Psychology Essays on Reality Theory by William Glasser

Reality Theory

William Glasser a psychiatrist developed the reality theory. It is a therapy approach used in counseling to aid individuals make problem solving decisions. It enables the client to focus on the current problem and equips him or her with the knowledge on how to create a better future instead of concentrating so much at the problem (Berger, 2005). This means that any counselor using reality theory as a counseling method will enable the client to think of effective ways of solving the problem at hand instead of focusing o the past and blaming the root cause of the issue.

The reality theory of therapy approach emphasizes the needs for making decision, taking control and actions about one’s life to help solve the issue they are experiencing at that point in time. This theory is very effective in solving Ana’s case because it will enable her to focus on ways of improving her jobless situation by applying for more jobs in order to be able to raise her son while her husband is away on duty. The approach will ensure that the client is able to discover what she really wants and examine whether her current actions or behavior are bringing her to achieving he needs (Berger, 2005). By using this theory, the Ana will be realistic, responsible, know what is right, and wrong in her life with t eh aim of taking the right actions to solving her problems. It aims to help the client take control of the world around her more effectively so that she is able to satisfy her needs in the best way possible.

The concepts that makes reality theory more applicable in Ana’s case include ability to be realistic, take action, focus on the current problem, avoid blaming others, taking control of her world, ability to satisfy her needs (Rosenthal, 1998). This theory is more effective over the other because it takes an accurate approach towards solving the client’s needs. The goals of counseling using reality theory are to ensure that the client finds an effective solution to her problems by making her able to take the right actions. The intervention methods here may include requiring the client to make new job applications, making it possible for the client to come up with a list of organizations where she can get a job to help alleviate her financial needs.

The theory is designed for short-term counseling. During this period, the client should have come up with viable proposals on how she or he wants to solve her problems. The client should be able to take appropriate actions and achieve her goals during this time. The counselor’s role with the client will be to ensure that the client comes up with the right solution to her problems (Thomas & Bevern, 2004). The counselor will take the counselee through the session and ascertain that the client has achieved her goals that made her come to the institution in the first place. The counselor will enable the client to see the reality of the situation, make her responsible, and identify the right and wrongs that lead to the issue. The client’s role during the counseling session is to attempt to come up with appropriate suggestions on how to solve her issues. Secondly, the client will document her course of action, and state the possible outcome of these actions.

This theory is most appropriate for all populations, especially in dealing with people facing challenges that are o non-mental or non-psychological nature. It is more appropriate for people who have the capacity to look into their lives, identify their problems, and come up with the right methods of actions on how to solve them by taking control of their world (Neri, 2007). Similarly, age is not an important factor while using this theory; the counselor must mainly focus on the problem and its solutions. This theory functions in addressing the social and cultural needs of the client by encouraging her to identify friend and if possible, relatives who can help her solve her main issue of joblessness. The client will be aware of the fact that being from a different country did not play a role in her losing her job and will certainly not help her in solving her issues. The theory will also make it possible for the client to realize that she needs some social acquaintances in order to live full life.

This case shows that the client has lost touch with her family who might have helped her with her problems. Second, she seems to blame her husband’s absence on her current inability or difficulty to raise her son single handedly since he was the sole provider. The clients’ need to consider adding extra qualifications in her specialty in order to have greater opportunities at work. Include taking casual jobs. The risk in using this approach may occur especially when the client develops the view that the counselor is putting her at fault. The counselor might be tempted to make suggestions for the customer, something the client might not like.




Berger, V. (2005). Reality theory. Retrieved from

Neri, G. (2007). William Glasser’s Choice Theory and Reality Therapy. Retrieved from

Rosenthal, H. (1998). Favorite counseling and therapy techniques: 51 therapists share their most creative strategies. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis

Thomas, K. & Bevern, N. (2004). Counseling theories and techniques for rehabilitation health professionals. New York, NY: Springer