Overcoming Anxiety & Depression: Solution-Focused Approaches

SFBT offers a uniquely effective strength-based, non-pathologizing, and evidence-based alternative to the traditional bio-medical model approach for supporting those struggling to overcome anxiety and depression.

In this course, participants will learn how to use solution-focused questions to draw out strengths and abilities in their clients and how to use the strength-based, solution-focused approach to create helpful positive thinking and perspectives. Through the use of didactic explanation, audio and video examples, discussion, role plays, pair and small group practice, and case presentations, participants will learn how to apply the primary types of solution-focused questions (outcome, exceptions, relationship, scaling, & coping) to increase hope, confidence, motivation and positive outcomes with people struggling to overcome anxiety and depression.

PLEASE NOTE: The SFBTC Program is undergoing review over academic year 2023-2024. The anticipated SFBTC Program renewal launch is September 2024. 

What You'll Learn

Enhancing your strategies for overcoming “Depression” and “Anxiety” is especially important since these are two of the most common presenting issues and psychological diagnoses in the world. The individual, social, and economic impacts of anxiety and depression are immense and helping professionals are tasked with the challenge of offering supports that are timely, cost efficient and effective. The most effective treatment approaches provide help before negative patterns become deeply entrenched and shift thinking in such a way that the person can avoid future episodes. Currently there is a call to action for the provision of brief, easily accessible, individualized, non-stigmatizing, and effective treatment for those struggling with depression and anxiety. This course aims to help meet that need by providing you with opportunities to enhance your knowledge, skill, and understanding in supporting clients in their struggle to overcome anxiety and depression with effective strength-based, solution-focused interventions to help them live more healthy productive lives.

PLEASE NOTE: The SFBTC Program is undergoing review over academic year 2023-2024. The anticipated SFBTC Program renewal launch is September 2024. 

Learning Outcomes

Learning Objectives

Participants will have opportunities to:

  • Recognize the importance of asking questions that are “solution-focused” rather than “problem focused.”
  • Understand and practice how the guiding assumptions and principles of SFBT (i.e. – ‘assume a not knowing / non-expert posture’ – ‘accentuate the positive’ – ‘use a solution-building process’ – ‘construct positive goals’) are particularly important when working with people struggling to overcome depression and anxiety.
  • Understand how adhering to the SFBT approach accentuates the recovery process.
  • Through live demonstration, observe and recognize how the utilization of the ‘not knowing position’ and the ‘one down position’ builds rapport and draws out clients’ strengths at times when they may not believe they have any.
  • Identify and practice how adopting a Solution-Focused position increases hope, motivation, confidence, and empowerment.


This course may count as an elective credit for those enrolled in the Solution-Focused Brief Therapy & Counselling Certificate Program.  


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Course can be applied towards

Solution-Focused Brief Therapy & Counselling: Elective Courses