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Learn To Make Your Submodalities Work For You!

Jun 29, 2008
As human beings, we make sense of the world through our five senses (sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell). This is the only information we have about the world and this information is used to make up our internal representations of the world.

What this means is that every thought, memory or use of imagination, contains information from our senses. So, it may comprise pictures, sounds, feelings, smells or taste.

Furthermore, the information from our five senses contains lots of different qualities and distinctions. So for example a picture can be moving or still, bright or dim, black and white or colour, a good or poor contrast, 3-D of flat. In fact, many more distinctions can be made for pictures and all the other senses.

If you have not heard about Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP), you may never have given much thought to how you code information in your brain. NLP has a name for the finer distinctions of our senses -submodalities. Its not something that we really think about, but it is extremely valuable to know about.

This is because it is possible to modify or change how memories are coded in our brains and as a result change the meaning of the memory. By making changes to the coding, memories and imaginings about the future can be made more or less intense, positive or negative, more desirable or less real.

Have you ever had the experience of thinking about a past event, or suddenly remembering something and feeling intense unpleasant feelings? It may be that you have a fear of something, and some kind of trigger, a word, smell or sound etc may set you off, so that you experience all those unpleasant feelings.

NLP, which is an understanding of how we code experience in our brain, has a range of techniques, which can be used to reduce or eradicate the intensity of remembered experiences. Its possible to take an unpleasant memory, examine how it is coded and then make changes so that it is no longer unpleasant and the emotion can just drain away.

If you suffer from unpleasant memories or fears, an NLP therapist can help you deal with this, via submodality work. These treatments are available from my therapy practice, where I use NLP Edinburgh.

You can also learn to be aware of the impact of how you code experience yourself. The best way to learn about submodalities is to experience them.

Try the following:

Have a think about something that is unpleasant or uncomfortable for you, it doesn't have to be something really intense, it could be thinking about something that annoyed you recently.

When you think about it do you have a picture?

If so, where is the picture located, is it near or far? -If it's near make it far and if its far, make it near.

How does that feel? Place the picture wherever if feels best.

You could make other changes to the picture, try turning the brightness up or down, if its black or white make it colour and vice versa.

Do you see yourself in the picture, your whole body? Or are you re-living it, as if through your own eyes. If you are seeing yourself in the picture, try becoming associated so that you are seeing through your own eyes and vice versa so that if you are associated, try viewing the picture dissociated with your whole body in it.

Are there any important sounds to go with the picture?

If there is a voice, try changing it to something funny, perhaps Donald Duck, or a really sexy husky voice!

You can turn the volume up or down, make the tonality and quality clearer and even change where the sounds are coming from. Again just play around to see what changes make the memory more pleasant.

Think about the feelings that go with the memory

Where are they located?

Try, moving the feelings to somewhere else, say your little toe.

If they are moving, try making them still or vice versa

What shape are the feelings? You could make them into a pink, fuzzy, vibrating ball, the size of an apple pip, located in your little toe!! Notice the change in how they feel as you play around with them.

I use NLP submodality techniques during NLP Edinburgh at my practice where I offer NLP, Edinburgh. NLP is effective in treating a whole range of psychological and behavioural difficulties.
About the Author
Karen is an NHS experienced occupational therapist. She runs her own practice in Edinburgh where she provides NLP, CBT and hypnotherapy treatments Edinburgh. Karen is registered with the HPC and BAOT. Karen is also a master NLP practioner. Her website is http://www.karenhastings.co.uk
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