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Predicting Tomorrow’s Psychology

     Psychology may be one of the most misunderstood fields of science. Part of this misunderstanding may come from the 53 divisions of psychology (Stanovich, 2007). Another cause may be on account of the lack of a uniting theory or application of theories (Cormack, 2005). Due to so many variables in the field, many may believe that anything that deals with the mind is part of psychology. This other psychology is pop psychology and may be influencing the real psychology. There is something growing in pop psychology called life coaching. This paper will briefly look at pop psychology, contemporary psychology and a possible direction.


The Wonder of ‘Pop’ Psychology

     Pop psychology has become known as being a collection of methods for improving one’s self-worth. A majority of these methods may not have any scientific foundation (Kayne, 2009). This information is hawked by a variety of self-proclaimed authorities that often have no credentials. Self-help books brought in more than $600 million in 2000 (Gunnell, Pimlott, & Motevalli, 2004). Topics range from spirituality, self-worth, to material wealth. The information provided is simplistic and touted as being breakthrough techniques that often defy science (Stanovich, 2007). Those with credentials such as James Redfield, author of the Celestine Prophecy series, base their information on case studies and his own experiences (Redfield, 2007). Case studies only provide a snapshot of a person’s life. Other books are based on personal experience. Redfield, unlike others, uses scientific theories as possible explanations for psychic phenomena.


     While pop psychology may offer some useful advice for personal growth, harmful advice is part of the mix (Gunnell, Pimlott, & Motevalli, 2004). Some may claim that these tactics are tough love and needed, others question their efficacy. Psychologist turned entertainer, Dr. Phil uses techniques that appear to break the person down, reducing them to tears. Prior to being an entertainer in California, Dr. Phil was a licensed psychologist in Texas (Li, 2008).


     Not everything in pop psychology is questionable; some publish books that are supported by scientific research. Much of this can be found in the science sections of the bookstore. Topics in psychology can be found in the neuroscience and physiological sections (Stanovich, 2007). Most of these books are based on scientific principles.


Can ‘Pop’ Psychology Become Contemporary Psychology?

     A developing area of pop psychology that may fall into the confines of contemporary psychology is that of life coaching. Life coaching is about goal setting and helping people reach their goals (Spence & Grant, 2007 ). A life coach works with an individual and establishes goals, develops a plan of action, then facilitates the progress of the individual (Gooding, 2006; Keene, 2006). Coaching is based on the establishment of a bond between the coach and the client. The program is based on dialogue but remains action oriented (Spence & Grant, 2007). Challenges are identified and solutions discussed. As the facilitator, the coach draws the solution from the individual. This sounds like contemporary psychology.


     Contemporary psychology such as clinical and cognitive psychology depend on the client-therapist relationship of trust. This is accomplished through a dialogue. One of the core principles of cognitive behavioral therapy is education, skill building, implementation, and achieving goals (Basco, Glickman, Weatherford, & Ryser, 2000). All are similar aspects of life coaching.


     An abundance of evidence supports the efficacy of motivation and goal setting. Few studies of the benefits of life coaching have been done. Many of the underlying therapeutic values of cognitive behavioral therapy exist in the methodology used in coaching. Comparisons can be seen in applications used by industrial/organizational psychologists with managers and employees (Spence & Grant, 2007).

A study by Grant (Spence & Grant, 2007 ) linked the sense of well-being with reaching personal goals. Another study by Spence and Grant (2007) found a correlation in the way a person’s self-reflection had changed from impeding goal progression to improved metacognition processes and lower stress levels. They also found that coaching did increase one’s sense of control over the environment despite not being able to confirm the connection with goal success and improved sense of well-being.


     Clinical psychology is where the theories of psychology are applied to the community in the assessment, treatment, and prevention of psychological distress and dysfunctional behavior (Huey & Britton, 2002). The ability of the clinical psychologist to draw from a variety of resources is essential to his success. The same may be said for life coaching. One person describes the difference between the two fields as life coaching is about today and tomorrow, while psychotherapy focuses on yesterday and today (Savage, 2006).


     Life coaching is a growing field that is filled with charlatans who make unsupported claims. The field is also fertile ground for conducting research and the application of therapies that may be a form of preventative medicine. Some psychologists, such as Anne Gooding (2006), supplement their practice with coaching. If this trend continues life coaching may become subfield 54.


Conclusion

     Pop psychology has developed alongside psychology. Both have had a strong influence upon the minds of the public. Psychologists and self-proclaimed experts have contributed to the confusion that may exist. Misrepresentations of the field in books, newspapers, magazines, radio and television abound. Many aspects of psychology began this way. The psychodynamic perspective developed by Freud, who was a medical doctor who took an interest in psychiatry . Psychoanalysis continues to thrive despite the lack of scientific support. Life coaching has the potential to become a part of psychology as well. In the meantime, life coaching has gone from anyone can do it to a strong emphasis on certification. Educational programs have developed and journals have come into existence (Gooding, 2006). For those unable to move forward in a career in psychology, they may be able to bide their time and hone their skills as a life coach.


References

Basco, M. R., Glickman, M., Weatherford, P., & Ryser, N. (2000). Cognitive-behavioral therapy for anxiety disorders: Why and how it works. Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic , 64 (3), A52. Retrieved December 10, 2008 from Academic Search Complete database.

Cormack, E. (2005). Meaning making: The future of integrative therapy? CPJ: Counseling & Psychotherapy Journal , 16 (5), 19-22. Retrieved January 21, 2009 from Academic Seach Complete database.

Gooding, A. D. (2006). Status, change, and future. Annals of the American Psychotherapy Association , 9 ( 3), 25. Retrieved February 16, 2009 from Academic Search Complete database.

Gunnell, B., Pimlott, D., & Motevalli, G. (2004). The happiness industry. New Statesman , 133 (4704), 10-12. Retrieved February 16, 2008 from MasterFILE Premier database.

Huey, D. A., & Britton, P. G. (2002). A portrait of clinical psychology. Journal of Interprofessional Care , 16 (1), 69- 78. Retrieved January 29, 2008 from CINAHL Plus database.

Kayne, R. (2009). What is pop psychology? Retrieved February 28, 2009, from WiseGEEK: http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-pop- psychology.htm

Keene, P. A. (2006). Life coaches: A partner in accountability. Today's Chiropractic Lifestyle , 35 (1), 20-22. Retrieved February 16, 2009 from Alt HealthWatch database.

Li, D. K. (2008). Betrayal: Brit Kin's shrink rap vs. unlicensed Dr. Phil. New Youk Post , Retrieved May 22, 2008 from http://www.nypost.com/seven/01102008/news/nationalnews/betr ayal_580869.htm.

Redfield, J. (2007). James Redfield. Retrieved February 20, 2009, from CelestineVision.com: http://www.celestinevision.com/

Savage, L. (2006). You go, girl! That'll be $300. Maclean's , 119 (48), 61-65. Retrieved February 16, 2009 from Business Source Complete database.

Spence, G. B., & Grant, A. M. (2007 ). Professional and peer life coaching and the enhancement of goal striving and well-bing: An exploratory study. Journal of postive psychology , 2 (3), 185-197. Retrieved February 16, 2009 from Academic Search Complete database.

Stanovich, K. E. (2007). How to think straight about Psychology (8 ed.). Allyn and Bacon.



Predicting Tomorrow’s Psychology

Phillip Falcone

University of Phoenix

PSY-490: CAPSTONE

Christopher B. Gargoline, MA

February 23, 2009


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This subtle energy is also a key ingredient for the creative process. Want to know why? Attend one of my workshops, and I’ll let you know. The tele seminar is on its way.

Watch for this to be offered as a webinar through livestream.

Find out what this has to do with the Law of Attraction and You!

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Athletes have coaches. Why not everyone else?

The real difference between seeing a psychologist, a minster, a psychic, and a life coach is that “…the coach is someone whose job is to be on your side of the fence. They’re there for trying to help you achieve your maximum potential and help you figure out how to get there along the way."

                                                       NPR's Talk of the Nation with Neal Conan - Sept. 27, 2011

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I am a manifesting coach. I co-create with people who want to grow using their inner Wisdom to create opportunities.

 

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Did You Know?

Dr. Wilder Penfield, through stimulating certain areas of the brain, the subjects would hear an authoritative voice that sounded like that of a man. This was from the right hemisphere .

Sources:

Hamilton, Mark; Alexander, Tracy; Savage, Eric & Wallace, Frank R. (2007). The Nouveau Tech Package of Inside Secrets. Neo-Tech Books

Want to know more?

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Each coaching session is not always directly tied to goal application.  Sometimes, the session focuses on areas that are vague. 


Goals are not always monolithic achievements.  The type of goal a person aims for has an impact on the approach and the level of satisfaction. 


Grant, Anthony M. International Coaching Psychology Review. 2012, Vol. 7 Issue 2, p 146-165.

The Life of Your Dreams 

When people say they don't have time to do something they want to do, they have already failed.  The only thing worse is you don't know what to do. 


Ellis, Dave (1998). Creating Your Future: Five steps to the life of your dreams.

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Lesley S. Martin, Lindsay G. Oades, and Peter Caputi. What is Personality Change Coaching?

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 Jennifer Irwin, and Don Morrow.