Existential Therapy

Existential therapists reject the notion of deterministic forces affecting one’s psychological well-being and functioning, such as those traditionally purported in psychoanalysis and behaviorism. Instead, they hold that all human beings have the freedom to shape their own existence through self-reflection; to pursue meaning, purpose, goals, and values in life; to engage in fulfilling encounters with others; and to choose to be true to oneself and authentic with others. Existential therapists acknowledge, however, that with making choices, we also must accept responsibility for our circumstances and actions; overcome anxiety, isolation, and alienation; be willing to actively engage in life for it to be personally meaningful; and accept the unavoidable finality of life, that is, death. In the existential therapy framework, the way one deals with the ...

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