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On Becoming a Person: A Therapist's View of Psychotherapy
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On Becoming a Person: A Therapist's View of Psychotherapy

4.1  ·  Rating Details ·  9,414 Ratings  ·  147 Reviews
The late Carl Rogers, founder of the humanistic psychology movement, revolutionized psychotherapy with his concept of "client-centered therapy." His influence has spanned decades, but that influence has become so much a part of mainstream psychology that the ingenious nature of his work has almost been forgotten. A new introduction by Peter Kramer sheds light on the signif ...more
Paperback, 448 pages
Published September 7th 1995 by Mariner Books (first published 1961)
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Aug 11, 2014 Thomas rated it it was amazing
The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.

This book has helped me through two of the toughest weeks of my life, and everyone interested in self-improvement should read it. On Becoming a Person will appeal to anyone inclined toward psychology or therapy, as Rogers does a fantastic job discussing his client-centered approach and how his model of therapy transcends the limitations of past psychotherapeutic frameworks. Even though the book was first published i
He writes of significant things he learned in his experience and study:

1. "In my relationships with persons I have found that it does not help, in the long run, to act as though I were something that I am not. It does not help to act calm and pleasant when actually I am angry and critical. It does not help to act as though I know the answers when I do not. It does not help to act as though I were a loving person if actually, at the moment, I am hostile. ...

Most of the mistakes I make in personal
Zoe Bell
Aug 07, 2011 Zoe Bell rated it it was amazing
Bluntly; although what was written often seemed foolish, impractical and fantastical I found Roger's style of writing cohesive and difficult to stop following. I know little of psychology and its various approaches and perspectives but I intuitively felt that Roger was at the time the book was written, revolutionary, bringing forward into the light a new way of regarding clients of psychotherapy. Mind you; the book did seem to drag on. Repetition. Repetition. On, further and on further still. Wh ...more
Dec 18, 2012 Alexander rated it it was amazing
Picked this one up for a course I was taking in college- Personal Development.

It turned out to be one of the best psychology-related books I have ever read. It described the therapeutic process in a personal way, rather than clinical. Since this process was from the point of view of Carl Rogers himself as a therapist, I felt I was able to discern how we develop as a person using relationships.

I felt like I was given more insight into how people change from this book than from any other piece of
Apr 18, 2010 Carly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is quite possibly the best book that I have read as a part of my graduate school experience thus far.

This is the third theory book that I have read (Skinner, Jung) and Rogers is the most easy to get along with and understand. Rogers is humble, and every step of the way takes you along his journey to how he developed person centered therapy. At no point does he insist that his theory is the right one, or the only, but he says that his theory is what he has developed from his own experi
Jan 28, 2014 Jahn rated it really liked it
Thought this was a pretty interesting read. As a psychology major in college, it is somewhat inevitable that some classes will concern themselves with therapy and therapy techniques, regardless of whether or not an individual wants to become a therapist, and this was where I first encountered the book. Nonetheless, all information is good and relevant in some way, and this book was incredibly interesting to me. I graduated, am not a therapist and have no interest in becoming a therapist, but I s ...more
May 09, 2010 Morgan rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anybody who wants to understand about listening and self-trust
Recommended to Morgan by: my wasband
Read it many years ago, and his simple, trusting view that we humans need witness and listening, and that will go a long way toward enabling the person to find their own answers within themselves.

At the time my husband was a Rogerian counselor. Later, I studied at Center for Studies of the Person, Carl Roger's center in LaJolla, CA, and experienced what he was talking about. He was there with us for a day each of the 2 summers I participated in their 17-day workshops. (In my 2nd summer, my weeke
Dave Labranche
Jul 11, 2013 Dave Labranche rated it really liked it
this is an extremely valuable book for all "thinking humans" to read. It really helped me begin to understand myself, and it gave me insights that allowed me to eventually discover what makes me happy, what motivates me, what I truly need to AVOID in life (becuase I'm just not wired to deal with it) and in general it gives you a framework for finding your inner self.
Oct 02, 2009 Cherene rated it it was ok
If anyone wants to know Rogers' theoretical framework, I can explain it to you in 5 minutes and spare you the grief of reading this long, redundant book. It was somewhat interesting, but too repetitive.
Jan 30, 2009 Alex rated it it was amazing
This book was a pleasure to read. Reading Rogers helps me whenever I lose faith in the efficacy of long term psychotherapy. It is so important when practicing to get over your own worries and anxieties in order to be truly responsive to your patient. Through his anecdotes, teachings, and overall philosophy, I have been able to make major breakthroughs in my own comfort sitting with my patients.
Apr 29, 2008 Karson rated it liked it
This was the first book I read by Carl Rogers. I really like what i perceived as his foundation; that humans have pure wonderful cores that are surrounded by protective hurt layers. This premise rings true in my life. I believe that humans are capable of great beauty and great ugliness. I've seen wonderful people do ugly things, and vice versa, and I've always wondered why. Rogers draws on his unique history as an experienced psychoanalyst to try and answer this tough question. Something else I ...more
Lee Adams
Oct 24, 2015 Lee Adams rated it it was amazing
A beautifully written book written so the layman can understand and apply...simply life changing and brought me to tears in many places. I read the version with his own intro, a 'to the reader' and 'this is me' section which moved me. I just wish a lot of the more modern psychotherapy/psychology authors would put their writings in the simple to understand and accessible way that Rogers did. This is one of those books where you read a page and have to then put the book down to ponder and absorb. ...more
Jyotika Varmani
Apr 09, 2015 Jyotika Varmani rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
This book is as beautiful as the person who wrote it. It is wonderful how Roger's never gave importance to techniques but rather the process of psychotherapy. And I can connect to it.

This book is written straight from the hard and though the length requires lot of patience, it is well worth the effort. The approach of the therapist is vital to therapy and the philosophy of this book is not restricted to therapists alone, but can be easily practiced in everyday relationships.

Feb 13, 2016 Branca rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
Tendo-me sido recomendado pela minha mãe, esta foi minha estreia em livros psicoterapêuticos.
Consiste na análise de uma terapia (entitulada de 'centrada no paciente'), que visa promover as pessoas a mostrar quem realmente são e o que sentem sem grandes inibições - analisando também a perspectiva de que não é por isso que deixamos de saber comportar em sociedade ou que nos tornamos irracionais -, obtendo esta 'libertação' graças ao terapeuta, que segundo Rogers, deverá inspirar confiança, criar u
Oct 09, 2011 Logan rated it it was amazing
There are two categories of people: Those who know what's up and those who don't.

Carl Rogers knew what's up.

I don't know how rare it is for someone to possess the kind of humanistic insight Rogers had, but I do know it's very rare for such a person to apply that kind of insight to his writing and his field. The influence Rogers had on client-centered therapy is huge, yet I had never heard of the man until my third year in college. . .why?

melike aydin
Sep 27, 2014 melike aydin rated it it was amazing
He is a true believer of human potential and proves in this book that this belief has power to help humanity.

You can be equipped with the best knowledge and tools yet if you don't believe everyone is unique and worthy, don't aspire to be a helper.

Foundation of a helping relationship lies on 3 things
1- Unconditional self-worth
2- Congruence
3- Empathy
May 30, 2009 Lee rated it really liked it
As a non therapist yet interested individual in personal growth, On Becoming a Person inspired me. It's actually a good read even though I expected it to be more of a technical read. Rogers writes in a similar way to his approach to therapy. It reeds warm and inclusive.
Oct 01, 2007 Lisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is a great tool for a new therapist to:
1. Understand him/herself at a deeper level,
2. Help gain clients' perspective of therapy.

Carl Rogers rocks!!!
Mar 01, 2015 Deborah rated it really liked it
Toward the end of authenticity, the author astutely presents the case for accepting ourselves and accepting others as a prerequisite for healthy relationships.
Jan 16, 2008 Alicia rated it it was amazing
one of the most important reads of my life. Highly recommended for those who are tracking certain progressions and their own maturity.
Feb 11, 2012 Kevin rated it it was amazing
Great book, I think I will be reading this book forever. Brilliantly painted conceptual work making the abstract tangible.
May 18, 2016 Bleesko rated it liked it
I am in two minds about the overall rating of this book. Carl Rogers' message is powerful and maybe even life-changing but the title suffers from considerable repetitiveness. It is a collection of papers and talks Carl Rogers delivered during several decades and which reflect his therapeutic approach in different areas.
It revolves around some wide-ranging topics such as marital life and student-teacher relationship too but most chapters deal with methodological challenges in psychotherapy. And
Gerald Jerome
Sep 07, 2015 Gerald Jerome rated it it was amazing
There's quite a bit to cover here so I'll try not to make this succinct while communicating the many different thoughts I have concerning this book and Rogers' writings in general.

It is clear that Rogers has invested a great deal of thought and consideration to the topics he discusses but it seems the communication of his ideas can be lacking at times. So hopefully I represent fairly his ideas I examine. In his defense, he has stated that he feels verbal communication and isolated fact can never
Frankie Della Torre
I’m going to get a little intimate in this review. I’m doing this because I’ve been touched deeply by Carl Rogers’ work, and I simply feel within me a passionate drive to express how his psychotherapeutic findings have impressed themselves upon me. So here it goes…

I think very many of us are extremely miserable. In our First World society, we possess enormous sums of money, luxury items, cars, food, technology, phones, safety, affluence, freedom, you name it. We live the “American Dream” (indeed
Jan 04, 2015 Austin rated it really liked it
This is a profoundly insightful and human book from a man who is a father of client-centered therapy. Carl Rogers' farming and religious background seem to inform what was a uniquely American and emerging view of psychotherapy in 40s, 50s, and 60s as he wrote the papers which are compiled to form this book.

The book holds meaning for me because his views on forming a 'therapeutic' or 'helping' relationship with others extend well beyond the sphere of formal psychotherapy to encompass all human r
Sara Cristina
Sep 17, 2016 Sara Cristina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Uma obra brilhante que nos ensina a como ser melhores pessoas, nomeadamente para quem está a prosseguir os estudos em psicologia, a tornar-mo-nos melhores seres humanos para auxiliar os outros. Gostei bastante e recomendo.
Steven Howard
Sep 30, 2014 Steven Howard rated it really liked it
It's amazing how this 40+ year old book still has relevance today.

Rogers provides clear reasoning and sound arguments for his beliefs, though this reader walked away wondering if Rogers believed that one can only become a person through therapy. I would love someone to take the gist of Rogers' thinking and apply this to the bulk of the population.

Warning: the eBook version contains numerous typos, some of which are quite disconcerting. Whoever converted this old text to the Kindle format should
Erik Akre
Oct 11, 2015 Erik Akre rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: those in the helping professions; those in meaningful relationships
Carl Rogers affirms my inner-most values; this book taught me to trust myself, trust my intuition, and trust the human growth process. His practice confirms that the best psychotherapy is to simply listen and accept another person for who he/she is. He offers the motto of "unconditional positive regard" as a guide to relating to others, both in and out of the psychotherapeutic setting.

The best way to be is to be who you are at that moment--no walls, no faking, no defensiveness. By being so, you
Ribeiro Alvarenga
O livro é grande, o que o torna fastidioso. Não era nescessário tantos artigos para se apresentar o que realmente importa: a prática terapêutica de Rogers que consiste na chamada aceitação incondicional, na dança de devolução empática ao paciente de suas dificuldades. Há também uma fraqueza horrenda de flertar com escolas comportamentais quantitativistas que buscam uma espécie de equação da cura. Coisa feia de se ler.

Os recortes de terapia são o que realmente valem a pena. Está tudo lá.
Joe M
Feb 01, 2016 Joe M rated it it was amazing
A book I should have read about a decade before I actually did, written by Rogers to an audience of counselors, and summarizing his approach. There are two key concepts Rogers advances that are particularly salient. The first is congruence (or ‘transparency’): a matching of experiencing, awareness, and communication—that all three of these are in alignment and ‘match up,’ without disconnect or discrepancy. The second is that of ‘unconditional positive regard’—conveying in the therapeutic environ ...more
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"Experience is, for me, the highest authority. The touchstone of validity is my own experience. No other person's ideas, and none of my own ideas, are as authoritative as my experience. It is to experience that I must return again and again, to discover a closer approximation to truth as it is in the process of becoming in me." -Carl Rogers, On Becoming a Person

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“What is most personal is most universal.” 70 likes
“I believe it will have become evident why, for me, adjectives such as happy, contented, blissful, enjoyable, do not seem quite appropriate to any general description of this process I have called the good life, even though the person in this process would experience each one of these at the appropriate times. But adjectives which seem more generally fitting are adjectives such as enriching, exciting, rewarding, challenging, meaningful. This process of the good life is not, I am convinced, a life for the faint-fainthearted. It involves the stretching and growing of becoming more and more of one's potentialities. It involves the courage to be. It means launching oneself fully into the stream of life. Yet the deeply exciting thing about human beings is that when the individual is inwardly free, he chooses as the good life this process of becoming.” 69 likes
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