Critical Reflections

Nathaniel J. Raskin, Carl R. Rogers, and Marjorie C. Witty intend to describe Roger’s theory of human nature regarding personality and motivation. Their idea is that the client-centered approach in psychotherapy has the greatest magnitude of trust between clients and psychologists, and it has an unwavering commitment to an individual’s sovereignty. Raskin, Rogers & Witty (2008) explain that client-centered therapy appreciates vast resources that help clients in self-understanding. They argue that self-understanding is critical in altering self-concepts, attitudes, and behaviors of the human person. The authors insist on the importance of empathy, caring, and genuineness in the client-centered approach, and that it is most effective on a person-to-person relationship, rather than a client-expert relationship.

Raskin, Rogers & Witty (2008) achieve their purpose almost wholly in the text. They begin by acknowledging the Rogerian hypothesis, which is the basis of client-centered therapy (p, 123), its history (p, 133), and the current success of the approach (p, 136). The argument in support of the efficiency and success of the approach is strong since social workers approach their clients as human persons and not problematic individuals (Harvard Publishing, 2006). I find the treatment process interesting since clients improve their conditions by focusing on their human-strengths and resources that reveal their potential. However, the topic is not detailed in the medical perspective. The approach relates to existential psychotherapy described in the next section in that they do not focus on a client’s symptoms or weaknesses.

To sum up, the client-centered approach is significant since it appreciates the strengths and potential of clients. Given that it is easy to merge with other approaches, I find it efficient. However, authors may inform to what extent the approach would agree or disagree with different approaches.

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Existential Psychotherapy

According to Yalom & Josselson (2008), existential psychotherapy is not a single school of thought but presents a perspective of life concerning human experiences that should be part of all psychotherapies. They argue that the approach is efficient since it does not focus on symptoms, but regards clients as human persons with experiences that have the four ultimate concerns. Yalom & Josselson consider the four top concerns as death, freedom, isolation, and meaning (2008). They insist that a psychologist must be willing to walk with their clients through the four concerns in efficient psychotherapy. Their idea is that humans are both meaning-making, and they are prone to human experiences and self-reflection, which should be accounted for in all therapies.

Yalom & Josselson’s argument is comprehensive. They describe that existential theory should be incorporated in other psychotherapies to account for the human experiences of clients. They explain that an affirmation in life’s experiences is critical in combating anxieties that may arise from the four fundamental concerns (Yalom & Josselson 2008, p. 288 -291). The topic of belief in the existence of an ultimate rescuer is interesting in this context. Yalom & Josselson (2008) explain that clients with excessive confidence in the ultimate rescuer tend to display passivity, dependence, and obsequiousness. However, they could have explained how the influence may affect related approaches, such as a client-centered approach, which focuses on the client’s dependence on their strengths and potential. Notably, both focus on the client’s life as human persons.


To sum up, existential therapy is a critical approach that should be accounted for in all psychotherapies. Besides not focusing on the client’s symptoms, but rather their strengths as human persons, it compels therapists to walk them through experiences of life. From the text, I am concerned whether the approach is only philosophical or it has medical significance.


Harvard Publishing. (2006). Client-centered therapy – Harvard Health. Retrieved 2 May 2020, from

Raskin, N., Rogers, C., & Witty, M. (2008). Client-Centered Therapy. In R. Corsini & D. Wedding, Current Psychotherapies (8th ed., pp. 101-151). California: Thompson Higher Education. Retrieved from

Yalom, I., & Josselson, R. (2018). Existential Psychotherapy. In R. Corsini & D. Wedding, Current Psychotherapies (8th ed., pp. 273-306). California: The Thompson Corporation.