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  - Dokumentationer / Lösningsfokuserade ledtrådar 2017

RayyaRayya Ghul is currently Principal Lecturer and Head of Academic Professional Development at Canterbury Christ Church University.


The power of the next small step by Rayya Ghul.
The Power of the Next Small Step
"This book is about how to live a sane and successful life using a remarkably simple approach called ‘Solution Focus’"
Rayya Ghul

The Challenge of Solution Focus as Self-Help

Who is for?
- Everyone and anyone.

That’s not possible – you have to have a specific market.
- I do, human beings.

Rayya Ghul












































Basic SF-skills and becoming a scientist in your own life and support your clients to be one - Rayya Ghul

Session 1 - Day 1

People Are Doing it for Themselves - Solution Focus (SF) as a Personal Methodology

Rayya seemed to be just as pleased to meet the audience as the audience was to meet her.

The audience

Rayya began this session by giving a brief story of her solution focused journey from occupational therapy, to higher education, to self-help - including what she has learned along the way…

The Secret

Rayya thinks that the central message of solution focus is:
Find what works and do more of it!

Humans are incredibly good at solving problems in many creative ways - so that is not the issue.

What really struck Rayya when she started to use Solution Focus (SF) as a method was her amazing clients - the most willing people to change. She started to see people very differently.

But First …

Most of the difficulties and distress we feel in life are not, strictly, "problems". If they were, we could solve them fairly easily with the right tools and skills. We are already pretty good problem solvers.

Exercise - Myth-busting

There is no such thing as "normal".

Reflecting on what ideals you feel you fall short of.Spend a couple of minutes reflecting on what ideals you feel you fall short of.

How many of these are actually based on messages about what is "normal" or "ideal"?

What would happen if you focused on being the "BEST YOU" instead?

The Detail Is in the Difference

The detail is in the difference

Rayya keeps asking - What difference would that make?

By keep asking the same question - What difference would that make? - over and over again you will get to know people's values. That will help people to think about what really matters to them.

Goals Are Dangerous

…unless you are training for a marathon or planning your workload!

Rayya talks about the danger about setting goals.

Rayya says:

  • Failure and goals go hand in hand.
  • It’s nearly impossible to set goals which involve people and other unpredictable factors.
  • Goals are limited to what you think is possible.
  • You are acting like you can tell the future!
Question from the audience: So, if you don´t use goals what do you use? Rayya means that we shall not be fortune tellers. She recommends the power of taking small steps - small steps that you don´t even think about (maybe small steps=small goals).

The Power of the Next Small Step

Rayya - The power of the next small step.

  • Turn yourself into a scientist.
  • Treat life like an experiment in finding what works.
  • Try out small, low-risk steps towards your preferred future.
  • Keep your preferred future as a compass to keep you on track.
  • When you stray off the track, take a small step back towards your preferred future.
  • Or …
  • If you like where you’ve found yourself - set a new compass!

"No matter what your situation, there is always something small you can do or change every day."


Video 1 - The First Session of Day 1

Here you can watch the whole first session:


Session 2 - Day 1
Solution Focused Methods

Rayya starting point for the next session is by quoting Antoine De Saint-Exupery:

Rayya"If you want to build a ship, don´t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work and give orders.
Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea
Antoine De Saint-Exupery

Exercise - Who Are You?

Exercise - Who are you?

Spend some time chatting to your neighbour (A to B). Ask about their hobbies and interests (not work!)

Ask them "how do you do that?". Keep the conversation going with "what else?"

Listen hard for their strengths and qualities. Create some "evidence based" compliments for your partner.

Be genuinely curious…

Rayya stopped the conversation after 5 minutes and gave A time to formulate some evidence-based feedback to B. Then A and B swapped over and did it the other way round. Ask what it felt like to be questioned, listened to and given feedback in this way.

Working with Complaints

Sometimes when people are meeting with you they feel the need to complain. The listener generally wants to either avoid getting involved or to get stuck in to solving the problem. Instead Solution Focus sees everything as an opportunity to learn about something that can help to build a solution.

Exercise: Complain, Complain, Complain...


  • People in pairs – A and B
    A = moaner
    B = listener
  • Instruction for A: you have to moan to B about something that really annoys you. You have to keep moaning for 3 minutes, don’t stop, just keep going.
  • Instruction for B: you have to listen to A without saying anything. You may only nod your head. As you are listening to A I want you to think about what qualities and strengths A has simply from listening to them moaning.

Complain for 3 minutes.

  • At the end of the 3 minutes B spends a little time formulating some compliments for A based on what they have heard and delivers these to A.

Rayya´s questions after this exercise:

  • Did you feel listened to?
  • Did anyone feel urged to give advice?

Solution Focused Process

Solution Focus Process

Step 1 - establish the desired outcome.
Step 2 - establish what’s working or has worked.
Step 3 – what is the next small step or sign?
Step 4 – review and repeat.

Preferred Future?
What will be happening?
What difference will that make?
What will you and others be doing differently?
What will you/they notice?

On a scale of 0-10 where are you now?
How do you know?
What has worked in the past?

What’s better?
What’s the next small step or sign?

Thinking Differently about .... Change - Solution Focused

  • You don’t need to know anything about the problem, you just need to know what you want to be different.
  • Change is to be expected.
  • Small changes are generative.
  • Change can happen in unexpected ways and places.

Ask questions beginning with...

Don´t ask Why -  Ask What, How, When, Where, Who

Big applause to Rayya

Thank you
Linda Anderfjäll thanks Rayya for a fantastic first day giving her some chocolate from Västerås, Sweden. Now everyone is waiting for tomorrow and the next session.

Video 2 - The Second Session of Day 1

Here you can watch the whole second session:

Rayya´s Presentations - Day 1

Rayya Ghul´s Next Sessions - Day 2

Combining Solution Focus with Tools and the Direct Link to Doing - Rayya Ghul

More from Rayya Ghul

Summary and photo: Christina Wallnér, No WaIT AB