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Saturday, November 25, 2017
Glasgow Counselling Communication Challenges
individual has their own personal model of the world, made up of their own
beliefs, values, attitudes, thinking patterns and filters. These filters will invariably “contaminate”
the interpretation of a communication. The
information comes in through the five senses, at something like two million
pieces of information per second. That’s
a lot of stuff!! Now there’s no way we
could process all of that information consciously, so one of the great things
your unconscious mind does for you is to filter out a lot of the content. It does that initially through the automatic
processes of deletion, distortion and generalisation:
we delete a heck of a lot of information at any one time. Right now, become aware of your left big
toe. Now where was it until I mentioned
it? That’s deletion.
Distortion - We bend reality to fit – we read between the
lines and hear what we think we hear, or make it the way we want it. Daydreaming is distortion, seeing faces in
Generalisation - We group things together and say “This is
like that”. Cushions, stools and sofas
are all places to sit, so if you came into my house and I said “please sit
down” you’d know what to do. You compare
new data to what you already know, which is the basis of all learning. Every morning when you swing your legs out of
bed, they always go down to the floor.
They never go up. You’ve learned
Whatever gets through those initial
processes, gets further filtered by a number of unconscious “files in the
filing cabinet” which sift through the data and codify it, make meaning out of
what we’ve just perceived. These
Language – the words and labels we use to
describe our experiences
Memories – our past history and the events
that have shaped us.
Decisions - Behind every belief that
something is true, is a decision that you made to make it so. If you believe you’re a confident person,
it’s because at some time in the past you decided that you were.
Thinking patterns - For example: are you
someone who moves towards what you want, or away from what you don’t want? Are you interested in learning, achieving,
gaining, progressing, acquiring? Or are
you into security, minimising the risk, being cautious, and avoiding
hassle. That one thinking habit shapes everything you do. That’s only one.
Your values - Are the positive & negative emotional states that your
nervous system pursues or avoids. They are your compulsions & revulsions,
they are your strongest feelings about what is right or wrong for you, they
dictate how you spend your time & they judge all your actions - in short
they govern your entire lifestyle.
Beliefs - A belief
is a feeling of certainty that something is true. If you believe the floor is blue, then you
feel very certain that it is. And unless
I get you to question it, you’ll keep that belief.
Now apart from all of the above, most people
are poor communicators, rarely truly “letting someone in”, or genuinely
listening to another person without immediately launching into one’s own
“stuff”. Most people have a short
attention span thanks to television, internet and Xbox. And when they do listen, it is often
grudgingly, waiting either for a chance to upstage the speaker with their own
concerns, or simply counting the seconds till they can terminate the
Lack of quality interaction leaves us feeling
emotionally distanced, lonely and isolated.
We withdraw into ourselves, begging to be heard but bound and gagged by
fear or resentment. Family gatherings
become endurance events, marriages become convenient flatmates, and our very
sense of identity is eroded.
Human beings all have a need for connection,
and significance. Poor communications
makes us feel detached and invisible.
Effective communication can create
miraculous change. Verbal magic!
So what about you? How's your communication? And how does it affect your life now?