Developed by Sigmund Freud, modern psychoanalysis is a dichotomy in psychology as it has been revered and refuted by the general public throughout the years. The success of this therapy, particularly in European countries, has served to sever it from its true roots. Psychoanalysis has been used in sociology, religion, literature, and even in mythology and through these mediums gained momentum and recognition with the general population. However, its therapeutic and clinical purposes were overshadowed by its cultural acceptance. Seen as one of the most influential theories in history, psychoanalysis appeared in our culture as a revolutionary and innovative model of construction that dared to oppose and challenge existing formulations and morals. The debate continues to this day as to whether this pervading clinical method of therapy has any validity in modern behavioral medicine or if it merely represents a meandering and colorfully narrative description of Freud’s own distorted perceptions and beliefs.
Although the field of psychoanalysis encompasses a vast number of therapeutic models, there are three main principles at its core:
1) Psychoanalysis is the technique of researching and discovering the ways of the mind and the thought processes.
2) Psychoanalysis maintains a specific set of ideas with regard to human behavior.
3) Psychoanalysis is a form of therapy for the treatment of various emotional and psychological disturbances.
Every area of psychoanalysis utilizes dreams, fantasies, and associations as well as the expression of thoughts both verbally and physically. The therapist uses this information to incite the inner battles being waged that are directly responsible for the appearance of symptoms and behavior problems. These issues can be so overwhelming or distracting that they cause the person to seek treatment. The therapist works with the client to address the underlying issues and work through transference and resistance. Ultimately, the client will gain insight into their own skewed reactions and realize what transformations need to occur with respect to their intrapersonal relations.