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Communication is an important if not the most important thing I do in my job as a therapist, there are things I hear someone say that without my training I probably wouldn’t have been aware of before hand. So I thought I would tell you about them and then you can listen to people and become a better communicator.
Is there someone who you just don’t seem to click with or get on with but you wish you did?
Have you even thought that your language maybe slightly different, that they may speak using different words to you? Yes everyone uses different words but did you know that people use Visual, Auditory and Kinaesthetic phrases in their everyday language and that they probably don’t even know it either?
This is what we call “Sub-Modalities in Language”, have you ever heard of this before?
Here are some examples of the language:
See, Look, View, Show, Clear, Appear, Focussed.
“You never see what I am saying to you”
Hear, Listen, Tune in, All ears, Be heard, Rings a bell, Sound, Silence
“I hear what you are saying”
Feel, Touch, Catch on, Hard, Get hold of, Tap into, Turn around, Unfeeling
“I feel you don’t understand me”
People are generally one of the above in their main language but will and can use a bit of everything, but as you listen to the person you will hear which they mainly use, try it!
I also listen out for the words I, Me, Self, You?
Here is an example of what I mean “I hate myself”, so if we look at that statement said “I” being the person hates “self”. I hates self so who is I and who is self?
There a lots of different thing going on with that statement but without going to deep I will leave to think about it for now.
We all use Metaphor every day in our language and some people don’t even realise they are! Are you one of those people? I know I used them but wasn’t sure why?
Originally, metaphor was a Greek word meaning “transfer”. The Greek etymology is from meta, implying “a change” and pherein meaning “to bear, or carry”. Thus, the word metaphor itself has a metaphorical meaning in English, “a transfer of meaning from one thing to another”. So the word metaphor is a metaphor within itself.
Amusingly, in Modern Greek the word metaphor is used to refer to a cart or trolley; thus visitors to Greek airports will find themselves using metaphors to carry their luggage.
We all use them but because we don’t notice, this means we use them unconsciously this is why understanding how to use metaphor is so important as a therapist. I went on a workshop with Andrew T Austin called Metaphors of Movement which really opened my ears to another form of communication that is so powerful and a great tool to use.
With this tool I can help the client explore the metaphor and help them to solve the problem in an easy and powerful way.
What sort of metaphor can a client use? Here is a few examples “I feel like I’m in a big hole”, “I can’t seem to move forward”,” It’s like I’m banging my head against a wall”, “ I just can’t get over it”, so I have learned how to engage the client at a physiological and neurological level
Here is how it works
Example of the problem = What happens
Emotional response to the problem = How we feel about what happens
The consequences on the problem = The effect of what happens
The diagnosis of the problem = What we call it
I often find after exploring the metaphor more with the client they begin to see the problem in a different way and after some helping and suggestions the client can see the solution themselves. I never put words into the clients experience but suggest various phrases relevant to the clients metaphor.
I love doing this kind of therapy because the result are often very profound and powerful in helping the client move on with their life or a situation that has in some way held them back .
I hope you enjoyed reading this and it has helped you to understand the verbal communication we all use every day, when we start to listen more closely then we can really hear what the other person may or may not be saying.
If would like to learn these skills for yourself then I would advise anyone to go where I went. Nick Davies owns and runs the Warwickshire School of Hypnotherapy and is an excellent trainer. www.WSOH.co.uk
Thank you for reading my blog.