Self-Therapy Journey as an Adjunct to Coaching

Self-Therapy Journey (STJ) is an interactive online tool for personal growth that integrates well with many different approaches to coaching. 

This page discusses the various ways that STJ can be a useful adjunct to Coaching. 

Healthy Capacities and Homework Practices

STJ provides a framework for identifying a client’s “signature strengths,” which can be drawn on in service of the client’s coaching goals. The healthy capacities are a natural way of looking at these strengths. This fits well with the positive focus of coaching.

For example, after the coach and client collaborate in identifying those capacities that the client is strongest in, the coach might say, “Let’s do some brainstorming. How can your Assertiveness Capacity support your goal of being more visible at work? And how can your Work Confidence Capacity support your next steps?”

STJ  helps clients to recognize which healthy capacities they need to cultivate or enhance in order to reach their goals. It is fairly easy to help a client translate from a specific goal to the capacity needed to get there.  

STJ can help clients identify emotional issues that may be interfering with reaching their coaching goals. Clients can learn about their current behaviors, feelings, and thoughts that are limiting their options. Then they can use STJ to move past these obstacles and develop the capacities that will allow them to achieve their desired outcomes. STJ is particularly good at helping clients create homework practices to activate these capacities in particular situations in their lives.

For example, suppose Diane has the goal of getting a job. She needs to find job possibilities and be successful in job interviews or conversations with companies that might hire her as a consultant. You discuss this with her and discover that she needs to develop her Social Confidence Capacity so that she can network with people in her field in order to make connections that might lead to job opportunities. This capacity will also help her in job interviews to confidently explain her skills and capacities and how they could benefit a particular organization.

Diane can use STJ to develop and activate her Social Confidence Capacity. She can also use it to work through her Self-Effacing Pattern that blocks her Social Confidence and to create a homework practice to enhance her Social Confidence in job interviews.

False Beliefs and Wisdoms

Each pattern is based on one or more false beliefs. For example, the Controlling Pattern involves being too invested in running the show and dominating other people, such as by micromanaging. This pattern includes false beliefs like the following:
  • I can only be safe if I am in charge of situations.
  • I can only get what I want if I am in control.
  • Other people can’t be trusted to handle things well, so I must be in charge.
  • I have the right to dominate people and get my way.
There is much more to the Controlling Pattern, but this is a quick way to summarize the important dysfunctional beliefs that may be involved.

Furthermore, each capacity has a wisdom, which more accurately expresses how things really work. The capacity that is needed to transform the Controlling Pattern is the Cooperation Capacity. The wisdom of the Cooperation Capacity is as follows:
  • In most situations, I can be safe without being in control.
  • By asserting myself, I can often get what I want without being in control.
  • I can be discriminating about when I can trust other people to be competent, so I don’t always have to be in charge.
  • Everyone has the right to have input into what happens in a situation. No one has the right to dominate.
STJ helps clients to recognize their versions of the false beliefs for any given pattern, see through them, and embrace the wisdom of the corresponding healthy capacity.


Clients can take quizzes which provide scores for each of the client's patterns. This is especially useful in helping clients understand which of their patterns are preventing them from reaching their goals. This has a clear appeal for many coaching clients, especially those in the business world.

You can have your clients take the appropriate quizzes to quickly get the information you need in order to know what patterns and capacities they need to work on. This can then guide your coaching with them. Many clients will be eager to take the quizzes on their own to understand themselves better.

To access the quizzes, go to Quiz Central.

Coaching Sessions and STJ Sessions

In a coaching session, you can help a client to identify a pattern that is blocking their progress or a capacity that would help them reach their goals. Then you can suggest that the client work on this pattern or capacity on their own between sessions using STJ. This empowers the client and gives them a greater sense of being in charge of their own work. And because of the structured nature of STJ, it keeps track of everything they do, so you can know exactly what they have done and where to go next.

Clients can also use STJ to work on issues they are interested in, and then come back to you for any help they need.

STJ is especially useful for clients who can't afford to see you every week and yet need weekly work. They can work on themselves in those weeks when they can't see you, and in this way enhance the effectiveness of your coaching with them.

Learning about STJ

I have written a booklet, The Professionals' Guide to Self-Therapy Journey, which describes STJ in quite a bit of detail. You can read it to get a good idea of how STJ works. Click here to download it for free.

I also recommend that you explore STJ itself to see how it works. I frequently teach free webinars on STJ or on how to transform specific patterns using STJ. Feel free to watch and join in.