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How Does Characteranalysis Differ from Traditional Analysis?


A major difference between these two modalities is that Characteranalysis lives and breathes in the here and now and interacts spiritedly with the blatant defensive style and chronic approach of the client.

We learn basic coping strategies early on that are reinforced throughout our lives.
These strategies are carved into our being both mentally and biophysically and create our interface with others. We unconsciously hone patterns of thought, feeling reaction and behavior that keep us afloat, but not as the master of our ship. Sometimes those patterns are hurtful both to our self and others because they are repeatedly destructive.

These defensive patterns are very obvious to the trained eye and characteranalysis highlights and engages them with the client. As therapists using characteranalysis, we interrupt the unconscious or conscious approaches that do not serve and ask the client to look and feel how they are being in the present. We are more interested in illuminating the unhealthy defensive modes than in using a primarily interpretive therapeutic approach. We work less with history, story and intellectualized modes because we want the raw, felt sense of contact with how we are.

Only then can we face into our selves honestly, experience the painful origins from our past with real feeling, and move forward in a very different way.


This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Facing into my self, honestly and directly, in the now, is not only a two-edged sword, it’s a prod threatening to disturb the comfortable reign ~ the ferocious dragon of substitute-self-defense structures, who in my absence, has enshrined itself king of my life. Fighting back with a paw of my mouselike here and now self, is more like scratching an itch rather than actually fighting back and leaving a mark, where this innocuous gesture might cause an awareness of my existence, which would hazard a dangerously fierce retaliation against my meager self-assertion – and crying, I’ll call out in the loudest whisper, “please, please, give me back my throne”….or so the story I repeatedly tell myself, goes…and I follow down the Rabbit hole…ashamed again…for admitting my truest desire and greatest fear, to claim my whole self (kingdom) and live authentically from the core of it.

    1. Hi Cheryl. I apologize for the delay in responding to your comment. Thank you for sharing such a powerful reflection.

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