I did a comparison of my family system theory approach with the Satir’s communications approach. 


Reply 1

I did a comparison of my family system theory approach with the Satir’s communications approach.  Satir’s approach is more structured.  In the Satir’s approach, she believes helping people find their wisdom box that is their sense of self-worth, hope, acceptance for self, empowerment, and the ability to be responsible, and make positive choices (Satir, Banmen, Gerber, & Gomori, 1991, p.4.).

Also, I watched the experiential therapy video centered around the family system which was structured symbolic and the therapist is truly involved in the session.

Both Satir’s and Experiential therapy deals with the family system. Satir’s approach is more emotional centered than the experiential.

The challenge I think I would face in my practice is choosing which theoretical orientation to use for my clients.  There are several Family systems approaches available to use for my clients. I must listen to them to assess the best approach for that specific client.

As a therapist, I want to connect with my client’s in the sessions whether emotionally or allowing them to believe I am actively listening, and I care about what they are saying.


Satir, V., Banmen, J., Gerber, J., & Gomori, M., (1991). The Satir model: Family therapy and beyond. Palo Alto, CA: Science and Behavior Books.

Reply 2

Week 3 Discussion Board

In the Psychotherapy.net (n.d.) video, Carlson discusses using the theory of Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT), and Kjos mentions that it quite structured and “manualized.”  This would be difficult for me personally because I allow the clients to lead our interactions in many cases.  I have found it difficult to “stick to scripts” with many clients and families because life and counseling work is not scripted.  Now, this is not to say that I do not follow scripts with activities and techniques when utilizing my CBT or DBT exercises; however, as a whole, my sessions are led by clients’ presenting problems as well as their own personality and demeanor.  Some counselors feel a great need to be “the expert,” but I view myself as more of a facilitator.

What I found curious, though, in my studying this week is that when reading the chapter of our text about EFT, it describes an approach that actually fits what I do.  I am absolutely a constructivist, just as I’ve described earlier.  I believe in the clients (and my students when I teach) creating and re-creating their own experiences with the learning.  This interaction is  essential to making the change within and for themselves (Gurman, Lebow, & Snyder, 2015).  In further watching the video of Dr. Sue Johnson,  I liked and agreed with her allowing the clients to express themselves and rather than directing them, she helped them better understand and put words to their struggles and their emotions.  I find this very useful to helping the clients want to change because they understand themselves and their partners better.  The work with emotions and the use of warm and unconditional positive regard all are Rogerian concepts that I use daily, and so I think it is safe to say that EFT would not be challenging to my current theory of practice other than the stated use of scripts.  I am not sure that I would follow to the letter what a script would say. My counseling and teaching have always been built on flexibility, and I think that would just be in direct conflict with beliefs and style. How I might mitigate that challenge would be that I would use the bits and pieces of the script that I like and feel are useful.  I would insert theme where I felt appropriate about them and where I think it would help that particular couple at that particular time in our work together. I also tend to use homework in couples and clients who will actually complete it.  This is an excellent opportunity to use some of the “canned” curriculum of the approach, as homework needs to be clear and focused since clients are completing it at home when not with you in session.

As stated throughout this discussion, I feel that EFT is much like what I already do, which makes sense since Carl Rogers was foremost in their mind when creating the approach.  I find little that would be challenging in the coordination of this approach with my current theoretical basis and worldview of counseling.

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