Today’s NLP Story
Perry Marshall wrote the book on Google Search when most others could barely spell SEO. In fact, Google hired him to explain it to them. So obviously, a very smart guy.
Perry was also a good friend of Tom Hoobyar, my co-author on “NLP: The Essential Guide”. This story isn’t from the book, so you probably haven’t heard it yet.
It’s a quick, easy story of how a couple of friends, just chatting away one evening, can produce profound life changes.
True, one of them knew a lot about NLP. And that wisdom is shared for you in a very easy form here in this story, and in our book.
While easy to read, (Did I mention Perry’s a pretty good writer himself?) like our book, there’s also a lot of depth if you like. 😉
My first experience with Tom Hoobyar’s NLP expertise
930 words, 2.8 minutes reading time
My first experience with NLP was with Tom Hoobyar himself, doing an impromptu session with me at a conference in a hotel. He said he could fix some of my “inner head trash” and asked me if there was an issue I’d like his help with. This was a decade ago.
I knew NLP worked because a lot of top platform presenters and sales people use it effectively to persuade – with embedded commands etc. Take-no-prisoners sales guys don’t give a rip about theory, as long as it works. So I knew NLP wasn’t hocus-pocus.
I explained how my oldest son, who then was 3 years old, had this odd way of being able to push my buttons and make me angry. I knew it was irrational and it was MY problem. And I didn’t like it. I tended to get mad at him very easily. (But not either of the other two kids.) I knew it was damaging my relationship with the little guy.
Tom says, “OK Perry, describe a scene where your son does something that sets you off.”
I think for a minute and say, “He walks to the refrigerator, opens it, pours himself a glass of milk. Then he drops the milk jug on the floor. It splits open and sprays milk all over the kitchen and I get MAD at him.”
Tom says, “Great. Now when do you actually feel yourself getting angry? Is it when he spills the milk, or is it some other time?”
He talks me through the scene one frame at a time. I realize I get mad just *before* he spills the milk, not after.
Tom slows down the film strip even more and asks me if I’m seeing, hearing, smelling, or feeling anything else.
This is odd. Like. . . what??? I don’t know what he’s talking about.
But he helps me slow down the frames in my mind even more. Suddenly I realize that at a certain moment there’s this sort of blue flash of light in my mind and it’s a flash of ANGER. It actually has a location in space. It has color and texture.
“Great!” Tom says. “Now I want you to do something for me.”
He stands up and walks across the room diagonally, from one corner to the other. He points to an invisible line on the floor and says, “This is the time line of your life. This corner is when you were born, that corner is someday when you die. Come stand here in the middle, in the present.” (One of Tom Hoobyar’s favorite techniques is helping you understand how you perceive your own time line. Everyone is different.)
I comply with his request. He says, “Now I want you to walk backwards on this line, towards the day you were born. Just as soon as you feel that feeling and see that blue flash of light, I want you stop.”
Man, this is weird. How in the world is this going to ever work? It seems silly.
I walk backwards slowly. Suddenly about halfway back, I see that blue flash of light and I feel that same flash of anger. I stop.
Tom says, “Where are you? What do you see?”
I’m laying on my bed, with a brown bedspread, the bottom bunk of my bunkbed that I share with my brother. I’m 14 years old. I’m crying. My dad has cancer and he’s about to have his kidney taken out and he may not make through the surgery. Or they might cut him open, see cancer all over the place and sew him back up and send him home to die. I’m terribly, horribly despondent.
“Perry, somehow you attached your son’s mistakes to your grief over your dad’s cancer. That’s not only anger, it’s sadness. Every time he makes a big mistake, you relive that sad day when you were 14 years old for about 10 nanoseconds. You get angry and you don’t even know why.”
Dang. This actually makes logical sense.
“Is it OK if we fix your film strip?” He asks.
He does an exercise with me where he replaces that sadness frame on the film strip with a different memory.
After that, I don’t get nearly as mad at my son anymore. The feeling wasn’t completely gone, but 75% of that anger impulse went away. Just like that.
Wow. That is cool.
NLP has hard limits to what it can accomplish; it’s not a cure-all. But Tom’s book, based on 20 years of incredibly intense study and his NLP master practitioner experience, gives you great insight into how our minds work.
We all know we have a subconscious, but few realize there’s all kinds of stuff going on one level below your awareness, flashes of sounds, smells, feelings and beliefs. They only appear for nanoseconds, but they have a huge impact on your feelings and behaviors. You don’t have to get hypnotized to access them.
NLP makes it possible for you to slow the film strip down – not only for yourself but in conversations. Ways of making difficult conversations much easier. This is an easy to read book written in plain language, not “NLP-ese.” There are a lot of not-very-user-friendly NLP courses and teachers out there, but this is NOT one of them.
You’ll appreciate Tom as he shares with you in an easy, conversational voice what is really going on in your mind and perceptions. This is a chance to change the way you feel and communicate.
That’s Perry’s story. How’d you like it? More like this?