Theories and approaches

Jakob focuses on three core coaching and counselling approaches including Positive Psychology, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and solution focused brief therapy.

How do these theories and approaches work?

Positive Psychology (PP)
For years, Psychology has focused on ‘what is wrong’ and how to fix it. Positive Psychology, a relatively new science, focuses on ‘what is going right’ and how to nurture and develop it. Positive psychology is not a self-help movement based simply on ‘the power of positive thinking’, it is a science, backed by thousands of studies related to the question; how and why do people flourish?

When working with this theory, you can expect to complete a range of questionnaires that measure your personal traits (eg. optimism, mindful attention, gratitude) and character strengths (eg. creativity, humour and playfulness, ability to love and be loved, perseverance). Once this information is collected, you will participate in a range of activities and exercises that support you to learn more about yourself and help you grow in the direction of becoming your best possible self.

Research shows that being aware of your personal traits and strengths has the following positive affects:

– Increases life satisfaction and wellbeing
– Has a positive effect on relationships and career
– Builds confidence, self-esteem and self-identity

PP coaching provides the support you need to uncover your hidden strengths, clearly see your weaknesses and acknowledge your learned behaviours. You will also notice the negative impacts of unintentionally overusing your strengths and where you could call on other strengths that you’re currently underusing.

Want to read more or see the research findings? Click here.

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
ACT is a third wave behavioral therapy approach, which combines the most effective elements of a range of existing therapies.

‘ACT is not just proven effective treatment for anxiety, stress, addictions, eating disordered, schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder and a myriad other  psychological issues. It’s also a revolutionary new way to view the human condition, packed full of exciting new tools, techniques and strategies for promoting profound behavioural change’ – Dr. Russ Harris (2009).

ACT is interested in aligning your life values with your behavior and your goals. These core values, once aligned, can be used in conjunction with a range of approaches such as mindfulness training, to guide, motivate and inspire behavior change. The aim of ACT is to support you to create a rich, full and meaningful life, while accepting the pain that is an inevitable part of life.

ACT does this in two ways, firstly by teaching you psychological skills and a common language for the mind, that allow you handle painful or uncomfortable thoughts and feelings more effectively and in a way that have much less impact or influence over your life, these are called mindfulness skills.

Learning and practicing mindfulness skills has a range of benefits including:

  • The improved ability to manage stress and anxiety and anger levels
  • The improved ability to handle painful thoughts, feelings, emotions, sensations and memories, in a way that has far less impact on your life
  • Improved concentration and attention
  • A common language to understand and discuss different processes of the mind
  • Enhanced sense of spirituality, self-love and compassion

Secondly, by clarifying what’s truly important and meaningful to you and using this to guide, inspire and motivate you to reach your goals and take action that enriches your life; this is called values re-alignment.

Values realignment work involves undertaking a range of challenging but rewarding activities to re-discover your values in a range of life domains. Once you have re-aligned with your values, I support you to set values directed goals leading to positive and sustainable change.  Re-aligning with our values helps to give life a sense of meaning and purpose and serves as a guide that will inspire and motivate you to live the life you want to live.

Solution Focused Therapy
This therapy is based around quality goal setting conversations.I provide support to discuss and develop goals that are inspiring, motivating and achievable to you. I gently challenge you to consider alternatives, dive deeper and uncover potential blind spots. Together we explore a range of questions, for example:

– What is currently happening and what needs to change?
– What options have you already tried?
– What are your roadblocks to success and how will you overcome these?

I will ask you to call on self learning gained through Positive Psychology and ACT work  to ensure the goals are values based and incorporate the use of character strengths. Once your goal is set we will put together an action plan and re-visit your progress over the coming weeks and months. Through this time, face to face or telephone coaching gives you the support and accountability required to make real lasting change. Goals often shift or change  and we may need to re-define the scope as you progress.

Having these quality goal setting conversations and a sounding board for your progress, challenges and wins, will support you to become your best possible self.

If you would like to find out more or book a coaching session click here


4 thoughts on “Theories and approaches

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