Helping you reframe your challenges and thrive

The Brief Therapy Problem-Solving Model

The Problem-Solving Model prioritizes the problems the client identifies. We recognize how actions are perpetuating negative results and work to achieve positive change.

The problem-Solving Model

The model was born in Palo Alto in the mid-sixties and turned modern therapy on its head. It connected the Mental Research Institute (MRI) to the rest of the world. The focus of traditional therapy and consultation has long been to search for explanations, which often results in more issues emerging in patients. More doors are opened, resulting in a longer treatment. The Problem-Solving Model prioritizes the problems that the client brings to the table, and yes: I have clients, not patients. When a client calls it is because something is wrong and they are searching for change. Together, we look at the here and now, to recognize how the client's actions are perpetuating the same negative results. We then look to the future, and work to break this cycle and achieve positive change. When that initial change occurs, other positive changes follow, with or without my help, as I have given the client the tools to manage their lives differently. The Problem-Solving Model is applied in both psychotherapy and business consultations by narrowing the focus of the work to something actionable, where the client can affect change in their environment. By looking at what the client has tried, we begin to understand how this has not worked and together we devise an intervention in which a solution can be achieved.


Positive Results

Rather than pursuing long explorations into the past in search of explanations as to why something is painful, this model focuses on the present.  The model allows me to concentrate on descriptions of what isn’t working, and together we are then able to construct alternative actions and behaviors that will benefit the client. This is usually not a common sense solution, but allows clients to reframe their current situation and attain a different perspective on their reality. After the progress we make during consultations, the undesired behavior of the past no longer occurs within the context of the reframed system of the future.

systemic approach

What makes my work interesting, challenging, and effective is understanding ‘circular thinking’. The problem that emerges in every situation is understanding which actions are reactions to the behavior of others. Solving the current problem is finding the best response, even if it is not adaptive. Through consultation we understand maladaptive behavior, whether in the family, the school, or the business environment, then look to break the negative cycle.