I am working as a service provider for Homewood Health. Basically this means that employers hire Homewood Health for counselling services for their employees. Homewood Health then hires counsellors such as myself to provide services for these people. That makes me a service provider for Homewood Health.
In my position as service provider, I am required to provide solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT). This means that there are usually between four and six session that I can provide (that is the “brief” part).
Solution-focused means that we are looking at the solutions to problems. SFBT does not necessarily focus on the past. In SFBT the past may be discussed as a way to understand present issues but past issues are not delved into as deeply as would be in other therapy situations.
Secondly, the focus is on goals. This can be how you wish things to improve or increase in your life. For example, a goal might be to increase coping strategies in workplace stress. The goals are called SMART goals:
- Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
- Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
- Achievable (agreed, attainable).
- Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).
- Time bound (time-based, time limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive)
Lastly, the focus is on strengths. What has worked in the past? What simple thing can you do today?
In our everyday lives we come across stresses, anxious provoking situations, and challenges. One way to address this is to see if your employer has a service provider such as Homewood Health as part of your benefit plan.
Another way is to use the SMART goals for yourself. What is one thing you can do differently today? What has worked in the past?
It is surprising what one small change can do!
Mary Stanwood, MA, RCC
Ackerman, C. What is solution-focused brief therapy? (2017). Retrieved from https://positivepsychology.com/solution-focused-therapy/#techniques-solution-focused-therapy.
SMART goals. Retrieved from https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/smart-goals.htm