In all of the training I have done to improve myself as a practitioner, learning about NLP meta-models has been some of my favorite.
At its simplest, it looks at the way people use language to describe the world. Often by examining the way people talk we can identify the beliefs causing distress.
Here is a simple example. Recently one of my clients “Debbie” said, “Everyone at work hates me.” My follow up question was, “Really, everyone?”
It is possible but highly unlikely that everyone at work hates Debbie. But if she walks into the office every morning believing that everyone hates her then she will be constantly on the defensive and prepared for attack.
When I ask, “Really, everyone?” she replied, “Well, no, not everyone.” By using the correct language to describe what was truly going on we were able to find our way to the real problem and address it.
You Are Not Your Emotions
One of the most common mistakes we make with our language is turning an experience into our identity.
The first time I was aware of this was in an email exchange with Dan Cleary where we were setting up a time for us to do a podcast interview. Something came up and I had to reschedule the interview. I sent Dan a note saying, “I am sorry I can’t do the interview as planned. We need to reschedule…”
You are not sorry. You might want to apologize for something. You might feel bad about changing the time. When you say ‘I’m sorry’ you are making a statement about who you are, not what you feel.
I know it might feel like a small, pedantic thing to change “I am sad” to “I feel sad” but he was right. These statements are not true: I am sad; I am angry; I am overwhelmed.
When I say “I am” I am making a statement about my natural, unchanged state of being. When I say “I feel sad,” I am making a statement about what I am experiencing. Because it is only what I am experiencing I am able to change it something better.
When “I am sad” I am not in control. It is my state. When “I feel sad,” I have the opportunity to change because it is an experience I am describing.
Moving From Being An Emotion To Feeling An Emotion
I know this feels like a minor point, but it makes a huge difference in our ability to tap effectively. It gives us hope that we can change and it helps us to see the issue more clearly.
Here is a simple tapping script you can use to help look at this in a new way. Sadness is my example here, but it can be used for any emotion.
It is alright to feel sad…It is really easy to say that I am sad…But I am not sad…Sadness is an emotion I am experiencing right now…It is not who I am…My emotions aren’t who I am…My emotions are information which helps me to understand what I am experiencing…My emotions are a state that can and will change…I don’t need to run away from my emotions…My emotions aren’t the enemy…I don’t need to fight my emotions…They are what I am feeling right now…And I am now choosing to work to a new and better emotional state.
Add Other NLP Tools To Your Tapping
The NLP training I did was one of the most useful trainings I have done. If you don’t want to spent the time and money doing a full NLP training I have created a short audio series where I teach you all of my favorite pieces of NLP and how you can add them to your tapping.
You can find the audios in the Expert Tapping Resources on-line store.