I got back home after more than a week of intense studying and learning (and also some free time of course). Maybe it’s time to tell you more about Solution Focused Brief Therapy.
SFBT as I understand it, is a way of thinking, it’s a philosophy. It’s not about problem solving, or about finding solutions. It’s also not about analysing the causes of problems or any kind of psychodynamic or psychoanalytic approach. Also, it’s not about discussing the past and trying to resolve problems that might have origins as back as in the childhood.
What it is about, is that it is future focused. It helps clients create the context, in which solutions emerge and become possible. It predisposes that a client is an expert of his/her life and therefore knows best what is right for them. The therapist helps the client by finding and identifying their resources. The hidden resources, which all of us have, but may not be aware of. A thought of a German physicists Albert Schweizer well sums this up , by saying:
Each patient carries his own doctor inside him. They come to us not knowing that truth. We are at our best when we give the doctor who resides within each patient a chance to go to work
It also means no advice, only appreciative compliments and feedback based upon what the client has shared. Because of this and already mentioned future focused approach, it has very few negative side effects. If a therapist is not experienced, the client may feel bored or annoyed by questions that may sound stupid. So if I end up stupid, this is it 🙂
What kind of problems and/or issues can be addressed? Any kind. They may be personal or professional. May be long-lasting or new. May be severe or just feeling of being stuck (which could be very difficult as well!). The approach might also be used when one has something important upcoming (like an important exam, meeting, etc.) and may serve well as a confidence booster (I guess everyone now and then could use some of that).
As a scientist, of course before even starting to learn SFBT, I was curious about its efficacy – does it actually work? Only a brief yes was not enough for me, so I’ve done a bit of research in this area prior to learning. Found out that plenty surveys and research has been conducted in the field of efficacy of the approach and most of them agree, it is at least as effective as any other therapeutic approach, if not more (see for example Gingerich, W. J. & Peterson, L. T. (2013). Effectiveness of Solution-Focused Brief Therapy: A Systematic Qualitative Review of Controlled Outcome Studies. Research on Social Work Practice, [online version], p. 1-18.; as well as http://www.sfbta.org/PDFs/researchDownloads/SFT.pdf for detailed description on most recent and past surveys about SFBT).
So, as shared today with my Facebook friends, I’m ready to go now! I’ve learned enough to be able to perform it well and independently (but of course under professional supervision). During intense courses I had plenty of opportunities to practice and got some very positive feedback from other participants as well as teachers, so I’m really looking forward to pass this knowledge on. Because I so much believe in the efficacy of SFBT and have experienced it live, I’m giving myself and my time to you without any charges at the moment. Starting with live or Skype sessions, might also work through chat, I’m all yours!