PTG in Clinical Practice

Clinical Applications of Posttraumatic Growth

January 1, 2015
Positive Psychology in Practice: Promoting Human Flourishing in Work, Health, Education, and Everyday Life

This chapter delves into the phenomenon of personal growth amid adversity and its significance in various disciplines. The authors review the literature on growth following life crises and emphasize the therapeutic relationship’s role in recognizing and nurturing this process.

In listening to clients with respect for their strength and ability to change, we find ourselves changed for the better.
Dr. Tedeschi et al.

This chapter reviews the literature that shows that growth occurs in the aftermath of a variety of life crises, and summarizes ways of understanding how this growth occurs.

Tedeschi and Calhoun coined the term posttraumatic growth to describe the experience of positive changes that occur as the result of the struggle with major life crises. The kinds of positive changes people experience in their struggle with major stressors are reflected in the Posttraumatic Growth Inventory: improved relationships, new possibilities for one’s life, a greater appreciation for life, a greater sense of personal strength, and spiritual development.

The chapter explores how the therapeutic relationship can be a vehicle for recognizing growth at a time of vulnerability. With a basic understanding of the variables involved in the process of posttraumatic growth, the chapter considers how a clinician can affect this process in useful ways.

Read the Chapter “Clinical Applications of Posttraumatic Growth”

About the Authors