Thursday, 31 December 2009
It is thought by psychologists that staying quiet while seething inside can lead to chronic stress, depression, low self esteem and possibly physical illness. And yet it is considered impolite to let people know how we feel, to keep our thoughts and emotions hidden inside is what we are taught to do from a very early age. Whats the best way to get rid of these negative feelings?
Maybe we should count to 10, remove ourselves from the situation and take a few deep breaths. Thats one way that will help you to calm down; taking deep slow breaths can slow down your heart rate. So many of my clients have said that only helps for a while, that is until “those thoughts come back”.
There is also a train of thought that thinks its healthier to let is all out by shouting, screaming or even smashing things. A few years back there was a train of thought that one way to get rid of peoples anger was for them to hit things – this was usually a pillow. The angry person would take a bat or stick and repeatedly hit something whilst thinking of their anger.
There is even a place in San Diego (www.smashshack.com) whereby you can go and pay for the privilege of being able to smash things. Its proving so popular in the US that we in the UK will be able to try out this way of venting our spleen very soon.
Googles and a safety suit are provided (we must remember health and safety whilst being angry) and a padded room whereby people can then smash crockery and glasses etc; they can even bring their own stuff if they so wish.
Studies have found that these kinds of techniques can actually make people even more angry and aggressive than before. The more they practice being angry the better they get at it ................
Anger like all emotions is there for a specific reason and is a signal for us to take action possibly change something and communicate to others that something isn’t right.
The old fashioned English way of keeping a stiff upper lip may even be damaging for peoples career according to research done by Harvard. This project tracked the lives of more than 800 people for the past 44 years and found that those who dealt with their anger were more likely to be happy in their life and career and enjoy closer physical and emotional intimacy whereas those who suppressed their feelings were more likely to have disappointment work and person lives.
So how can we deal with anger in an appropriate way?
Exercise is one way as the exertion will reduce adrenalin and any aggression whilst giving you time to think and calm down.
Another way of helping people deal with aggression and anger is to ascertain their strategy, what is it that they are doing in their head that makes them feel this way and teach them how they can change the way they are feeling, responding to situations that will allow them to let go of any aggressive angry thoughts; in turn giving them the ability to decide what needs to change to enable them to improve their physical and emotional wellbeing.
Friday, 11 December 2009
They have no preconceived ideas as to how things work; if you ask them about the pictures they have in their head or the voices they hear – they will tell you. If you ask them to tell you about the feeling they have, they are very happy to explain. They can tell you about all these things in the smallest of details. They don’t want to tell you any details of their fears or worries and are extremely happy to work content free.
Many years ago my first young client was a girl of 7 whose big brother had let her watch the Exorcist whilst he was babysitting! If you haven’t seen the movie, there are scenes in it that I (who have seen many things and isn’t squeamish) don’t like very much so you can imagine how it could affect a young girl. When she came to see me she had stopped talking to anyone, wouldn’t eat very much and would only go to sleep if her mother cuddled her.
To her mothers surprise after just a few moments, she was able to speak; her mother said it was like magic. What did I do? I told her that I would take the fear away and lock it in my filing cabinet and proceeded to do just that. Her first words in weeks were “you wont let it out will you”.
She was fine until she got home and her father said “you’d better be careful it doesn’t come back”. Great thanks dad!
When mum brought her back to me the next week, she said its not the same fear and I showed her how she could shrink down the pictures in her mind. But she didn’t want to keep them in her head so she would put them into envelopes and post them to me. Writing on the outside “Do Not Open Fear Inside”.
Just a few months ago a mother brought her 12 year old son to see me a very quiet nervous looking boy, who just sat and looked at me. He didn’t want to go to school, and each morning when they arrived at the school gates he had a panic attack. Apparently this started at his previous school and mum changed schools for him as the teachers in his previous school said he was stupid and slow. This lovely young man had been labelled dyslexic and his parents were trying to find some way to help him learn so that he could pass exams and succeed in life.
He thought he was stupid and was worried that he wouldn’t be able to do any of the things that was needed; he had been to counsellors before and they hadn’t helped at all.
He didn’t think about school when he wasn’t there, got ready in the morning OK, got in the car and it was only at the gate that he became scared. He said he had a huge picture of his teacher (who he didn’t like cos she thought he was stupid too!) in his head and all he could think about was this women who didn’t like him. I showed him how he could shrink her and push the picture away, and they suddenly he laughed, there was a sparkle in his eyes. “Can I give her a donkeys head?” he asked. Sure I replied and he put her in his pocket.
“Can I do this with the other thoughts I have?” he asked.
I told him of course he could and he proceeded to sort out his thoughts. Till he came to a feeling he couldn’t budge and I showed him how to get rid of that, and change the voice in his head. Then we went on to look at spelling strategies .....
His mum was so pleased that he now goes to school easily, and is much happier apparently he is starting a “Worry Club” for others at his school so that he can help other children change their bad feelings; and he’s asking when can he do his NLP Practitioner training ..............
Please note that anyone working with young persons or vulnerable adults may need to have a CRB (Criminal Record Bureau) check; this is essential if you are working alone with the young person. In the absence of this check you will need a parent or guardian with you at all times. Contact the CRB call centre on 0870 90 90 844 for a form.
Friday, 27 November 2009
There are so many responses to those words. I love Christmas, always have. Buying presents for people I care for, looking forward to spending days with loved ones, friends coming over, visiting, cooking, entertaining ........... parties.
My mother hated Christmas – buying presents, having the family under her feet (her words), visiting, visitors, cooking etc etc etc.
Whereas I view Christmas as a time for being jolly, having fun with friends and family all she thought of was the trouble it put her too and how much work it brought her.
Christmas is a time where so many people feel lonely, depressed, worn out, stressed – far too much to do and far too little time or resources. Many people do not have the model family and there are step brothers, sisters, parents too. All this can change your view of this time, as some people being to think about the problems; especially when there are all those lovely seasonal movies on TV showing how wonderful Christmas with the family is making people believe just how wonderful everyone else is feeling....................
This is a time when so many of my clients turn to “false friends” to change the way they feel – alcohol, tobacco and drugs. Then there are the Christmas Parties! Each year I am astounded at the effect of the Christmas Spirit – instead of just a few drinks to become merry so many people seem hell bent on oblivion. I’m not just talking about “youngsters” but people of all ages, in their 30’s, 40’s, 50’s and beyond. Suddenly otherwise sane individuals feel compelled to make such utter fools of themselves.
Coming down with a bump in January! Feeling below par after over indulging in food, alcohol, cigarettes and far too many late nights.
Over the years I have taught my clients strategies, techniques, that help them to copy with this crazy time of year; and for those who go wild through the festive season and call me in January deciding they need to STOP the craziness and keep their new years resolutions its not long before they are back on track.
For now the Christmas Cards have been written and are ready to be sent, and I’m enjoying the Christmas preparations and looking forward to the holiday season.
Thursday, 10 September 2009
When we got home, he asked if he could come up to my office with me so that he could do his work. I sat at my computer answering emails, booking appointments in my diary and designing a seminar whilst he sat at another desk in my office with my notepad pc and practiced his alphabet; ever so often asking me how to spell something. The little boy who lives next door was calling to him across the fence and he replied “I can’t come and play I’m busy working with Tina”.
A childs imagination is wonderful. I remember Richard Bandler telling a story about finding toy soldiers in pot plants in his house where his son had created another universe with his toys.
Our imagination can be used for many things some of them just as wonderful as the games created by children at play; and sometimes our imagination creates bad feelings, fears and anxieties.
I spoke to a 16 year old girl the other day whose diet was extremely limited. She lived off bread, potatoes, chocolate (funny but chocolate always seems to be OK), diary produce (milk, cheese, butter), chicken and fish. She didn’t eat vegetables or fruit – she could eat tomato ketchup (thats another that seems to get through peoples filters), creamed tomato soup and orange juice.
Her GP sent her to a dietician who told her what she should be eating ..........
She knows what she should be eating, but she doesn’t want to. Ever since she was a very small child she has had a problem with her food. Apparently as a toddler she nearly choked on something and from here decided that certain foods should never be eaten. She wont eat anything with lumps for example, and the food that she does eat she chews for ages before swallowing – this means that each meal takes an age.
When I asked her if she had eaten any soft fruits, I was surprised to find out that apparently raspberries had huge pips which made them difficult to eat. I hadn’t noticed.
On looking for something that she would be happy to eat at the end of our session, I suggested grapes but apparently eating a grape was like eating a blister. YUCK I thought that would definitely put me off. I then discovered her strategy for avoiding food, each food had a disgusting association attached to it. Her imagination had run wild for years stopping her from eating many foods.
A lot of people problems are caused by what they are imagining in their head, and all they have to do is imagine something different to change their feelings. Ah yes but how do they do that you may wonder.
Well thats a story for another day ............
Monday, 31 August 2009
It is estimated that one in seven couples in the UK have difficulty conceiving, what does this mean? A fast number of these people have unexplained infertility, in other words there are no medical reasons why they haven’t conceived.
There are a vast number of potential causes that can hinder conception, ranging from physical to emotional and psychological barriers.
A diagnosis of infertility, whether explained or not, leaves the recipient of the diagnosis feeling disappointed and some feel there is no hope. More so if the diagnosis is unexplained. My clients tell me that if there was some medical explanation it would be easier to tackle than to be told that they have to relax and wait for nature to take its course.
Does this diagnosis mean the end of a dream? Or are there things that you can do to increase your fertility and to become a parent?
Many of my clients have been trying to become pregnant for many years, and have begun to wonder if they will ever have a family of their own. Some have spent thousands upon thousands of pounds on various medical treatments, drugs, IUI, GIFT and IVF without success. Some have waited to start their families only to discover that it is taking longer than anticipated to become pregnant.
Regardless as to their diagnosis they all found that the process of conceiving was highly emotional and stressful, many became depressed at the prospect of remaining childless.
Unfortunately, stress and depression can also reduce fertility levels. Stress and depression causes changes in the body’s biochemistry and upsets the body’s natural balance. Many of these women found themselves in a catch 22 situation; worried and anxious about not conceiving and then being told they had to relax.
Over ten years ago, just as I was beginning my studies of NLP and Hypnosis I discovered that one of my cousins was having difficulties conceiving. She had spent years having various tests and operations to improve her “chances” to conceive, these didn’t work and she was eventually told she would never conceive naturally and begun to think of IVF.
There was a problem here too, as she was afraid of some of the procedures and this was when I found out about her problems. She knew all about my studies and asked my advice. It was very clear from our discussions that the major blockage at that time was her fear of the process, and as we talked she began to tell me about other “silly worries” she had too. During our discussions we worked on the various issues that she voiced and she made the arrangements for the IVF cycle to begin. Only she never made those appointments as shortly after our meeting she became pregnant naturally.
Hypnosis can help increase fertility by reducing stress, relieving anxiety, lifting depression whilst enabling clients to deal with the many situations they face through this time. Also learning NLP and Hypnosis techniques allows them to take back in control of their lives.
Interestingly, I have found that by helping my clients deal with their limiting beliefs, fears and anxieties surrounding conception many women who had thought the only way they would conceive was through medical assistance, conceived naturally just like my cousin.
Tuesday, 28 July 2009
Did you know a five year old laughs on average 400 times per day, whereas an
adult laughs around 15 times per day?
What happens as we grow into adulthood?
How is it that so many adults loose the ability to have that inner feeling of happiness children feel? Remember the excitement you felt as a child? My grandson gets so excited when he hears the song played by the ice cream van. Or maybe the excitement you felt just before your birthday, waking up an "the day" looking out for the postman. How wonderful it felt on the last day of school, just before the summer break - all those weeks ahead just playing and having fun.
How can you tap into those feelings of happiness?
Adulthood brings many responsibilities and at the same time gives us freedom. freedom to choose how we want to live. So how is it that so many adults say they are unhappy? Stressed? So many people are taking prescribed medications for depression, anxiety, panic attacks and sleeping problems, how can we find a way back to that those feeling of happiness we had.
The way we think creates how we feel.
Feelings can't just happen, we need to create them and we do this with our thoughts.
My clients are often amazed that by identifying the thought process that creates them to feel depressed, anxious, fearful; and then charging this their feelings charge. By changing your thoughts you change your emotions. We can change the way that we perceive situations and this will help us to achieve a better frame of mind
I remember on my NLP Practitioner course feeling so amazed that I could actually control the way that I responded to things could be changed by using the principles and techniques of NLP. I had been given the users manual to my brain.
What is it that adults do of have forgotten to do?
Our thoughts are creative, most adults focus on the negative, the “what ifs” than focussing on what they can do. Children take each moment, enjoying the simplest of pleasures - enjoying he people around them, the moment.
By taking control of your neurology, you thoughts, you too can get rid of any negativity and begin to create a happier more fulfilling life.
Wednesday, 8 July 2009
Maxwell Maltz was a highly regarded plastic surgeon who noticed that with the surgery that he did some people were completely transformed. Changing their bodies changed their personality. Once they had the plastic surgery they became the person they wanted to be, whilst others, no matter how much surgery they had never seemed to “find their true selves”. No matter how much they reconstructed their physical image it was not necessarily the key to their happiness, something else was needed.
Once this something else was reconstructed the person changed, inside. He said it was as if personality had a face, and this non physical face was the key to personality changes. He believed self image is the key to human personality, change the self image and you change the personality and behaviour. Self image defines what you can and cannot do, so if you expand your self-image you expand the area of possibility.
Successful men and women have for years used mental pictures and rehearsal; practice to achieve success. For example Napoleon practiced his soldiering in his imagination for many years before he went on to fight any battles. Positive visualisation can change your self image; Maxwell Maltz believed before you can change you must see yourself in the new role.
Using positive visualisation to picture the desired result literally forces you into positive thinking. This exercise can help you achieve your best possible self; by forming a picture in your imagination of the self you want to be and see yourself in the new role.
In San Francisco two psychologists with the Veterans Administration reported on an experiment; whereby mental patients were asked to answer questions as if they were a typical well adjusted person. In order to answer the questions as a typical well adjusted person would answer they had to imagine how a typical well adjusted person would act. They had to imagine themselves in the role of a well adjusted person and this in itself was enough to cause them to begin acting as ……………. And feeling like ……………………
Tuesday, 7 July 2009
People complain about;
“running out of time”
“theres never enough time”
“I need more time”
For years people look for more time then just when they think they will have the time they crave suddenly they have time on their hands .............
Sitting on the plan having forgotten to pack my iPod, my entertainment system not working and of course due to that wonderful earthy law; there were actually a few movies I wanted to see! Fidgeting in my seat, checking my watch for the umpteenth time - I suddenly realised I had lost control of time. Each minute dragged by like an hour.
Now I know that every single one of you has gone through experiences of time distortion like this. Waiting in a queue at the bank the person in front of you hands over a bag of coins and they begin to count them. Time seems to stand still you feel as if you have been waiting for hours, look at your watch and only a few moments have gone by.
And times when you are having so much fun, those times you want to hold onto forever, just fly by. And when you have been driving on the motorway at speed when you pull off and slow down it feels as f you are crawling along so very slowly when you are actually moving at 40 mph.
Time cant change just your perception changes depending on the state you are in.
Within NLP one of the most basic skills we learn is how to control our state. One of the basic presuppositions being that we have being that we have all the resources within us.
As well as learning how the way that we perceive something depends on the frame in which we place it.
So how to get back control of time.
I reviewed my state. It wasn’t a useful one focussing on the entertainment system, moaning to myself about how there was nothing to do, how uncomfortable I was, tired, fed up ....................
The first thing I changed was my state. I thought about my destination. I was flying to Orlando to be a support trainer for Richard Bandler and John La Valle’s summer program. I also had some me time planned for retail therapy, relaxing in the sun and chilling with friends.
I made some plans thinking about what was to come. Ensuring my thoughts were full of all the fabulous things I wanted to do. Big bright colourful plans including all representational systems, sounds of music, voices; creating wonderful feelings of anticipation; fragrances and tastes of local delicacies all filled my mind.
OK now my state was different.
Then I focussed on other times I had flown and how amazed I was at just how quickly I arrived at my destination.
Feeling much more in control I decided to close my eyes for a moment and then we were coming in to land.
How time had flown.
Thursday, 28 May 2009
There’s been a lot of press coverage over the past few months with Jade Goody dying from Cancer, Patrick Swayze and also Farah Fawcett too now also have terminal cancer.
What constitutes good health and how do we ensure that we are healthy and if we do get sick how do we heal ourselves.
Websters Dictionary defines health as “the condition of being sound in body, mind or spirit; especially the state of being free from physical disease.....”
Medical science has provided us with various cures for illnesses that at one time were incurable; and throughout the history of medical research we have also discovered factors such as the placebo effect. People being given what was probably basically sugar pills and being told that they were a super drug that would heal them and they heal. Against all odds their disease goes away.
Various alternative health practitioners suggest that to be healthy we need to maintain the harmony between the body and mind and between ourselves and the world that we inhabit. To create a total ecology may necessitate an adjustment in other parts of our lives to stay balanced.
Health and healing often involve addressing several levels of change with beliefs being one of the most important and influential levels. If someone doesn’t believe that they will heal or become well that person can become apathetic and not take full advantage of the resources that are available to them. Whilst as demonstrated with the placebo effect if a person believes that something will help them they activate many conscious processes that contribute to their wellness.
Bernie Siegel found that those people given the life challenging diagnosis who decided there was nothing for them to do (even though their cancer may have been treatable) died. Whereby those who decided that there were too many things they were yet to do in their lives, those who began to make plans about what there were to do next with their lives – lived.
Saturday, 25 April 2009
Prior to setting up my own businesses I worked in Human Resources sector, in Golf Club Management and as a Police Officer in Londons Metropolitan Police Force. It was as a Police Officer working in Londons East End that I became aware of a skill that was vital to my success, and safety. When I realised that I had to become a master of influence no matter what it took!
This skill has transferred over into every aspect of my life and has been utilised in each career move and interaction. When I did my NLP Practitioner over 10 years ago I was able to indentify how I managed to influence and also to improve on those skills.
Some of you may now be thinking I knew NLP was manipulative.
Yet aren’t we trying to influence, manipulate, with each of our communications?
• When meeting people for the first time, your goal is to get them to like you isn’t it?
• When applying for a job don’t you want to get them to employ you over everyone else?
• As parents aren’t we teaching our children good values so that they won’t be encouraged by negative influences they may be exposed to?
• As Coaches and Practitioners isn’t the goal to help your client achieve their best?
The ability to influence is the key whether you are selling an idea to your friends or a project to one of your clients.
How do we improve our skills to influence?
I have noticed over the years that age old expression that we get what we focus on or in the words of Henry Ford “If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right”;is actually right.
So the first thing to do to improve your skills to influence is to believe that you can. Once you have this belief then you will find a way, and your actions will lead to your success.
You believed you could, then you planned how, you took action confident of the result that you would get. Maybe you didn’t get their straight away, but that was OK because you knew you would so you continued adjusting using the information you gleaned from those first mistakes until you succeeded.
The person who believes in themselves is most likely to take action, and is most likely to develop the skills needed to get the result that they want.
Tuesday, 31 March 2009
Its said the most powerful thing you can give a child is your attention and in todays society there is something about having someone focus their full attention on you. The next time you are talking to someone give them your full attention and notice the difference in their response.
Some people “listen” whilst waiting for their turn to speak, thinking about what they will say in response, but when you give your full attention to the other person its different. Its also much easier to notice their words, tonality, gestures, eye movements when your full attention is on the other person. I also find that by entering my communicating state, giving my full attention, connecting with the other person making the whole process of rapport, pacing and then leading the communication to a successful conclusion much easier.
When children have your full attention, they too are much easier to influence and far better behaved. Just taking a few minutes to give your full attention and really listen can give you so much more in return ......................
Monday, 23 March 2009
The human mind is a miracle, there are intricate webs of light inside your mind that shape who you are and your understanding of the world. All through our lives the brain works to make sense of our experiences, thoughts, feelings, memories and ideas. It does so much and yet so much of the way our mind works remains a mystery.
It is said our mind is the greatest computer capable of much more than we realise, and so much more than we ask of it.
What happens when we think? Where do thoughts come from?
My brain is not the same as it was 10 or 20 years ago. There is an ongoing process of change that begins from conception from the very beginning of life and continues throughout your life time.
The brain of a foetus produces twice as many nerve cells as it will need and the excess cells dissolve through pregnancy. After the birth babys brain begin creating neural pathways – making connections that enable baby to see, hear, smell, think and learn. As baby begins to experience his/her world the programming begins. With each new experience the brain begins to adjust and create new connections.
During adolescence there are many many more changes as the cells in the frontal lobe (where we process emotions, judgements & impulses) grows and just before puberty too! This continues well into our early 20’s and probably explains all those mood swings teenagers have as they are literally changing their minds.
In a study whereby a group of adults and teenagers were asked to identify an emotion from photographs of people with various facial expressions. The adults did well but many of the teenagers got it wrong. The participants brains were scanned whilst they took the test. The teenagers used a different area of their brains, they used the amygdala – the areas of the bran used to access raw emotions and “gut” instinct whereas the adults used their frontal lobes and were better able to identify the emotions shown.
As parents of teenagers you may wonder why at times it appears that your teenage son or daughter just doesn’t comprehend what you saying, its almost as if you are talking to Rainman at these times it may help you to think of the changes going on in their minds.
Tuesday, 10 February 2009
Immunologist, Mr Michael Levi, says an allergy is like a phobia of the immune system. In the 1950s Dr Levi won the WHA award for his research, after many years studying the immune system he says that when a person develops an allergy, its because the immune system has in essence formed a kind of phobic response to that particular substance. Assuming that something that is harmless (ie pollen) is harmful and that the allergic response is in fact the immune system going into panic.
Like a phobia an allergy is a conditioned response, research has shown that allergies can be conditioned in guinea pigs using a procedure similar to that used by Pavlov when he was working with his doges. After a while all the guinea pigs had an allergic reaction installed within them to a perfectly harmless substance.
Following on from Dr Levi’s suggestion that an allergy was like a phobia, Robert Dilts reviewed the fast phobia cure and created a technique has some similarities to the fast phobia cure.
As hay fever season is just a few months away I thought I’d post this technique for you to experiment with.
1. First you access the allergic state, associating into the experience so that you get some of the discomfort associated with the allergy. Once in this state explore what sub-modalities intensify and de-intensify the reaction.
2. Establish a dissociated state. When doing this I ask my client to close their eyes and imagine a glass shield between yourself and the substance that has triggered the allergic response. Floating up and out of that response, watching yourself as if on a TV screen ........... When you have the dissociated state anchor it.
3. Establish a desired state – how do they want to be respond around the substance. Anchor.
4. If there has ever been a time when they have been able to be near the substance comfortably, access that state and anchor – stack onto the other positive anchor.
5. Have person imagine being near substance whilst you fire off positive anchors.
6. Test by bringing a small amount (initially) of substance and fire off positive anchors.
Friday, 6 February 2009
The question I am asked most frequently usually begins with, “I have a client with x and I have tried y and it didn’t work, I don’t know what to do now, I’ve tried the “name of technique” and the client is just stuck, what do you suggest my next move is!?”
Frequently, my first reply is based on something I learned during my Practitioner and Master Practitioner courses, Richard Bandler said: “there is no such thing as a resistant client”.
As NLP Practitioners we all know that our state drives our success. When you become stuck, consider checking that you have the most beneficial state to work with your client. Is your inner dialogue yelling “Its not working, its not working”, or something equally unhelpful. Are you making pictures of failed outcomes, or allowing yourself to sink into a feeling of despair or panic? Remember, “go there first, get your own state under control”.
Now, have you really heard what your client said?
Do you know what they want, what is their desired state, what will be different as a result of achieving this desired state?
Does your client understand what is being asked of them?
Whilst viewing sessions conducted by newly qualified practitioners I have witnessed a complete lack of understanding between Practitioner and client; when the practitioner says something like “I’m just going to anchor that for you”, are you surprised that your client wonders if they’re seeing your for therapy or about to embark on a cruise? Keep your explanations simple.
These are just a few pointers that may help, should you find yourself wondering, “what do I do now?”
Sunday, 1 February 2009
"Take a look at this clip of Bob Newhart from You Tube, it really made me laugh.
When my laughter had subsided, I reflected on the number therapists out there who believe they can offer 'a cure for all problems', and are determined to use a particular technique, whether it is working or not. I do hope, unlike Bob, they eventually 'make change' for their clients, or at the very least have a box and a deep hole handy!"