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DSST Fundamentals of counseling

Psychodynamic therapy focuses on discovering the

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Psychodynamic therapy focuses on discovering the unconscious processes that govern behavior. Psychodynamic methods seek to uncover underlying thoughts or feelings in order to gain insight and understanding into why a person acts the way he or she does. The focus is often on how the past affects present behavior. The founder of psychoanalysis is Sigmund Freud. Psychoanalysis refers specifically to Freud’s work and theories and psychodynamic therapy is rooted in Freud’s work but contemporary influences have been added. Until Freud’s work, mental activity and behavior were deemed part of the mystical and unidentifiable world. Freud gave meaning to the word “unconscious” and conceptualized the idea of irrational feelings underlying unproductive behavior. Jung is another main contributor to psychodynamic theory. In Psychodynamic theory, the Id is the instinctual pole of the personality. The Id constitutes a person’s instincts and at birth a person is all id. The Id does not think – it only acts. It is mostly the unconscious part of the brain that is innate and people are rarely conscious of their id impulses. The id is ruled by the pleasure principle. The id seeks to minimize pain and maximize pleasure. The id is illogical, immoral and driven to satisfy base needs regardless of the social context the person is in. In Psychodynamic theory, the Ego is the part of the brain that regulates personality and behavior. The Ego is referred The Ego is ruled by the reality principle. The ego is realistic and logical. The ego formulates a plan to satisfy a need using rational intelligence. The ego is what keeps the id from blindly controlling a person’s behavior. The ego recognizes the difference between internal images, thoughts, and feelings and those that things that are part of the external world and plain for other people to see. In Psychodynamic theory, the Super Ego plays the role of the judiciary in determining personality . The super ego contains a person’s moral code and decides whether an action is right/wrong or good/bad. The Super Ego is the ideal state and it seeks to inhibit all id impulses and convince the ego to equate rationality with morality. The superego represents the internalized social lessons handed down by parents and expected from society. Anxiety is the state of tension that motivates a person to act in a particular way. Anxiety is a key concept in psychodynamic therapy and it results from the conflict between the id, ego, and super ego. When the ego can’t maintain control over the forces of the id and the superego, it acts in ways to defend itself. These behaviors are called ego-defense mechanisms. Ego Defense mechanisms either deny or distort reality, enabling the person to cope with the current reality.
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