Group Presentation

Cue the Video
Solution-Focused Brief Therapy
Michael Matthews, Kim Michaud,
Ricshawn Adkins Roane & Luis Sosa
The Development of SFBT
In this section we will discuss:
The Development of SFBT
Brief History
Important Theoretical Concepts
Underlying Assumptions
Stages in Treatment
Finding Solutions
• originated 1970’s
• Mental Research Institute (Palo Alto,CA)
• Cognitive/Behavioral
• Change of actions/thoughts
• Psychodynamic
• Efficient / results-oriented
• Systems
• Reciprocal relationships: client/others
• Social systems
Theoretical Concepts
• Einstein: A problem can’t be solved at level of
its creation
• Little attention to human development & past
• Focus on positive change in small increments
• Troubling behavior client’s static frame of reference
• Clients are capable of change given increased hope &
• Client’s imagined positive frame clinician’s
ideas/suggestions client’s hope for change goals
• Concrete goals & changed perceptions/behavior
• Small changes snowball positively
Early Contributors
Steve de Shazer
– Miracle question
“If you woke up and
miraculously your complaint was
gone, how would you know?”
Task Suggestions
Insoo Kim Berg
O’Hanlon & Weiner-Davis
– Stepping stones to goals
• behavior changes > understanding
– Starts on the phone: Notice good that’s happening before we have first
• Therapy relationships relatively brief
– 6 to 20 sessions
• Scheduling is flexible
– Breaks for clinicians to develop clues
– Breaks for clients to implement
• Treatment lasts until goal is reached /
complaints resolved
Treatment Stages
• Seven Treatment Stages which include:
– ID solvable complaint
unsuccessful interactions/ mishandling
– Establishing specific, observable, measurable, concrete goals
which will change client’s VIEWING, DOING, OR ACCESSING
RESOURCES client’s positive imaginings or exceptions
– Strategic tasks
evaluation of tasks
– Termination by client : goal accomplished
Finding Solutions
• View clients as experts with
strengths/resources they need to change
• Focus on change in progress/expand on
positive exceptions
• Provide rationale for tasks
• Encourage new behaviors, not just cessation
of old
• Make solutions practical and specific
Treatment Using SFBT
In this section we will discuss:
•SFBT Therapeutic Goals
•The Therapeutic Alliance
•Therapeutic Techniques
Jamie, Ricshawn, Ellington & Hathaway
Minka-en, Tokyo, Japan
Therapeutic Goals
• Establish climate conducive to change
• Shift from problem-talk to solution-talk
• Identify “exceptions”
• Tap inner resources
The Therapeutic Alliance
• Positive orientation
• Collaborative and consultative relationship
• Therapist-as-expert replaced by client-as-expert
• Therapist as facilitator of change
SFBT Therapeutic Techniques
Solution Talk
Make Suggestions
Complaint Pattern Intervention
Focus on strengths
Formula First Session Task
Miracle Question
Pretherapy Change
Problem Externalization
Scaling Questions
Summary Feedback/Compliments
Section Review
In this Section we discussed:
•SFBT Therapeutic Goals
•The Therapeutic Alliance
•Therapeutic Techniques
Application & Current Use of Solution
Focused Theory
Section Overview:
Application to Diagnostic Groups
Application to Multicultural Groups
Application to Other Groups
Current Use of Solution Focused Brief
What Type of Client is Best for SFBT?
• Is motivated to face their difficulties and
• Has a history of good relationships
• Can be flexible and creative
• Has succeeded in finding solutions to past
• Has a strong support group
The Scope of SFBT
• Has expanded and is meant to help anyone who is in the midst of a crisis
Focus is on helping clients realize that they are more than their symptoms
and/or experiences
• The use of trances, stories, and solution talk are used to validate what
others invalidate within themselves. (This invites the client to consider
new opportunities.)
• Promote a client’s boundaries/the ability to maintain those boundaries
• Rituals provide consistency & facilitate transitions & can also promote
connection with other people, memories and one’s history and culture.
Application to Diagnostic Groups
Well suited to treatment of mood and anxiety
Concepts and Strategies associated with SFBT
• Attention to motivation
• Emphasis on small successes
• Efforts to find exceptions
It is likely that a counselor will need to apply more
than just SFBT
Application to Multicultural Groups
SFBT respects and honors the unique cultural backgrounds – each client is
seen as the expert on his or her own life
SFBT Focuses on:
Client Dignity
Self- Determination
• Flexible -- What’s most important to each client can be emphasized on a
case by case basis
• Does not place great weight on the importance of cultural factors
• The key is client motivation
Application to Other Groups
Useful for clients of all ages but may need
modification for children
Child Modification: The use of Integrated
expressive play techniques
Current Use of Solution Focused Brief
Growing in popularity because of its efficiency and effectiveness
Well received because it advocates:
Goal setting
Measurement of progress
Empowerment of clients
Collaborative therapeutic alliance
• Use of intervention and homework tasks makes this easy to
integrate with other theories—particularly those that focus on
behavior change. (Cognitive behavioral, REBT, Adlerian and reality
Cue the Video
Evaluation of SFBT
In this section we will discuss SFBT:
• Too much focus on the presenting problem
• Client history is neglected
• Not usually appropriate as the primary or only
treatment plan
• Lack of focus on insight
• Can be costly for the client
Effective and efficient
Well received by clients
Deals with immediate problems
Challenges clients to think
Encouraging and empowering
Can be combined with other counseling
• Optimistic orientation
• Provides clinicians with powerful new
interventions (The miracle question, emphasis
on exceptions and possibilities, and its
emphasis on small behavioral changes)
Section Review
In this Section we discussed:
Corey, M. S., and Corey, G. (2011, 2007). Becoming a helper (6th ed., pp.
174-176). Belmont, California: Brooks/Cole.
Corey, G. (2005). Postmodern Approaches. In L. Gebo, J. Martinez, M.
Flemming, & S. Gesicki (Eds.), Theory and Practice of Counseling
and Psychotherapy (7th ed., pp. 382-419). Belmont, California:
Gladding, S. T. (2009). Counseling: A Comprehensive Profession (6th ed.,
pp. 242-244). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson.
Ivey, A. E., D’Andrea, M., Ivey, M. B., & Simek-Morgan, L. (2007). Theories
of Counseling and psychotherapy: A Multicultural perspective (6th
ed., pp. 65-71 & 101-108). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.
Seligman, L. (2010). Theories of counseling and psychotherapy: Systems,
strategies and skills (3rd ed., pp. 366-369). Upper Saddle River, New
Jersey: Merrill, Prentice-Hall, Inc.

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