Transforming shame, guilt and anxiety through a salutogenic PP1.0 and PP2.0 counselling framework

Claude–Hélène Mayer, Elisabeth Vanderheiden, Rudolf M. Oosthuizen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Salutogenesis is the study of what keeps people healthy and how to develop health. It is a theory introduced by the medical sociologist, Aaron Antonovsky, in the late 1970s. Contemporary salutogenesis is an internationally well-researched theory. It was previously placed in a positive psychology framework (PP1.0) as a theory. In this article, the authors discuss how salutogenesis and the second wave of positive psychology (PP2.0) can contribute to developing the mental health and well-being of individuals in the counselling context. They focus on the emotions of shame, guilt and anxiety and their impact on counselling. The article further presents a conceptual approach to deal with shame, guilt and anxiety from a salutogenic and PP2.0 perspective to transform emotions that are experienced negatively into positive experiences. This salutogenic transformation can contribute to the growth, mental health and well-being of individuals. One case example from counselling practice is given. The article closes with conclusions and theoretical and practical recommendations for counselling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)436-452
Number of pages17
JournalCounselling Psychology Quarterly
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2 Oct 2019


  • Salutogenesis
  • anxiety
  • counselling
  • guilt
  • mental health
  • positive psychology
  • shame

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental Health


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