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Person-Centered Therapy


Build a foundation for lasting recovery from addiction

a woman smiles while looking at a person consoling her in her person-centered therapy program

With millions of people struggling with addiction, treatment programs have had increased exposure in both popular cultures and on the internet. Many people have a misleading view of what happens during therapy, with most thinking that it is simply a matter of telling a therapist your problems and listening for answers. However, there are options where the patient is in the lead, not the therapist. One of the main examples of this is person-centered therapy, an approach that allows patients to drive their recovery journey.

Too often, people are reluctant to begin treatment because they fear judgment for having a treatable disease. Starting a person-centered therapy program could make all the difference in the quality of a person’s life. If you or someone you care about is struggling with addiction, we at Evoke Waltham are here to help. Our focus is on helping our patients better understand themselves and giving them the skills, support, and resources they need to manage their addictions.

Our compassionate and non-judgmental staff members are ready to welcome anyone who wants to break free from drug or alcohol use. Contact us today at 866.276.1920 to speak to our admissions team and learn more about our person-centered therapy program and addiction therapy in Waltham, MA.

What Is Person-Centered Therapy?

Person-centered therapy, also known as patient-centered or Rogerian therapy, is an approach to psychotherapy that focuses on an individual’s personal growth and development. The therapist’s role is to provide a warm, nonjudgmental environment in which the patient can feel safe to express themselves freely and openly. The emphasis of this type of therapy is on the person’s inner resources for self-exploration and healing.

Therapists practicing person-centered therapy use a combination of active listening and empathy to help patients explore their feelings, thoughts, behaviors, and reactions without judgment or criticism. This helps create a supportive therapeutic environment where patients feel accepted for who they are and are encouraged to take ownership of their own decisions and actions.

The goal of person-centered therapy is not just for patients to understand their current situation but also to gain insight into how past experiences may have shaped their present behaviors or beliefs. Through this process, patients learn how to regulate their emotions better and become more self-aware to make positive life changes.

Person-centered therapists strive to accept patients without prejudice or bias, regardless of what has happened in their life. They also emphasize collaboration with the patient. Rather than telling patients what they should do or think, they work with them on problem-solving strategies so they can find solutions that fit with their values and belief system, an approach that can also be called non-directive therapy.

How Does Person-Centered Therapy for Addiction Work?

The main focus of person-centered therapy is building a genuine relationship between patient and therapist based on three core ideas.

1. Unconditional Positive Regard

The first principle of person-centered therapy is unconditional positive regard (UPR). This means the therapist accepts and respects the patient without judgment or criticism. The therapist must be genuinely interested in understanding their patient’s experience and provide them with an accepting environment where they can feel safe to express themselves openly. Therapists refrain from giving advice or making assumptions about how patients should live their lives.

2. Empathetic Understanding

The second principle of person-centered therapy is empathic understanding. The goal is for the therapist to accurately reflect on what they hear so that patients can gain insight into their own thoughts and feelings. Empathy helps build trust between therapists and patients, leading to greater self-awareness for the patient and more meaningful conversations during therapy sessions.

3. Congruence

The third principle of person-centered therapy is congruence. This means that therapists must be genuine in their interactions with patients. Congruence helps build trust between therapist and patient because it creates an environment where both parties can safely express themselves without fear of being judged or misunderstood by one another.

Person-centered therapy sessions are structured around helping patients come up with specific goals that reflect what they want out of life and simple, actionable steps toward achieving those goals. Both therapist and patient must have an open dialogue throughout treatment so that progress can be monitored. The therapist may also assign readings or other activities outside of the session time to help promote personal growth related to the patient’s goals.

If you're ready to start your journey to recovery, we're here to help.

Get Addiction Therapy in Waltham, MA, at Evoke Waltham

Person-centered therapy is just one of many treatment modalities offered at the Evoke Waltham facility in Waltham, MA. Our addiction treatment experts conduct a complete medical history and customize treatment plans for each patient, resulting in the best outcomes possible. At Evoke Waltham, we provide our patients with the support and guidance they need for every step of their recovery.

Some treatments and therapies that may be part of a treatment program include life skills training, music therapy, trauma therapy, and motivational incentives. If you are looking for an addiction therapy program for yourself or your loved one, contact us at 866.276.1920 to learn more about our person-centered therapy program and what else we can offer.