What’s up everybody and welcome to today’s edition of Solutions Every Day Live, of course, I’m your boy Elliott Connie. And so I was thinking today about diagnosis and like my thoughts about diagnosis. And in fact, the stance of a Solution Focused Brief Therapist about diagnosis. And I had a situation happened today with a client that I was seeing, that I want to share with you that I think demonstrates why diagnosis don’t matter,
why they’re not necessarily relevant or important to what we’re doing as Psychotherapists. And I know that might sound like a controversial or maybe even radical assessment or a radical position, but I want to express to you why I hold it. So first, when I talk about this topic, I want you to know that when I first came to Solution Focused Brief Therapy,
when I first came across this way of working, I think that there was a myth out there from people that the Solution Focused community does not believe in diagnosis. And I think that’s not true. Diagnosis are obviously real. There are people who struggle with depression and anxiety and narcissism and all the rest of it. Like diagnosis is real. It’s a real part of our life.
It’s actually out there. I have loved ones and family members that struggle with mental health disorders. I have loved ones that struggle with bipolar disorder. So I experience it as somewhat disrespectful when somebody takes a position that like these things don’t exist. Like they’re somehow just made up by the psychological community and they’re not real. That’s actually not true. Like people really do struggle with mental health issues and they are in fact a thing.
But what I do want to convey to you is like understanding the mental health diagnosis and capitalizing on the mental health diagnosis to help create change is not necessary. So when I say that for us, the diagnosis is not relevant. What I mean is it’s not relevant to accomplish change. And I want to give you an example. So I saw a woman today and I’m going to change up some of the details to protect her identity. But I do want you to hear this story.
So I saw a woman today who was married to someone that she didn’t think was good, where they were married, about 11 years. She divorced this person. And when she met him, she was a School Teacher. And over the course of time, she decided to give up her career as a School Teacher, be a Stay At Home Mom and function as his wife basically, kind of giving up her identity as a School Teacher.
Last year she divorced him and then decided to come to me for therapy. And over the years, she had taken anxiety medications. She had seen Psychologists for depression, and she had some pretty significant mental health challenges and they were real like she wasn’t sleeping well. I mean, she was really kind of struggling and absolutely thought that she had like a chemical imbalance and there was something within her that caused her to feel anxious and depressed and sad and all those things. Well, last year she divorced this husband and came to therapy to see me a few months ago about like this next chapter in her life.
I asked her, when does she remember being the most herself, the most happy, the most kind of sounded and grounded in her life. And she said, when I was a Teacher in the early career, early stages of my teaching career. So after that first conversation, she decided to get back into teaching and I saw her today and she’s a month or so into this new school year and all of the symptoms, the anxiety and the depression, all of that stuff has gone away because this woman loves teaching. This woman loves being like an Early Elementary School Teacher of young kiddos.
And when she became that version of herself, once again, then the symptoms of the mental health issues could not survive. They could not continue to exist and they extincted. And she said for the first time in years, this past month, she’s not sad and she’s not depressed and she’s not anxious because she’s getting back to being herself and getting excited again. And I want to share that with you guys, because I think so often we think if someone has depression, it’s our job to solve the depression. Or if someone has an anxiety disorder, it’s our job to solve the anxiety.
But that’s not true. If someone is struggling with a mental health issue, perhaps the best way to solve that issue is to help that person become the very best version of themselves and make changes in their lives that are in line with that. So maybe being a Stay At Home Mom, though, you have the money to do it, though. You have the environment to do it.
Maybe the best thing you could do is get back to doing the thing that you love doing that gives your heart and your soul and your spirit energy, and get back to teaching. Once she did that, then she’s back in her element, she’s back being the version of her that she wants to be, that she’s built for, that he’s constructed to do.
And she’s impacting kids’ lives in a positive way and the symptoms extincted. And are they going to stay gone? I don’t know, I’ll see her in a month or so. And we’ll see, but she just had a month of no anxiety attacks. No bouts of depression. No, over-drinking. All she did was be happy and experience joy as she was teaching young kids.
You know, a lot of times we get kind of off of the path because we spend a lot of time. We make decisions based upon money, status, prestige, and privilege, but maybe what we should be doing is making decisions based upon who we are and what fills our heart with joy and happiness. And once we do that, then we’re not making decisions that get us off the path and create struggles and problems for us. And this woman is a great example. It’s such a joy and honor to get to talk to people like this. And look, I’ve been a Psychotherapist for 15 years and I practice something called Solution Focused Brief Therapy, which is a very specific way of doing this work.
And the one thing that shocks me more than anything else is when I’m working with clients, it’s not ever the experience that I ask the question that completely solve the sadness. It’s not ever that. The thing that blows me my way about this work is the most profound and significant changes come from people making life shifts and putting themselves in a different environment and a different circumstance.
And then all of a sudden the behaviors extinct, which kind of makes sense because we know if I’m putting myself in the wrong environment, I’m likely to have an increase of psychological disruption. So that must mean if I put myself in an appropriate environment that I’m much more likely to have a successful adjustment in my life. And I think sometimes we just, we believe too much in the symptoms and we don’t understand the power of the circumstances. So look, diagnosis are real, but they’re just not important. They’re just not relevant to the process of accomplishing change.
And I want you guys to believe that. Not just in your work with your clients, but believe that in your life, when you see someone struggling understand there’s nothing wrong with them, there’s nothing wrong with that person. There’s something wrong with the environment that they find themselves in. Even you, when you find yourself struggling and having a bad day, understand there’s nothing wrong with you. There’s just something wrong with the environment you find yourself in. And if we can really believe that and really harness that, then the work that we do in ourselves, in our families and our communities and in our work with clients. They are likely to be significantly impacted.
So, anyway, thanks for watching guys. I appreciate it. Thank you guys for watching this video, please like it, share this video with your colleagues. I think it’s an important message. If you’re watching this video, any other place than my YouTube channel, head on over to my YouTube channel, subscribe there and hit the bell to get notified when we post a new content, which we do pretty consistently. I love you guys. And I will see you in the next video.
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