WRITTEN BY RYAN JACKSON
Entrepreneurs have a lot to contend with – in addition to developing productive and profitable businesses.
How will it feel, to have techniques, tools and ways of thinking that alleviate stress and help you to overcome your daily challenges?
NLP will help…
Neurolinguistic Programming – NLP – is toolkit for a mode of thinking, feeling and behaving that will supercharge your personal life and your professional business. It combines aspects of the mind and body connectedness – how our thoughts and feelings affect what we do; it looks at our speech, our thoughts, and our thinking patterns and behaviours. It enables us to make subtle – but significant – changes, to get us better results.
The early developers of NLP observed and scrutinised the thinking, speech and behaviour of experts in a range of fields – all people who excelled in what they did. Then they analysed what they had seen and extracted the ‘difference that made the difference’ – so other people could replicate their success. The idea is that if they can do it – so can we; once we know the tricks of the trade – or the things that come naturally to them, that we can learn to do.
NLP is used in a range of areas: personal development, business, education, therapy, health, marketing, sales. Courses, books, coaches and training abound.
Here are some techniques you will find useful:
Having Rapport with People
As an entrepreneur, developing rapport with contacts and building good relationships helps in both your personal and your business world. How do you do this?
If we can show that we’re similar to our contact, client or friend – this really works, because people like people who seem to be like themselves.
Match and mirror people – subtly reflect their posture, gestures, movement and body language – even copy their rate of breathing. This all helps to build rapport.
Match their pace of speech. If they talk slowly, make your speech slower, too. Or if their speech is fast, speak rapidly, too.
Notice their use of words and phrases – and aim to talk in the same or similar language. People have a preference for phraseology about a particular sense, because that’s how they perceive the. Some people use lots of physical or ‘feeling’ words: “I was moved… Let’s throw some ideas in… I love… I feel…” For some, it all “sounds good… I’ve heard… Listen!” Other people see the world in a very visual way: “Look! … My vision is… I can just picture that…” While other people are very analytical, using phrases and words like “That’s not my policy… I need to process that idea…”.
If you can be flexible in your posture, language and tone in matching and mirroring, you will be able to connect with anybody, and build a positive relationship.
Goal Setting for Motivation
Identify a goal you have – in life or business.
How do you think of that goal?
Do you feel it, hear it and see it with your own senses, as if you’re experiencing it happening now, around you? (Subjective, and ‘associated’)
Or, do you feel distant and detached from the emotions and action – as if you’re watching yourself as a character on TV? (Objective, and ‘disassociated’)
Imagine that you’ve achieved your goal. Experience that, with all your senses as if it’s happening to you now (associated). How do you feel? What sounds do you hear? What can you see? Can you even smell or taste things?
Fully experience that multi-sensory success – to make your vision, goal and intentions really compelling.
Then, dissociate from that. Detach, and imagine you’re watching yourself on TV, successful.
Most people experience stressful situations – especially when running your own business. But it’s how you handle it that counts. Some people give themselves (or others) a hard time – using negative language, and basically, being their own worst critic.
The more you tell yourself “I’m stressed… I’ve got this problem…” the more you get yourself mired deeper down into the same problem-thinking. Instead, focus on solutions and positive thoughts, like: “I’m sure I will find a way out of this.,, What will make this better?.., I’ll do it.’
If you tend to generalise things negatively – “It’s all bad – I can’t do anything right!” – recognise what you’re doing and change it around. Even if you have to work your way up there: “That didn’t go so well, but I’ve done great work before – and I’ll do it again.”
If you have a negative narrative going on in your own mind, an internal voice nagging or criticising you, you can always switch the sound down to silent. Or make the voice itself seem so laughable – like a cartoon or comedy character – that you can’t take what it’s saying seriously. It works – try it!
This is just a tiny sample of techniques in NLP. If it’s whetted your appetite for more, learn about other things you can do to accelerate your success with NLP – by reading a book, watching some videos, contacting a trainer or coach, and going on a workshop or course!
Ryan Jackson is a serial entrepreneur and success coach, running numerous businesses in the UK and abroad. Ryan is passionate about inspiring people to use personal development, to be the best versions of themselves.