15th May, 2008
Solution-focused therapy is gaining an increasingly strong foothold as an effective method for helping with a wide range of problems from anxiety, and depression to weight control. Whilst the past is given respectful recognition, the focus for this type of therapy is on building positive expectations for the future. Integral to this is giving clients the tools to shape their own vision of a future without the problem and harnessing their resources (often far greater than they think or remember) to get there.
Anything worth doing needs practice and rehearsal. So, a clear detailed vision, sound and feel of a future free of the problem creates a nourishing goal to aim for: practice and rehearsal, initially through things like guided imagery makes this an ever compelling vision. What we focus on is what we get. This doesn't mean all dreams come true but it does mean that we are increasingly focused on what we need (rather than just what we might want) and this focus is highly motivating for change.
When emotions are overwhelming, it can be very hard to see, hear or feel a world where our problems have receded to just a narrative memory of a past unhappy time (like the detached memory of intense physical pain from something like a wound after the wound has healed). This solution-focused approach allows people to stand back and really concentrate on what they need and how that change can best be achieved.
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