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What is Contextual Therapy?: The 4 Dimensions

Why is it Important to Have 4 Dimensions?

One of the things that I find most useful about the contextual approach is how it incorporates multiple perspectives. The integrative aspect of contextual therapy (CT) runs through the model and affects treatment in many ways. The emphasis on multiple perspectives becomes clear as soon as one opens a book about CT and reads about the 4 dimensions because these dimensions provide 4 simultaneous perspectives, 4 ways of looking at each person in a family.

Contrary to appearances, these dimensions are not hierarchical; no one dimension is either deeper or more important than any other. When conducting therapy, the CT therapist should be considering all 4 of the available perspectives.The four dimensions of contextual therapy are: Facts (history), Psychology (psychodynamics and individual differences), Transactions (Family systems issues), and Ethics (Interpersonal fairness). In future posts in this series, I shall have much more to say about each of these dimensions and how they can enhance therapeutic effectiveness.

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