The Emotion Engine: Structure + Tip (Email 3)

Note: This is an archive of an email from the release series of The Emotion Engine (Early Adopter Edition).

If you've come in late, you've missed two emails, linked below:

  1. Tue, (Mar 31, 2020) — TEE: KISS (Email 1)
  2. Wed, (Apr 1, 2020) — TEE: How should I start? (Email 2)

Read them both before you continue. They're important. They lead up to this point.

Today, I will explain the structure of The Emotion Engine, then I will end off with a massive tip that could change the game for you.

I'd like to explain the structure of the program for two reasons:

First, if you're considering enrolling in the course when it's available next week (April 6-10) it's important that you know what to expect.

Second, explaining my thinking process helps me improve my thinking (and exposes me to feedback that also helps me improve).

I ingurgitate copious amounts of information, including more digital courses than I’d be willing to admit. Over the years, I've realized that I have a particular way that I learn best, and that is reflected in the way I teach as well.

The only exception to this rule is my modeling workshop on selling — Unleash The Modeler Within — because it’s more a guided journey than a course.

For the most part, though, I like to orient myself to the 10,000 meter view of a topic so I can view the whole picture, view how pieces fit together (or notice if they don't), and confirm that the structure and flow of ideas makes sense.

When a teacher doesn’t offer this level of perspective, I often go through the course material and then create the 10,000 meter view myself. (That's not very efficient and it's no fun when the parts don't fit or the creators' logic doesn't hold up to scrutiny.)

One axiom I enjoy is "how you do anything is how you do everything." It occurred to me that I have created The Emotion Engine as a reflection of how I learn best.

To inform your decision-making, here's what you should expect...

Broadly speaking, The Emotion Engine is divided into three sections:

  1. current reality,
  2. principles and key drivers of emotion,
  3. and driver-specific intervention points.

Current reality is a collection of important truths and facts about what we currently live and the trends affecting us. For example, workplace demographics are shifting, the gig economy is on the rise, marriages are ending at a rate of 100 per hour, people are ever more hyperconnected, etc.

It’s very important for us to set the context in which we and other people live because emotions don’t arise in a vacuum. Whether they are reactive or generated, emotions are context-bound. 

Principles are powerful, actionable insights that follow logically from thinking deeply about the second and third-order (and beyond) consequences of current reality.

For example, knowing that people touch their smartphone an average of 2,617 times a day, leads to the principle that simply altering someone’s relationship to their phone will directly affect their emotional state.

Principles, at their core, are the exceptionally high-value ideas that frame our thinking so our interventions are most effective. They're pressure-tested against, and follow logically from, a clear understanding of reality.

I'm anticipating that understanding current reality and the principles and key drivers that follow will be approximately 40% of the content of The Emotion Engine which we'll cover first.

It's the foundation for everything that follows and, if I may be so humble to say, I think this section alone will transform how you think about NLP, communication, people and life far beyond emotions.

Once we understand a set of principles that inform our behavior, we'll turn to transforming those principles into interventions specific for each of the key drivers of emotion

These interventions will involve two parts: exercises you can do yourself so you experience the shifts, and specific examples that you can then use or adapt for your own benefit. I will also address specific questions or issues that you will bring to the course — for example, how I would approach resolving a particular emotional issue for yourself or one of your clients. 

Again, the distribution will be (approximately) 40% current reality + principles, 60% mastering the drivers and how to work with them.

Content will be a mix of media.

Lots of written content, some screencasts (particularly for presenting the models), some graphics mapping out the model, some video demonstrating particular intervention points, and links to other resources I believe are important.

There will be live interaction with me as well (Zoom Q&A and hot seat calls at regular intervals).

This will be an intense, hands-on, action-packed adventure.

My goal is skill transfer from me to you. I appreciate legendary coach John Wooden's dictum that "you haven't taught until they've learned" — a corollary to NLP’s classic presupposition “the meaning of your communication is the response you get”.

It's unrealistic to expect that I can transfer two decades of practical experience, Matrix-style, with a direct upload line to your brain.

Instead, I have distilled what I've learned and used to its most important, practical insights that you can internalize and put to work quickly and effectively.

I know some of you are anxious to implement as quickly as possible and I'm going to address that two ways...

First, some of the initial content will be available as soon as you enroll in the course so you can get started immediately.

This will help compress the time required to understand the first foundational 40% of the material (current reality and principles).

Second, you'll be able to begin implementing long before we conclude the course (you don't have to, but you will be able to).

I wanted to share a final insight that I hope you will find quite valuable as I did.

It’s that of Process vs. Outcome...

Last week, I went through Barbara Oakley’s course Learning How to Learn (free to enroll, by the way). In it, she teaches to learn to focus on process, not product. (product is the ultimate outcome).

Process refers to the flow of time and the activities associated with it. As in: I'm going to spend 20 minutes writing.

Product is an outcome or a result. As in: The Emotion Engine course.

Barbara Oakley teaches that one of the easiest ways to focus on process is to focus on doing a Pomodoro: a 25 minute timed work session. When you carry that out, you shift your focus from completing a task to doing and enjoying the work.

Translating this to TEE — forget about the outcome (your own Emotion Engine) you plan/hope to master "x" many weeks later.

As Barbara Oakley demonstrates, this thinking and behavior is flawed.

Allow yourself to slow down. Enjoy the process.

Special Forces operators have a slogan when it comes to urban combat: "Slow is smooth and smooth is fast." It also perfectly expresses, albeit paradoxically, what I’m trying to convey to you.

If you have questions, or if you want share an insight you had (I would love to hear yours), head to the comments section here.

Talk tomorrow.


— Martin

P.S. All the emails of the series can be found here.