In our class discussion today we covered the three main qualities that Carl Rogers’ proposed were necessary for reversing neuroses/maladjustment. According to his client centered therapy approach, Rogers believed that geniuty, unconditional positive regard, and congruence were most imporant in illiciting a change from a patient. As Dr. McAnulty stated, when you are trying to get someone to open up to you, you have to be genuine. If they have any reason to think you have a hidden agenda or ulterior motives, they won’t take the risk of making themsleves vulnerable. If you want people to be straight with you, you have to be straight with them first. In order to create an opportunity for openness, you have to first create an environment in which people are comfortable. And a key to doing that lies in being genuine. Show an interest in the person rather than in “curing their issues.” The next key factor for growth is unconditional positive regard. If a patient, (or even a friend or family member) knows that you are going to be there for them no matter what happens, they will be more open to receiving help from you. You have to let that individual know that even though you support them, that does not mean you support their lifestyle or behavior choices. People are much more inlclined to be themselves around you when they know you are not going anywhere. The last key factor Rogers’ discussed was congrruence. This kind of ties into the first point of being genuine, but the difference is that it entails showing empathy as well. Who you are, what you think, and how you behave must be in line with what you believe in order for you to be truly congruent. Congruence enables the patient to open up because it creates an inviting environment. The more “real” the patient thinks you are, the more likely they are to be “real” with you. As far as empathy goes, I think everyone should work on having empathy towards their fellow human beings. And I think Rogers was a genius for realizing this. If you take the time to try and understand where someone else is coming from, it will open your eyes to a whole new view on life. Empathy and genuity are key when trying to get someone to open up. Its all about comfort. If you want people to talk, you have to create comfort.


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In a quote that I think perfectly sums up our discussion,Frank Warren states, “Every single person has at least one secret that would break your heart. If we could just remember this, I think there would be a lot more compassion and tolerance in the world.”