Solution Focused Masterclass for professionals working with families, children and young people

Solution Focused practice is an approach to foster positive change effectively and in a considerably shorter amount of time than other approaches. It was developed in 1980’s by Steve de Shazer and Insoo Kim Berg as Solution Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) and has since been worldwide used across different fields, such as therapy, social work, coaching, training, business, management, education, facilitation, project management, etc.

Solution Focused practice is having a massive impact on all aspects of education and is associated with making a massive difference in behaviour, attendance, school achievement, leadership and staff morale. It provides a simple framework for managing influential conversations between professionals and young people/children/families, which have the capacity to improve:

  • well-being of families, children or young people
  • parental support and cooperation
  • school attendance
  • learning
  • behaviour
  • relationships
  • enthusiasm and job satisfaction
  • burnout prevention

On 1st and 2nd February 2020, Ribalon Institute is proudly hosting two special guests from United Kingdom and offering you a 2-day Masterclass for Slovenian professionals working with families, children and young people in school settings, social services youth field or another educational sector.


Ben Scott trained in Solution Focused Practice with BRIEF in London, and has since gone on to receive accreditation with UKASFP (UK Association of Solution Focused Practice). Ben works in the Education department of Bedford Borough Local Authority, co-ordinating a schools-based Solution Focused service, and providing targeted Solution Focused training to senior school staff. This training targets family support workers, pastoral leads, and Heads of Year. In addition, Ben uses Solution Focused Practice when volunteering for ‘Azalea’, a charity that supports women to exit from sexual exploitation and that offers mentoring to men who purchase sex and wish to quit doing so.

Greg Oberbeck has been using the Solution Focused approach for over seven years now, working with families as part of an ‘edge of care’ team within Essex County Council. In addition to working with families, Greg helps to develop practice through regular workshops, SF supervision as well as SF trainings. He has also wanted to continue to do more with the approach, and so over the past few years has been working with the Young Women’s Trust, providing SF telephone coaching and also has an online-based private practice. Like Ben, Greg has also been trained in Solution Focused Practice with BRIEF in London and is also received accreditation with the UKASFP.

In January 2019 Ben, Greg and Biba have formed a new organisation in the UK called SF Possibilities, at which they are designing and delivering face-to-face and online training courses in Solution Focused practice in the UK and beyond with the mission of keeping the practice succinct, minimalistic and straightforward. Some of their work you will be able to experience in this two-day Masterclass, which will be geared specifically towards teachers, psychologists, learning support staff, mentors, youth workers, social workers and any other professionals working with children, young people or whole families. The course will be in English, with occasional Slovenian translation upon demand.

In the February 2-day Masterclass, you will learn all the essential skills of Solution Focused tools and techniques and will be able to start putting them into practice as soon as you return to work. To book your place, please visit The cost for the whole Masterclass is 320 eur. For all the queries, contact Biba at We are very much looking forward to seeing you in February!

Ben, Biba & Greg


First Year in London

Dear reader,

today is exactly one year since I formally left Slovenia, cancelled all my papers, accounts, insurances and moved to London with a one-way ticket, no work contract and no place to live. Looking back over the past year, I think it was the best decision I ever made but not because London would have been so spectacular or I wanted to escape something. Neither, really. It is more an analogy with our working with clients when at the beginning of our work, some would have it difficult describing what is it they are hoping for and even more difficult describing what that might look like. I did feel a bit doubtful and scared at the beginning, but also trusting that life will present itself to me best it could. And it did.

We live our lives the best we can in given circumstances. And many times we think we are giving all we can. And other times there is so much more to discover, but we do not give ourselves a chance or simply overlook that we might have extra resources, some of which we have long forgotten about or some we thought we never had. Yet they surface, when we need them.

And they surface when you do things you’ve never done before, in places you’re not used to. Easy roads do not make skilled drivers, but skilled drivers often don’t consider themselves as such once they master the skill. In Solution Focused Brief Therapy or Coaching we however do. Looking for hidden gems is exactly what us as practitioners are curious about – the resources people have and demonstrate every single day, but might not be aware of or the circumstances around them don’t recognise it as such. As was with me – now looking back moving to London doesn’t seem such a big thing, but thinking about it on this special day, my life has changed dramatically since then. Travelling loads, I always had a sense that I need to pack many things “just in case”. Whenever I moved in to a new place I wanted to make it a “home”. In the past year I learned that the more I drag around, the more I enhance my sense of vulnerability. I am totally comfortable with uncomfortable now and pack extremely light. Feel totally stable with unstable world. And those are actually skills – I know that everywhere I’ll go and anything I’ll do in the future, I’ll not only manage, but also enjoy the journey. I don’t need stable, predictable or safe anymore. It’s an illusion anyway. Life is a constant-changing process and stability is rather our enormous skills of survival and thriving disguised. So glad to be a Londoner now. Feels good to be here and I think I might stay another year. UK is a great country and I feel good in it. For now (and asking about Brexit – if UK government doesn’t know what to say, how would I?)

As for you, never underestimate your skills. Rather than looking how far you still need to go, how about turning back and celebrate how far you’ve come?



Look forward, but don’t forget that you’ve got a rucksack full of resources with you. That’s the only baggage you’ll ever need.

Letter to lovers who let you down

Dear reader,

wanting to improve and/or move forward in relationships seems to be a very common topic in therapy, counselling and coaching. Relationships consist a very big part of our lives, our identities, our sense of belonging, they help shape our purpose of living, are reasons to get up in the morning, in short, they make our lives juicy and full.

Sometimes they also bring pain, disappointment, betrayal. They can be manipulative, abusive even, and that goes to all relationships – personal, professional, romantic, etc. They usually start beautifully, but then as you get to know each other better or as life happens in ways that make it harder for you to stay together, it becomes hard work and too much pain . Should you stay or should you go? Should you try harder with your partner or should you look for someone better for you? If you decide to fix the relationship, who should be the one to change first? How much of a compromise is still worth it?

Sounds familiar? Yeah, I’ve been there too. Many times. And as much as I’d love to give you an answer about how to move forward, I cannot, because everybody’s different. But that’s good news, because you already have the capacity to find the answers that will work for you (and your partner if you are in this together). Either you’ll find them on your own, or together with a professional, but don’t worry, you will.

I can however share with you a letter I wrote to my most significant relationships, which have hurt me.

Dear you,

you have left footprints in my life that will never fade. I am thankful for all of our good and bad moments together and the contrast they produced. I now know better what I don’t want and that makes it a good starting point to think about what is it that I do want. If we could go back, I would have repeated it all over again, second by second, because I know it was essential for the growth of both of us.

It may seem that you were all I ever wanted and it had been your fault things did not work out for us, because you couldn’t find enough time for me and couldn’t keep your promises. If you had, our relationship would have thrived. But I know now that this was false. It was not your fault, it was mine. You should never have been a condition for my ability to love and I now know better, not to give my heart to anyone with notice they may break it. I wished you and me were back in alignment, so much. And I would have done anything to fix this. Now I know what truly matters is me and me in alignment. You still may be my subject of attention, but the condition of my love will not be yours. It is not your job to love me. It is mine. It is not your responsibility to make me happy. It is mine.

The love that I was seeking was not where I was looking. So here I go, moving through life, with or without you. I will work on it and do my best to allow the things life has to offer to come my way, but for me, not for you. And I promise to myself not to let me down again. Relationship with me is the only relationship that will last me a lifetime, so the best place for my heart is to stay mine and not be anyone else’s. I want to invest it all into it. And when sometime in the future I do, life will flow through me, I will be my best version and I can promise you, that I will love again, differently, regardless who is around and even if there is no-one. You can be a part of this. But I don’t mind if you don’t. I got this.

Take care.

So here it goes, to all of you either loving or looking for love. Everyone deserves to be given a wild love from a gentle soul, like yours. Love doesn’t have to stop if your loved one stops loving you. Not sure my love letter is of any use, but who knows – sharing is after all, caring.



We got this.

I like hospitals …

Dear reader,

today my husband and I spent (or wasted?) a day of our lives at the ER and some other hospital departments in Ljubljana. He’s had quite bad luck lately and it seems it’s “one damn thing after another” and neither him, nor his Drs are certain of what the cause and what the symptom is anymore.

I wrote a quite personal newsletter to my Slovenian community today. About this hospital visit. I never particularly fancied hospitals, doctors, nurses, white coats and jumping stickers you got as a baby if you behaved well. I don’t recall getting any and was probably great pain to my mum whenever she had to bring me. Once I even managed to hold on to the sink so tightly that it separated from the wall and broke. She probably had to pay for that.

Then my own time in hospitals – in short – essential, not fun, painful. Or so I thought. Until today.

Having all the time in the world waiting for my husband, I spent it observing people. Patients, their carers, relatives as well as staff. Not a happy place: patients impatient (funny how the word impatient implies patients/patience?), carers worried, no laughter, silent conversations on one hand or too loud screaming in the phones on the other, staff rushing, looking away not to be barked at when the next patients’ turn was. Plenty of evidence of pain, hopelessness, bitter faces, as well as sometimes shame and often loneliness. On top, used facilities, broken air conditions, smelly rooms of drugs and old, ill people. That’s what it seemed on the surface. Until one decides to look for different signs.

I so deeply admire and respect health workers, especially nurses and cleaners who spend the most time mingling with us mortals. So much dedication, so much patience and such professionalism. We spent 9 hours there and saw two shifts. They were so quick, efficient, communicated lots in order to find the best solution for each patient. Vast evidence and presence of professional work ethics. Then I listened to a conversation behind the door, supposed to be closed. Everybody knows the waiting lines for some services can be insane. The nurses were discussing what to do with a certain patient who in their opinion, needed to be seen before couple of months. They spent at least 45 mins phoning already enrolled patients on their registry just to see if there was a possible cancellation so they could squeeze this man in. And there was. So they did. I doubt this is stated in their contract as task description.

But such care wasn’t present only among staff. There was evidence of it among patients too. The way how they were with each other. At first sight, one might think that we were all sitting there selfishly, waiting for our turn to see the doctor, hoping it would have been before others. And in doing so, not wanting to engage or in case an encounter happened, take all the time in conversation to speak about oneself, one’s health history and troubling occurrence. But that was the first sight and it was not entirely accurate. For instance this: At one point, a young woman, probably a nurse or a young doctor (she was dressed in white) rushed from the ER straight onto a chair next to mine, buried her head into her hands and bursted into tears. It wasn’t just a cry, it was fury, she was out of her mind. Of course having sat next to her I leaned towards and embraced her. But I wasn’t the only one. Another woman approached too and offered her another shoulder to cry on. Then somebody brought a bottle of water and discretely backed up, as two of us were enough. Another one turned the ventilator down. And the rest were silent. Silent, unmoving, but very much present. The entire room organised itself so they could support a stranger in distress. It was beautiful to see, if one decides to look for the signs of human care.

This is what Alasdair MacIntyre wrote about and called it virtue ethics. I explored bits of it in my Doc, but probably not really understanding what it meant in practice. MacIntyre talked about needing interdependency because this is how people learn virtue of care, love, compassion and the like. We don’t learn virtues reading about it. We need circumstances where we can experience it. Experience what it’s like to look after someone and be looked after. Of course some individuals don’t take their chance, but others do. And it is those then who look after others and hence provide experience of being cared for which is then at some point, likely to be passed on.

So from today I officially like hospitals. The aspect of it which provides so much evidence of human care, vulnerability and interconnectedness. If one is willing to look out for it. This is what we train people in Solution Focused practice.

With much care and wishing you all good health,

Biba (red nose/cherry)


If I ever have the privilege to work with hospitals, I shall bring cherries instead of red noses.

SLO: Certifikat iz k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa + prva novica o novih strokovnih usposabljanjih v Sloveniji

All the international readers, I hope you do forgive me for offering a post in my mother tongue – I am so proud to announce a very fresh set of Solution Focused trainings in Slovenia as well as a very first certificate process for Slovenian professionals who would like to take their Solution Practice further, to a certified level. Ribalon Institute has been bringing Solution Focused practice to Slovenia since 2014 and has every year organised trainings for Slo audiences. After I left the country, there was a slight risk those trainings would stop, however I promised to myself to give my best and stay true to my roots by continuing to spread the SF word, skills and knowledge in my country. And so, for this autumn we have something special prepared. Whilst Slo friends are invited to read further, the rest of you may take a break and have a good and long summer! Thank you all!

Spoštovana Slovenija,

vsi, ki ste z nami že opravili usposabljanja in uporabljate pristop, za vas smo z ekipo iz UK pripravili program, ki vam bo omogočil večjo prepoznavnost in odraz vaših veščin. Certifikat, pridobljen z usposabljanjem in izkazom veščin k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa je prva stopnja kvalifikacij, ki jamči, da prejemnik:

  • Pozna osnove k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa
  • Zna ustrezno, kompetentno in etično uporabljati pristop pri svojem delu
  • Skrbi za lasten profesionalni razvoj in refleksijo svoje prakse.

Certifikat se podeli posamezniku/-ci (v nadaljevanju »kandidat«) na podlagi opravljenih strokovnih usposabljanj in izkazane kompetentnosti pri uporabi veščin in orodij k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa.

Pogoji za vstop v proces certificiranja ter pridobitev certifikata

Kandidati za vstop v proces certificiranja opravijo najmanj 8-dnevno usposabljanje iz k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa, ki ga izvaja Ribalon v Sloveniji oz. njegovi partnerji v tujini (BRIEF ali SFP) in obvezno vključuje opravljeno osnovno usposabljanje. Udeležba na delavnicah, ki niso usposabljanje ali predstavitvah na konferencah za proces certificiranja ne šteje, šteje pa opravljeno usposabljanje znotraj drugih organizacij, v izvedbi Ribalona ali partnerskih izvajalcev.

Vloga za certificiranje

Kandidati, ki dosegajo zahtevane pogoje so vabljeni k oddaji pisne vloge, s katero izkazujejo razumevanje k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa.

Vloga naj obsega do 10 strani (brez virov in literature) in zajema naslednja poglavja:

  1. Opis kandidatovega trenutnega delovnega mesta, znotraj katerega uporablja k rešitvam usmerjen pristop
  2. Opis opravljenih usposabljanj
  3. Razumevanje in opis k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa in modela
  4. Opis uporabe k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa in predpostavk pri kandidatovem delu
  5. Študija primera: podroben opis in dokumentacija konkretnega primera
  6. Skrb za profesionalni razvoj (supervizija, strokovno izpopolnjevanje)
  7. Viri in navedena literatura, kjer je to potrebno

Vlogo pošljete dr. A. Bibi Rebolj na elektronski naslov z referenco “certifikat iz SF”. Po oddani vlogi boste prejeli povratno informacijo o odobrenem certifikatu ter podelitvi, ali morebitnih dopolnitvah ter dodatnih pojasnilih, v primeru, da vloga še ne dosega standardov za podelitev certifikata. Ocenjevalci so dr. A. Biba Rebolj, Ben Scott, Greg Oberbeck in po potrebi, svetovalno telo inštituta Ribalon.

Ob uspešni in pozitivno ocenjeni vlogi, boste Certifikat prejeli v fizični obliki, povabljeni pa boste tudi, da postanete eden izmed Ribalonovih priporočenih praktikov.

Navodila za pripravo vloge

Pri pripravi vloge sledite spodnjim navodilom ter obsegu. Vloga naj bo v MsWord, poljubne pisave, velikost 12.

  1. Opis trenutnega delovnega mesta, znotraj katerega kandidat uporablja k rešitvam usmerjen pristop – do 150 besed
  1. Opis opravljenih strokovnih usposabljanj: navedba kraja, datumov, izvajalcev, trajanje posameznega modula ter skupno število dni (ur).
  1. Razumevanje in opis k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa in modela – do 600 besed

K rešitvam usmerjen pristop lahko opišemo na različne načine, bodisi kot nabor orodij in tehnik, bodisi skozi predpostavke, bodisi skozi razmišljanje o tem, kako pristop dojema spremembo, kliente, načine dela, ipd. V opisu nas zanimata kandidatova interpretacija in razumevanje pristopa in v tem smislu ne zahtevamo opisa zgodovine in razvoja pristopa, pozdravljamo pa sklicevanje na relevantno literaturo.

  1. Opis načina uporabe k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa in njegovih predpostavk pri kandidatovem delu – do 1300 besed

V tem delu kandidat izkazuje sposobnosti uporabe k rešitvam usmerjenih predpostavk in tehnik v različnih kontekstih, znotraj katerih deluje, npr. pri delu s klienti, morda pri poučevanju, izvajanju skupinskih srečanj, pri svetovanju, vodenju sestankov, ipd.

  1. Študija primera: podroben opis in dokumentacija konkretnega nedavnega primera, kjer je uporabljen k rešitvam usmerjen pristop – do 2500 besed

V tem segmentu kandidat izkazuje kompetentno uporabo k rešitvam usmerjenih veščin v praksi. Kandidat izbere primer iz prakse, kjer je uporabil k rešitvam usmerjen pristop in tehnike:

  • Izbran primer naj bo odraz nedavnega dela in ne starejši od 6 mesecev od prijave za Certifikat.
  • Primer naj bo samostojno delo, ne npr. delo v paru z drugim k rešitvam usmerjenim praktikom ali soizvajalcem
  • Pri opisu naj se kandidat osredotoča na uporabo SF veščin in ne na opis primera. Ne opisuje se zgodovine primera in podrobnih okoliščin klienta, temveč se izkazuje kompetentno uporabo k rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa. Posebej dobrodošli so transkripti dejanskih pogovorov.
  • V študiji primera se lahko opiše eno ali več srečanj s klientom ter celotno sodelovanje skozi daljše časovno obdobje. V kolikor obstajajo informacije, se opiše tudi učinke po tem, ko je bilo delo zaključeno.
  • V opisu primera kandidat jasno opiše kako je vzpostavil dogovor oz. sporazum s klientom in kaj je ta vseboval.
  • Nato opiše kako je potekal opis željene prihodnosti, pri čemer demonstrira kako se je v vprašanjih osredotočal na znamenja, ne na korake ali cilje – poudarki pri opisu željene prihodnosti so na znamenjih, ne akcijskem načrtu.
  • V kolikor so bile uporabljene lestvice, kandidat navede kako jih je zastavil (kaj je bila 10, kaj je bila 0), kakšna so bila nadaljnja vprašanja in čemu je dal največji poudarek.
  • Ob koncu napiše svojo refleksijo o tem, kaj je po lastnem mnenju naredil dobro ter kaj bi si želel, da bi naredil drugače (ter kako, v kolikor bi imel še eno možnost).
  • Kandidat navede tudi kako je poskrbel za ustrezno varnost in zaščito klienta in/ali njegovih bližnjih, v primerih, kjer je bilo to potrebno.
  1. Skrb za lasten profesionalni razvoj (supervizija, strokovno izpopolnjevanje)

K rešitvam usmerjenega pristopa se hitro naučimo, vendar je potrebno veliko nadaljnjega razvoja za dosego nivoja kompetentnosti. Kandidat v tej rubriki navede kako ohranja stik s prakso ter skrbi za etično in kakovostno izvajanje svojega dela.

  1. Viri in navedena literatura

Za citiranje se uporabi APA standard, kjer se sklicuje na reference.

Želimo vam veliko uspeha pri pripravi vloge. Veselimo se vaših vlog in vas pozdravljamo med kompetentne in razmišljujoče praktike!

Hhrati vas z veseljem obveščamo, da so objavljeni novi datumi za jesenska usposabljanja, ki jih najdete tukaj.

dr A. Biba Rebolj, 2019 za Ribalon in SFP ©

Slovenian Certificate in Solution Focused Practice

What if vs. what is: why Solution Focused approach isn’t about the positive

Dear reader,

nowadays you may come across many tips, strategies and theories that are solution-focused, future oriented and try to emphasise the positive, like:

  • positive affirmations
  • visualisation
  • CBT
  • NLP
  • positive psychology
  • growth mindset
  • etc.

What these approaches all have in common is, that they steer away from looking for what’s wrong and instead focus on the opposite: what’s working, positive, what’s wanted, etc. If taking for example, they are focusing on what if (your life was XXX – insert the preferred term). We have got quite some evidence showing that for instance, expressing gratitude, writing letters of appreciation, practising positivity and the like tasks, bring about fruitful results. And we also have evidence that in many cases these results do not last.

I do not wish to go into the discussion and critique other approaches. But I do wish to draw the line of what makes Solution Focused approach different to other solution and future oriented approaches. So here are a few of my arguments:

  • Solution Focused is not about solutions. It is about the solution context, as Evan George from BRIEF likes to say. Which makes SF not interested in concrete action, steps, which in many cases do not happen for various reasons. It is instead interested in signs. Which are always present, regardless of the action.
  • Solution Focused is about preferred future. It stays close to the description of the client’s future, therefore we do not insert any adjectives such as positive, better, grand, fulfilling, etc. We simply call it “preferred”, which means that our clients define what preferred is. Thus we are not emphasising the positives. Which brings me to:
  • Solution Focused is not about the positive. It is about what is wanted and what is working. For instance, if a client whose partner died tragically in an accident, for such client the term “positive” may not suit, as it is overly ambitious and all in all, not suitable. Still, they may want to find comfort, peace or just time to pause and deal with grief and loss. Many people do not live lives that enable them to even think about positive. This does not mean that they have stopped living, though some of them might have tried to end their lives.
  • Solution Focused has no agenda of what is working. The previously mentioned evidence which shows correlation of certain tasks with desired change, is left aside in SF approach. Simply because it comes from research and thus leaves a possibility that it might not work for our client. Instead, we believe that our clients are capable of designing their own strategies of what is working for them and more, they already have the skills and resources to follow these strategies if they choose to do so. Oddly, SF research shows, that when the practitioner lets go of their own agenda, their willingness to offer useful tips and advice as well as let go of being interested in what clients will do after the session, clients’ progress towards change happens faster. Thus, tasks are not necessary and may even be a burden to change.
  • Solution Focused is not following “fake it till you make it” rule. Yes, it does work with the “what if” concept, but it rather brings it into description of “what is”. Therefore, it does not require effort to pretend the “what if”, instead it invites our clients to notice the “what if” into “what is”. Again, emphasis is on working with concepts and descriptions our clients give us – not what we think they might need or want.

This may sound simple. And it is. There is no grand theory or vast knowledge in the practitioner’s purse and backpack. Instead they come into the conversation as a blank page and try not to read between the lines, either trying to figure out what the client “really” wants and “really” says. But this is far from easy. Whenever I train professionals in SF, they say after trying out a couple of exercises, that this is the hardest part. I couldn’t agree more. And this makes a profound distinction comparing SF to any other approach, even though the core interest and focus may be the same. But SF’s viewpoint and paradigm make it very, very unique. Which in my opinion allows it to be effective with people, who find themselves in all sort of life situations, across cultures and with different levels of motivation or abilities to make change happen.

This autumn, I will be going new places to teach Solution Focused Brief Therapy: Georgia in September, Greece in October and India in December. I cannot wait to meet new professionals, explore SF with them and share my passion.



A poster I often use in my trainings. Everybody has preferred future – but it makes a big difference who defines it and how.

So now you’re a Doctor. What next?

Dear reader,

we have a new Doctor in the house. Not a medical one, but a PhD. Last Wednesday I passed the last formality and am now officially Dr Biba (which is strange, because my bibliography will say I obtained it in 2018 but here we go – done and finished!). I couldn’t have wished for a nicer ceremony and my farewell to the academia. Lovely memories, lots of gratitude, appreciation and a huge relief.

One of my Committee members, a professor, said it’s easy to obtain a PhD, but after, the person holding it must prove every single day they’re worth it. With such a title comes responsibility, as does with talents. Talents are not only gifts, they are duties as well. The holder’s got duty to use them for the benefit of not only pleasing themselves, whatever the talent may be – art, science, children upbringing, cooking, craft, etc.

My professional path has taken many unexpected turns and I’ve no ambition to stay in the academia for now. But if it wasn’t for my university, my supervisors, extracurricular activities as well as setbacks, I would have probably never left Slovenia and discovered the field I am so passionate about at the moment. Time for the next step. My ambition is the world. My passion is Solution Focused Practice.

So here comes some bits of news I have been looking forward to telling you for a while: I am not alone in this. About a year ago, a fortunate coincidence crossed paths of three people: Ben Scott, Greg Oberbeck and myself.


A thought that brought us together concerns the future of SF and how to spread its brilliance to the next wave of practitioners. All of us have been training others in SF and recently, we formed a trio called SF Possibilities (SFP). We have noticed there are many frontline workers, practitioners and enthusiasts worldwide, who are keen and curious about SF and haven’t got access (geographical or financial) to high quality training. We want to respond by providing international Solution Focused Training with up to date observations from our own frontline practice.

What is uniting us is our wish to keep the SF approach simple, minimalistic and straightforward. The core of our ethos is continuing to follow the guiding principles our teachers at BRIEF have been inspired by for 30 years. Innovation, observing and presenting our own work as well as staying humble is something that brings us together, in spite of our personal differences and training styles which we see as beneficial and enriching.

So this is where I am going from here. It has become a “we”. We are “coming out” at the UKASFP Conference this July in Bath and before that, if you’ve ambition, you can join us in a 3-day training course in Solution Focused Practice in Bedford, UK. The invitations will go out soon, as will our web presence. Meanwhile, you are welcome to have a look at this page. We’d love to have you with us!

Dr. Biba, SFP

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#Succinct #Minimalistic #Straightforward


She Designed a Life She Loved

Dear reader,

I really like the thought that life doesn’t happen to us. It happens for us. I don’t mean it in a self-centred narcissistic way, but rather as an ongoing invitation for different experience life is and has to offer. Then it is of course up to you how you evaluate this experience, for instance bad, good, joyful, pleasant, rough, painful, exhilarating, etc.

Since I recovered and am able to fully walk again, I enjoy walks differently and do my best to go out for a walk every day. Sometimes with a purpose, like buying pineapple and sometimes without. As I was walking the streets of West London the other day, when we had a longer period of 20+ degree days over Easter, I accidentally ran across a painting.

Visual art has never been my cup of tea, it hasn’t touched me like music does, so it is quite obvious I am not a frequent or a passionate gallery visitor. I can appreciate the efforts of an artist, however am unable to tune into their channel of expression. Never did I think I’d buy any artwork for myself. Until recently.

On my purpose-less walk (or was it?) I was appreciating the sun, enjoying the warm breeze, my walking, friendly faces, colourful markets and playful unleashed dogs. And there it was, this painting. It put down to words what I was thinking, or better said, daydreaming. It said

She Designed a Life She Loved.

Art enriches and stretches our worlds, it puts to words and images the thoughts better than we’d manage without it. An artist offers you ways of thinking and being that are new to you or that speak to what is already there, seeking or provoking your response. Yes, this painting has been an answer to my deliberate creation to design a life I love. So now it is hanging in my London office to remind me every single day of my choices, to answer life’s invitations and translate it into experience that fits the life I would love.

Today I was supposed to fly back to Ljubljana, Slovenia. It was an early morning flight from a quite remote airport, so I decided to catch a late night film at 1am and then have a long walk to Marble Arch from where I’d catch a bus to the airport. All chilled, casual and quite relaxed. Until my bag came out of the security check. I got cold feet, realising I left my passport behind. So there I was, with two hours before my flight, without an ID document which of course, prohibited my boarding.

This is quite a stressful situation with obviously, many practical and emotional implications.

And in the middle of this contrast of having a good night which then escalated into an invitation to not be granted access to fly, I chose to feel good. Not because I would have evidence to justify feeling good or that this time life’s invitation sounded pleasant, no, far from it. Feel good because I want to deliberately embrace full experience life has to offer me and to keep designing the life I love. It all comes down to one single question, which is so important in Solution Focused Practice. If I did X …

what difference would that make for the rest of my day?

So I came back to my London house and not to mention that the entire house found my sudden return quite amusing, I had a good day. Imagine the difference this deliberate decision has made on the way how I thought about what to do next. Which airplane ticket to buy, how to get from the airport asap, how to tell people I promised to meet I am letting them down, etc. It makes a massive difference. So now I have a juicy story. And you have some (hopefully useful) blog.



My clients love it. What do you think?

A Patient Cured is a Customer Lost (about ethics in therapy and coaching)

Dear reader,

This came across as I was sipping my morning coffee. In therapy and coaching, there are numerous examples of unethical practices and behaviours. One of them is surely keeping clients in therapy or coaching process longer than necessary and useful for them and sometimes these intentions might be profit driven.

When I deliver trainings in Solution Focused Practice for professionals around the EU and UK, I often tell them that if they want to become rich, they have to change to another modality. SF process is brief and if one is surviving on clients only, one might either become really good at constantly and frequently attracting new clients, or make their living elsewhere (or be unethical, which I will not consider at all atm).

Solution Focused Practice will invite you to think about your preferred future. It will help you describe new ways of living for yourself and might open up new possibilities of a future you consider worth living. It will not tell you what to do and will not provide an explanation of why you haven’t managed to get there yet (or reversed, why you have been in the situation you do not want to be in). The research across cultures, countries and settings shows to have lasting effects comparable to any other type of therapy or coaching, with the difference that you arrive at your desired outcome faster. So why do more, when you can do less? Why spend half of your life in therapy if there are other, faster and lighter options with the same outlooks?

And one more thing re below picture. Therapy and coaching in my modest opinion, are not business services. They should not correlate to one’s ability to pay or afford it. The practitioner should always strive to be brief – not do one session more than what is absolutely necessary. And the “necessity” should always be determined by the client, not your expert opinion. So when the patient feels well, they should not be given extra drugs “just in case” or when the client feels they are able to move on or live their life in the way that is right for them, they should not be imposed another session “just in case”. If they ask for it, that’s a different thing altogether.

So whenever you meet a therapist or coach who will tell you in advance how many sessions it will take, walk away. They have no ways of knowing and their theories are merely theories – they help us think, but not always act.

Some Monday, huh? Wish you a good week ahead,



Borrowed from Facebook.


Not interested in therapy anymore. I never was.

Dear reader,

It doesn’t interest me if you’ll read this post. What matters is, if it might add to your day so that you can be in alignment with who you are and want to be.

It is not my ambition to collect likes and followers. What really matters to me, is whether we will get to the point of being true to each other and be well off together, or separately.

It hasn’t been of my concern of whether this world will be a better place because of me. As long as it is not worse.

Why do we post on social media? To impact? Impress? Sell? Inform? Show off? Justify our existence? Please don’t, the world is already overly cluttered. What I want is to share with you simple, casual, everyday images and thoughts, no photo filters or editing, not in order to shock or impress or inspire, but simply to share authenticity and an image of real life, not camera-ready or social media cropped. And I am interested in seeing you, for who you are and how you are, not just when things go right but when they go everywhere.

Life is so much better when lived and enjoyed together. So I do care about each and every one of you, whether we have met yet or not, whether we will find a common language, or not.

I just hope that every living being feels comfortable in their shoes/bodies and is brave enough to share their life story as it is, not as the mass media, pressure and competition think it should be. And that every being is left alone, not pressed to be different. We are not competing, we are travelling, changing, expanding. If I can do it, you can do it, everyone can do it. There is nothing special about me or my life. It’s just that I along the way, decided not to strive to be exceptional or an achiever. I allowed to be every-day average and enjoying it. And life unfolded in front of my eyes in ways I could have never imagined, I am thriving and my work calendar is full until July.

Change is constant and inevitable, this is one of the core assumptions in Solution Focused Brief Therapy. Therapy, traditionally, has been viewed as trying to fix what has been broken or to bring people onto the “right” path (again or for the first time). People are not broken. We have had different life experiences which have been offering us lessons over and over again. Sometimes we learn and sometimes we don’t and that’s learning too. But we are never broken, just undone. And once we are done, we’ll probably leave this place and go somewhere else.

So may I be undone with you, haven’t shaved legs or done my nails for weeks and yet I am not sure what I might lack this very moment. Things are changing. And so are we. In this world, sometimes together, sometimes separately, but we are all sharing this Planet so … I care about you. Living being, be it a stone, a river, a fly, cat or dear reader.

With love,


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There is a fine line between genius and crazy. I like to use that line as a jump rope. Photo D. Hogan, Frankfurt SF Trainers Conference 2019