I have not included the opening segment where Rogers explains the basis of his method and his underlying standpoint. This is important as the session below underscores Rogers' main thesis that the search for congruence, that is, the inner reality of the person (their values, beliefs) needs to correspond to their outer actions and behaviours is one of the motivating factors for people when they come to therapy. It also means that what one is experiencing inside is present in one's awareness and comes out in one's communication. When this occurs, a person can be said to be living an authentic existence. Additionally, Rogers states that in the therapeutic relationship, there needs to be total transparency such that the client sees, intuits or feels that therapist is showing genuine positive regard for the client. When the therapist is real, in this fashion, their own feelings will bubble up but not be expressed in a way that interferes with the client centered process. Rogers feels that praising and prizing of the individual as unique person is essential. This dynamic is sometimes referred to as a non-possessive love. The other dynamic at play is that the therapist must be able to move around in the inner world of the client such that the therapist is not only able to understand the outer world but the inner world, hidden meanings and allusions that the client is attempting to describe. This is much more than empathy as it requires attention and attenuation on the other as they experience themselves. Furthermore, for Rogers, this attenuation needs to be accompanied by love, caring and acceptance.
If the above occurs and is present, the client will explore their feelings and attitudes more deeply. The client will discover other areas of themselves. Being prized by the therapist may mean that the client prizes themselves more. There will be a change in the manner of their expression. The client will be able to sense and express what is going on in the moment. Finally from a locus outside of themselves, the client will move to a locus inside of themselves in terms of being able to come to decisions around their life.
All of this may sound fuzzy and abstract. However, seeing it play out in the half hour vignette below demonstrates the method with remarkable clarity. Rogers did not know anything about Gloria before seeing her. I had to put together four segments from You Tube and used Wondershare as a free trial, hence the watermark. There may be some slight repeats as a result. But overall the flow of the session is maintained. Fascinating to see the method play out. His reframing and feedback is first rate. His demonstration of positive regard is authentic. While he is totally present in the moment, he never rescues, yet she does not feel alone. There are many instances where Gloria states explicitly that what she want from him is a direct answer. Rogers handles this with remarkable artfulness. Great use of pauses and silence. Fascinating.