Theories and techniques


. After reading Chapters 1-3 in McCarthy & Archer’s (2013) Theories of Counseling and Psychotherapy, write a 2-4 page description of your psychosocial development. Use the chart below as the basis of your description. Write one paragraph for each psychosocial stage in Erikson’s model. In each paragraph provide the following: Give a brief description of how you experienced this stage of development. Personal application is preferred, but if you do not remember your own experiences, you may use specific examples of an individual going through the stage. Describe the high points, low points, traumas, major life-changing events, etc., along with the resulting outcomes of virtue and strength or maladaption/malignancy. Erikson’s psychosocial crisis stages Life stage / Relationships / Developmental Process Virtue and strength (Positive outcome from each crisis) Maladaptation / Malignancy (Negative outcome – one or the other) 1. Trust vs. Mistrust infant / mother / feeding and being comforted, teething, sleeping Hope and Drive Sensory Distortion / Withdrawal 2. Autonomy vs. Shame & Doubt toddler / parents / bodily functions, toilet training, muscular control, walking Willpower and Self-Control Impulsivity / Compulsion 3. Initiative vs. Guilt preschool / family / exploration and discovery, adventure and play Purpose and Direction Ruthlessness / Inhibition 4. Industry vs. Inferiority schoolchild / school, teachers, friends, neighborhood / achievement and accomplishment Competence and Method Narrow Virtuosity / Inertia 5. Identity vs. Role Confusion adolescent / peers, groups, influences / resolving identity, direction, and becoming a grown-up Fidelity and Devotion Fanaticism / Repudiation 6. Intimacy vs. Isolation young adult / lovers, friends, work connections / intimate relationships, work and social life Love and Affiliation Promiscuity / Exclusivity 7. Generativity vs. Stagnation mid-adult / children, community / giving back to others, helping, contributing, mentoring Care and Production Overextension / Rejectivity 8. Integrity vs. Despair late adult / society, the world, life / meaning and purpose, life achievements (at peace with oneself and the world). Wisdom and Renunciation Presumption / Disdain Point Value of this Written Assignment: 9 This Assignment aligns with the following weekly outcomes: 5 This Assignment aligns with the following course outcomes: 1

sample paper

Theories and techniques

Therapists and counselors are one of the most respected people in the society because they dedicate most of their time in ensuring that psychological life of the most people in the society is healthy.  Psychotherapy theories provide a framework and guidelines for therapists and counselors to interpret a client’s behavior, thoughts, and feelings. In most cases, these therapists and counselors play a great part in helping a client navigate the client’s journey from diagnosis to post-treatment (Marcia, 2012). The theoretical approach is an integral part of the therapeutic process. Erickson’s model of psychosocial development is very important and highly regarded and meaningful concept. Erickson defines life as a series of lessons and challenges which help us to grow and explains why. The theory is crucial to child development.

Trust vs. mistrust

According to Erickson, this stage occurs in the first year of life. At this stage I was not certain in the world I lived in, and I was dependent on my mother stabilize and provide a consistent care.  Consistent, predictable and reliable care leads to trust which I carried on to their next relationships thus developing an internal hope. Failure to develop the attribute of hope leads to develop a virtue of fear which further leads to mistrust and withdrawal.

Autonomy vs. shame and doubt

This stage started after 18 months when I decided to move around, choosing what I wanted and choosing which toy to play with. My parents gave me the opportunity to try new things, but they were always closely watching me in case I needed any assistance. This helped develop courage and will which leads to self-esteem and autonomy.


Initiative vs. guilt

This stage was full of ply and interaction with other children as I started school at baby class. The play helped in developing interpersonal skills through initiating activities, games, and children discussion. With the help of my parents through answering my questions to quench the thirst of knowledge, I was able to develop purpose (Newman, 2014).

Industry vs. Inferiority

At this stage, there was a promotion from baby class to lower primary and my teachers took a central role in developing my self-esteem. They encouraged my initiatives and accomplishment and coached me on how to become more efficient and innovative and this turned and industrious person through being competent in all that I did.

Identity vs. Role Confusion

This stage usually occurs during adolescence. I become more independent and saw future with another perspective regarding relationship and career. It is during this time I realized the role I had to play in the society as a man and through the guidance of my elder brother, I developed a sense of fidelity (Newman, 2014).

Intimacy and Isolation

During this stage, there was the development of desires to love and intimacy with others. I explored various relationships with people of the opposite sex that could lead to long-term commitments and to start might own family. Eventually, I developed the sense of love which led to marriage.

Generativity vs. stagnation

After the marriage, I had to settle down to raise my family and develop my career. I was proud to give back to the society through raising my children, being involved in communal work and being production and this lead to the development of virtue of care in me (Marcia, 2012).

Ego integrity vs. despair

As I was getting older and older, I retired from my work to enjoy the fruits of my work and look after my lovely family. It is during this time that I contemplated my accomplishments, and I was able to develop integrity as I say myself leading a successful life. This contemplation helped develop a sense of wisdom in me.

In conclusion, we can say that Erickson’s theory has good face validity, and most individuals can relate to this theory about various stages of their live


Marcia, J. E. (2012). Ego identity: A handbook for psychosocial research. Springer Science & Business Media.

Newman, B. M. (2014). Development through life: A psychosocial approach. Cengage Learning.

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