Solution Focused Brief Therapy
By: Natalie Burch, Masters Level Intern
There are many techniques and interventions that therapists may use when working with clients. As a client, it can be difficult to understand the process of therapeutic techniques and perhaps why it feels like it is taking so long to feel better. Depending on the symptoms you may be feeling, some things honestly just take time to process through and heal from. However, there is a therapy technique that aims to focus on short-term clients who need faster relief: Solution Focused Brief Therapy.
What is Solution Focused Brief Therapy?
Solution Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) “is a short-term goal-focused evidence-based therapeutic approach, which incorporates positive psychology principles and practices, and which helps clients change by constructing solutions rather than focusing on problems.” This is a collaborative approach with your therapist that really focuses on your goals as the client and aims to help you feel better faster. Rather than focusing the majority of the session’s attention on the problems you may be facing, each session will focus on what steps you can take to meet the goals you are looking to achieve.
How do I know if SFBT is right for me?
SFBT is not right for everybody. However, if you are an individual who is very goal oriented and motivated to see results quickly, this could be the route for you. Often, SFBT helps individuals who may struggle with anxiety, excessive worry, depression, social isolation, lack of motivation, stress, career frustration, some behavioral problems, parenting, transitions, and even psychosocial and interpersonal problems they are facing. SFBT can be adapted and appropriate for children, adolescents and adults alike.
What can I expect my sessions to look like?
Your initial session will be focused primarily on you, your history, your current symptoms, and the goals you desire to reach at the end of therapy. Each session after that will then focus on those goals you identified, and possibly some goals your therapist might suggest as well. Your sessions will likely entail more questions regarding the present and future versions of yourself, while only touching on certain aspects of your past. For example, it will be helpful for your therapist to understand what you’ve tried in the past and what has worked in order to know how to best help you move forward.
It can also be expected that you will need to put into practice the work you are doing in therapy. This is true for any modality or intervention that your therapist may use. The 60-minute sessions are wonderful each week to work with your therapist, however the majority of your growth is going to come from what you do with the remaining 167 hours in the week in between those sessions. With most anything in life, you will get out of it what you put into it. Your therapist will work with you on achievable little goals each week where you can take small steps towards your main goals.
While SFBT is not right for everybody, it could be right for you! You have already started educating yourself on the process by reading this article, and that’s a big step! Next step is reaching out to work with a therapist. YOU have the courage it takes!