Mark Harrison

This blog post was written by Mark Harrison.

NLP: A New Way of Thinking About Your Relationships

NLP - relationships

In the last article, we saw that excellence in any field can be studied and copied, and that NLP (neurolinguistic programming) is a well established and effective way of doing this. Success in any area – be it career, family, business, politics or anything else – is largely a matter of building relationships. People who are able to develop and maintain good, mutually productive relationships with other people tend to be much more successful than those who don’t do this.

Building good relationships does come more easily to some people, but it is a skill that can be developed, and NLP offers a number of perspectives and tools to enable you to do so.

NLP - relationships

Neurolinguistic Programming – A Road Map to Change

Neurolinguistic Programming

What makes some people successful and able to handle change creatively? Why do some people seem to have good relationships or always appear to be in the right place at the right time? Is there something special about them? Are people born with certain traits which enable them to navigate through difficulties with apparent ease? Or is it all down to luck?

In the 1970s, John Grinder, a professor at the University of California, and a student called Richard Bandler started to work together on a project to observe the behaviours of successful people. They were interested in why some people are so good at what they do. Together, they developed a way of observing, codifying and replicating the thought patterns and behaviours which lead to individuals experiencing high levels of success. They called the approach Neurolinguistic Programming, since it explores the relationships between how we think (neuro), how we communicate (linguistic) and our patterns of behaviour and emotion (programmes).

Neurolinguistic Programming

7 Essential Skills for Managing Change

It’s a cliché, but change has always been the only constant. In recent times, the pace of change has accelerated greatly, and we all need to find ways to deal creatively with this fact of modern life. Leaders, in particular, need to face and manage change in a constructive way, but everyone who wants to be successful – in career, in relationships, in life – must learn how to see and manage change the way that successful ‘change leaders’ do. Such leaders are adaptable and creative, responding to change in three key ways.

1. People who respond well to change will have a high ‘ambiguity threshold.’ Change is inherently ambiguous, and those who deal creatively with change will have a high tolerance for uncertainty and ‘shades of grey.’

Facing Up to Your Fears

facing up to your fears

We usually feel fear when we get frustrated, when our self-esteem is threatened, or when we feel pressured to perform beyond our perceived capability. Unhealthy fear is debilitating; healthy fear is mobilizing. But no matter what kind of fear you experience, it requires your immediate attention, or you risk cowering behind your full potential for the rest of your life. Read on for some tips on facing up to your fears.

facing up to your fears

Turning Shyness into a Strength

shyness

Does the thought of doing certain things hold you back, be it in social situations, work, public performances, or relationships? Like most things, a little shyness is normal and even helpful in small doses – it can be quite an endearing trait – but shyness can also be debilitating. But, as with many things, a little refocusing can turn things around. If shyness is more your enemy than your friend, here are some ideas on how to turn your shyness into a strength.

Sometimes, we may be ashamed of shyness – we might think it is a sign that something is wrong with us. Despite what culture dictates, being a little shy and a little self conscious is normal, natural, and nothing to be ashamed of. Start making shyness work for you by taking responsibility for yours.

shyness

How to Change the World

change the world

In a previous post, I alluded to the idea that what we experience is a kind of echo of our inner world. In this post, I would like to explore this idea a little further.

Those who act on the world never, I notice, succeed. The world is a strange instrument, not meant to be handled.

This stanza from the Tao Te Ching suggests that to attempt to change the world is never a wise thing to do. Of course, people try to control the world all the time – we try to control our kids, our parents, our spouses, our careers, our health … this list goes on.

change the world

10 Positive Habits to Cultivate

positive habits

People often think of habits in a negative way. Ask someone to name a few of their habits, and they will probably report what they believe to be ‘bad’ habits such as smoking or eating too much. In fact, almost everything we do – the good, the bad and the ugly – is driven by habits.

Some habits are very positive and developing them will greatly benefit you. In fact, cultivating these habits will almost certainly have the effect of causing some of the more negative ones to drop away.

Here are some of the most constructive and beneficial habits you can try to develop.

positive habits

The Wisdom of the Serenity Prayer

serenity prayer

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.”

Karl Paul Reinhold Niebuhr wrote what is usually called ‘the serenity prayer’ for a sermon in the 1930s, although it is sometimes misattributed to other writers. The prayer is now quoted widely, and you don’t have to be a Christian or, indeed, have any religious beliefs to see the timeless wisdom in this simple and profound statement.

Some years ago, I attended a seminar given by an excellent motivational speaker. At one point, he handed out pens with the words ‘fact of life’ printed on the side. On stage, he had a large version of the pen, and repeatedly dropped it. The idea was that, like gravity acting on the pen, some things were just ‘facts of life.’ They cannot be changed and you have no power over them. To complain about these things or to seek to change them is, at best, a waste of time and, more often, corrosive and self-defeating.

serenity prayer

How to Help Your Kids Learn More Effectively

kids learning

David Thornburg is an award winning author and consultant who specializes in the ways in which computer technology influences our lives, particularly the ways we learn. As part of his research, he has proposed that we need access to four basic environments, or ‘learning spaces’ in which to operate in order to learn effectively.

The campfire is where we share knowledge and information with others. This is about preserving knowledge and, in the past, where technologies for encoding information (such as writing, books and, now, the Internet) were not developed, this was an essential means of ensuring that essential information was not lost to the community, that it did not, for example, die with one individual. The oral traditions – the stories – of many cultures are the embodiments of their campfires.

The watering hole is where creative discussions take place. Information does not exist in a vacuum – we have to make sense of it, put it into a context. The same data can mean different things to different groups at different times and, in the end, the sense made of all knowledge is contingent on time and place. We are social animals and so the watering hole is a place where we explore knowledge in the context of the community.

kids learning
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