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Brooke Castillo

Video: The Model Part 1

Join in as Brooke Castillo talks about the self coaching model developed and used at The Life Coach School.

The CTFAR model is a structure to help you when you are coaching your client. When your client comes to you, whatever problem they present to you, you can define it as one of these categories. By showing them that all problems really boil down to thought problems, then you can coach a client very easily through any problem.

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Episode Transcript:

Hi. This is Brooke Castillo from the Life Coach School. In this video I'm going to talk to you about a concept that I created that we call The Model. We call it The Self-Coaching Model, we call it The Get Your Head Straight Model, we call it The Model.

The reason that I created this is after I had been coaching for I would say probably 3 years I had been deeply studying the work of cognitive psychology, the work of Byron Katie, Eckhart Tolle and also the work of Abraham. One of the themes that kept coming up in all of the work that I was studying was basically the concept of The Model that I kept creating in my mind. I noticed that I was using it in my coaching and it was making my coaching really laser sharp.

So many of my students and clients at the time would come to me and be like, "How do you do that? I want to learn how to do that," especially if they were coaches. I started really thinking about how do I organize this information in my brain that makes it so easy for me to coach. When I started taking notes and documenting it and understanding it I came up with The Model. I didn't come up with the concepts and it's really clear that I didn't because they're universal truths, they're things that are just true in the universe, I just put them in a way that I find very easy to understand and use.

I want to give you a little caveat; it takes a little while to figure it out. You have to be willing to stay with The Model long enough and practice it long enough, but it's just like riding a bike, once you get it then you've got it. I'm going to introduce it to you here in the video and after the first round of watching this video you may be like, "Hmm, I don't really know if I fully understand it." That's normal. It's okay. If you don't understand it on the first round that's okay. Take the concepts in, study the concepts, practice it, write it out. It's kind of like riding a bike; let yourself fall down a couple of times before you really start to, "Oh, okay now I get it. Now I get it."

If you're at the school and you're taking a class please practice and have your instructor look at as many models as possible. The more you do it the more you're going to understand it.

Okay, so why is the model so awesome when it comes to dealing with the client? The reason why is because anything your client presents with can be plugged into this model. It doesn't matter what it is, it doesn't matter how graphic it is, how scary it is, how big of a deal it is, you can take a deep breath and say, “Okay, I know that this problem can be solved by The Model.”

Every problem can. That's just reassuring to know because a lot of my new students will come to me and be like, “Oh my gosh, I don't know how to deal with this issue or what if somebody comes to me with this issue.” Every issue is really a thought issue and when you know that then you can refer to your model. You don't have to necessarily talk your client through it; you can have it in your mind’s eye.

This is what The Model looks like. Circumstances are at the top there. Circumstances trigger thoughts, thoughts cause all of your feelings, feelings drive all of your actions, and actions drive all of your results in your life. You can trace back any result in your life to a thought.

The way that we write The Model when we’re using it is it’s nice to have that visual of it but this is how we write it; C-T-F-A-R. The C represents circumstances, the T represents thoughts, the F represents feelings, the A actions and the R results. You can at any point in the day in my house find many pieces of paper with this written on it, because sometimes when something is going on in my mind that I can't figure out I need to actually do it on paper to figure out what's going on with me.

What I’m going to do is I'm going to break down each of the concepts and explain to you what they represent.

First, is circumstances. Circumstances are those things in your life that you don't have any control over. One of them is other people. Now you may argue with me at this point that you do have control over other people, but I promise you, you don't. Even if you have influence over other people you cannot control them. All other people and all of their behavior is a circumstance. Your entire past, no matter how many times you try and change your past, it is a circumstance. It’s not something you have any control over. It is over. You can argue with it, you can be upset about it but you can't change it. Then anything else outside in the world that you don't have control over is a circumstance. That’s the C line, we call it.

The next line is the T line, which we call thoughts. Now thoughts, the best way to think about thoughts are they are one sentence that you have in your mind. You can have a circumstance in your life, which is a fact. It is something that you can’t change. It's provable in a court of law. Then you will have a sentence in your mind about that circumstance. Now these two are the two that get most often confused. Most of us think our thoughts about circumstances are facts, but really our thoughts about circumstances are just thoughts, which mean they’re choices.

We have the facts, the things we can't control in our life and then we have thoughts, which is just one sentence in our mind that we have about a circumstance. When you're doing work with clients understanding that distinction is the most important first step. You can't put any kind of judgment in that C line.
Let me give you an example. A circumstance may be that somebody yelled at you. That's a fact. You could prove that in a court of law if you had a video of it, right? This person yelled at me. Now what you make it mean, how you feel about it, your thoughts about it, everything else is a thought. The person yelling at you is a neutral thing. It doesn't necessarily have to bother you, it doesn't have to hurt your feelings, it doesn't have to upset you in any way until you have a thought about it, which is one sentence in your mind.

Next is the F line. That is for feelings. What we put in that line is a one word description of how you feel. The way that we define feelings here at the school is it’s a vibration in your body; sad, mad, glad, happy, frustrated. Feelings can be described really specifically as vibrations in your body.

Remember C’s are facts. Those are circumstances. You can't control them. They’re neutral. Thoughts are one sentence that you have in your mind. Feelings are one word created by the thought and all of your feelings in this F line; this one word is what's going to drive your actions. Actions include any behavior that you take, any lack of behavior that you make and any reaction.

A lot of times, someone will put in the A line nothing; like inaction. The other action may be yelling back, right? If your circumstance is someone yelled at me, the thought was I need to defend myself, the feeling may be fear, then the action might be the yell back. A line is any action or reaction that you make.

Then the result is going to be what that action created in your life. Let's say I yell back then the other person may become even more agitated, which makes me more afraid because I'm thinking I need to defend myself. That result is always going to prove that original thought.

That's just the general overview of The Model. If you’re looking at me like, “Uh,” that’s okay. This is just round one.

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