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Category Archives for "Achievement"

Piano Players, Stonecutters and NLP Coaches

Yesterday, I missed a step. Didn’t send you your daily dose of NLP.

I started putting the finishing touches on the Straight Line Results System at 6:30 in the morning and wasn’t done until 3 in the afternoon.

And even then, there was still a little glitch in the payment processing. Fortunately, I got messages from interested clients and was able to get it fixed by early evening.

This just goes to show you the importance of being detached from plans.

No matter how much you plan, the unforeseen can still get you off your game.

What matters is two things:

1. Knowing how to manage your state, and
2. Getting back to the next step in the Straight Line.

Just as craftsmen start grinding out useless, parasitic steps in their work processes, I’m starting to notice that all of my coaching revolves around two or three fundamental approaches.

When handled correctly, these fundamentals produce 96% of all the results.

That’s when the craft becomes art.

Once you know the fundamentals so deeply, you’re able to play with the process.

And then, magic happens – in any craft.

You’ll see it in piano players. You’ll see it in painters. You’ll see it in stonecutters.

Once they reach a certain level, there’s an effortless grace to their work.

Prodigy. Virtuoso.

It’s a beauty to behold.

That’s how you see Tony perform in his interventions. He can take them any which way because he understands perfectly the phenomena unfolding before his eyes.

That level of mastery only comes from extensive experience. Doing it over and over and over until you’re performing at a near unconscious level.

So it’s cool to experience the craft of NLP coaching chiseling itself as you work with more and more people.

Better still, to be able to apply these new distinctions to yourself.

That way, when you fall off the bandwagon, you get back to your game quickly.

Plan, just to make sure you understand what you’re doing. But forget that plan as soon as you finish it. Life won’t allow you to follow it.

Even better than planning, get yourself a Straight Line for anything you want to accomplish.

Get it at launch price:

Tweak Your Action Plan


Hey there,

In today’s edition of DailyNLP, I talk about the power of formulating your action plan in a way that motivates and empowers you to act.

Often, my coaching clients come to me with huge plans of what they will accomplish.

It’s very impressive.

However, it holds one problem. It doesn’t move them forward.

Stop for a second and consider your to-do list.

Do you feel psyched about working the plan? Are you excited about what’s before you today?

If not, you need to tweak the plan.

You have to wordsmith it in a way that directly connects and taps into your primal motivation.

You also have to structure it following your natural work tendencies.

For instance, if you like to connect with others, your work plan MUST involve that.

Otherwise, the work plan will feel like pulling nails.

Do that exercise today.

Evaluate your to-do list emotionally. Are you thrilled by it?

If not, reformulate it.

If you want a partner to help you do it, book a session with me.

Together, we’ll get you rolling at a speed you’re not accustomed to.

You can request more information about my coaching sessions here:

Talk to you tomorrow,


How To Change Your State Instantly

In today’s edition of DailyNLP, Martin Messier talks about how to change your state instantly.

You can do this by:

  • Shifting your focus
  • Altering your physiology
  • Making long term shifts by using Belief Relief

Pattern Interrupt: Redirect Your Thoughts In An Instant

A pattern interrupt involves breaking an individual’s habitual thought or behavioral pattern so as to shake it up.

Sometimes, an existing pattern of behavior will have a particularly “deep groove” and will be solidly conditioned in someone’s system. This can create surprising resistance and interference to the change process.

Instead of tackling this resistance head on, you can use a pattern interrupt to “swipe the legs” of the resistance.

Here’s a simple way to understand a pattern interrupt.

You’re driving to work in the morning. If you’re like me, you always take the same route from home to your office. We’re like monkeys: totally conditioned to repeat tasks in the same way, every time.

The cool thing about this is how economical it is. You don’t really have to think. You put yourself on auto-pilot, head off to Bermuda in your mind, and your unconscious mind takes care of everything for you.

And so you’re cruising along on the way, daydreaming of sun and waves, and snapping your fingers to call the waiter who instantly brings you a…


A fallen tree on the road is an example of a pattern interrupt.Right in front of you, a giant tree collapses onto the road, completely obstructing your path. You feel yourself slamming on the brakes and the car comes to a screeching halt as the tires try to grasp to the road.

And for a few minutes, you have absolutely no clue as to what happened or what you’re doing.

Now, your unconscious doesn’t know how to respond. It’s awaiting instructions either from your conscious mind or from someone who’s conscious.

A classic example of a pattern interrupt

Here’s a classic example of a pattern interrupt as described by Milton Erickson in his book Advanced Techniques on Hypnosis and Therapy (1967)

One of the physicians present (at a lecture on hypnosis) was most interested in learning hypnosis, listened attentively during the lecture, but in the social hour preceding the lecture, he had repeatedly manifested hostile aggressive behavior toward most of his colleagues. When introduced to the author, he shook hands with a bone-crushing grip, almost jerked the author off his balance (the man was at least 6 inches taller than the author and about 66 lbs heavier) and aggressively declared without any preamble that he would like to “see any damn fool try to hypnotize me.”


When volunteers for a demonstration were requested, he came striding up and in a booming voice announced “Well, I’m going to show everybody that you can’t hypnotize me.” As the man stepped up on the platform, the author slowly arose from his chair as if to greet him with a handshake. As the volunteer stretched forth his hand prepared to give the author another bone-crushing handshake, the author bent over and tied his own shoe strings slowly, elaborately and left the man standing helplessly with his arm outstretched. Bewildered, confused, completely taken aback at the author’s nonpertinent behavior, at a total loss for something to do, the man was completely vulnerable to the first comprehensible communication fitting to the situation that was offered him. As the second shoe string was being tied the author said “Just take a deep breath, sit down in that chair, close your eyes, and go deeply into a trance.” After a brief casual startled reaction, my subject said “Well I’ll be damned! But how? Now do it again so I can know how you are doing it.”

He was offered a choice of several traditional techniques. He chose the hand- levitation method as seeming the more interesting, and this technique was employed slowly, both for his benefit and that of the audience, with another somnambulistic trance resulting.

Pattern interrupts are really useful in that they shake up a person’s typical thoughts and actions and opens the possibility for something new to take place.

Doing this is an important part of the change process. Obviously, it’s much easier to influence and redirect an unstable pattern than a rigid one.

When a pattern is interrupted completely, the person is left without a next step in their thought process or behavior, and naturally opens up to whatever next step is offered to him or her by the situation.

In other words, the person whose pattern is interrupted becomes highly influenceable.

The power of the pattern interrupt

Our unconscious excels at running patterns or programs automatically. This frees our conscious resources to ponder other matters while we perform certain activities unconsciously.

This sometimes can present a problem when trying to change your own or someone else’s habitual patterns of thought, emotion or behavior. You want to change but your unconscious keeps doing the same thing over and over and over.

What the heck do you do?

Here’s the key principle that allows you to make changes in your behavior:

The unconscious mind isn’t effective at making decisions. That skill belongs to the conscious mind.

And herein lies the power of the pattern interrupt. And this is your opportunity to leverage the Pattern Interrupt NLP Technique.

To force the unconscious mind into “decision-awaiting mode,” you have to send it into a tailspin.

You have to break the habitual flow of how things happen, and force it to get into “what now?” mode.

It’s at the time of the pattern interrupt that you can insert changes into the unconscious’s programming.

When the unconscious is saying to you “OK, what do you want me to do now?

At that point, there’s space for you to insert new instructions.

Two drills for you to explore

Drill 1 – Interrupt your own pattern

  1. Choose a behavior you’d like to change that you normally perform automatically, without thinking.
  2. Observe how the pattern runs, what is its route.
  3. Create a pattern interrupt that has nothing to do with the behavior. If you bite your nails, the pattern interrupt might be to jump up and down, or rub your nose intensely. If you eat every time you watch TV, the pattern interrupt might be to think of cow poop every time you open the fridge. Come up with a pattern interrupt that will jolt you like a tree falling in front of your car.
  4. When you notice the pattern running, use your pattern interrupt repeatedly.
  5. Observe what happens to the pattern.

Drill 2 – Interrupt someone else’s pattern

  1. Observe someone who has a habitual pattern that you’d like to play with.
  2. Create a neat pattern interrupt. For instance, if your mother or wife eats butter every morning, without thinking about it, use blue food coloring to change the butter’s color. If your child has been curious about playing with electrical outlets, have some balloons ready at hand; pop them anytime (s)he approaches an outlet.
  3. Observe what happens to the pattern.

More On Mastering Emotions

My last post spawned some interesting discussions around the issue of emotional mastery.

Let me share a bit more about my experience and see if this resonates with you.

I used to believe that I SHOULDN’T feel a certain way in certain circumstances. For instance, I shouldn’t feel angry when someone criticizes me or tells me they don’t like something I’ve done.

For some reason, I believed that it’s not spiritual to feel that way, or that everyone is entitled to their opinion, or whatever else.

You have to get the message.

But the truth is that that anger is just a message. It’s a pointer.

And I only have to feel it as long as necessary for me to get the message.

Trying to repress our emotions as a form of emotional mastery is similar to try to shut down your phone system because telemarketers are bothering you.

Sure, telemarketers will call your home, but so will your best friends. If you cut off the phone, you knock out your communication with your buddies as well.

The instant you perceive emotions as a messaging system, you move on to the second step: learning to interpret the message accurately so that you can take effective action (once again, either realign your values or realign your circumstances).

What about long-lasting disempowering emotions?

Cherry commented on my previous post: “The problem is – and this is what I want to hear more about emotional mastery – is that this anger of mine won’t go away for hours. Any ideas on how to save hours and hours of negative, unproductive emotions?”

When modeling people who feel anger or resentment for long periods of time, I’ve found that this stems from a belief that has a “should” in it. “People shouldn’t do this” or “this should be different” or “I shouldn’t have to do this” and so forth and so on.

The word “should” has a peculiar effect on our nervous system. It disengages us from reality. Moreover, the problem with “should” is that we can’t do anything about it. It totally disempowers us.

Think about it for a second.

“People shouldn’t treat me this way.”

Perhaps, but they do. Whatcha gonna do about it?

“This is line shouldn’t take this long.”

Perhaps, but it is taking this long. What now?

“Shoulds” create endless loops in our nervous systems and we cycle stress through them.

So what’s the antidote?

The instant you either take action or realign your values, the loop ends. No “shoulds” anymore. All taken care of.

“Yeah, but I shouldn’t have to realign my values or take action…”

I rest my case.


Mastering Your Emotions Is Not About Changing Them

My email address has been down for some time now. Just discovered that today.

And I was wondering why I was getting no email for the past couple of days…

Don’t you get pissed when that kind of stuff happens to you?

I sure do.

Which brings me to something important about learning and mastering NLP: emotional mastery.

When I first started learning NLP, I believed that from that moment on, I should be able to feel the way I wanted, whenever I wanted, and that I should have absolute control over my emotions.

As I progressed, I discovered this was the farthest thing from the truth.

In fact, whatever emotion comes up serves only as a messaging system that lets you know what you’re currently living isn’t aligned with your values.

EDIT: whatever “painful” emotion comes up. Thanks for pointing that out, Mike.

So now, when I start feeling bad, it’s only a matter of seconds before I figure out what my system is trying to tell me.

And then the solution comes easy: take action or change your values.

One or the other.

No way around it.

Let me know if you’d like to learn more about this by posting some comments here below and I’ll give you some really good stuff.


Tom’s 4 steps to self-mastery

Tom from NLP Times published a really cool post a couple of months ago on self-mastery and change.

Go read it.

But before you do, just check out the gist of it. Tom simply points out that, in order to effect change, you must:

  1. Become aware that some pattern isn’t serving you.
  2. Take complete responsibility for the pattern and changing it.
  3. Have a clear outcome in mind as to what you want.
  4. Get leverage on yourself to make sure that change is a must (taken from Tony Robbins).

Once and only once all these criteria are met can you apply NLP techniques to interrupt patterns and condition new ones.

But don’t take my word for it. Check it out.

The Power Of Your Model Of The World

When was the last time you sat down and examined your model of the world, in an effort to make it work more effectively for you? Have you ever compared your model with others, to see if you could find modifications that would make yours:

  • guide you to more effective actions?
  • allow you a more pleasant experience of life?
  • give you more confidence in dealing with other people?

If you are now asking yourself, “What the heck is he talking about?”, you’ll really benefit from reading this article.

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