chapter  47
The concern for power in the therapeutic relationship shown by person-centred therapists is misconceived and misdirected
Pages 4

As indicated in Points 5, 6 and 37, the issue of power has long been considered as important in the practice of person-centred therapy. At the very heart of the approach lies the therapist's eschewal of the direction and domination of the client. However, this appears to con¯ict with what is generally agreed to be an inherent imbalance in the power dynamic in which the therapist has knowledge and expertise and the client is vulnerable and anxious. Also effective person-centred therapy depends on therapists being fully present as powerful people. However, rather than denying their power in a relationship person-centred therapists are required to be acutely aware of it and to exercise it in a constructive, in¯uential way. It is also hoped that as the therapeutic relationship develops, as the result of increased reciprocal trust, there is a move towards the sharing of power or, more correctly, the establishment of a co-operative and collaborative endeavour in which therapist and client are equal although they have different aims, focus on different things and function differently. That is to say, in the person-centred relationship `equality' is not about being the same but being of the same worth.