Solution Focused Brief Therapy is a practical, goal-driven model with emphasis on clear, concise, realistic goals. It assumes all clients have some knowledge of what would make their life better, even though they may need some help describing the details of what that could look like, and they already possess at least the minimal skills necessary to create solutions.
Why Solution Focused Brief Therapy?
Solution Focused Brief Therapy is under the umbrella of Cognitive Therapies with extensive empirically validated treatment. With its focus on the present and future, it can feel like treatment is creating forward momentum quicker and reinforce motivation for change.
We want the individuals we serve to have a clear idea of what we are doing and why we are doing it in therapy. Exploring the past and patterns of behavior might not be the best option for the current concern. Situations might be happening that are related to present functioning and not an indicator of historical malfunctioning. Per the words of Sigmund Freud “Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar”. This is not to say that emotions are not important; for they are perhaps most important in the grand scheme of things. A SFBT approach to treatment simply takes a look at an individual’s experience through the lens of their current thoughts and behaviors and seeks to problem solve ways to improve the current experience. Want to learn more check out: The Institute for Solution Focused Therapy
This may just be a personal preference of ours, but we value practicality. SFBT focuses on what is currently taking place in an individual’s life and what can be done to make desired changes. Achieving greater insight is a worthwhile pursuit, but we’re more concerned with helping people put that greater insight to use.
We believe in the adage, “It is a therapist’s goal to work themselves out of a job.” At Mindly, we understand that the reason why people come to therapy is because they are looking for help in escaping some sort of distress. We want to help you feel better as soon as possible while also setting you up for long-term success.
At Mindly, we do not delude ourselves into thinking that we know how to solve every problem that our clients experience or that we can somehow lead an individual down a path towards “enlightenment” or “self-actualization” (think Gandhi). Instead, we strive to assist individuals to overcome specific obstacles that may be in their self-defined path towards whatever larger end they choose to pursue. Why? Self-actualization is life-long process, whereas therapy shouldn’t have to be.
Solution Focused Brief Therapy works well within a problem-solving/coaching framework and is not just for treating mental illness. We believe that while there is such a thing as mental illness, most of the distress and dysfunction that people (including those with a mental illness) experience is the result of ineffectively utilized mental and behavioral responses to environmental demands. In this sense, mental illness becomes just another obstacle to overcome in pursuit of one’s goals. Because thoughts, emotions, and behaviors underlie all human conscious experience, SFBT can be useful in a wide-range of human pursuits including improving physical health, career advancement, and even spirituality.