This week I’m going to keep it short as I’m busy preparing for the NLP Conference which starts on Friday. Thinking about the Conference and looking at the programme reminded me of the value of learning as a way to boost your self-esteem.
This makes learning another form of self-care. This is boosted further when you learn with others. The social element creates a positive affect and a sense of belonging. When the learning is a little challenging you also get the additional benefit of feelings of accomplishment and success.
We recently completed an NLP Practitioner Training spread over several months. The students really bonded and supported each other. On the evaluation days some of the students felt anxious. After the results were announced the feelings of success were even greater.
Have you ever had that experience?
Take a moment to review what learning opportunities you have given yourself recently.
You could choose to learn a new hobby, learn a language or learn a practical skill. What about starting some academic studies? You could even start a journey of self-discovery such as NLP Practitioner or beyond.
Some of our new students recorded some reflections on their experience. Click the link to find out more.
Next week I’ll be at the NLP Conference so will get back to you the week after.
This week someone asked me to explain the benefits of NLP to them and I realised this is something I’ve not written about recently. It made sense to me to give you a little background into my personal angle on this.
Several years ago I studied for an MSc in Applied Positive Psychology and for my dissertation I decided to research the benefits of NLP. In my study I was interested to find out if there was any evidence to support my hypotheses, paraphrased here as:
“NLP can be used to improve self-esteem and well-being”
As part of my study Joe and I facilitated a one day workshop with over sixty participants and a dozen of our NLP Master Practitioner Graduates assisting with the group work. During the day Joe and I taught some principles of NLP and guided the group through three NLP change work processes.
I collected data from already existing psychology questionnaires that measured self-esteemand well-being. The measures were taken before the workshop, at the end of the day and six weeks later. There was also another group of a similar size who did not take part in the workshop who acted as a control group. I measured their self-esteem and well-being during the same time frame (they got to do the workshop after the study had been completed).
The results were very pleasing demonstrating statistically significant evidence that NLP does improve self-esteem and well-being. I was not really surprised as I have been using these techniques myself in self-care, in my private practice with clients and teaching to my students for years. Time and time again I see people having excellent results.
When I work with people in my private practice I often encourage them to consider taking NLP Practitioner training as part of their journey. By taking the training my clients are learning how to self-coach when issues come up, they often experience a transformation in their mindset and report feeling greater control in their lives.
Here is a comment from a recent student about a particular technique and NLP in general:
“In all the years of therapy etc I’ve never noticed a shift like this, so it’s a fantastic technique and I really want to be able to use this and my NLP skills to be able to help others who have been through similar experiences to me. Just wanted to share that with you and thank you for all your help.”
If you want to find out more about my research you will find lots of information on the website including my full dissertation and the journal article published later. I also have a free audio download recorded at the research workshop that includes two of the processes covered. Here is the link:
As I may mentioned in an earlier blog I have reached the short list for the Research Award at the NLP Awardsin May. This event is being hosted at the NLP Conferencewhere we will also have a trade stand.
For those of you ready to start your NLP journey you can join us for our NLP Taster Day: NLP101. We have a token charge of just £24.95 for the day which is also day one of the fully ANLP Accredited Practitioner.
For full details of our next NLP Practitioner Training or to book onto a taster day contact me direct via Contact Us.
How can you manage your inner critic with self-care?
Last week I began sharing with you my thoughts about how you (and probably everyone else) has an inner critic. Before moving forward I would like to remind you that you will also have an inner champion, are you listening to that part of yourself too?
Both of these internalised inner voices are parts of you that have taken on a role. Both were developed unconsciously during your developmental phase and both emerged for a good reason.
As a side note, the type of inner voice I am commenting on is part of healthy normal development. There are people who have issues with internalised voices as a mental health issue. If you have any voices urging self-harm or violent behaviour please seek support and help from an appropriate qualified professional.
The focus today is on managing the inner critic. Last week I gave you some tips about acknowledging and evaluating the messages from the inner critic.
If your inner critic is particularly loud write down the script. By writing it down you will be able to get some distance and perspective.
Now write down what you think the positive intention is behind the script.
Definition: Positive intention is a term used in NLP to mean the motivation behind a thought, feeling or behaviour. The presupposition in NLP is that your unconscious is responsible for your patterns of thinking and behaving.
Your unconscious has a positive drive and is trying to protect you the best it can. Sometimes it has not enough or faulty information and so develops patterns that appear negative. Here is an example that illustrates what I mean.
An adult has a tendency to want to please others and say “yes” when they would really rather say “no”.
This pattern could have emerged for a variety of reasons, one could be that in childhood this person experienced disapproval from parental figures for saying “no”. Using child logic they developed a belief that the only way to be loved and approved of was to please others. This belief is held unconsciously and yet runs the adult’s responses.
Whenever this adult considers saying “no” to others or pleasing themselves the inner critic replays a version of those early messages. You may or may not consciously hear them however the emotions created are felt.
If this person continues to say “no” or please themselves their inner critic will continue commenting perhaps triggering feelings of guilt and low self-worth.
If the person suppresses their desire to say “no” or please themselves they may get a sense of relief coupled with other feelings such as low self-worth and unhappiness.
This has created a double bind, damned if you do damned if you don’t. Is this feeling familiar?
Now to return to my suggestion of writing down the script of the inner critic, as you review your own scripts consider “who was the author?”
The chances are the author will have been parental figures who in most cases had good intentions. By writing down your script you may gain some new insights that allow you to make changes.
Insights can be very powerful however sometimes insights are not enough. Have you ever had the experience of understanding something logically but hanging on to it emotionally?
This is a really common experience and this is where NLP can help you. There are many techniques in NLP that can help you re-write your script and become the author of your own life.
Here is a link to a free download which includes a technique called “Changing Beliefs”. The recording is taken from a workshop delivered as part of my NLP Research Dissertation into NLP as a way of improving Self-esteem and Well-being.
Next week I will share some ways of changing the sub-modalities of your inner critic to reduce the impact and perhaps transform your experience.
I am pleased to share with you that I have been nominated for the Research Award at the NLP Awards in London this May.
This week I would like to start a new series of discussions on self-care beginning with an introduction. Over the next few weeks I will expand on this theme.
What is self-care?
My definition of self-care is the operationalisation of healthy self-esteem. Healthy self-esteem is where you recognise your own value and worth as a human being and crucially also recognise the value and worth of others.
When you recognise your own worth and value you look after yourself on all levels, physically, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually. You ensure that you remain healthy in relationships including intimate, family, friends, colleagues and even with chance encounters.
I will share my thoughts and include some ideas about how to develop your personal practice of self-care more fully. I welcome interaction and discussion so will be setting up a forum for discussion (more details coming soon).
Self-disclaimer: I am a work in progress myself. Most of us are, no matter how much personal development you have. When I self-assess I estimate that 90% of time I am in a healthy place particularly however there are some areas still requiring some attention.
I will be using this series myself to continue my journey.
Will you join me?
Next week we will begin the journey with some self-assessment and a place to start making changes.