I Know You Better Than You Think

You’re an open-minded and genuine person. You’ve had difficulties in your life but on the whole you’re a fighter and you always get through them.

You’re intrinsically honest and you try to be a good friend to those people that you value highly. When you have strong gut instincts they are nearly always right, although occasionally you do override them and wish you hadn’t afterwards.

That can lead you to being tough on yourself which is something that you tend to do anyway. In fact, you say things to yourself that you’d never dream of saying to your loved ones and justify it because you want to have high personal standards. All in all you’re a good person even if from time to time you can forget that and get down on yourself.

Does that sound like you? I’m betting it does. If not all of it, the vast majority.

Why do you think that is? Am I a mind reader and a Life Coach, or did I get lucky or have I just been stalking you for the last couple of months?

Well I’m definitely not a mind reader because if I was, I’d have known the repercussions of telling my wife to pull herself together at the wrong time of the month.

I’m not particularly lucky either as anybody that has been in any lottery syndicate with me will testify, and I stopped stalking years ago when that new law came out.

So it must be something else.

There is a language model used in NLP called the Milton Model of language.

It was developed by Bandler and Grinder after spending hundreds of hours modeling Milton H Erickson the brilliant psychotherapist and clinical hypnotherapist.

Prior to Erickson most hypnotherapists used a command approach that involved an induction followed by an instruction to the subject  in trance to stop smoking, lose weight or get a grip on themselves, depending on their particular circumstances. This approach could work, but it was hit and miss at best.

Erickson’s approach differed substantially in so much as he seldom told clients to do anything directly connected with their issue.

He would talk in metaphor a lot of the time, bypassing the conscious critical faculty and allowing his clients unconscious mind to extrapolate its own meaning at leisure.

On top of that, he would be artfully vague with his use of words. He would construct sentences that literally meant little, but could be construed to mean whatever the recipient wanted them to mean. You know, a bit like a politician might.

You may possibly have smiled at that last bit about politicians thinking I was being flippant, but I wasn’t, because that is EXACTLY what politicians do a lot of the time.

They, or more likely their speech writers, are often masters of artfully vague language as well as every other advanced language pattern known to man.

They can knock out a 20 minute speech that says 100 different things to 100 different people. It’s a highly crafted skill that can earn you vast wads of cash if you get really good at it.

People who write horoscopes use the same language patterns too.  I’m not going to get into the relative merits of astrology, because quite honestly I don’t know enough about it, but make no mistake; they use tricks of writing to get their message over. You can decide for yourself the motive for that.

What is the value in knowing this you may be wondering? Other than for stopping conniving politicians from pulling copious amount of wool over your eyes, I guess like a lot of things, it’s as useful or useless as you want to make it.

My advice for what it’s worth, would be to not always take words at face value. It’s easy to jump to conclusions and put meaning on to things that may not be there and it’s easy to allow others to do the same to us by being vague and unspecific, even about things that are important to us.

Look past the obvious and ask yourself from time to time “Am I seeing what I want/expect to see, or am I seeing what is actually there?”