FAQ

Brief Strategic Therapy

“We cannot solve our problems
with the same thinking we used when we created them”

Einstein

Brief Strategic Therapy is the art of “solving complicated problems with apparently simple solutions”, promoting rapid changes even in long standing disorders.
Relinquishing the notions of “sanity” and “insanity” and moving from the search for causation to the search for solutions, the strategic approach focuses on “how I am functioning here and now”.

The intervention is brief and focused on extinguishing symptoms, and reframing the relationship we have with ourselves, others, and the world.  A successful therapy will replace the patient rigid and dysfunctional point of view with a more functional and flexible one.
The initial change, always goal oriented, is achieved rapidly through sophisticated communicative stratagems and simple tasks (prescriptions) to be performed between sessions. The intent is to make the person “feel” differently, so he/she will substitute his/her dysfunctional reactions with more appropriate ones, with no direct pressure, since “we create our own reality”.
After the initial change, the person is guided to gradually develop new abilities and shape a new reality. Besides being symptom-free, the person will therefore initiate a virtuous cycle with long-lasting effects in different areas of life.

Brief Strategic Therapy combines a rigorous  problem solving model with a flexible intervention, always modelled on the person. A complete intervention is usually less than 10 session, with follow-up encounters at 3, 6 and 12 months. Its great efficacy and efficiency stems from more than 30 years of rigorous action-research, led by Giorgio Nardone and his associates at the Arezzo Strategic Therapy Center, with 88% of patients cured in an average of 7 sessions.

The strategic model has been successfully implemented in different fields: medicine, business, sports, education. Brief Strategic Therapy is evidence based and recognized as best practice in several important psychopathologies.

Historical notes

FAQ

Strategic Therapy is rooted in ancient history, originating in the Hellenic tradition of Sophists, masters of rhetoric and persuasion, and in the Art of Stratagem of ancient China.
Recently, the prolific tradition of the Mental Research Institute in Palo Alto, California, generated the Brief Strategic Therapy Model. This innovative model stems from Gregory Bateson (a famous anthropologist) interactional communication studies, the constructivist approach (Heinz von Foerster) and Milton Erickson’s studies on suggestion and hypnosis.
Paul Watzlawick then organized the theory and principles of therapeutic communication in a fundamental textbook, “Pragmatic of human communication” (1971).
Giorgio Nardone, with Paul Watzlawick, pioneered the model in Italy, establishing the Strategic Therapy Center in Arezzo: in the past 40 years Giorgio Nardone and his associates treated successfully thousands of people and a huge variety of disorders.
Since “it is the solution that explains the problem”, all outcome data were collected and analyzed to further improve the model (“action- research”), perfecting strategies, implementing protocols for specific disorders, and refining communication techniques (strategic dialogue).
Data and results of this vast research are published in numerous books in several countries, which are fundamental texts of the strategic approach to psychotherapy.

Brief Strategic Therapy: who can benefit

FAQ

Brief Strategic Therapy is effective in the following disorders:

Anxiety disorders
Panic disorder
Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
Agoraphobia
Specific phobias (animals, objects, situations…)
Social anxiety disorder

Obsessive-compulsive disorders
Obsessive-compulsive disorder
Obsessions
Pathological doubt
Self-harming
Hoarding disorder
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Depression

Somatoform disorders
Hypochondria
Pathophobia
Dysmorphophobia

Eating disorders
Anorexia
Bulimia
Vomiting
Binge eating

Sexual disorders
Erectile dysfunction
Premature ejaculation
Vaginismus and dyspareunia
Hypoactive sexual desire

Relational problems
Different settings: couple, family, work, social, etc.

Internet addiction disorders
Internet and smartphone addiction
Chat addiction
Cybersex addiction
Gambling online
Compulsive online trading
Compulsive online shopping

Childhood and adolescence disorders
Childhood phobias
Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Oppositional defiant disorder
Selective mutism
Avoidant disorder
School phobia

Scholastic problems
Learning disabilities
Student’s performance block
Conduct disorder
Performance anxiety

Brief Strategic Therapy

“We cannot solve our problems
with the same thinking we used when we created them”

Einstein

Brief Strategic Therapy is the art of “solving complicated problems with apparently simple solutions”, promoting rapid changes even in long standing disorders.
Relinquishing the notions of “sanity” and “insanity” and moving from the search for causation to the search for solutions, the strategic approach focuses on “how I am functioning here and now”.

The intervention is brief and focused on extinguishing symptoms, and reframing the relationship we have with ourselves, others, and the world.  A successful therapy will replace the patient rigid and dysfunctional point of view with a more functional and flexible one.
The initial change, always goal oriented, is achieved rapidly through sophisticated communicative stratagems and simple tasks (prescriptions) to be performed between sessions. The intent is to make the person “feel” differently, so he/she will substitute his/her dysfunctional reactions with more appropriate ones, with no direct pressure, since “we create our own reality”.
After the initial change, the person is guided to gradually develop new abilities and shape a new reality. Besides being symptom-free, the person will therefore initiate a virtuous cycle with long-lasting effects in different areas of life.

Brief Strategic Therapy combines a rigorous  problem solving model with a flexible intervention, always modelled on the person. A complete intervention is usually less than 10 session, with follow-up encounters at 3, 6 and 12 months. Its great efficacy and efficiency stems from more than 30 years of rigorous action-research, led by Giorgio Nardone and his associates at the Arezzo Strategic Therapy Center, with 88% of patients cured in an average of 7 sessions.

The strategic model has been successfully implemented in different fields: medicine, business, sports, education. Brief Strategic Therapy is evidence based and recognized as best practice in several important psychopathologies.