such expectations fail, they develop stress(Corey, 2015). It means that people can learn to live with inequalities if it is impossible to change their state. My thoughts in this are that when clients accept social inequality as a way of life and culture, they will develop no stress because they will set achievable goals. The theory changes my approach to therapy towards helping clients realize the cause of their problem is inequality and marginalization stressors leading unmet expectations. Through the approach, clients can set goals in line with the inequalities and avid stressors.

Chapter 13 – Postmodern Approaches

Before exposure to postmodern approaches to psychotherapy, I had no idea that people can develop psychological problems such as fear from learning. However, I find it as a strong argument that people develop issues, for instance, depression socially and through language(Corey, 2015).The theory is based on the current reality, where most people do not understand the causes and symptoms of psychological problems. People learn the existence of some problems from others, and sometimes they are not aware of how such events occur. The theory motivates me to think that most people fake psychological issues unconsciously because they do not understand their occurrence but have close symptoms. For example, one might start fearing darkness because, at one time, the heard stories about a danger which someone faced at night. The experience has made me realize that leading people towards constructing a new perspective about the issue in the future can help solve their current and similar problems to come.

I have also had thoughts that psychological problems do not result from conditioning where people construct the problems. My idea was that people develop issues based on immediate context and hence, need to address the cause. Interaction with the postmodern approaches exposes me to a new perspective that past experiences shape psychological problems (Corey, 2015). People develop stress once they see or face a similar incidence that happened in the past leading to psychological issues. Experiences conditions people to develop stress once such an element or similar appears. As a result, addressing a single cause would not solve the problem. It is a remarkable experience that makes me adopt a deconditioning approach to my future clients. 

Chapter 14 – Family Systems Theory

There are some instances when I wonder how a spouse or a child might develop stress to the extent of attempted suicidedue to family issues such as poverty. My anxiety comes to an end with exposure to the family system theory that teaches me about the contentedness of family members. According to the theory, emotional and behavioral problems arise to an individual due to the functional purpose within the family system(Corey, 2015). The approach opens my mind to figure psychological issues as a response to stress results from failed function to and from the clients towards the family. For example, when children lack parental love, which was there before, they are likely to develop stress. Dysfunctions within the family system make the mind loose rewards and start seeking compensation.

The experience changes my approach to seeking a source of psychological problems by assessing changes in the family system. I have come to realize that although there are other possible underlying causes, the family is a potential barrier to psychological health. The problem can be historical due to the family system orientation or temporal because of some current changes. Family members can make someone happy or sad, depending on what they expose or offer. As a result, I will change my practice from narrowing my assessment to marginalization, socialization, and other social-economic and political issues.


Corey, G. (2015). Theory and practice of counseling and psychotherapy. Nelson Education.

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