Gestalt Therapy

WHAT IS IT?

Gestalt therapy is a humanistic, holistic, person-centered form of psychotherapy that is focused on a person's present life and challenges rather than delving into past experiences. This approach stresses the importance of understanding the context and ideas of a person’s life and taking responsibility rather than placing blame on themselves or what they might have done. By definition, gestalt refers to the shape of something and suggests the the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.


HISTORY

Gestalt therapy was developed by Fritz Perls, with the help of his wife at the time, Laura Perls,

and introduced in the 1940s as an alternative to more traditional psychoanalysis. Both Fritz and Laura were trained in psychoanalysis and gestalt psychology, which made them be the perfect candidates to come up with an alternate form of therapy which Along with others, such as Paul Goodman, they worked together to develop a style of therapy that was humanistic in nature.

GESTALT THERAPISTS AND WHAT THEY DO

When in a particular therapy session, gestalt therapists want to learn about the experience of

their clients. It is understood that context matters and the therapists use techniques to help the client become more aware of what they have been through, their experiences, as well as what their responses to those certain situations could be.


HOW DOES IT AFFECT MENTAL HEALTH

Gestalt therapy provides an alternate mechanism, to which therapy can be used with people

who are dealing with internal battles. Instead of reciprocating the same thoughts and feelings a person is experiencing back onto themselves, they actually have the possibility of understanding their motion with the therapist and figuring out what their response to the circumstances that have been placed in should be. Clients are focusing on what is happening right now, rather than what could happen in the future. This promotes the client to become more self aware, as well as help them navigate their own thought patterns, which could be making them unhappy.

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