This is the fourth of four blog posts, summarizing major therapeutic styles. Some therapeutic styles are based upon and incorporate other styles. (See posts dated June 19, 2018, July 3, 2018, and July 10, 2018 for more information.)
Reality Therapy – This client-centered therapy is based on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. The focus is on improving current relationships and circumstances and avoids discussing past events. Based on the idea that our foundational need is to be loved and connected, this therapy teaches individuals they can only control how they think and behave, which helps clients take control of their own lives by making better choices. Reality Therapy is used in individual, parent-child, and family counseling settings. It has been found useful in treating addiction and behavioral problems. In addition, it can be helpful in increasing leadership abilities by helping those in leadership positions increase their connection to others.
Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) – SFBT focuses on the here and now, finding a solution to the current issues and providing hope for the future. The therapist uses coaching and questioning to help clients find their own solutions, based on their expert knowledge of themselves. SFBT has been found effective with all ages and a variety of issues including addiction, child abuse, child behavioral problems, domestic abuse, family conflict, relationship problems, etc. The treatment may also be helpful for those experiencing depression or psychosis as it empowers clients and may help improve their quality of life.
Somatic Therapy – This body-centered therapy explores the connection between mind and body and often combines talk therapy and physical therapies to facilitate healing. Somatic therapists use talk therapy, mind-body exercises, and physical techniques to help clients release tension that negatively impacts physical and emotional health. It has been found effective in helping those dealing with addiction, anxiety, depression, grief, relationship problems, sexual problems, stress, and problems related to trauma and abuse. In addition, it is helpful for those who are dealing with chronic physical pain.
Strength-Based Therapy – This therapy explores the client’s internal strength and resourcefulness. By setting up a positive mindset, the client can build on his/her best qualities, learn to recognize personal strengths, build resilience, and change their worldview to a more positive perspective. This approach is useful for increasing self-esteem. It helps build internal strength for clients who experienced domestic or childhood abuse. It also increases confidence and reduces stress for those experiencing anxiety, depression, and psychosis. Strength-Based Therapy is also used as an intervention to prevent future problems. It is used with all ages and can be used with individuals or groups.
Structural Family Therapy (SFT) – This method addresses patterns of interaction that create problems within a family. Its focus is on the family structure rather than individual family members. The goal is to improve communication and build appropriate boundaries. The therapist will create a chart or map to help families identify problems. Families may be asked to role-play different situations to practice new skills.
Trauma-Focused Therapy – Another form of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, this therapy targets those who have experienced early childhood trauma. For youth, a therapist will often bring a non-offending parent or caregiver into sessions and incorporate interventions found in Family Therapy. This therapy is helpful for anyone who has experienced mental, physical, or sexual abuse. Often, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or Dialectical Behavior Therapy is the first intervention used, followed by Trauma-Focused Therapy.