Introduction to Meaning-Oriented REBT: How to Help Clients with Existential Questions  (5/6/2022)

Introduction to Meaning-Oriented REBT: How to Help Clients with Existential Questions (5/6/2022)

Regular price $115.00

Leader: Joel Vos, Ph.D., MSc., M.A., CPsychol., FHEA

Dr. Joel Vos Ph.D., MSc., M.A., CPsychol., FHEA, is a psychologist, philosopher, researcher, and lecturer. He works as a Cognitive Behavioural Therapist and Existential Therapist. He works as a Senior Researcher and Senior Lecturer at the Metanoia Institute in London, United Kingdom. His research focuses on topics around meaning in life, social justice, and the effectiveness of humanistic and existential therapies. He chairs the IMEC International Meaning Events & Community which organizes annual conferences, workshops, training, and cultural events ( He has over 100 academic publications, including the books ‘Meaning in Life: an evidence-based handbook for practitioners’ (MacMillan, 2017), ‘Mental health in crisis’ (Sage, 2019), ‘The economics of meaning in life’ (University Professors Press, 2020), and ‘The psychology of COVID-19’ (Sage, 2020). Read more on Email:

Date: Friday, May 6, 2022 | 9:30 am EST - 12:45 pm EST

Location: Zoom

3 Contact Hours/ 3 Continuing Education Credits (APA, NBCC, New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work & Mental Health Counselors)


This lecture will cover how REBT therapists can work with their clients’ existential questions. Research shows that the therapy goals of many clients are not only about getting rid of their clinical symptoms, such as depression or anxiety, but they want to learn how to live a meaningful life despite life’s challenges. Existential questions are not merely a by-product of irrational beliefs: it seems rational that most clients ask existential questions after traumatic life experiences and chronic/life-threatening physical illness. Therapists can help clients to explore meaningful answers to existential life experiences. Traditional REBT theory and practice offer many methods and processes to help clients with questions about life, and to prevent irrational beliefs disrupting living a meaningful life. This lecture will highlight how REBT can help clients live a more meaningful life in the face of existential and emotional challenges. Research shows that rational beliefs can help individuals to live a meaningful life, and living a meaningful life can stimulate rational thinking. Research also suggests that the experience of meaning may go beyond some of the traditional REBT concepts. This lecture will give an overview of empirical research on meaning in life and how to work therapeutically with meaning. The theory will be exemplified with description of case studies and reflective exercises. Participants will be given practical tips and strategies for how to work with meaning in their own REBT practices.

Learning Objectives:

  •  Identify existential questions in clients
  • Explain how REBT methods and processes can help clients with existential questions
  • Explain key research findings on the psychology of meaning in life
  • Describe key research findings on working therapeutically with meaning in life
  • Recite where to find more resources for working with meaning in life
  •  Analyze one’s own sense of meaning in life

Recommended reading for this lecture:

Vos, J. (2016). Working with meaning in life in mental health care: A systematic literature review of the practices and effectiveness of meaning-centred therapies. Clinical perspectives on meaning, 59-87.

Vos, J. (2016). Working with meaning in life in chronic or life-threatening disease: A review of its relevance and the effectiveness of meaning-centred therapies. Clinical perspectives on meaning, 171-200.

Vos, J. (2017). Meaning in life: An evidence-based handbook for practitioners. Macmillan International Higher Education.

Vos, J. (2020). The Economics of Meaning in Life: From Capitalist Life Syndrome to Meaning-Oriented Economy. University Professors Press.

Vos, J., & Vitali, D. (2018). The effects of psychological meaning-centered therapies on quality of life and psychological stress: A metaanalysis. Palliative & supportive care, 16(5), 608-632.

Russo-Netzer, P., Schulenberg, S. E., & Batthyany, A. (Eds.). (2016). Clinical perspectives on meaning: Positive and existential psychotherapy. Springer.

Ryff, C. D., Singer, B. H., & Dienberg Love, G. (2004). Positive health: connecting well–being with biology. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B: Biological Sciences, 359(1449), 1383-1394.

Park, C. L., & Folkman, S. (1997). Meaning in the context of stress and coping. Review of general psychology, 1(2), 115-144.


Albert Ellis Institute is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists.  The Albert Ellis Institute is approved by The State Education Departments State Board for Social Work.  The Albert Ellis Institute maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

Albert Ellis Institute has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 5145. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. Albert Ellis Institute is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.

Albert Ellis Institute is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Psychology as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed psychologists #PSY-0133.

Albert Ellis Institute is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #SW-0131.

Albert Ellis Institute is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors #MHC-0019.


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