Methods of Successful Influence
How did I shift the beliefs of a woman with a death wish into one so excited about living she took up salsa lessons? How did I persuade a man who had been carrying the burden of guilt for over 40 years that it was time to forgive himself? How did I use the power of words to propel my coaching success to become the fastest promoted senior coach in the history of one of the largest training companies in Singapore?
In the Secrets of Changing Minds series I reveal step by step the key communication tips & strategies from NLP and indirect hypnosis you can use to change minds and transform beliefs.
Become A Time Traveller
I thought I’d finished this series with the most important key, but it turns out I still have something left to share
Changing someone’s mind doesn’t just mean changing their perspectives, it can also mean changing the way they think through time.
People can be stuck in a way of thinking not just from a perspective, but also from a fixed focus on either the past, present or future. A sneaky way you can change someone’s mind is to use your language to change when they’re focusing on as well as what.
Look Back From The Future, What Do You See?
To get people to change their state from feeling stressed over a present problem into a positive focus on solutions, I’d ask something like this;
“Imagine tomorrow that you’ve already resolved this problem successfully. How would things look, feel and sound differently?”
You bring them forward in time and get them to look back at now as if it’s the past, and ask them what’s different.
How Have You Already Achieved This Goal?
If I needed to help them find steps towards a desired outcome to which they have no idea how to get to, I’d ask;
“So imagine in the future already having achieved this goal, looking back at now, what were the steps you took that helped you get there?”
So instead of looking from the present to the future and planning how to get there, we focus on the successful future already accomplished, look back to the present and plan backwards.
How Would You Know When You’ve Already Made This Change?
The 2 questions above work when the other person already knows what she wants. But what happen when she doesn’t? That’s where the miracle question from Solutions Focused Brief Therapy works very well:
“Imagine that tomorrow somehow, in some way, this whole problem has been overcome. How would you know that things are different? What would you see, hear or feel?”
How You’ve Been Sold With This Technique
This technique is often used in sales. Someone might say;
“I know it looks expensive now, but after you’ve used it for years and saved all the maintenance costs you would have paid with the other machines, you’ll realize it was a fantastic deal.”
The 3 Keys To Changing Minds Through The Future
Confused? You might already have noticed the 3 keys to shifting time as a way to change someone’s mind.
1) Talking about the present in the past tense. Looking back from the future at now, so that what you’ve learnt reading here adds to your magic bag of mind-changing tricks.
2) Presupposing a more positive future. If you’re going to make a future, might as well make a good one. You use the trick of going into the future to presuppose a positive one in which problems have been solved and outcomes achieved, and look back at the more problematic present to see how you got there.
By the way, pessimists are great at this technique, only they often create a worse future to look back from!
3) Noticing what’s different. The core question is to notice what’s different about having a positive future experience compared to a negative present one, so you have the keys to knowing what needs to be changed and what a good change would look like.
In actual fact, no-one really travels to the future, but by using this trick of orientating them to a better future they can experience now instead of a present in which they’re stuck, they activate the wealth of positive states and resources which they already have.
Still confused? Well, confusion is the first step towards new learnings Leave a comment with your questions so you won’t be confused after.