At The EPICentre we apply and receive ongoing training and professional development in five core therapeutic approaches, and in addition will practice well researched and accepted mainstream therapies. Our counselors use an eclectic therapeutic approach with clients and therefore are experienced in applying specific or combined evidence-based therapies to best meet the needs of the client. The five core evidence-based therapies are evidence-based due to the large amount of past and current research and scientific data that each respective therapy has accumulated.
One or more evidence-based therapies may be used by the counselor to best manage and treat the stressors the client is experiencing. This decision will also be based on what therapy the client is comfortable working with during the initial assessment session with his/her counselor.
The five core evidence-based therapies:
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT)
This therapy is based on the premise that the way people think and behave is influenced by their environment and life experiences. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or CBT involves guiding clients through experiences that will change the way they think so that they can change behaviour. This may also be called rational-emotive therapy. CBT has generated more empirical research than any other psychotherapy model.
Person Centred Therapy (PCT)
PCT’s basic assumptions are that people are essentially trustworthy, that they have a vast potential for understanding themselves and resolving their own problems without direct intervention on the therapist’s part, and that they are capable of self-directed growth if they are involved in a specific kind of therapeutic relationship. The best vantage point for understanding how people behave was from their own internal frame of reference focusing more explicitly on the actualising tendency as the basic motivational force that leads to client change.
Solution focused brief therapy (SFBT), often referred to as simply ‘solution focused therapy’ or ‘brief therapy’, is a type of talking therapy that is based upon social constructionist philosophy. It focuses on what clients want to achieve through therapy rather than on the problem(s) that made them seek help. The approach does not focus on the past, but instead, focuses on the present and future. The therapist/counsellor uses respectful curiosity to invite the client to envision their preferred future and then therapist and client start attending to any moves towards it whether these are small increments or large changes. To support this, questions are asked about the client’s story, strengths and resources, and about exceptions to the problem.
Gestalt therapy is an existential-phenomenological approach based on the premise that individuals must be understood in the context of their ongoing relationship with the environment. The initial goal is for clients to gain awareness of what they are experiencing and how they are doing it. Through this awareness, change automatically occurs. Gestalt therapy is lively and promotes direct experiencing rather than the abstractness of talking about situations. The approach is experiential in that clients come to grips with what and how they are thinking, feeling, and doing as they interact with the therapist. Gestalt counsellors value being fully present during the therapeutic encounter, and growth occurs out of genuine contact between client and therapist.
The current trend in behaviour therapy is toward developing procedures that actually give control to clients and thus increase their range of freedom. Behaviour therapy aims to increase people’s skills so that they have more options for responding. By overcoming debilitating behaviours that restrict choices, people are freer to select from possibilities that were not available earlier. Thus, as behaviour therapy is typically applied, it will increase individual freedom.
Corey, G. (2005). Theory and Practice of Counselling and Psychotherapy. (Seventh ed.) Thomson Brooks Cole, Belmont.
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