Self-Esteem Therapy (SET)
To maintain a consistency of thought, we begin this chapter by comparing the Freudian mechanistic approach to therapy with our Adlerian-based humanistic approach. Consistent with our dialectic theme, we have placed these two modes of therapeutic process in juxtaposition to each other while postulating that the one is largely sterile and nonproductive, the other vital and creative. Utilizing a Freudian approach to discover the beginning of the client's problem can prove to be a long, drawn out therapeutic process, and relatively useless. Knowing when and how the client's self-esteem was destroyed or what factors were present during the socialization process that prevented the development of good self-esteem does nothing to help rebuild a dangerously weak self-esteem. There is little wonder why psychoanalysis and many forms of therapy require such long-term involvement when the orientation largely focuses on the understanding of the basis for the condition or the cause of the malady. A more positive approach to therapy is needed: If A represents the past, B represents -the present, and C the future or goal, then in the Freudian model, instead of moving from B to C, the emphasis is largely on A, the past or causal element presumed responsible for B, the present. It is assumed that successful therapy is contingent upon the understanding of the preceding causal motif, and it is only when this is understood that the disturbance will disappear. Little or no time is spent with C, the goal or the future. In Freudian therapy the movement then is from B back to A before moving to C. In the Adlerian model, we begin at B but place the emphasis on C, the goal or that which is desired. Our orientation to therapy, then, is the movement from B to C with little or no concern for A.