DSST Fundamentals of counseling

A person with what they believe is general anxiety

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A person with what they believe is general anxiety may really be suffering from an aversion to one specific thing. One approach to treating GAD involves determining the real source of the anxiety and reducing the anxiety via systematic desensitization. Behavioral and cognitive clinicians will often use systematic desensitization as an approach to treating a specific fear or phobia. While not used exclusively, as in some cases it would be inappropriate, systematic desensitization may help to greatly reduce specific fears in patients, such as common phobias involving animals or heights. Research has shown the technique is effective at reducing fears and anxiety. Systematic desensitization has been found to be especially effective in dealing with phobias. A phobia is a continual, irrational fear of a specific situation or object. Systematic Desensitization, which involves having patients combine relaxation with the visualization of anxiety-provoking stimuli or situations has been effective in dealing with phobias. Systems therapy refers to approaching and working and counseling within the context of the family . In systems therapy the family is seen as a complex system of interrelated people and interrelated dependencies, responses, and learned behaviors. In a systems approach the individual is seen as part of this overall system and the way the person behaves with the family system is indicative of the way he or she will behave in the larger social system. In a systems approach, an individual may carry a symptom for the entire family . A person who presents as depressed may be displaying depression as a result of how someone else in the family system is feeling. The symptoms have been known to be physical as well as a son has ulcers when in fact the person suffering from chronic anxiety is the father. Humans experience the world on three levels. They experience the world through feelings (affect), through cognition (thoughts) and through behavior (actions/reactions). Different psychological theories place a different emphasis on one or more of these levels. Humanistic approaches are based very strongly in affect, cognitive approaches are based on cognition, and behavioral approaches are based on behaviors, but the interrelatedness of these three levels is recognized by most theories. The idea of integrating the three levels of human experience is called Eclecticism. While there are many specialized models of psychological development, the ultimate approach likely involves a little bit from each one of the theories. Ecclectic practitioners have learned what works best from each model and for which situations and they use the best of all the theories to help the client grow and develop as a person.
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