Who Changed Psychology and Better Defined Mental Health?

by DanielaSpinelli on March 17, 2014 - 10:53am

Before the 1940’s mental health was mainly based on Sigmund Freud’s research on how the individual’s mental wellbeing was dependent on a mothers care, a functioning libido, conscious and unconscious mind. Someone who was known as “the father of client-centered therapy” (Holl, 1997) and  “the most significant humanistic theorist” (Cherry, 2014) has changed the world of psychology. The leading figure of psychotherapy and development of the popular theory of personality development is Dr. Carl Rogers. He has significantly changed the way mental health is analyzed by the discovery that “psychoanalytic, experimental, and behavioural therapists were preventing their clients from ever reaching self-realization and self-growth due to their authoritative analysis”(Holl, 1997).

Many of my posts are related to mental health and how common and easy it is for a mental illness to take over one’s health. For example, my most recent article addresses the world issue of domestic violence and I have linked it to the psychological effects on a victims mind. Those who are exposed to harm tend to develop mental illnesses and have difficulties functioning day to day. In my posts about mental health I stress that mental well-being should have more awareness and value in societies. The main way people seek help is by speaking to psychologists and psychiatrists in hopes that they can overcome their mental illness. Counselling has been so successful due to Carl Roger claiming that “therapists must express complete acceptance of their patients”(Holl, 1997) this allows for clients to have comfort and courage to speak up. Rogers also introduced the term “client” instead of “patient” so that those who are interested in seeking help do not feel branded with the term “mentally ill”. 

Carl Rogers studied psychology and researched beyond psychotherapy by analyzing “education, marriage, leadership, parent child- relationships, and the development of professional standards” (Holl 1997). In short, Rogers accepted and studied the way mental health was defined and found better ways to understand the methodology of mental health by the different stages of every specific and unique case. Rogers found that exposure to life-threatening events and abusive nature may cause for “ the lack of a healthy environment that provides genuineness, acceptance, and empathy what will cause relationships and healthy personalities to not develop as they should, much like a tree will not grow without sunlight and water” ( McLeod, 2007).

Carl Rogers was a big inspiration to doctors, psychologists, and psychiatrist and he continues to inspire those who suffer from mental illness to seek help and reassure victims that they can progress. The wonder of psychology is that new methods and therapeutic ways are continuously being discovered and can be better analyze through all of Carl Rogers theories that focus solely on the patient and the patients well-being. 

Note: The links in the first paragrapgh are posted to provide additional information that may not be common knowledge to all.

References 
Cherry, K. (2014). Carl Rogers biography. About.com Psychology. Retrieved March 11, 2014,from http://psychology.about.com/od/profilesof

Holl, K. J. (1997). Carl Rogers. Psychology History. Retrieved March 11, 2014, from http://www.muskingum.edu/~psych/psycwe

McLeod, S. (2007). Carl Rogers. Simply Psychology. Retrieved March 11, 2014, from http://www.simplypsychology.org/carl-rogers.html

 

Comments

I am very glad you wrote about the mental health field, as it is something that is very interesting to me and mostly because I am a psychology major. Defining psychology and mental health has certainly come along way from Sigmund Freud explaining to his patients that they have an innate attraction to their opposite sex parent. Although, we should not shun Freud for his teachings, considering he set a baseline for psychology and somewhere we can start analyzing. As for your blurb about domestic violence, in my psychological disorders of childhood class, we talked about how child abuse can actually change the brain chemistry in a child when they are going through something like that and ultimately be more susceptible to developing mental health problems, such as depression and anxiety. However, there are more reasons that children develop these sorts of outcomes, psychology is complicated at best.
I do think it is important for counselors to have a client-centered approach when dealing with patients who have mental health issues. I want to be a counselor when I graduate and I find this the most important quality to have as a counselor. It is important for the client to discover themselves and what they can do as human beings, rather than you, being the counselor, feeding them what they should do. Carl Rogers was definitely an influential person for the person-centered therapeutic approach.

Having family and friends who have been affected by mental illnesses, I definitely agree with your idea that mental health can be a major issue that takes over a person’s life. I am also of the belief that there is a strong stigma associated with mental health. In recent history, many advancements have been made in improving treatment of mental illnesses, with new medications and improved counseling methods. I think the next step in helping the mentally ill would be to attempt to reduce the stigma associated with it. Already we have the improvements you mentioned, which is a good start. I think your summary of this article really brings to light the issue of mental health and also the ways in which treatment of mental health issues has been bettered to make it what it is today.

This post is interesting to me, because I am a psychology major and have always loved learning about the mental health field. I agree with you that Carl Rogers made a very big impact within the field and redefined what most people knew about mental health. Within your post, you mentioned that mental illnesses can be dealt with through counseling or psychotherapy. I like this, because I am a huge advocate for mental health counseling. Many people, especially college students, think of counseling as a last resort or something they will never do because they are not “crazy.” However, therapy is so beneficial for everyone, even if you do not have a particular problem to work through. It is nice to just be able to talk to someone about your day-to-day activities and thoughts. Carl Rogers was an important figure in developing client-centered therapy, which has helped countless people cope with or even overcome mental illnesses.

I was particularly interested in this article because I am a psychology major and I would like to look into a career that is mental health related. I one hundred percent agree that a mental illness can take over one’s life completely. Not only their life but others around them as well. I never knew anyone that was effected greatly by a mental illness so my perspective is only based on what I read and learned about. I have heard about Carl Rogers before but because of this article I would like to research more about him I believe that in addition to counseling and therapy, people with a mental illness should meet others and be around others who are effected similarly so that they know they are not alone.

I was particularly interested in this article because I am a psychology major and I would like to look into a career that is mental health related. I one hundred percent agree that a mental illness can take over one’s life completely. Not only their life but others around them as well. I never knew anyone that was effected greatly by a mental illness so my perspective is only based on what I read and learned about. I have heard about Carl Rogers before but because of this article I would like to research more about him I believe that in addition to counseling and therapy, people with a mental illness should meet others and be around others who are effected similarly so that they know they are not alone.

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