Principles of Operant Conditioning, Classical Conditioning and Social Learning Theory in Psychotherapy

Mark Henry*

Department of Statistics, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK

*Corresponding Author:
Mark Henry
Department of Statistics, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK

Received date: December 23, 2022, Manuscript No. JBBCS-23-15755; Editor assigned date: December 27, 2022, PreQC No. JBBCS-23-15755 (PQ); Reviewed date:January 10, 2023, QC No. JBBCS-23-15755; Revised date:January 17, 2023, Manuscript No. JBBCS-23-15755 (R); Published date:January 23, 2023, DOI: 10.36648/jbbcs.6.1.5
Citation: Henry M (2023) Principles of Operant Conditioning, Classical Conditioning and Social Learning Theory in Psychotherapy. J Brain Behav Cogn Sci Vol.6 No.1: 005.

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Psychotherapy can be said to have existed throughout history because mental health professionals, philosophers, spiritual healers, and people in general used psychological techniques to treat other people. By the 19th century, a moral treatment movement at the time known as morale or mental treatment based on non-invasive, non-restraint therapeutic approaches had emerged in the Western tradition. Mesmerism, also known as animal magnetism, would have a significant impact not only on the development of hypnosis theories but also on the development of dynamic psychology and psychiatry. In 1853, Dendy coined the term psycho-therapy to describe the ways in which doctors could influence patients' mental states and, as a result, their physical conditions, such as by inducing opposing emotions to promote mental equilibrium. In 1872, Tuke used the term and wrote about psycho-therapeutics, where he also suggested turning animal magnetism into a science. Bernheim and her colleagues in the Nancy school further developed the idea of psychotherapy, which means using hypnosis to heal the body with the mind. This marked the first time the word appeared in a clinic's name. Traveling stage hypnosis gained popularity during this time, adding to the scientific debate surrounding the use of hypnosis in medicine. Also in 1892, van Eeden tried to claim credit for the term psychotherapy and separate it from hypnosis at the second congress of experimental psychology. Thus, the treatment of disease by psychic or hypnotic influence, or by suggestion was the original definition of psychotherapy.

Hypnosis at the Second Congress of Experimental Psychology

Freud went to the Nancy School, where he used hypnosis in his early neurological work. However, Freud began focusing on conditions that appeared to have psychological causes originating in childhood experiences and the unconscious mind following the work of his mentor Breuer, in particular a case where the patient Pappenheim, dubbed a talking cure. He went on to develop methods like free association, dream interpretation, transference and an analysis of the id, ego and superego. He also developed these other techniques. His use of the distinct term psychoanalysis, linked to an overarching system of theories and methods and the effective work of his followers in rewriting history established his popular reputation as the father of psychotherapy. A number of theorists, including Adler, Jung, Horney, Freud, Rank, Erikson, Klein and Kohut, frequently developed their own systems of psychotherapy on top of Freud's fundamental ideas. All of these were later categorized as psychodynamic, which refers to anything that involved the conscious or unconscious influence of the psyche on the self and relationships outside of it. Over a number of years, there were typically hundreds of sessions. Behaviorism emerged in the 1920s, and the 1950s and 1960s saw the rise of behavior modification as a treatment option. Wolpe in South Africa, Shapiro and Eysenck in the United Kingdom and Watson and Skinner in the United States were notable contributors. In order to effect therapeutic change in observable symptoms, behavioral therapy approaches relied on the principles of operant conditioning, classical conditioning, and social learning theory. Phobias and other disorders became common targets for this method.

Essential Bleakness of Human Self-Awareness

The European school of existential philosophy inspired some therapeutic approaches. Major contributors to the field and Europe attempted to develop therapies that were sensitive to common life crises arising from the essential bleakness of human self-awareness, which were previously only accessible through the complex writings of existential philosophers (e.g., Kierkegaard, Sartre, Marcel, Heidegger and Nietzsche). The primary focus of the field was on the individual's capacity to develop and maintain a sense of meaning and purpose As a result, the patient-therapist relationship also functions as a vehicle for therapeutic investigation. Carl Rogers started a related school of thought in psychotherapy in the 1950s. Rogers popularized person-centered psychotherapy by drawing on Maslow's work and his hierarchy of human needs. The client had to meet three fundamental conditions from his or her therapist or counselor: Positive regard without condition sometimes referred to as pricing the client's humanity; congruence authenticity, transparency and genuineness; and comprehending with empathy. It was believed that clients could fully experience and express themselves through this type of interaction, allowing them to grow according to their inherent potential. Others developed the strategy, including Gestalt therapists Fritz and Perls, nonviolent communication pioneer Marshall Rosenberg, and transactional analyst Berne. Humanistic psychotherapy is the name given to these subfields of psychotherapy today. Books and self-help groups gained popularity. Ellis created Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT) in the 1950s. A few years later, psychiatrist Beck independently developed cognitive therapy, a type of psychotherapy. In contrast to the longer-lasting insight-based approach of psychodynamic or humanistic therapies, these two contained relatively brief, structured, and present-focused techniques aimed at identifying and changing a person's beliefs, evaluations, and reaction patterns. The Socratic method was used primarily in Beck's approach, and ancient stoic philosophy and these cognitive therapies have been linked. In the 1970s, approaches to cognitive and behavioral therapy were increasingly combined and grouped under the term Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Active directive yet collaborative empiricism a form of reality-testing and evaluating and modifying dysfunctional schemas and core beliefs are at the heart of many CBT approaches. These methods became widely accepted as the primary treatment for many disorders. Acceptance and commitment therapy and dialectical behavior therapy were two examples of a third wave of cognitive and behavioral therapies that extended the concepts to other disorders and/or included novel components and mindfulness exercises. The third wave idea, on the other hand, has been criticized for not being fundamentally different from other treatments and for having roots in earlier ones as well. The developed counseling techniques include systemic coaching and solution-focused therapy. Postmodern psychotherapies like narrative therapy and coherence therapy see the goal of therapy as something that the client and therapist create in a social context, rather than imposing definitions of mental health and illness. Transpersonal psychology, which focuses on the spiritual aspect of human experience, and systemic therapy, which focuses on family and group dynamics, also developed. The human givens approach, feminist therapy, brief therapy, somatic psychology, expressive therapy, applied positive psychology and other orientations that have emerged in the last three decades include in 2006, a survey of more than 2,500 therapists in the United States revealed the ten most influential therapists and the most popular therapy models.

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