Morita Therapy was developed by Shoma Morita, a Japanese psychiatrist who believed that the feelings we experience are natural responses to life circumstances. This is a form of treatment that shows patients how they can overcome internal conflicts by accepting them. During treatment sessions the patient learns how to lead a wholesome life by implementing a habitual way of thinking. Fears are present in all of us and having the ability to work through them toward improvement is a learned skill. Some skills that we adopt throughout our lifetime require practice or repetition. Every behavior can be learned in time and an individual will only progress by participating in the activity repeatedly. Mental health and building a healthy perception requires skills and mental patterns that must be repeated so that thoughts eventually become habitual. The skill to develop comes from practicing and putting in a personal effort. Morita Therapy is based on the idea that if an individual is dealing with depression or anxiety they must come to accept these feelings instead of focusing on the current state of mind. When feelings are accepted it can lead them to external accomplishments. Concrete focus eliminates conflict and improves current circumstances into something that is truly desirable.

Goals of Morita Therapy

The goal of Morita Therapy focuses on recognizing the psychological function of the patient and looking at what emotion makes them feel uncomfortable. It's too often that individuals try to label themselves when they are dealing with uneasy circumstances instead of diagnosing the cause of their emotion. When an experience is observed - awareness will stem from it. Paying too much attention to one's self can initiate anxiety because it is a forced focus. When a client pays attention to worry it often turns into a trapped perception. Morita Therapy focuses on absorbing what the person is going through and helping them understand why they are feeling that way currently. They will comprehend the state of mind and work through it. The goal is to release the person from focusing their attention on the "self" by looking at what they truly desire in life. It's easy to practice a life that is undesirable because people often believe that they are not capable of accomplishing what they truly desire. This then leads to an internal struggle.

When is Morita Therapy Used?

Morita Therapy is used on those who are focusing too much on an inner self instead of the opportunity that surrounds them. At times they may experience a significant amount of anxiety which results in oblivion toward everything else. By dwelling on these emotions it's going to control their behavior. Therapy is used when an individual is concentrating too much on an inward focus, leading to inaction and a lack of goals. Forgetting about these wants is only going to increase contemplative thoughts. The patients who benefit from this therapy need to learn how they can take active roles in their life instead of focusing on their introvert self.

How Morita Therapy Works

Morita Therapy begins by diagnosing a patient, uncovering their worries and figuring out what has established their discomfort. The therapist diagnoses what is going on in the mind of the patient so that they can then teach them how to get away from a trapped way of thinking. It is going to require that the patient focuses on what they truly desire in life by creating a plan that they can physically implement. If the patient is dealing with an internal conflict it often means that they are not doing what they truly desire in life. They may be meeting the expectations of others instead of taking control of their own wants and needs.

After the therapist uncovers one's desires they will then assist the individual in strategizing a plan. Once the treatment plan has been created the client will focus on a goal instead of their own thought process. Time will begin to pass and the patient can start to execute a new approach that helps them get through the day without worrying about an internal conflict. The therapist will teach their client the basics of Morita Therapy; throughout these sessions they will then illustrate how to use techniques and focus on extrovert goals instead of a conflicted introvert. The patient will soon get in touch with their deepest desires and feel enthusiastic about achieving personal goals.


Bryan, D. (2013, April 12). Morita therapy. Retrieved from

Chang, S. C. (2011, Dec). Psychotherapy and culture. morita therapy: An illustration. Retrieved from

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