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Alexandrea Day founded iAffirm in 2020 to ensure that Adaptive Therapy would carry on after she could no longer, it being her vehicle to carry her legacy. She formed a 501 (c) 3 non-profit and donated her training, books, and process to it. Visit https://iaffirm.org

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Philosophy of Adaptive Therapy

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Philosophy of Adaptive Therapy

From the Adaptive Therapy perspective, a therapist is only a vehicle of service that coaches clients in finding and living purpose.  Adaptive therapists don’t treat, diagnose nor prescribe but instead listen, reflect and help a client explore their inner world.  Once a client understands that their “programming” was not developed by choice but instead by exterior forces, for protection (at the time of the original event) it’s quite a positive experience for them.  Clients then become investigators of self in partnership with their therapist in a safe, inquisitive, and dynamic session(s).

Adaptive Therapists also work their own stuff (i.e. their own past experience and how they affect their current emotional state and behavior) to become better at helping their clients.  These therapists learn to test their own unconscious agendas by listening to those emotions that bubble up and then drilling down to find them.  In some forms of therapy this is called pulling the red thread.  It is one and the same. Experience with clients has revealed that it is very difficult to help a client with an issue that is active within the therapist.

In Adaptive Therapy, it is understood that people are on their own unique paths, and it is their responsibility to decide if and when they are going to take the steps necessary to heal. If clients are pushed or information is revealed before it is appropriate, it slows down their healing process and can actually cause more pain or acuteness of a “symptom.” Permission is always sought before asking any questions that will reveal an individual’s unconscious agendas. Therefore, the Adaptive therapists are careful to investigate only subjects that the person’s inner wisdom has directed.

Adaptive Therapy is not about being the expert with techniques and information to direct clients in their healing; instead, it is about being present for their clients, so that clients may direct their own healing. Adaptive Therapy empowers the client. Adaptive Therapy is service.

Some key principles of Adaptive Therapy:

  1. We don’t intentionally do anyone harm; we react from programming (it’s okay to steal to survive)
  2. If someone does cause harm to someone, he/she is following their programming (I have to stop a competitor before they beat me)
  3. When faced with a new unexperienced event, we react more primitively (hoarding toilet paper during Covid)
  4. The reason we catalog an emotional event in a similar situation is for use in the future to provide the host a non-thinking response that is faster (and known to have worked correctly in the past to provide protection). This is also more efficient, direct, and specific than just the fight or flight syndrome
  5. We embrace the use of 500 emotions which are “feeling flavors” due to the need to specifically define the core issue. If one identified the feeling with the client exactly it is easier to identify the core belief.  For example, to feel angry is so inclusive of many emotional flavors however, feeling defiant is more revealing, i.e. “Why did you feel defiant when you found out someone talked behind your back?”  To feel angry would not easily point to a core issue such as:  “I always get even.”
  6. What you hate in others is because a negative emotion is bubbling up in you, experiencing what has been triggered by someone else’s behavior. If you didn’t own it yourself, you would not be triggered.
  7. What you admire in others is also you.
  8. When addressing an issue, we re-program both “behavior” and core issues to help eradicate the problem quickly and permanently. An example would be, “I no longer feel that people cut me off while driving,” is the behavior and the core issue could be, “I must be first.”
  9. The process includes asking why; the therapist assists with ideas to help the client identify the original recording of the perception, core belief, we typically repeat the question a number of times and ask the client to think back to a time in the past, “Why do you feel defiant when someone talks behind your back?”
  10. Muscle testing is used only to verify the truthfulness of a client’s answer, in search of their core issues
  11. It’s helpful if a therapist is in a state of perpetual wonder, asking questions without expectation
  12. In addition to modifying core issues, there are advanced techniques to specifically address post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), phobias, co-dependency, conflicts of will, time disorders, temperaments, black holes, attitudes, view of life, drivers, addiction, denial, bias, definitions, and traumas.
  13. No one does anything “to us,” but they do things for us which means anyone triggering you is trying to help you become aware of an issue that is limiting / hurting your life
  14. Formation of the original core belief process:
    1. An emotionally-charged experience (mom put 3-year-old child’s hand on a hot burner to teach her not to play with the knobs on the stove – of course this is abuse but it really happened to a client)
    2. Emotion: At wit’s end (mothers emotion adopted by child and tagged to event)
    3. Core belief established – “I never learn.”
  15. Future triggering:
    1. Attending school facing learning experiences, learning to ride a bike; any learning experience
    2. Feeling is “at wit’s end”
    3. Core belief, “I never learn,” causes lack of interest to learning, day-dreaming, avoiding school, failing behavior, dropping out, inability to concentrate due to stressor of feeling “at wits end”

Adaptive Therapy does not seek to address a diagnosis that someone may wish to address.  However, oftentimes someone will indicate a medical issue that they want to understand how he/she might contribute emotionally to its presence, and we oblige.  Performance enhancement is also an area that is useful in helping to connect someone to their inner learning about a sport and disconnect any emotional triggers that might bubble up during play. And finally Adaptive therapy is for anyone looking for hope, vision and purpose.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs conveys the journey we all need to live a life fully.  However, most people feel blocked, living well below self-actualization as they scratch for necessities such as food, rent, and childcare while working a number of jobs. No wonder hope is lost. And with the pro-consumerism mantra, life feels even more empty as the majority of citizens go without. Is there any wonder why people are looking for and latching on anyone that can offer hope?

Adaptive Therapy offers hope.  It is a way to experience a purpose-filled life on the inside to manifest it on the outside by modifying core beliefs. It’s not about programming yourself for success, riches and stuff.  It’s really modifying programming that compels you to do things you really don’t want to do and to want things you really don’t need.  Remember, marketing and advertising has the capability to program you too (Gangadharbatla & Daugherty, 2013; Sarar, 2016; Ardiansyah & Sarwoko, 2020; Ioanas & Stoica, 2020).

Adaptive therapy helps anyone that feels left out and helps them realize the ultimate goal without feeling limited by any external circumstance.  When someone is whole and healthy within, they are whole and healthy walking in their life, interacting with others, and becoming a contributor to solutions.  This is what it means to live a life with purpose.  Visit https://iaffirm.org to find an Adaptive Therapy therapist.



Gangadharbatla, H, Daugherty, T. Advertising Versus Product Placements: How Consumers Assess the Value of Each (2013). Journal of Current Issues & Research in Advertising, 34, 21–38.

Sarar, H. Consumers Responses to Traditional and Non-Traditional Advertisements (2016). Advances in Social Sciences Research Journal, 3(6), 192-205.

Ardiansyah, F, Sarwoko, E. How social media marketing influences consumers’ purchase decision? A mediation analysis of brand awareness (2020). JEMA, 17(2), 156-168.

Ioanas, E, Stoica, I. Social Media and its Impact on Consumers Behavior (2020). International Journal of Economic Practices and Theories, 4(2), 295-303.

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