By Jane Bredius
What you get when you play with your mind.
The A-Z of NLP
The A-Z of NLP - what you get when you play with your mind. A free e-book from PositivityNOW. firstname.lastname@example.org
Introduction I am a big fan of NLP, so it was a pleasure for me to break down my enthusiasm into 26 bite size pieces and explore exactly what NLP has brought into my life. Written and (mostly) illustrated by me, this little book provides literally the A-Z of the sometimes surprising side-effects of the NLP experience. I “did” NLP in 2006, at a moment when I wanted to change direction in my career. I thought that my study was teaching me the tools to help other people. I was therefore taken by surprise when my own problems surfaced. More than surfaced: after years of struggle, depression, and a crippling lack of self- confidence, I found myself using tools which helped me - and still do - weed out the bits which hindered me in my work-life - and replace them with super charged bits that do work! Thatʼs why I am an NLP fan - everyday I play with my mind and Iʼm getting better at what I do. NLP works. I work with NLP. Is this for you too? Read this little book first.
The A-Z of NLP - what you get when you play with your mind. A free e-book from PositivityNOW. email@example.com
About the Author Jane Bredius is founder of PositivityNOW - a social business that helps people bring positivity to work. At work or at home. Janeʼs work is based on the presupposition that “where positive thinking is nice, itʼs positive action that gets the job done.” The Positivity Strategy supports the work which Jane carries out with PositivityNOW and she passes on these four easy-toremember tenets to all who study NLP with her: 1) Responsibility - find out whatʼs yours and take it. 2) Flexibility - do what works instead of what youʼve always done. 3) Positivity - change your mind and see all the things that are working for you. 4) Sustainabillity - build, not break. Make your goals sustainable. PositivityNOW offers NLP Training Courses and workshops with the following themes: Jane also blogs and writes books. Sign up for my mailing list Follow Jane on Twitter Connect on LinkedIN Join me on FaceBook
The A-Z of NLP - what you get when you play with your mind. A free e-book from PositivityNOW. firstname.lastname@example.org
Attention Most of us communicate like him. Blindfolded and ears shut, mouth open, tongue flapping. Not effective. We are so busy with what we think people are saying that we miss the real message. We overlook the information we need to understand how other people are thinking. It might be tempting to believe that we are all the same. Meanwhile, back here in reality the fact is that we are not. Each one of us is doing our own thing in our head: taking in masses of information and filtering it down to a few usable bits. How we filter depends on our upbringing, our convictions, experiences and our learned preferences in thinking. Sometimes we come across people who filter similarly to ourselves and we feel a “click” with them. There are also heaps of people with whom we have no click. Making this click with everyone is technically possible! Anyone can do it.
Remember: you have TWO eyes, TWO ears and ONE mouth!
NLP helps you take off the blindfold, pin back your eyes, shut your mouth and watch and listen. Youʼll be amazed at what youʼve been missing. If your aim is effective communication then Pay attention. It doesnʼt cost a penny, but it delivers itʼs worth in gold.
Begin How do you build a piece of furniture from Ikea? • You grab a freshly brewed cup of Columbian coffee, snuggle down on the sofa and take a tour through the instructions. • You like to sort out all the bits and bobs, organizing them into piles for easy reference before you get started. • You need someone else to read the instructions while you build. Advice is nice. • You choose to let someone else do the work while you make the coffee. • Youʼre like me and you just build. Armed with a picture of the result, you have a go at putting the bits together so that they resemble the picture. Mostly it works out well and sometimes it doesnʼt. You can always fall back on the instructions. These are learning style preferences and we all use all of them. We may start in different places which makes team work, for example, quite a challenge, especially when we stick to a style and refuse to be flexible. Often we canʼt get started with a project because we are not sure how to. One of the pillars of NLP is flexibility. Success lies in doing what works, not what youʼve always done. Rmembering that your learning style is only a preference, and that you are capable of more, helps you to stretch yourself. If you donʼt know how to get started, simply think of your result and just begin anywhere, you can always fix it as you go.
Change This is a bit of an over-used concept, I know, but it is impossible to talk about NLP without mentioning it. Change is what you get when you: • • • • • • • • • • • • •
look at your world from a different perspective realize that your world is not the real world understand that everyone is living in their own worlds get to grips with the fact that you are free to design your world in any way you want understand that all your behaviors are driven by positive intention, but that they donʼt always deliver positive results. use NLP tools to adapt your behaviors to get your positive results. accept that happiness, freedom, love, results and achievement are your right - and your responsibility build your flexibility and use new, undiscovered bits of yourself you do more of what works instead of what youʼve always done shift your focus from whatʼs not working for you, to what IS working for you see and hear people communicating and you get them wake up to the masses of information which you have been missing make use of the information to get on in your world, and in the real one.
LOVE DREAM BIG BE SPONTANEOUS
CELEBRATE CHANGE THE WORLD
OR GO HOME In vino veritas: the label on Stormhoek wines (from South Africa, of course!)
You see, change is what you get when you experience NLP. The only people it doesnʼt change, are dead ones.
Direction Goals are great. Direction is HOT! Let me explain. Mostly we focus on the end result (the goal) and we neglect to remember that we have to get there (the direction). Some goals are just too big to achieve in one single step, although that doesn始t stop people from trying - think of yo-yo dieting, get-rich-quick schemes, ambitious career development plans, or stopping with that 40-a-day smoking habit. The brain works effectively when it is given a direction, a course to follow in order to achieve the end result. Think of it this way: a footballer kicks a ball into the net but only when he始s lined himself up - and the ball - for the shot. If he始s a pro that is! Amateurs kick the ball any which way and from anywhere in the field, which is why their score record is poor. If you want to score your goals, then aim carefully when lining up the ball. NLP has tools to help you choose - and follow - your direction.
A-Line yourself with achievement. That始s direction. Direction is everything, the goal is what you get!
Energy Now, who wouldnʼt want a bit more of that? There is the tendency to be all serious when we get to be big people. When I was a kid I played at “Mummies and Daddies”. Mum was always serious, stern, frowned and sighed a lot. Even as a kid I knew that. Of course life offers itʼs share of serious issues: money, jobs, security, the responsibility of raising kids, keeping a job, making a living, dealing with illness, death and divorce. We all have our crosses to bear. We think that we have to accept the routine, the drag and the negativity as our lot. We even bump up the volume on these things by judging and bemoaning them. You know the people who talk incessantly about how they have no luck? (oops, thatʼs a nominalisation) Whatever story you are telling yourself provides your brain with input which determines your results. Your brain does exactly what you tell it to do: tell yourself a no luck story? Youʼll find just that: no luck.
Listen to the stories which you repeat to yourself. Then ask
“is this giving me energy?” If not, change your story. It’s free!
But do we have to live this way? No way! We just expect to. We have learnt that to be a good person is to take it all seriously and to struggle and fight through life. The good news is that can be a good person and enjoy yourself. Actually, you become a better one for doing so because positive energy is contagious. We just think too much, and sometimes not enough. Most NLP participants report a substantial increase in energy as they tell themselves new stories.
Freedom is everything and love is all the rest. If youʼve been doing some shopping around for an NLP training course, you have most likely seen this plastered around various sites and books.
Live enough of what you have always dreamed of doing, and there’s no room left for feeling bad.
Cliches creep into our language because they are true. What sort of freedom are we talking about here? • • • • • • • • • •
freedom from old programs which fail to deliver desired results freedom from thoughts which haunt us and rob us of enjoyment freedom from glass ceilings which we believe in freedom from the opinions of others in which we invest so heavily freedom from must-do, have-to-have, should and should-not. freedom to choose for yourself freedom to change yourself freedom to think for yourself freedom to play (with?!) yourself freedom to be yourself
The NLP tool-box contains the spanners and screwdrivers which you need to remove old outdated bits and put new, better, more fun, juicier, sexier, pimped up, primed, and positive bits back. Every engine needs a tune up from time to time. Quote author: Richard Bach. “The Messiahʼs Handbook.”
Is it time for yours?
Growth! Battalions of training companies the world over are writing inspiring business plans based on this word: growth. I think that itʼs odd that Self Development and Growth gets to be a goal that we sometimes get around to addressing. For me, itʼs a way of life. Whyʼs it so important? Simply because we get older and change and we need to update ourselves as we go. The world is jam-packed with people who use outdated strategies to solve their problems like old MS-DOS operating systems for an Apple IOS 5 life. Does it work? Not a bit, but often itʼs only when the program crashes and the system ceases to work, that growth becomes a point of urgency. Itʼs not just computers that are being updated at brain-dizzying speed. What the human brain can do still knocks the socks off of any super computer. Itʼs just that we are crap at programming ourselves and asleep when it comes to making necessary system updates. So, thatʼs what growth is: a system update. This is exciting stuff! This amazing brain hardware which we have been given needs regular maintenance. With NLP tools you can tweak the code, bump up the juice on the output, feed it with top class input and: bingo! Update - and success - guaranteed... Thatʼs success as a human being, in your results, in your ability to be happy and loving and success for a living. Itʼs not a once-in-a-while job. Use your Gumption and do it every day!
Happiness We speak of the pursuit of happiness, as if itʼs something outside of ourselves which we have to hunt down and tame. For many people it is something to strive for but for whom it remains elusive.
Looking for happiness in cars, houses, jobs, whatever are all pointless pursuits. The reality is that happiness is yours for free, it doesnʼt cost a cent and you donʼt have to hunt far to find it. You just have to do it. Happiness is a verb. Itʼs a state of being. Its the experience you have when you are enjoying yourself, loving or being loved, or appreciating the manifold wonders around you. In NLP we watch out for sneaky little buggers called Nominalisations. They go under a big word, and thatʼs because they do big damage.
Ask yourself this question a lot
“am I being happy right now?” and then take action to address your answer.
A nominalisation is what you get when you express a verb (something which requires action) as a noun (something which you have or donʼt have). An example: Nominalisation! !
Cheeky NLP Answer!
Try this instead
“I need help.” " -> “How many kilos do you need?” -> “Can you help me write this?” “I get no respect.” "-> “Was the shop out of stock?” -> “My kids donʼt respect me.”
Once you understand that you only have to DO happiness, then thereʼs nothing between you and it. Game over.
Inspiration Are you stuck in your left brain, thinking your way through life and trying to understand and categorize everything? Are you following procedures to the “t” and demanding that processes be followed in all things? Simply put: if you are are obeying all the rules, then you are missing all the fun. You are missing out on Inspiration. Your brain is formed by two halves: left and right. Classical learning stimulates the left, thinking brain. Itʼs the logical bit which wants to put everything in neat little boxes. The mirror image is the right brain and it wants to create, explore and find alternatives. Everyone knows that alternatives are good to have. Much better than no choice at all. The NLP brain is a marriage between the two hemispheres. They need each other to help you survive. An example: many thousands of years ago if you had been here you might have bumped into a sabre-toothed tiger. Your left brain would have shouted at you to fight it, or run away from it. Your right brain would have been exploring the alternatives: how to fight it (available weapons) or how to flee (escape routes). You see? You need this marriage to work. The right brain stimulates Imagination. If you can see it, you can make it!
Juice! This is wild stuff! We all know about the importance of having goals and all that bla-bla. We all know how to set ourselves goals only to NOT meet them. How does that happen? There are two reasons: 1) The goals are not all that exciting, are unrealistic, negatively stated, or rely on too much input from other people to achieve them and/or 2) We lack the juice to go after them. If you struggle with point 1 then take a look at the Direction & Targets pages in this book. If itʼs juice you want, then read on. When we engage our brain to go after our goals, we set it in motion to spot opportunities which will help us make progress. If our goals are fuzzy, or not clearly stated and “anchored” in our body, then a very weak program will be put in place. In others words, your brain will lack direction and it will run out of gas trying to find a petrol station in the wilderness. NLP goals are clear, and we bump them up: the sounds, pictures and feelings which we get when we think about the achievement of our goals, feed our brains with high octane juice. With itʼs own built in power-pack, your brain can drive you at mind-boggling speed from a
So set rivetingly clear goals. May the juice be with you!
Kick in the Pants We all know people who moan about how bad things are, but who never seem to do anything about it. We also know people who appear to “get away with murder.” These are energy games. (also see Wake Up Call). • If itʼs your life and it sucks, then itʼs your job to change it. • If itʼs your life and you need to get things done, then itʼs your job to do those things. • In short: your life is your responsibility. Responsibility is a tricky balance for many of us: taking too much or too little are both easy to do. Both games have positive intention supporting them. The helpful person hopes that other people will like her. The easy going person hopes thar his life will be easy. The question is this: is it working?
The best way to accept responsibility is to say
“I have responsibilities” There is no more to this puzzle than that.
Balance in most things is desirable and thereʼs no need to make the puzzle a complicated one. The only responsibility that you have is for yourself. Whatever “yourself” encompasses. It could also include: kids, family, job, tasks, self development, being happy. If you are engaging in being too helpful, or not helpful enough, then finding balance is your responsibility too. Responsibility is one of the pillars supporting NLP - and you. Go to it. NO “Yes, buts..”
Love (this one is personal) Love gets some bad press, especially in the workplace. We talk about professionalism and efficiency. We run training courses to get people to understand and communicate with one another, but never do we use this word. Our kids attend schools where they are taught that playing together is good and that being nice to one another is acceptable behavior. We hardly ever mention the word love. For me, one of the side effects of NLP is that love entered my life. I don始t mean that I found a husband, I already had one of those (I still do, and the same one). What I mean is that I learnt to love me, something that I had particular issues with in the 36 years before NLP. Not only do I love me, which enabled me to shed 30 kilos of excess baggage and take care of myself. I also love others. I fall in love with people every day. The sweet child with the gappy smile, the man who holds the door open for me, the harassed housewife who brushes past me on the street. The colleague who needs to tell me her problem. The angry client who wants to blow off steam. The world is full of love because, being another sneaky little nominalisation (verb), I have learnt to do it. To love means to understand. Go on, have a go!
MindFUNness Buddhists practice mindfulness and, in many respects, NLP is akin to Buddhism. NLP is more technical, certainly as logical and it has broken down the tenets of mindfulness into easy-to-follow steps. NLP is perhaps easier for the Western left-brain, business-mind to grasp and accept. Here are a few examples of how mindfulness and NLP correspond: • return to the present moment and engage your senses in the here and now (uptime) • notice beauty and details (attention and focus) • feel at peace (controlling your state) • feel at one with others (rapport) • align the body with the mind (mind-body feedback) • let go of negativity (perceptual shift) • change by releasing concepts (the freedom to choose) • release energy (system update) • take action (direction and outcomes) • laughter is your birthright (the map is not the territory)
Star Tip! " "
There is fun everywhere.
“Be Mind-full” to dis-cover and then appreciate all of it.
Mindfulness is just another word for Kindness. Kind to yourself and kind to your environment and the people in it. NLP provides the tools to practice kindness and mindfulness. Because itʼs so much fun, I call it MindFUNness.
a moment of rest & reflection. enjoy one now.
No Excuses In a society where we are pounded by messages telling us to express and follow our feelings and desires, it was inevitable that we would use them as excuses. Have you ever said, thought or heard: “I donʼt feel like it.”? Sure you have. Itʼs normal to not want to get going sometimes. No-one looks forward to taking huge risks, or working really hard on a tricky piece of research, or documenting a long-winded process. Do you really think the explorer gets up in the morning after weeks of trekking over the bleakest and hardest terrain, having had no shower and munching on the same rations AGAIN, and thinks “whoopee, letʼs go discover something?” Iʼll bet heʼs driven to achieve his goals and that he has an off-day once in a while. Just as itʼs my guess is that the celebrated heart surgeon has an ”Oh, god, not another life saving operation to perform.. give me just five minutes more under the duvet…” feeling on the occasional morning. No matter how sexy your job is, you wonʼt always feel like it. Thatʼs because some times some things just arenʼt fun to do. Hereʼs the rub: whether you like it or not, you will have to do some notfun stuff too. Stop believing the feeling, put it to one side, and do the work. If you canʼt then you need a kick in the pants. Simple.
Feelings are alarm clocks. They wake you up so that you can take action.
NLP helps you to use your feelings to motivate yourself.
Open Mindedness You are unique. Just like everybody else. Before NLP, I spent rather a lot of my time avoiding people who were “odd” or “strange” and I didnʼt have very many friends as a result. I was judgemental, impatient and inflexible. With myself too. Then I hit on an amazing realization: “Everyone is odd”! Actually, it was my husband who woke me up to this fact and I am ever grateful to him for doing so. Life is easier, communication smoother, my expectations lower and my pleasure much much higher, with this in mind. Being open-minded sets us free. Celebrate your nerdiness, craziness, strangeness and oddity by opening your mind to the possibility that you were made that way for a jolly good reason. I donʼt look like Angelina Jolie because I am Jane Bredius. You are not like me because you are you. Me and You are different and we can dance together in our mutual strangeness. I will not try to change you. I trust that you understand that you cannot change me. As my step-mother always said: “life would be boring if we were all the same.” Open the windows and let some fresh air in. Vive la difference!
What’s my why?
OK, yes, my sex-life has improved post-NLP, but thatʼs not the passion which I had in mind to talk about here! Passion is an intense emotion compelling feeling, enthusiasm, or desire for something. • Itʼs what burns inside of us as kids and which drives mankind to discover and to keep on creating and connecting in the strange, wonderful ways that we do. • Itʼs what gets us out of bed in the morning and which stimulates us to make career decisions, choices and to push through limits and boundaries. • Itʼs what gives our lives color and itʼs what so many of us are missing....ummm.
If you have a job, have you ever asked yourself why you are doing it? If you are performing any action, why are you doing it? Itʼs a small question - WHY - but it offers big answers. Why is an important question and one to be used sparingly and in the right context. My “why” for NLP and PositivityNOW is that I am passionate about plugging people back into their own energy. Itʼs a kick! Whatʼs your why?
Quit worrying (or smoking or whatever else you are addicted to) In the whirly burly of busy-ness, itʼs easy to collect tasks and a todo list can grow exponentially with almost no encouragement. Instead of automatically worrying and flapping, remember that 80% of problems sort themselves out. The trick is to focus on the residual problem, the one which doesnʼt sort itself out. The “Extract of To-Do”, as I like to call it. In other words, the “real deal”. Giving it a more serious name does not mean that the “real deal” has to be heavy. Quite the contrary, celebrate the “real deal”, itʼs what makes your world turn. Itʼs your current raison dʼetre. Even if you donʼt like it, accept it.Taking responsibility for the “real deal” is an empowering step. Remember that “real deals” donʼt care whether you like them or not, they will keep coming back to bite you in the bum, until you do something. So get into action. An example: Iʼm not all that hot on administration and in the past I ignored it until it turned into an ugly mess. I hadnʼt marked it as the “real deal”. An ugly mess is difficult to clean up and hard to get motivated for. But I did both. Quit worrying about it. Chunk it. Begin anywhere. Break the “real deal” into bite sized portions and do it bit by bit. You can NLP any bad habit, even worry: admit it, own it, chunk it, do it.
My friend, who was undergoing chemotherapy for cancer, told herself this little story to keep herself from worrying: “How do you eat an elephant? One mouthful at a time.”
Real Relationships Armed with an NLP toolbox jam-packed with communication tools, and with your eyes and ears wide open and your brain set to receiving, you are set for communication success. Hereʼs another little NLP trick which helps you build real relationships. Itʼs a tiny little Metaprogram (or thinking style preference) which has a big impact. It involves ears again. Four of them. Every one of us commits communication errors, whether we want to or not. Based on the way we think, four traps exist which we can fall into. These traps ensnare us and make us react in odd ways, unless we wake up to them and stop it. Itʼs easy. A spot of self awareness does the job. Think about this scenario: You and me, weʼre in a car together and you are driving. We have to stop for a red traffic light. Because youʼre with me, we get talking and your attention is focussed on me (partly because by now you are a good NLPʼer and partly because of my sparkling personality and good looks!). In the middle of our deep conversation I utter a sentence. Before you read the sentence, prepare yourself to catch your first thought after reading it. This is important. Got it? Here it goes: “The lights are green.”
What did you think? _________________________________________________ Look at the back of this book to find out what this means!
Self Confidence If I had a Euro for every time people have told me that they are looking for more of this stuff then Iʼd be RICH! Self Confidence is not part of the syllabus at school, the place where quite a lot of us lose what little we had in the first place! I donʼt wish to knock schools, but instead Iʼd like to point the finger at us humans as a race: what are we doing? Self confidence is the most crucial ingredient in the recipe of success. It should be at the top of our to-do list when we raise kids and educate the minds of tomorrow! NLP offers some very powerful tools for building self confidence: 1) Firstly, self confidence is a nominalisation. Itʼs not a thing that you can buy (moreʼs the pity), itʼs something you do. Take responsibility for the process. This is a very important first step. 2) NLP is based on the presupposition that we have choice and that having choice is better than having none at all. If you find this bit hard to swallow, start by telling yourself that you believe that you have little self-confidence. Your brain will hear the difference and do the dirty work itself. Since you are only believing something, then your brain already knows that it has a choice! 3) Remember that so-called failure provides us with useful feedback! The next time you are inclined to knock yourself for making a mistake, stop it! Think about what you would do differently now that you have had the experience. See yourself doing the thing again and hear and feel what itʼs like when you do it right. This helps your brain to learn quickly and stops you from repeating errors. 4) The next time you make a mistake, celebrate it! Donʼt wait for it to fall in your lap! Get on with doing self confidence and Start NOW!
Targets Every year I bet that you set yourself some goals at work and at home and some you achieve and some you donʼt. Yada yada yada.
Ever wondered what stopped the not achieved goals from turning out?
what do you see, hear and feel when you experience success with this goal? This is high octane brain juice (see Juice)
You may have already noticed, but nothing happens by itself. OK, thatʼs not strictly true. What I mean is nothing that you want happens by itself.
If itʼs important to you, donʼt leave it up to chance. Take your responsibility and set yourself up for success! Literally.
is it good for you to achieve this goal? How do you know? How is it good for you? What will you gain? What will stop?
T-ime when are you going to achieve it? Day, hour, minute, second, please. Be realistic.
State your goal here:
_____________________________________________ Now go and ask yourself the NLP questions there
U-nder your own control can you do it by yourself or are you dependent on others? Is your goal dependent on other people changing or doing stuff that they are either not aware of or not prepared to do? Make sure itʼs under your influence, otherwise wave goodbye to your result.
P-ositively stated donʼt think of a pink elephant in blue slippers. Capiche? When we state goals negatively, we set our brain up to go and do what we donʼt want. State what you DO want, then youʼll be on track for success! Go for it, Tiger!
Understanding Itʼs already been said, but worth repeating: Love is understanding. The nature of true love is to understand others deeply and kindly. Once you understand someone, itʼs impossible not to love them. Understanding someone is not all that easy. Understanding is a long, ongoing, deep process of contemplation. It means that we donʼt give up when we donʼt understand. It means staying open, and keeping on looking and listening even when we think we understand. Itʼs constant contemplation, without judgement. Because we are so intent on “reading” other people, real understanding is difficult. The countless books and training courses on body language tell their own story. From an NLP perspective, itʼs so much simpler - and more loving - just to ask the question instead of assuming that you know the answer. Once you stop asking questions, you are doomed to ignorance. NLP brings us the tools to understand each other (and ourselves) and it leaves love in itʼs wake. No wonder that participants feel better about themselves and experience a closer connection to others, as a result of an NLP training course. Perhaps for the first time ever they experience understanding.
Vision One of the central questions in NLP is this: “What do you want?” This is not a question I had asked myself in the past. I was raised to accept what I got and to get on with what had to be done. I had no idea that options were mine to choose and, when I did, the world opened itself to me. Whereas life before was a plan of action (get it done), it has become a vision of my own design. • I can choose what to do, when, with whom and with what - and where. • I can take a chance, or I can cut my losses. • I donʼt have to do anything any more. I can, if I want to. Think about it, itʼs different and itʼs liberating.
Vision Checklist: 1) Ask yourself what you want. 2) Open your world to choice. 3) Rewrite your vision. 4) Live your life. 5) To the fullest.
Wake Up Call In game theory and economic theory, a zero-sum game is a mathematical representation of a situation in which a participant's gain or loss is exactly balanced by the losses or gains of the other participant(s). If the total gains of the participants are added up, and the total losses are subtracted, they will sum to zero. Cutting a cake is a zero-sum game, because taking a larger piece reduces the amount of cake available for others. A zero-sum game is also called a strictly competitive game. Someone will win and the other one will lose. Shit happens. BUT No-one is an island because we need each other. By engaging in Zero-Sum games we radically reduce the chances of cooperation and success. Your success too. Play at your own risk. I have concluded that we spend so much time trying to communicate with one another because other people are important to us. All those NLP tools you have paid for enable you to engage other people. Because you need them. To listen, to buy, to approve, to help. At work: share knowledge and resources. Remember that other people can make or break your result, so help them achieve theirs. At home: pull together as parents and offer your kids an united front, consistency and peace of mind. Just think about this:
From plant to bean to cup, exactly how many people were involved? You get it now? We need each other. Play nicely.
Who made your cup of coffee?
eXperimentation NLP is all about doing what works. It involves a fair bit of trial and error. You wonʼt know what works until you give it a shot, so you will be obliged to experiment. If you are worried about making mistakes then relax: youʼre going to make a ton of them! But hereʼs the thing: each “mistake” provides you with feedback to help you hone your efforts and reach your goal more quickly. Experimentation and daring are two exciting side effects of NLP. When you hear yourself telling yourself the story that you canʼt do something, then you need to challenge that story: • • • • •
who says that you canʼt? what would happen if you did it? what is “canʼt”? Is it a lack of skill, guts, or permission? what stops you from doing it? what would enable you to do it?
Ask yourself these NLP questions to set yourself free from your outdated stories. Avoid asking yourself “why” too much, because the answer will only provide a justification. Play, have fun, see what works, and how it works. There is so much to learn and do! Off you go, lab coats ON!
Be Yourself I donʼt know who else you could be, but being yourself is the finest gift you can give yourself. Sometimes we feel that we have to wear a mask, or masks. We cover ourselves up and keep our true face for ourselves. Often out of politeness, sometimes shyness and mostly out of the conviction that other people wonʼt like us if we reveal our true nature. The problem with this habit is that we lose a grip on who we are. In our drive to prove our self worth, we are not presenting ourselves, but a hollywood, toothpaste smile facsimile instead. How do you expect to keep that up? In any case, unless you are a werewolf with human-flesh-eating tendencies, the chances are that you are wrong about what you think other people might be thinking about you. Read that again. How about asking people what they think? Instead of negatively comparing yourself to others, ask other people to tell you what they think. My guess is that other peopleʼs feedback wonʼt be anywhere near as hard as the knocks you give yourself. Even if it is hard, remember that itʼs only an opinion. More critically, the question that you need to answer is: “what are you thinking about you?”
Would the real Jane please stand up?
Do what works: Look at what youʼve GOT instead of what you MISS.
Zwitched on! When buying a pair of sandals, I became aware of a giant poster on one wall of the shop I was in. In blaring letters, the poster screamed one word at me: “TRUST”. Together with a photo of a bunch of ladies drinking coffee and laughing, with shoe-shop bags beside them, I was invited to enter this world of “shoe trust” by purchasing the sandals that I was trying on. I went out to walk my dogs with my husband. Frank was fooling about, playing his (un)usual word-games which made me laugh, which caused me to call out to him: “Iʼm lovinʼ it...!” The words were no sooner out of my mouth when I realised that a huge McDonaldʼs poster was on display at a bus stop along our route. My student pulls her cardigan closer around her and looks at the window. I ask her if she is cold and walk to the window to close it to block out the cold draft which I have inferred is flowing through the open window. She hasnʼt uttered a word. This is subliminal messaging in action. Mostly we are not aware of it, but our job is to wake up to it. Marketeers, politicians, lawyers, doctors, friends, families - even your own brain - are all busy doshing out suggestions and you need to zwitch yourself on and think about which ones you want to react to. Watch out! Thereʼs another one...
The Four Ears (page 12)
Make friends with your right brain: here are a few suggestions: • make drawings of your problems. A lack of artistic skill is no excuse. • make mind maps to keep notes • listen to music, especially the baroque classics • take time to study things, flowers, birds, nature, without naming or categorizing. This exercise is about looking, seeing, feeling and hearing, not about knowing.
How did you answer? Thought
Consequence & Suggestion
“The light is Green”
You have difficulty in picking up nuances and people may find you blunt in your opinions. Remember that there are many shades of grey between black and white.
You probably take on a lot of work without having to be asked. Ask more questions to find out if all your actions are necessary.
“I donʼt need Jane to tell me that the light is green!”
You react to information because you suspect that other people think that you are stupid. They might just be trying to be helpful!
“Jane is impatient.”
You interpret facts to reveal a hallucination about how the other person is reacting. Ask questions before condemning others.
Watch out for this. Youʼre doing it!
If you enjoyed this little book and you would like to know more about PositivityNOW and NLP, please visit my site and make contact with me. There are plenty of opportunities to get to know one another: in a workshop, during an open evening, by mail or phone. " " " " www.positivitynow.nl (dutch) " " www.positivityatwork.nl (english)" " " " email@example.com (email) " " 0031 35 609 0194 (telephone) Thanks for joining me on this personal exploration of NLP. I wonder what you will discover? Whatever it is, have fun! With Positive Regards,
Jane The A-Z of NLP - what you get when you play with your mind. A free e-book from PositivityNOW. firstname.lastname@example.org