The Capacity to Grow
"The person-centred counsellor believes that all clients have within themselves vast resources for development.They have the capacity to grow towards the fulfilment of their unique identities, which means that self-concepts are not unalterable and attitudes or behaviours can be modified or transformed."
Where development is blocked or distorted, this is the outcome of relationships which have trampled upon the individual's basic need for positive regard and which have led to the creation of a self-concept and accompanying behaviour that serves as a protection against attack and disapproval.
The counsellor's task is to create new conditions of relationship where the growth process can be encouraged and the stunting or warping remedied.
In a sense the counsellor attempts to provide different soil and a different climate in which the client can recover from past deprivation or maltreatment and begin to flourish as the unique individual he or she actually is.
It is the nature of this new relationship environment and the counsellor's ability to create it that is central to the whole therapeutic enterprise."
Mearns D & Thorne B, (1988)
Person-Centred Counselling in Action