Today, I had the wonderful opportunity to lecture at a University to a group of Social Work students. It was a wonderful day and I hope the students were able to learn a bit of useful information about the Solution Focused Approach.
One of the students asked me a question that caused me to think about something I am very passionate about, the learning of SFT. The question that was asked of me was, “what led to you opening your first office”? The answer to that question is a simple and somewhat painful one. I first was introduced to the Solution Focused Approach for Dr. Linda Metcalf while I was a graduate school student; it was a special time in my life. I was working at an agency as an “interventionist”, which is a job that is somewhere between a therapist and caseworker. Something about this approach instantly made sense to me and I was immediately enthused. I ran to work and became excited to work with clients in this way as well as sharing this unique way of working with my co-workers and supervisors. Unfortunately, my enthusiasm was not met in the way I expected. In fact, it was made clear to me that regardless of the fact that the clients I was working with were getting better at a faster rate than many of my co-workers, my job was not safe. I was shocked and began to seek other employment. At the next job, I ran into the same dynamic, then finally at the third location, same thing.
I was finally convinced that the only way that I would be able to practice psychotherapy the way I wanted was to open my office. My role in coming to talk to that group today was to talk to them about skills needed to become a psychotherapist. Well, I would like to be sure that people know that one of the skills I certainly needed was TENACITY.
I met several people along my journey that were prepared to tell me how wrong what I was doing was or how they thought I would not be successful. Well, I was so convinced in the approach and that it was a form of psychotherapy that I could practice in a way that was helpful to clients. Thank goodness I trusted myself.
So please, for those of you that have been bitten by the Solution Focused bug, be prepared to face criticism, harsh words and other people’s doubt. However, trust yourself and the process and never listen to others’ doubts!
Quote of the Month:
“Sometimes people with the worst pasts can create the best futures”.
– Furyal Mahmood
I hope you enjoyed and found inspiration!
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