Solution Focused Brief Therapy What is Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT)? Solution-focused therapy is based on the therapist’s respect for and collaboration with the client. Together client and therapist concentrate on success, solutions, and what works. Therapists develop goals with the client, rather than imposing “appropriate” treatment objectives on them. If one solution does not work, the technique—not the client—is blamed and client and therapist go on to “do something different. SFBT is a multi-faceted approach to treatment, which can adapt to many different kinds of clients and settings. It is useful and beneficial as a practical adjunct to mind body therapies that may address underlying neurological, thought and emotional issues. “Do something different” -Herb Where does SFBT come from? The entire solution-focused approach was developed by Steve De Shazer, Insoo Kim Berg and their colleagues beginning in the late 1970’s in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. De Shazer and Berg observed and studied work done by therapists in an inner-city outpatient mental health service setting where clients were accepted without previous screening. SFBT developers spent hundreds of hours observing therapy sessions over the course of several years. They carefully noted the therapists’ questions, behaviors, and emotions that occurred during the session. Questions and activities related to clients’ report of progress were preserved and incorporated into the SFBT approach. SFBT is greatly influenced by Milton Erickson who believed that each of us possess the skills and abilities to solve our own problems. Erickson also believed the self-validating act of a client developing his own solutions strengthens and reinforces their ability to adapt and respond better to current and future challenges. What makes SFBT Different? SFBT is a practical and goal-driven form of therapy. It emphasizes clear, concise, realistic goal development. The approach assumes that all clients have some knowledge of what would make their life better, even though they may need help describing the details of their better life. Underlying Solution-Focused Brief Therapy is the belief that everyone who seeks help already possesses at least the minimal skills necessary to create solutions and that small changes can lead to bigger changes. SFBT has become one of the leading schools of Brief Therapy and has become a major influence in such diverse fields as business, social policy, education, criminal justice services, child welfare, and domestic and violent offender treatment.