Coaching Instructions

Basic Concepts

It is important to introduce the Project New Day coaching model to clients before presenting the individual web pages and videos. Here are some points to include in the introduction.

  • The Project New Day coaching model provides a very organized collection of evidence-based concepts and methods that will help you learn how to have the best life possible.
  • These concepts can be grouped into categories:
    • Unburdening yourself from the past (forgiveness and healing)
    • Learning how your mind works (brain chemistry and neurodiversity)
    • Adopting a positive way of being (optimism, strengths intervention, gratitude practice)
    • Creating a philosophy (moving forward with purpose based on meaning and values)
    • Becoming a complete adult (the hero’s and heroine’s journeys)
  • Learning these concepts in an organized way will, in turn, help you feel and think in more organized ways.
  • All of the web pages have a video overview so you can watch and listen instead of reading.
  • Most of the web pages have a Ted Talk or other related videos that can be assigned as homework.
  • The goal is not to learn a few things about these concepts and then be done. Instead, look at the concepts and methods as paths that lead to your best life – then plan on continuing down those paths for the rest of your life. By striving for continual improvement in small increments, your life can just get better and better.
  • Once you are on these life-improvement paths, you can feel great, knowing you are doing all you can to have your best life.

Clients will likely feel empowered if you say, “By the time we get done learning this collection of life-improvement techniques, you will know more than 95% of the population about pursuing your best life.”

And it is true. How many people do you know who take the time to study these topics?

Improving Coaching Outcomes

Making the coaching experience successful

According to a study by McKenna and Davis, 2009, successful outcomes in therapeutic relationships result from:

  • 30% Client-Coach Relationship
  • 40% Client Factors
  • 15% Theory and Technique
  • 15% Placebo Effect

If you believe their study, you can improve outcomes by:

  • Client-coach relationship – always show unconditional positive regard.
  • Client factors – express encouragement when they show initiative.
  • Theory and technique – seek to improve your skills continually. Never think you have learned enough.

Sharing Your Personal Challenges

The Project New Day coaching model helps with theory and technique. As a coach, what can you do to create the optimal client relationship? One possibility is relating challenges you have faced that may be similar to those of the client. Sharing in this way can be disarming and can lead to a discussion about “shared humanity,” an important component of self-compassion.

Kristin Neff, Ph.D

“One of the most important elements of self-compassion is the recognition of our shared humanity. Compassion is, by definition, relational. Compassion literally means “to suffer with,” which implies a basic mutuality in the experience of suffering. The emotion of compassion springs from the recognition that the human experience is imperfect, that we are all fallible.”

Kristin Neff has done extensive research on the topic of self-compassion and has authored multiple books on the topic.

This is not to say you should dominate the coaching sessions with your personal stories, but instead, create a sense of mutuality. Let the client know that the sessions will be a benefit to you both. After all, you do feel better when helping other people – don’t you?

Forgiving, Honoring, and Loving Yourself

Clients who come to coaching almost always have experienced some type of trauma in their early lives. Typically, the trauma is related to some type of neglect or abandonment. Or chronic belittlement, or even physical, mental, or sexual abuse. In short, they did not experience consistent love, connection, acceptance, and forgiveness.

One way to help clients recover from these deficits is to suggest it is time for them to rise up and take over by showering themselves with self-love and self-forgiveness. How to go about that is presented on the Optimizing Your Self-Concept page and the Improving Your Relationship with Yourself and Others page.

Clients usually respond well to the suggestion that now is the time for them to take on these duties – because one cannot always expect others to do them for you.

As far as learning to love oneself, the idea is that self-love is not about narcissism, it is about self-care. Try suggesting your clients say to themselves, “This is how I honor myself!” multiple times a day when doing self-care, performing job tasks, or being helpful. This is an easy way to start balancing out the negative messages we all hear or tell ourselves.

Transforming Reactivity into Compassion

When a client expresses that she or he has become uncomfortable with another person, consider saying, “I have some knowledge that may be helpful. May I share it?” If the response is affirmative, then suggest the client questions:

  • “What was the other person doing to make me uncomfortable?”
  • “What are all the possible reasons for the other person’s behavior?”
  • “What feeling did it bring up for me?”
  • “When was the first time in my life that I had that feeling?”

In this way, clients can discover if they are reacting with an earlier mindset. The end goal is for clients to feel so secure that they are not triggered, but, instead, are compassionately curious why the other persons are not kinder or more considerate.

Coming to Terms with Past Experiences

Coming to terms with your past experiences in a deeply feeling way will relax the brain’s natural tendency toward avoidance. If you directly connect with a past painful experience your brain has less reason to keep its avoidance grip on it. This is not only healing but will free up energy and promote mental and physical harmony.

It may be helpful to suggest clients think of their brains as having layers, like onions. Early or severe painful experiences affect the deepest layers. Clients may have access to the outer layers and may be able to put them in order. But when stressful events occur, inner, deep pain can erupt. It is especially easy to be triggered by family members who seemingly have a fast track to the deepest layers. After all, parents and siblings have been around since the earliest stages of brain development.

Clients can connect with the innermost layers by doing meditations, as described on the “Connecting with Your Deeper Feelings” web page. In general, coaches are not licensed to perform psychotherapy. But, by using “knowledge-based” life coaching, the clients can be shown how to do this healing work on their own.

Helping Clients Reframe the Past

When one creates a frank and honest connection with their most joyful and painful experiences, it relaxes the brain’s defenses put in place long ago out of sheer necessity.

Defenses cause thought pattern rigidity, anxiety, depression, PTSD, addiction, behavioral problems, and physical health issues.

So, what does one do with the pain once the defenses are relaxed? Isn’t the pain more obvious than ever? The answer is yes. The task, then, is to use one’s creativity to reframe the pain so it is doing some good. Learning to survive early painful experiences can create “the wisdom of trauma.” With that wisdom, one can compassionately help other people with their lives. That will generate oxytocin and serotonin and make one’s own pain significantly diminish.

Using the Project New Day Coaching Model

Take a look at the visual coaching model below. Notice the title. “Continuous Growth and Transformation.” The implication is that you will have your best life if you aspire to continuous growth. In general, we feel best when we are working toward something. That’s just how our brains are designed. So, why not continually work toward having the best life possible?

Coaching Model
Click the image to navigate to coaching model

At the bottom of the visual coaching model is a hyperlink to “Finding Your Path to a Fulfilling Life.” It is an overview page that describes the model and how it can be used — and is a good starting point.

The coaching model’s eight columns represent eight life-improvement topics. Each column has a hyperlink to a web page or a set of web pages containing text and videos that will help in one’s pursuit of the best life.

At the top of the model is a link to “Realizing Your Full Potential.” It is about self-actualization and self-transcendence — and is a nice page to visit after working on the topics referenced in the eight columns.

All in all, there are ten topics.

Presenting the Topics

  • The Project New Day Program model suggests that participants receive a total of 13 coaching sessions:
  • Six weekly coaching sessions in preparation for their first psychedelic session
  • Psychedelic session #1*
  • One more coaching session
  • Psychedelic session #2*
  • Six weekly coaching sessions to integrate new-found perspectives into daily life

The order in which coaches should present these modules is presented below. It only makes sense to begin the coaching sessions with the link at the bottom of the model titled, “Finding Your Path to a Fulfilling Life,” as this is the introduction. It also makes sense to finish with the link at the top, “Realizing Your Full Potential.”

Early on in the coaching sessions, it is best to avoid the deeper and, perhaps, more difficult topics, such as, “Reframing the Past” and “Connecting With Your Deeper Feelings” until a solid rapport has been established with the participant. On the other hand, it is important to cover these topics before the first psychedelic therapy session, which takes place just after the sixth week of coaching.

“Brain Chemistry,” which is part of the “Knowing Your Own Mind” module, is presented in the second session because many of the other modules rely on a basic knowledge of one’s “Happy Hormones” (dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, and endorphins.)

Project New Day does not provide psychological or medical treatment, or recommend or administer psychedelic therapy to anyone. The responsibility for this falls on other organizations that adopt our framework, guided by legal and professional statutes along with individual suitability assessments conducted on a case-by-case basis.


You may find links to a number of worksheets on the Resources page.

The first session with a client should always begin with filling out a Life Satisfaction Survey. Other documents that support the coaching process are,

  • Values Clarification Worksheet (when presenting the “Circle of Fulfillment – Values” page)
  • Strengths Classification (when presenting the “Leveraging Your Strengths” page)
  • Posttraumatic Growth Inventory (when presenting the “Posttraumatic Growth” page)

Clients usually enjoy worksheets. The Life Satisfaction Survey may be used again, in the middle or at the end of the coaching sessions, to gauge progress.

Assigning Reading

The clients who become quite interested in the coaching model life-improvement concepts are typically the ones who progress the most rapidly. Letting clients know this often motivates them to do work outside the coaching sessions. Nearly all of the coaching model pages have one or more videos at the bottom that can be assigned as homework.

Additionally, assigning Viktor Frankl’s seminal book, “Man’s Search for Meaning” is a great way to underpin the concepts presented on the “Circle of Fulfillment – Meaning” page. The book is short, in the public domain, and there are PDFs available online at no cost.