The end-of-session break was a standard part of the solution-focused approach to solution-focused brief therapy as it was developed by the Brief Family Therapy Center (more about the origin of the solution-focused approach here, here, here, and here). During the break, the therapist would reflect on what had been said in the conversation and/or discuss this with colleagues who had watched the conversation from behind a one-way screen. After the break, the therapist would come back and first give a series of compliments about what clients had done that worked and then a few suggestions which were based on what clients had said.
My impression was that this practice has changed. I suspect that many SF therapists don't use breaks at all anymore, and that those who do usually don't use a reflecting team anymore.
My question: Is this true? Do you still use breaks? What are your reasons for using it or not using it?
So far, I have received the following types of responses:
- I don't use the break
- I still use the break and I leave the room
- We use the break but don't leave the room
- I also use the break in coaching/ organizational work
- We use the break but after the break the emphasis is not on compliments and suggestions but on feeding back to clients key elements of what they have said that fits with expectation of progress
These responses suggest to me that not many people use reflecting teams anymore (who sit behind the one-way screen, that is), that the break itself is still used, but not by everyone, and that the message after the break has become a bit different.
I'd be interested to get more responses.