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Have stuck clients keep a prospective diary

Ask clients stuck awaiting change to keep a prospective diary. An explicit account of life after the hoped-for change can help clients unstick themselves and start changing now. Some clients (and some therapists) get stuck awaiting a single change which will solve all...

Think before you act for your client

Stop and think before you take action on behalf of your client. You may be depriving them of the opportunity to help themselves (with appropriate support). Therapists are people who want to help. People of equivalent qualifications in other fields are usually paid...

Leave contracts out of the first session

Many therapists set explicit goals and use treatment contracts with their clients. Goal setting provides a focus for therapy: contracts indicate that both parties have agreed to the terms of the therapy (or should: the contract you use does bind the therapist as well...

Remove the miraculous from the Miracle Question

The Miracle Question can elicit negative responses from some clients. These negative reactions can be avoided by rephrasing the question without the miraculous element. The Miracle Question is used by Solution-Oriented Therapists to elicit the conditions which would...

What is your one aim for any session?

Having too many goals can be as bad as having no goals. This is as true for therapists as for our clients, yet therapists may enter into a session with far too many goals to achieve in one sitting. Trainees often struggle with first appointments, in which there is so...