New Generation of Solution Focused professionals has arrived!

Dear reader,

just got from Bulgaria, Sofia, where we celebrated 25 years of EBTA (European Brief Therapy Association) in a form of annual international conference. Solution Focused Brief Therapy has evolved massively since its beginnings in the early 1980’s. Today it is widely used not only in therapy and social work, but also in counselling, coaching, consulting, management, HR, education, even sport. Basically wherever there’s a need or a desire to build (or discover) rapid change towards a better future.

I am not very young anymore, yet still, a millennial. And have been practising Solution Focused practice for four years. That might not seem like a long time, but it is long enough to embrace the responsibility and even duty to take the approach further. Since SFBT is not mainstream, as has radially different outlook on therapy, relationship with clients and change, it has not been very good at politically establishing itself like positive psychology has done for instance. And that means that it might be widely unknown. While there’s nothing wrong with that, it is also a pity, because people like me might not know about it. I can speak for myself, that I was somewhat desperately in need for such an approach while I was working with students with mental health problems at university. But I was simply unaware of SFBT’s existence. Accidental discovery has made such a difference to me personally, professionally, that I decided to dedicate my entire career to it. And hence “only” four years and I am already an international presenter and speaker. Because I am so passionate about it. And I feel the duty to tell as many people I can that there is another way in doing therapy, coaching or whatever the setting in working with people. So EBTA has been truly supportive and welcoming. And I am taking it further – together with emerging new generation, new “kids” on the block, who come from different countries and who will hopefully be brave enough to trust, love and work in the way that will do our ancestors Steve and Insoo and others, justice.

So much for now. I’m training the third generation of Slovenian professionals this upcoming days – four day professional training in Solution Focused practice. And this is my little contribution before leaving Slovenia. And now let me feed my cat 🙂



I suck at saying goodbye: EBTA 2015

Ask, and you will be answered. Step out and you will be noticed. Do good things and good things will come back.

This is a message from this year’s annual European Brief Therapy Association Conference that was held in Vienna from 11th till 13th September. I was sent there with support from my English institution and my main supervisor. Just a couple of days prior to the conference I got an email from my Hungarian friends and coaches, inviting me to join a workshop on team coaching straight after the conference with one of the best coaches from Switzerland and Hungary. I was delighted and excited about both of these events and had it hard waiting to start.

My dear reader, which is your preferable: to be surprised or to make others surprised?

If I have to choose, I like the latter better. I love doing something for my significant others and enjoy planning it, keeping it a secret and at last, surprise them. It might be a small thing, or a big one, doesn’t matter, I quietly scream out of joy when I feel the passion that drags me to do it. So I dug up that my supervisor (and a dear friend) has birthday right after the conference. Since he’s a really modest and quiet man, but with a great mind, he didn’t say anything. We organized him a small surprise party and made a photo album for him. Though I had no idea what and how it will happen, the end has been what we hoped it would be: warm, supportive, loveable, friendly. Others who are close to him joined in this surprise and together we were able to do it just right. Happy bday C.!

Apart from this, I offered to give an open space at the conference. The proposed topic was transferring Solution Focused knowledge to the next generation. In case you are not familiar with open space, it is a very useful setting when you want to use the potential and creativity of your attendees. I use it all the time in my workshops and trainings. It has four principles and one law. The four principles go as follows:

  1. Whoever comes are the right people.
  2. Whatever happens is the only thing that could have happen.
  3. Whenever it starts is the right time.
  4. When it’s over, it’s over.

Additionally, there is the law of two feet, which means that if for any reason you feel you can’t contribute to the group of don’t get enough from it, use your two feet if you have them and go someplace else.

So I had my open space. Surprisingly many people came. I asked them to place on an imaginary scale to see where we are in terms of experience. It turned out the situation was about 50-50. I was amazed about how much willingness there was to offer support whenever and wherever needed and how it was a precious experience for both groups – they could both learn from each other! From this open space and talk over dinner, I am proudly to present my additional supervisor and many international partners. I’ll soon open another subpage and list their names and organizations, so that you can look them up if you’d like to see how big the international dimension is. Ribalon is growing!

One thing I’m not really proud of, but do it regularly, is that I always leave without notice. It’s a strange habit, because I’m really lousy at saying goodbye. So I left the conference without saying goodbye to anyone. In this manner, I believe, we are still somehow connected and when we meet again, it will be as if we never parted. So please forgive me my dear SF friends if I didn’t say goodbye – I never do. And it was not just rude to you – I do it to everybody. But now I miss you all …

Since Wednesday I’m back home. Vienna and Budapest have left a remarkable footprint. Apart from professional development, I’ve noticed one small thing that is different now. I’ve become much nicer to random people. Before I was reserved or didn’t pay much attention, but now I’ve become nicer and helpful to complete strangers. Simply because why not to be nice. And this makes a HUGE difference. Suddenly people around me have changed. Just today, as I went to the supermarket, a guy hit my car on the parking. My reaction was kind. I surprised myself totally. And like it a lot lot. A lot! My car might disapprove.

So let’s see where the road continues to lead us. Next Wednesday I’ll have a workshop in my hometown. I’m really curious about how the group will react within this new habit and setting … 🙂


One more thing I suck at, here’s my first go of knitting at the EBTA conference workshop. Wonderful instructors and facilitators though!

What to say to a new-born

Dear reader,

you haven’t heard from me for a while. If you browse the blog’s pages, you might have figured out the reason why yourself. If not, I’ll tell you now.

Ribalon has been born. First Slovenian Solution Focused Institute. I’m sure you’re not surprised, because I told you in the past posts that something similar is coming up. Well I AM surprised, because I can’t believe how I managed that. And yet it’s here, conceived with help of many many wonderful people which I’m dedicating this post to:

– C.I. It’s one year now since I first met you in London. You encouraged and pushed me to practice what I’ve learned as soon as I returned home. You gave me tips about preparing my first workshops. You helped me with proposals for the research funds. You were always there when I needed you, replying to my doubts about whether I’m going in the right direction, answering my questions about SFBT, spending a day with me in the EBTA conference afternoon … and finally you agreed to be Ribalon’s consulting body. Many say you are one of the best SFBT therapists in the world. I think so too. But I find it hard to believe that you’ve decided to dedicate so much of your time to me.

– SFBTA. I can’t even list all the wonderful people who have prepared me such a warm welcome in America. Thank you for the opportunity to visit you, participate on training and conference and to stay in touch. Ribalon is the result from it.

– EBTA. The national representative’s members, who invited me to join even though it was only me (100% Slovenian presence ha). The research committee who pointed me to a direction I can explore further. Thank you J. W. for your prompt replies and your willingness to help Ribalon to be born and for your future help for it to learn to stand up.

– SOL CEE. I can’t remember the last time I had so much fun. I love you guys.

– M. M. from Italy. Thank you for your peer coaching just before the Ribalon’s opening.

– R. F. from Canada. I’m still embarrassed because I don’t know how to properly thank you for your efforts in making it easier for me to obtain the top SFBT literature.

– E.d.J. from the Netherlands. You saw in me what I didn’t. Now I do. You were among the first who’ve set Ribalon’s foundation.

– all my fb Solution Focused friends around the world. For your best wishes you’ve sent, the support you’ve expressed. I feel close to you even though we see each other once a year.

– My faculty and university. You gave me the opportunity to try and practice. We launched Solution Focused Coaching together. Thank you for your trust and willingness to let me do what I feel that I have to do. Here’s the outcomes.

– last, but not least, my clients. First my friends, who were the first to experience SFBT. You were the ones that helped me improve. I’ve earned so much from you. And you from me. As I saw you thrive, I knew I picked the right road. All the future clients will benefit from our past work.

So dear reader, thank you for being around. For being with me on this fabulous journey. This is not the end, it’s another beginning. This blog has become a webpage You can check what we’ve accomplished together in one year.

My dear Ribalon, you were born to lift others up. I hope I can provide you with wings you need to do so. As C. I. once said to me when I asked him what to say to a new-born, he said:

Listen and don’t follow!

Your mom.

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