Academic journal article Professional School Counseling

Reality Therapy in Action

Academic journal article Professional School Counseling

Reality Therapy in Action

Article excerpt

Reality Therapy in Action by W Glasser; Harper Collins; 2000; 234 pages.

A gentle giant in counseling and psychotherapy steers us in the new millennium with his new theory, a theory of choice! As an iconoclast in Realty Therapy in Action, William Glasser shatters the shackles of external control psychology that he considers ineffectual, futile, and detrimental to loving relationships that make the very core of human happiness. Choice Theory (1998) is Glasser's wake-up call against biochemical causation as Realty Therapy (1965) was a voice against Freudian dogma of unconscious conflicts.

After 35 years, Glasser still stands adamant that there is no such thing as mental illness. Psychological problems are caused by lack of responsibility, the choice of behaviors, and toxic relationships. Glasser's provocative assertions to make a paradigm shift from external controls of others to the internal controls of the self have the potential to revolutionize the mental health field. For the welfare of the clients, he nudges the practitioners from going astray into post-modem beliefs such as chemical imbalance in the brain or bad genes as the problems and pills as the answer.

Reality Therapy in Action is Glasser's practical attempt to put the quintessential concepts (belonging, power, conscious choice of behaviors, responsibility, freedom, and fun) of his choice theory into practice. To demonstrate that loving and meaningful relationships are the cornerstone of people's satisfying lives and antidote to their psychological problems, Glasser presents several case examples in this book. These 16, real-life scenarios or life scripts are presented in riveting, novellike narratives portraying people with problems ranging from obsessive compulsive disorder, depression, loneliness, and panic attacks to suicidal thoughts, alcoholism, and sex-change surgery.

Reality Therapy in Action is written in a vivid, lively, and lucid style. It is easy to understand and is very practical. Grounded in his personal and clinical experience and motivated by his strong convictions and passion, Glasser adroitly conceptualizes his clients' problems and brilliantly illustrates how professionals improvise treatment plans using loving relationships as the key to address psychological problems. …

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