What is Adlerian Psychotherapy?

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Adlerian Psychotherapy stems from the ideas of Alfred Adler. Sometimes referred to as “Individual Psychology,” the underlying tenet of Adlerian Therapy is that individuals can positively change their lives.

Adler believed that people have feelings of inferiority. These feelings are positive for individuals with positive ways to cope with them. But they’re negative for those who don’t. When people feel encouraged to strive toward self-improvement due to feelings of inferiority, Adler stated, they contribute to a greater social good.

Adlerian Psychotherapy involves four distinct stages:

  1. Engagement – You and your therapist establish rapport and create a safe environment for you.
  2. Assessment – The therapist learns about your past and present. This stage helps them understand your life experiences and your thinking styles.
  3. Interpretation – The therapist suggests how past experiences color your way of thinking and how those might be helpful or not. You then decide if the therapist’s interpretations are useful.
  4. Reorientation – You test new strategies for ways of thinking and living that help move you toward self-improvement.

If you feel discouraged or inferior, often compare yourself to others, or want to strive for more, you may benefit from Adlerian Psychotherapy.

Therapists Who Specialize in Using Adlerian Psychotherapy