There is a lot propagated in the personal development field about positive thinking. This article is about how dangerous taking a simplistic idea of positive thinking can be, how you can actually use the concept and some practical application for restructuring the basis of your entire reality.
Thinking Happy Thoughts
Some people in the personal development industry seem to push the idea of thinking good thoughts to the exclusion of whatever else might be going on in your life. This could be a fast route to suppressing all sorts of emotions and could be exceptionally dangerous.
Here is an example of this warped logic that I see quite often. A typical presupposition used in NLP is,
“There is no failure only feedback.”
A CEO coaching client of mine once said something like, “If a company I am running goes bankrupt and we end up laying people off and making them redundant I am fairly sure I will get lynched if I spoke to them about the feedback I had just received about running companies. Both in their eyes…and in mine in these circumstances failure exists.” And I agree with him.
I have seen a number of people replace the word failure with the word feedback. The trouble with this approach is that all they have done is switch the labels without dealing with what the word represents. So now they say feedback but they still mean failure.
Reality is only in YOUR Head
In a gross oversimplification I would say that the words that you use are just labels for the things that you construct in your head. Imagine the power you have if you were to replace the feelings you associate with the labels you habitually use.
Let me take this a little further and suggest that you create your reality. Don’t worry I am not going all Laa Laa Land. What I mean is that you put meaning on the things and events around you. You probably don’t have many feelings about doors but I have a friend who was once looked in a room with a violent criminal and was luck to survive. She encoded some meaning to locked doors to the point where she can get seriously freaked out if all the doors in the room she is in are closed. She has encoded some really bad meaning to closed doors.
That was a very big and obvious example but we do this for most things and it is completely outside of our conscious awareness. Have you noticed how good you feel when you suddenly hear one of your favourite songs on the radio? How irrational is that bearing in mind you probably have a recording that you can listen to any time you like?
Change your mind with NLP Applications
So what if it were possible to learn a set of tools where you could change all the associations that you have? Here are a few ideas:
- If you are dieting, you could feel good about good food and feel bad about foods you don’t want to eat.
- If there are certain situations where you lose confidence, public speaking for a typical example, you could take away that association and replace it with one where the more you think about it the more you get excited about doing it.
- You could associate your usual failure criteria with a feeling that means you will learn from your mistakes and move on.
- You might find the feelings you associate to learning fast, accurately and confidently and associate them to a subject you are currently struggling with.
- A more specific example might be that you associate sitting down at your place of work with feeling of excitement, being open to opportunity and motivated to do great things. Just how much better would your work days go if you had those associations?
But let me make this a little spectacular. Once you understand how these filters work you could start applying them to other people. How cool would it be if you could do all the things we were suggesting but with someone else?
And for one last switch, remember we started this talking about separating the label from the association and then attaching the label to more useful associations. Well what if those labels could be pulled off and reattached conversationally and outside of people’s conscious awareness?
If I go back to my last example. Imagine you managed a team of people. How much better would their work days go if they also all associated with sitting down to work with feeling so of being empowered, looking for opportunity and motivated to do great things?
This is what my NLP Practitioner Course is about and is a little beyond this typical positive thinking concept.
Understanding the filters you use to create your reality and how you can manipulate them to your best advantage. This doesn’t mean that you can magically reinvent your world, it just means you can better chose how you feel about things and what meaning you give them. If you understand how this works on you then you can use the same with other people.
Click through and find out more about the course when you click on the picture below: