Strength-Based Therapy v. Insight-Oriented Therapy

I practice Solution-Focused Therapy and use a lot of Cognitive Behavioral techniques. This kind of therapy is considered “strength-based” as opposed to “insight-oriented.”

Strength-based therapy focuses on the present and the future. It is concerned with today’s problems and tomorrow’s concerns. The kind of therapy I do is also non-pathologizing therapy. This means that I don’t view my clients as being crazy or deficient in some way. I don’t diagnose clients (unless insurance requires it) and I don’t let them diagnose themselves either.
It’s not that insight-oriented therapy is the opposite, but it is more interested in one’s past, one’s history of repetitive patterns and relationships, and gives much more weight to subconscious drives, behaviors, and issues.

While both therapies have their places in the world of mental health, my experience has found strength-based therapy to be more effective.” I want to share three points that I heard recently at one of my conferences about the kind of work I do.

Focusing on your strengths always produces the best return on your investment.

Work to improve what you’re good at. You don’t have to ignore the rest – cross training is good — but if you were born to swim butterfly, then for god’s sake beware of breaststroke. It’s hard.

People are always trying to right themselves.

Even if someone you know doesn’t seem like they are doing themselves any favors, they don’t see it that way. When they find the right system for them, their efforts to right themselves will eventually work.

Thoughts are our best predictors of happiness.

Train your brain and see results.