This research project explores and describes how names and embedded meanings might be utilized as a therapeutic technique in order to mediate social adjustment and interpersonal efficiency. The subjective feeling of success that a person experiences in different areas of life is closely related to the quality of interpersonal relationships that underlie satisfactory interaction with other people. It is the researcher’s opinion that a person’s name almost equals a personal life prophecy and that any name could be a means to mould the client’s life script onto more favourable pathways, because the embedded meaning of a name might contribute to the client’s level of self-knowledge which is necessary for healthy, meaningful relations with others. With the rationale of this research study in mind, the research problem was formulated as follows: How can names and embedded meanings be utilized as a therapeutic technique to mediate social adjustment and interpersonal efficiency? Critical questions that emerged were: What are the underlying psychological constructs that guide the use of names and embedded meanings as a therapeutic technique? How can embedded meanings of names contribute to the different components inherent to sound social adjustment and interpersonal efficiency? Can names and embedded meanings be successfully utilized as a therapeutic technique to enhance social adjustment and interpersonal efficiency? A mixed method approach of qualitative as well as quantitative research was used for the purpose of this study, and interpretivism was the preferred epistemology. A non-experimental mode of inquiry was implemented at the hand of a single case study. Multiple data gathering methods were employed, which included: a well observed intake interview, a pre- and post-test at hand of the Interpersonal Relations Questionnaire, research participant-reflection during a structured interview with a number of stimulus-questions and informal observations and conversations. As enhanced social adjustment, interpersonal efficiency and growth in certain areas were obtained by means of using names and their embedded meanings as a therapeutic technique, the hypothesis of this study could be accepted and supported.
Dissertation (MEd (Educational Psychology))--University of Pretoria, 2007.