Reality Therapy is the practical application of Choice Theory and is used in counseling, therapy, and personal development training. Developed by Dr. William Glasser, Choice Theory and Reality Therapy have been used to create significant life changes for people of all ages and backgrounds.
In brief, the purpose of Reality Therapy is to guide clients towards meeting their basic needs of Love and Belonging, Power, Freedom, and Fun through learning to solve problems and make better choices.
In Reality Therapy, the relationship between the therapist and client is important. Relationships meet the need for Love and Belonging, and the therapist must create an environment that models a healthy relationship.
The client needs to feel safe, respected, and heard. Then, the therapist can work with the client to discover solutions to current problems and create practical plans that the client will undertake to meet their needs. The therapist also provides clear feedback regarding the client’s current choices and actions. All sessions maintain this focus. The actions of others are not a concern to Reality Therapy, only the client’s actions.
A client does not need to work through a painful past before finding solutions and changing their life. Reality Therapy focuses on the present, not the past. This is a refreshing change for many clients who are tired of talking about the past and never moving forward. Now, clients learn to change their outlook and focus on what they are thinking and doing today.
This new outlook does not use excuses or focus on complaining or blaming. Instead, the client learns to change their thoughts and actions, and make plans that are practical and open to evaluation and change. Personal empowerment is a natural progression of this outlook. Whether the client is an overwhelmed parent, a middle schooler, or a prison inmate, Reality Therapy helps empower clients to change their outlook and change their lives.
Reality Therapy is quite different from the “client on the couch” style of counseling. It focuses on here and now, not the past. Every problem the client is struggling with is an example of a search to fulfill needs, not the result of biology, genetics, or conditioning. Clients learn what their needs are, and meet their needs with solutions developed in partnership with their therapist. Solutions are open to evaluation and change. Clients are in control of their thoughts, actions, and life.
Reality Therapy focuses on meeting five basic needs: Love and Belonging, Power, Survival, Freedom and Fun. Clients might have previously used toxic ways to meet their needs, such as manipulating others to feel Power, abusing drugs to have Fun, or stayed in an abusive relationship in the search for Love and Belonging. With Reality Therapy, they learn healthy ways to meet those same basic needs.
Reality Therapy is a practical, effective approach to meeting your needs, becoming empowered, and changing your life. To learn more about how to apply Reality Therapy to your life by becoming your own reality therapy counselor, enroll in the Internal Empowerment Program. We have worked with people from all backgrounds and all walks of life to create healthy happy lives, and we’d love to have you join us!
IECAST is a 501 (c)(3), Public Benefit, non-profit organization dedicated to perpetuating productive and mindful individuals, families, and organizations. We bring this vision into reality by developing diverse, internally empowered leaders who use the principles and practices of Choice Theory® as taught through the Internal Empowerment Coaching program. Our goal is to teach individuals, families, and organizations to reframe, reorganize, and reallocate resources to become effective coaches and leaders.