Solution Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) is a therapeutic approach that focuses on helping clients make desired changes in their lives by utilizing their own strengths and resources. Unlike traditional therapy approaches that delve into past traumas and problems, SFBT encourages clients to envision a future where they are managing life better and living in accordance with their dreams and desires.

At its core, SFBT believes that clients are competent, capable, and have the ability to achieve greatness. It does not require individuals to re-experience problematic events or be re-traumatized in order to heal and make lasting changes. Instead, SFBT maximizes what is good in people’s lives and uses this goodness to help them achieve their goals.

The approach of SFBT is rooted in the belief that clients do not need to focus on their problems or spend excessive time searching for the root cause of their current symptoms. Instead, it encourages them to describe how their lives would be different if they were managing life better and acting in accordance with the best version of themselves.

One of the key aspects of SFBT is the art of asking solution-focused questions. These questions are designed to move clients toward their best selves and help them envision a future where they have achieved their desired outcomes. Solution-focused questions have been extensively researched and proven to be effective in therapy.

The history of SFBT can be traced back to the Mental Research Institute (MRI) in Palo Alto, California. It was at the MRI where psychotherapists Steve de Shazer and Insoo Kim Berg met, dated, and subsequently married. They later moved to Wisconsin and founded the Brief Family Therapy Center in Milwaukee in 1978. This center became the birthplace of SFBT.

SFBT challenges the traditional approach of focusing on problems and problem development. Instead, it shifts the focus to where the client wants to end up. This outcome-focused approach was a paradigm shift in psychotherapy and continues to challenge the status quo today.

In SFBT, therapists do not see it as their job to fix their clients. Instead, they aim to inspire, connect, and help clients describe the outcomes they desire. By doing so, therapists can observe the changes that occur in the process.

The effectiveness of SFBT has been supported by research. The American Psychological Association has highlighted that psychotherapy, including SFBT, is effective but often underutilized. Research has also shown that the modal number of therapy sessions internationally is often just one, and the majority of people who attend a single session are satisfied.

The book “Solution-Focused Brief Therapy with Clients Managing Trauma” by Adam Froerer, Jacqui von Cziffra-Bergs, Johnny Kim, and Elliott Connie, along with “The Art of Solution Focused Therapy” by Elliott Connie and Linda Metcalf, “Solution Building in Couples Therapy” by Elliott Connie, and “The Solution Focused Marriage: 5 Simple Habits That Will Bring Out the Best in Your Relationship” by Elliott Connie, provide valuable insights and guidance for practicing SFBT.

In conclusion, Solution Focused Brief Therapy is an approach that empowers clients to make positive changes in their lives by utilizing their own strengths and resources. It focuses on the future rather than dwelling on past traumas or problems. By asking solution-focused questions and envisioning desired outcomes, clients can achieve greatness and live in accordance with their dreams and desires. SFBT challenges the traditional approach to therapy and has been proven effective in helping individuals achieve their goals.