NLP Training – Dealing With Shame

In the pursuit of goals, I have always reminded people to ensure that they set clear goals. However, when things go awry, it is our resilience that will help to keep us going. The unfortunate thing is that some people do not have that resilience for moving forward any more than some people can’t run a marathon.

A marathon is actually an apt analogy. Anyone can run a marathon, and we don’t care if we can’t make it. But when it matters, a lot of people tend to become attached to the goal. It’s almost like the emotion of guilt is manufactured once that goal is set.

The approach to NLP is a very humanistic one. In order to achieve your goals, you must first ensure that you adapt, be flexible and create changes inside of yourself in order to achieve your goals. At the same time, there is no part of the formal NLP literature that talks abut emotional handling of shame.

Here’s what I would suggest.

Look at the things that generated guilt and shame for you, and acknowledge that part of you that has brought this attention to you.

Then, follow this feeling to the core.

Once you are able to follow this feeling to the core, you will discover interesting things about the origins.

In most of our lives, busy as we are, it is essential to take the time to stop for a moment and pay attention to ourselves. In NLP, this is commonly known as self-calibration. Ultimately, when you are blinded by the external world, take some time to regain “in”sight.

Guilt is a powerful emotion because it reveals lessons you have to learn in order to become stronger and more powerful. The only reason why guilt/shame stands in the way is because of limiting beliefs that prevent you from getting past the fact that you failed. In reality, you took action. Action merely begets feedback.

Take the core feeling and acknowledge what it is saying to you. Once you listen clearly and honestly you will be better able to understand the reason for it’s existence and use it to move forward toward your destiny.

Learn NLP: Problem States versus Solution States

I came across the concept of Problem State and Solution State when I was first exposed to Robert Dilts’ work. I later came to understand it as the way in which our emotional states drive our actions.

Emotions are the pre-requisites for our behaviors. Suppose you have an outcome of losing weight. In this case, you will need to shift the emotions you currently have that drive your eating behaviors.

If you are constantly in a state of compulsion, then you might find that you get overweight really fast. Conversely, weight loss becomes a bit easier if you have a compulsion for exercising and staying fit, while you reduce your desire to eat to an appropriate level.

Once you know what drives one behavior, you will know that you need to have a state change. But what state? This is the art of defining your solution state. If you know that fear keeps you from starting a business, but you want to do it, you know you need an emotion that is congruent with your goal. It could be many possible emotional states. Curiosity, determination, frutration are all emotional states that can drive you out of a comfort zone or from fear.

The important thing you need to bear in mind is that there’s no longer such as thing as a good or bad emotion – merely an appropriate or inappropriate one.

Recently, I worked with someone who had a lot of confusion in studying. So I got this person to tell me the outcome that was desired. As a student, this person wanted to score good grades. So, to test, we looked at emotions such as motivation. It didn’t t really work for her. I tested frustration from hearing her parents nagging at her to study. She seemed more affected by this – because she wanted to prove to her parents that she was better than they thought she was. Wow… frustration at people who disbelieved her capability really riled her into action.

Whenever you want to create change, always ask yourself what is an appropriate solution state that can drive you closer to your desired outcome.

To fully appreciate this, you need to study a little bit about submodalities and how you can control your emotional states.

Learn NLP – To Give 100% Or To Hold Back?

One thing in NLP is that the focus on the attitude of success is hardly mentioned. People keep focusing on the techniques and the method, and I think that’s a little passe.

One principle I share in the success process is about giving 100%.

A number of people have asked me about giving 100% and what that really means. While this is not strictly an NLP strategy, I think the attitude of being at your 100% is very important. Personally, I find that it is a very useful concept. But, is it possible to give 100% all the time?


When you set your goals, do you think that it is an important thing to put in 100% to achieve your goals?

Even if you have the best skills and techniques, you may not necessarily achieve your goals simply because you did not put in your best. If you want something, you may want to put limitations aside.

Of course, if you are in an environment, you may also find that you are restricted by culture, the way people do things. When you are in conflict as to whether you should put in your best, you have to ask yourself the question: what will be beneficial overall?

Have you realized that some of the top performers actually defy the norms in order to push themselves to the highest possible level of performance? Perhaps, holding back is not really an option anymore!

Consider, though, that it’s no longer about what you do, but rather how you communicate your intent. It’s probably the best, therefore, if you wish to get yourself to stretch or even get other people to stretch, that your intent is clearly communicated so that you and the stakeholders of your decisions are clear about your intent first.

NLP Practitioner Training: Achieving Your Goals

For most, achieving their goals is something like “wishful thinking”. I’ve seen parodies of “The Secret” and they are unflattering, possibly insulting to our actual nature.

The real reason why you will want to set goals is to ensure that you constantly get enough motivation to keep moving. Goals are actually represented by your submodalities (we’ll have an article to talk about that later), which are affected by beliefs, values and identity.

Creative Commons License photo credit: ┬╗Philo

Each of these concepts requires a separate discussion, but the interesting thing you might want to do is to consider how compelling a goal really is. To make a goal compelling, you need to probably follow a sequence similar to this:

#1 – Get into the appropriate state (usually a state of relaxed awareness)
#2 – Picture your goals in the future. Observe it from a distance.
#3 – Bring it closer and intensify the colors, sounds and vibrance of the future image.
#4 – Step into it and experience it in full as if you are already there.
#5 – Imagine how good it feels to be able to achieve this
#6 – Figure out how to achieve it (activate your resources)

Most people know how to get here, but it doesn’t really work, other than to make you feel good most of the time. You need to get triggered in case you don’t get this done. For example, you may find that you slack off from your goals and targets.

In this case, you need another sequence to get you back on track:

#7 – what happens when you do something that is counter productive to your goals? what images do you see?
#8 – play this out into the future and grab that image from the future. Play the movie of the consequences you may have there and intensify this reality.

Now, this may seem “bad”, but I think in order for your desired reality to become real, it’s important for you to learn how to stay on track. In other words, don’t just have the pull (toward) factors working in your favor: use the push (away from) factors that will help you avoid the potholes!