Trusting the people with whom we work is probably the single greatest requirement for the Solution Focused Practitioner. Trust turns up in so many forms in so many parts of our practice and without it our practice is transformed into something other than Solution Focus, something different. So where does trust, or the lack of it, make a difference?
1. We trust that clients meet with us for a good reason.
2. We trust that when people describe their best hopes that they do indeed wish to ‘achieve’ them.
3. We trust people to know what to focus on and thereby resist the urge to ‘know better’ what they should be focusing on.
4. We trust that people arrive ready to work hard.
5. We trust that every client is motivated for something – we just need to ask good enough questions to establish what outcome they want.
6. We trust that people are competent and that they have the capacities required to make their desired changes.
7. We trust people to use the right words and so we work with the client’s words rather than imposing our own.
8. We trust the client to know whom it would be useful to bring to sessions.
9. We trust the client to know the right spacing between sessions.
10. We trust the client to know when they have ‘done the job’ and no longer need to return.
11. We trust clients to find their own best ways to move forward between sessions and so we do not need to pin them down or to action plan.
12. We trust the client to decide what we need to know for the therapy to be useful.
13. We trust the client to be giving of their best at all times however tough life may be for them and however problematic their life might seem to us.
14. We trust in the client’s capacity to answer our good questions.
15. We trust that people do things for their own good reasons.
16. We trust clients to determine whether our work together is of use to them (or not).
17. We trust in the client’s right not to answer questions that they experience as intrusive.
18. We trust people to make good use of sessions.
19. We trust that change is constant even when the client is not noticing it.
20. We trust the human capacity to find ways forward in the most difficult of circumstances.
21. We trust the human capacity to overcome the greatest traumas and tragedies.
22. We trust that describing future and past difference makes a difference in clients’ lives.
Choosing to trust our clients does not require ‘evidence’, we do not assess clients for ‘trustworthiness’. To trust is a choice that we make and it is a choice that we make before we meet the client. Choosing to trust transforms the conversation. Choosing to trust makes a difference. Naturally choosing to trust does not absolve us from hearing risk and acting upon it.
13 September 2020.