A strengths-based approach to counselling is interested in extracting and working with the skills and competencies that people already possess or have displayed in their lives (Saleebey 1998).

Survival Questions

“How have you managed to survive, given what you have had to contend with?”

“What have you learnt about yourself during your struggles”

“Which of these difficulties have given you special strength, insight, or skill”

Support Questions

“Who has given you special understanding, support, and guidance?”

“What strengths or skills did they see in you?”

Exception Questions

“When things were going well in your life, what was different?”

“Tell me more about the time when you felt in control of the problem?”

Possibility Questions

“What do you want your life to be like?”

“What people or personal qualities are helping you move in this direction?”

Esteem Questions

When people say good things about you, what are they likely to say?

“How will you know when things are going well in your life?”

Next are elements from the Therapeutic Models which describe skills and techniques for further developing a conversation with a young person.

E4. Unique outcome and exception seeking

B6. ‘Miracle question’ and envisioning the future