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Conversational Magic: Words to Awaken New Visions for Our World Language The English word "language" comes

from the Latin lingua, meaning "the tongue," h ence denoting speech. The term has been expanded through time to include many as pects of coding and communication. Webster's Dictionary defines language as "any means of conveying or communicating ideas; specifically, human speech; the expr ession of ideas by the voice; sounds, expressive of thought, articulated by the organs of the throat and mouth." According to Webster's: Language consists in the oral utterance of sounds which usage has made the repre sentatives of ideas. When two or more persons customarily annex the same sounds to the same ideas, the expression of these sounds by one person communicates his ideas to another. This is the primary sense of language, the use of which is to communicate the thoughts of one person to another through the organs of hearing . Articulate sounds are represented to the eye by letters, marks, or characters, which form words. Thus, language is an essential aspect of both the coding and communication of ou r experience and ideas. It is both a representation for experience and a means o f communicating about it. Language is at the core of Neuro-Linguistic Programmin g. NLP studies the influence that language has on our cognitive programming and other functions of our nervous systems; and also the way in which our mental pro gramming and nervous systems shape and are reflected in our language and languag e patterns. Spoken language is a characteristic that is unique to the human race, and is con sidered to be one of the key factors that distinguishes humans from other creatu res. Sigmund Freud, for example, believed that words were the basic instrument o f human consciousness and as such had special powers. As he put it: Words and magic were in the beginning one and the same thing, and even today wor ds retain much of their magical power. By words one of us can give another the g reatest happiness or bring about utter despair; by words the teacher imparts his knowledge to the student; by words the orator sweeps his audience with him and determines its judgments and decisions. Words call forth emotions and are univer sally the means by which we influence our fellow-creatures. Freud's emphasis on the importance of language resonates with some of the key pr inciples of Neuro-Linguistic Programming. The essence of NLP is that the functio ning of our nervous system ("neuro") is intimately tied up with our capability f or language ("linguistic"). The strategies ("programs") through which we organiz e and guide our behavior are made up of neurological and verbal patterns. In the ir first book, The Structure of Magic, NLP co-founders Richard Bandler and John Grinder strove to define some principles behind the seeming "magic" of language to which Freud referred. All the accomplishments of the human race, both positive and negative, have invo lved the use of language. We as human beings use our language in two ways. We use it first of all to represent our experience we call this activity reasoning, t hinking, fantasying, rehearsing. When we use language as a representational syst em, we are creating a model of our experience. This model of the world which we create by our representational use of language is based upon our perceptions of the world. Our perceptions are also partially determined by our model or represe ntation.... Secondly, we use our language to communicate our model or representa tion of the world to each other. When we use language to communicate, we call it talking, discussing, writing, lecturing, singing. thus, according to Bandler and Grinder, language serves as a means to represent or create models of our experience as well as to communicate about it. The Greek s, in fact, had different words for these two uses of language. They used the te rm rhema to indicate words used as a medium of communication and the the term lo gos to indicate words associated with thinking and understanding. Rhema ( ) mean t a saying or 'words as things'. Logos ( ) meant words associated with the 'manifestation of reason'. The great G reek philosopher Aristotle described the relationship between words and mental e

xperience in the following way: Spoken words are the symbols of mental experience and written words are the symbols of spoken words. Just as all men have not the same writing, so all men have not the same speech sounds, but the mental experiences, which these directly symbolize, are the same for all, as also are those things of which our experiences are the images. Aristotle's claim that words "symbolize" our "mental experience" echoes the NLP notion that written and spoken words are surface structures which are transforma tions of other mental and linguistic deep structures. As a result, words can bot h reflect and shape mental experiences. This makes them a powerful tool for thou ght and other conscious or unconscious mental processes. By accessing the deep s tructure beyond the specific words used by an individual, we can identify and in fluence the process level mental operations reflected through that person's lang uage patterns. Considered in this way, language is not just an 'epiphenomenon' or a set of arbi trary signs by which we communicate about our mental experience; it is a key par t of our mental experience. As Bandler and Grinder point out: The nervous system which is responsible for producing the representational system of language is the same nervous system by which humans produce every other model of the world visual, kinesthetic, etc. . . . The same principles of structure are operating in each of these systems. Thought of in this way, we can view the structure of our language systems as par allel to the structure of our other perceptual systems. Thus, the structure and principles of language would in some way mirror the structure and principles of perception. The strategies for "forming concepts," though, would come more from the "principles of structure" (i.e., syntax or grammar) of the language than fro m the specific content of the vocabulary or words. Thus, language can parallel and perhaps even substitute for the experiences and activities in our other representational systems. An important implication of th is is that 'talking about' something can do more than simply reflect our percept ions; it can actually create or change our perceptions. This implies a potential ly deep and special role for language in the process of change and healing. In ancient Greek philosophy, for instance, logos was thought to constitute the c ontrolling and unifying principle in the universe. For example, Heraclitus (540 -480 B.C.) defined logos as the 'universal principle through which all things we re interrelated and all natural events occurred'. According to the stoics, logos was a cosmic governing or generating principle that was immanent and active in all reality and that pervaded all reality. According to Philo, a Greek speaking Jewish philosopher (and contemporary of Jesus), logos was the intermediate betwe en ultimate reality and the sensible world. NLP begins with a conception of language as a "4-tuple." That is, words or 'sur face structures' (Ad) are symbols or codes for groups of stored sensory representatio ns or 'deep structures' derived from the four basic sensory channels: Visual, Au ditory tonal, Kinesthetic, and Olfactory. The basic relationship of language to experience is represented as Ad<At,V,K,0>; where the verbal surface structures ( Ad) both trigger and are derived from the sensory deep structure represented by <At,V,K,0>. Thus, language is an 'oper ator' which organizes and structures other aspects of our experience. Deep Structure Sensory Experience and Patterns Verbal 'Surface Structures' Both Trigger and Are Derived from Sensory Experience s This relationship gives language a special role as a "meta model" a model of our o ther mental models; something which other animals do not possess. It is our abil ity to build meta models that allows us a special degree of choice and flexibili ty in relationship to our experience of the world. NLP's focus with respect to language is more on the patterns, processes and form of language than its particular contents. That is, NLP identifies certain class

es of words e.g., nominalizations, sensory based predicates, ambiguity, embedded c ommands, etc. which reflect areas of deletion, distortion and generalization in ou r experience and maps of the world. These types of formal patterns reflect highe r level processes, such as beliefs, presuppositions and assumptions, which have a greater influence on our perception of the world than any specific contents. NLP also stresses non-verbal aspects of language as a key element in forming and communicating our models of the world. Somatic Syntax, for example, explores ho w non- verbal patterns, such as movements and gestures, both shape and reflect o ur inner experiences and representations. **Proper Naming The names we give things determine their meaning to us. In the same way that a p arent helps a child learn to understand and effectively interact in the world by teaching the child the proper names of objects, events and emotions, effective leadership involves giving voice to the type of language that supports team memb ers' core values, personal qualities and capabilities. Studies made on the relationship between language and health (Rodin, 1986), for instance, indicate a connection between physical health, sense of control and "s ymptom labeling." That is, a patient's sense of control effected the way he or s he experienced and labeled bodily sensations as symptoms relevant to health or i llness. In other words, people who have less of a sense of control are more apt to label a physical sensation as a "symptom" of illness. Likewise the label give n a particular physical sensation will effect the degree of control a person fee ls about it. For example, a patient with a stomach ache can either say, "My stom ach hurts" (a bodily sensation) or "I am getting the flue" (a symptom of an illn ess). This type of labeling determines a great deal about how the person approac hes dealing with his or her situation. A "proper" name can be defined as one which brings out the best in oneself, ackn owledges the positive intention of any others involved in the situation and, at the same time, tells the truth of the experience. Phrases like, "I failed," "I am not good enough" and "I did my best, but did not yet achieve my goal" for ins tance, could all be used to describe the same situation. Each, however, will hav e a different impact on the internal state of the speaker. A name that brings out the best in oneself while demeaning others would not yet be a "proper name." Clearly, labeling something in a way that puts oneself down or negates one's own resources, would also not yet be a proper name. A name that highlights positive aspects of oneself or others, but which hides or denies the real problems of an experience, is also not a "proper name." In many ways, proper naming is a type of verbal reframing. Proper naming helps p eople to view their experiences in a way that awakens a wider perspective and pu ts them in touch with potential resources and solutions. Proper naming is partic ularly important with respect to identity statements. **One-Word Reframing Exercise A simple way to practice proper naming is to explore "one-word reframes" of othe r words. This is done by taking a word expressing a particular idea or concept a nd finding another word for that idea or concept that puts either a more positiv e or negative slant on the concept. As the philosopher Bertrand Russell humorous ly pointed out, "I am firm; you are obstinate; he is a pig-headed fool." Borrowi ng Russell's formula, we could generate some other examples, such as: I am righteously indignant; you are annoyed; he is making a fuss about nothing. I have reconsidered it; you have changed your mind; he has gone back on his word . I made a genuine mistake; you twisted the facts; he is a damned liar. I am compassionate, you are soft, he is a "pushover." Each of these statements takes a particular concept or experience and places it in several different perspectives by "re-framing" it with different words. Consi der the word "money," for example. "Success," "tool," "responsibility," "corrupt

ion," "green energy," etc., are all words or phrases that put different "frames" around the notion of "money," bringing out different potential perspectives. Tr y forming some of your own one-word reframes for some of the following concepts: responsible (e.g., stable, rigid) responsible (e.g., stable, rigid) playful (e.g., flexible, insincere) playful (e.g., flexible, insincere) stable (e.g., comfortable, boring) stable (e.g., comfortable, boring) frugal (e.g., wise, stingy) frugal (e.g., wise, stingy) friendly (e.g., nice, naive) friendly (e.g., nice, naive) assertive (e.g., confident, nasty) assertive (e.g., confident, nasty) respectful (e.g., considerate, compromising) respectful (e.g., considerate, comp romising) global (e.g., expansive, unwieldy) global (e.g., expansive, unwieldy) **Frames and Questions for GeneratingPositive Verbal Reframes Problem Statement: I (am/am not/cannot/etc.) ___________________________________ ___ Outcome Frame: What is the outcome you want? Positive Intention: What is the positive intention behind the statement? Opportunity Frame: How is this an opportunity for you? Outcome Frame: / am not a good negotiator. I want to improve my ability as a negotiator. I mi sjudged the situation. I would like to be able to judge situations more accurate ly. / cannot succeed in _______ . It is very important for me to succeed in ____ _____ . v Positive Intention: / am not a good negotiator. I want to be honest about my competencies. / misju dged the situation. It is important for me to be accountable for my decisions. I cannot succeed in _______ . I want to put my energy where it will make the most difference. Opportunity Frame: / am not a good negotiator. This is an opportunity for me to test the limits o f my competence and develop new skills. / misjudged the situation. This is an op portunity for me to improve my decision-making capabilities. / cannot succeed in This is an opportunity for me to find out how to use my energy most wisely. **Limiting Beliefs The three most common areas of limiting beliefs center around issues of hopeless ness, helplessness and worthlessness. These three areas of belief can exert a gr eat deal of influence on a person's mental and physical health. something you are or have (not) done. Hopelessness occurs when someone does not believe a particular desired goal is e ven possible. It is characterized by a sense that, "No matter what I do it won't make a difference. What I want is not possible to get. It's out of my control. I'm a victim." Helplessness occurs when, even though he or she believes that the outcome exists and is possible to achieve, a person does not believe that he or she is capable of attaining it. It produces a sense that, "It's possible for others to achieve this goal but not for me. I'm not good enough or capable enough to accomplish i t." Worthlessness occurs when, even though a person may believe that the desired goa l is possible and that he or she even has the capability to accomplish it, that individual believes that he or she doesn't deserve to get what he/she wants. It is often characterized by a sense that, "I am a fake. I don't belong. I don't de serve to be happy or healthy. There is something basically and fundamentally wro ng with me as a person and I deserve the pain and suffering that I am experienci ng."

To be successful, people need to shift these types of limiting beliefs to belief s involving hopefor the future, a sense of capability and responsibility, and a sense of self-worth and belonging. Obviously, the most pervasive beliefs are those regarding our identity. Some exa mples of limiting beliefs about identity are:"/ am helpless/worthless/a victim." "I don't deserve to succeed." "If I get what I want I will lose something." "I don't have permission to succeed." Limiting beliefs sometimes operate like a "thought virus" with a destructive cap ability similar to that of a computer virus or biological virus. A 'thought viru s' is a limiting belief that can become a 'self-fulfilling prophesy' and interfe re with one's efforts and ability to heal or improve. Thought viruses contain un spoken assumptions and presuppositions which make them difficult to identify and challenge. Limiting beliefs and thought viruses often arise as seemingly insurmountable "im passes" to the process of change. At such an impasse, a person will feel, "I've tried everything to change this and nothing works." Dealing effectively with imp asses involves finding the limiting belief that is at their core and holding the m in place. Ultimately, we transform limiting beliefs and become 'immunized' to 'thought vir uses' by expanding and enriching our models of the world, and becoming more clea r about our identities and missions. Limiting beliefs, for instance, are often d eveloped in order to fulfill a positive purpose, such as protection, establishin g boundaries, feeling a sense of personal power, etc. By acknowledging these dee per intentions and updating our mental maps to include other, more effective ways to fulfill those intentions, beliefs can ofte n be changed with a minimum amount of effort and pain. Many limiting beliefs arise as a result of unanswered 'how' questions. That is, if a person does not know how to change his or her behavior, it is easy for the person to build the belief, "That behavior can't be changed." If a person does n ot know how to accomplish a particular task, the person may develop the belief, "I am incapable of successfully completing that task." Thus, it is often also im portant to provide the answers for a number of "how to" questions in order to he lp a person transform limiting beliefs. For example, in order to address a belie f such as, "It is dangerous to show my emotions," we must answer the question, " How do I show my emotions and still stay safe?" Limiting Beliefs may be Transformed or Updated by Identifying the Positive Inten tions and Presuppositions which Underlie the Belief and Providing Alternatives a nd NewAnswers to 'How' Questions. As a simple exercise, practice turning the following limiting beliefs into how q uestions: It is dangerous to try something new. (e.g., "How can one try something new and stay safe?") If I get what I want now, something bad will happen later on. I am not c reative enough to be successful. I am too old to really learn anything new. I am too young to have anything important to contribute. Summary In summary, limiting beliefs can be updated and transformed by: Identifying and acknowledging the underlying positive intention. Identifying any unspoken or unconscious presuppositions or assumptions at the ba se of the belief. Widening the perception of the cause-effect chains or 'complex equivalences' rel ated to the belief. Providing 'how to' information with respect to alternatives for fulfilling the p ositive intention or purpose of the limiting belief. Clarifying or updating key relationships which shape one's sense of mission and purpose, and receiving positive support at an identity level.

**Verbal Frames for Eliciting LimitingBelief Statements Beliefs, and the verbalization of beliefs, typically take the form of what are k nown as "cause- effect" and "complex equivalence" statements in the Meta Model. That is, we believe that something is the result or consequence of something els e, or that something is evidence of or means something else. The following state ments use these verbal forms as a way to explore and elicit clusters of limiting beliefs relating to the sense of hopelessness, helplessness and worthlessness. Filling in the statements with respect to some situation or area in your life wh ere you feel stuck or at an "impasse" can help you to uncover important limiting beliefs which can then be addressed by other belief change processes and techni ques. If I get what I want then ___________________________________________________. What would you lose or what could go wrong if you get what you want? Getting what I want would mean ____________________________________________ . What would it mean negatively about you or others if you got what you wanted? Getting what I want will make ______________________________________________ . What problems could be caused by getting what you want? The situation will never change because_________________________________ . What constraints or blocks keep things the way they are? I can't get what I want because_____________________________________________ . What stops you from getting what you want? It is not possible for me to get what I want because ___________________________ ___ . What makes it impossible for you to get what you want? I am not capable of getting what I want because________________________________ . What personal deficiency prevents you from getting your outcome? I'll always have this problem because _______________________________________. What prevents you from reaching your outcome that can never be changed? It is wrong to want to be different because ____________________________________ _ . What makes it wrong or inappropriate to want to change? I don't deserve to get what I want because _____________________________________ . What have you done, or not done, that makes you unworthy of getting what you wan t? hgfgfdhdfhgdfh **Building a Winning Belief System A winning belief system helps people to experience: an expectation of a positive future a sense of capability and responsibility a sense of self-worth and belonging The expectation of a positive future is produced by having desirable outcomes th at are believed to be within reach. The sense of capability and responsibility c ome from the confidence that we have a good plan and possess the necessary capab ilities to take the behavioral steps necessary to successfully reach desired out comes. The sense of self- worth and belonging is a result of the degree to which it is believed that we deserve and have the permission and the support to mobil ize the capabilities and qualities required to be successful. Winning beliefs are directly related to the five fundamental components of the c ause-and- effect chain required to achieve change. These five components include : 1. The outcomes the individual, team or organization is trying to achieve. 2. The path of steps which leads to those outcomes.

3. The behaviors or actions required to take the steps necessary to successfully travel the path. 4. The plan specifying the capabilities and qualities needed to in order to effe ctively execute those behaviors and actions. 5. The people or team who must possess the capabilities and qualities needed to take the actions and successfully complete the path leading to the desired outco me. People form key beliefs which effect their perception with respect each of these five elements of change. These beliefs have to do with: 1. The desirability of the outcome (the strength of its link with core values). 2. The conviction that it is possible to reach the outcome via the specified pat h of steps. 3. The judgment of how appropriate (i.e., ethical, difficult, practical, etc.) t he required behaviors and actions are (regardless of whether or not it is believ ed they will produce the desired result). 4. The confidence that the involved individuals, team or company is/are capable to follow the plan and perform the appropriate behaviors and actions required to successfully reach the outcome. 5. The sense of responsibility, worthiness and permission that the involved indi viduals, team or company perceive with respect to using their capabilities, foll owing through with the plan and reaching the desired outcome. Creating a winning belief system involves communicating and justifying confidenc e in each of these five key beliefs. **Winning Beliefs Assessment Sheet The purpose of this worksheet is to help you identify and assess the key beliefs needed to successfully reach desired outcomes. Start by thinking of a goal you would like to achieve and write it below: Goal: ____________________________________________________________ In the spaces provided below, rate your degree of belief in your goal in relatio n to each of the statements on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being the lowest and 5 being the highest degree of belief. Check your head, heart and gut. a. "My goal is desirable and important. I want to reach it." Head: 1 2 3 4 5 Heart: 1 2 3 4 5 Gut: 1 2

3 4 5 b. "It is possible for me to reach my goal." Head: 1 2 3 4 5 Heart: 1 2 3 4 5 Gut: 1 2 3 4 5 c. "What I have to do in order to reach my goal is appropriate and ecological." Head: 1 2 3 4 5 Heart: 1 2 3 4 5 Gut: 1 2 3 4 5 d. "I have the capabilities I need to reach my goal." Head: 1 2 3 4 5 Heart: 1 2 3 4 5

Gut: 1 2 3 4 5 e. "I have the responsibility and deserve to reach my goal." Head: 1 2 3 4 5 Heart: 1 2 3 4 5 Gut: 1 2 3 4 5 **Using Inner Mentors to Build Confidence and Strengthen Belief The following steps can be used to help clients to build confidence and strength en belief through the use of inner mentors. 1. What else would you need to know, add to your goal, or to believe in order to be more congruent or confident? 2. Who would be your mentor for that knowledge or belief? Imagine where that men tor would be located physically around you in order to best support you. 3. Put yourself into the shoes of your mentor and look at yourself through your mentor's eyes (second position). What message or advice would that mentor have f or you? 4. Return to your own perspective (first position) and receive the message. How does it affect your degree of confidence and congruence? Beliefs, both empowering and limiting, are often built in relation to feedback a nd reinforcement from significant others. Our sense of identity and mission, for instance, is usually defined in relation to significant others who serve as ref erence points for the larger systems of which we perceive ourselves as a part. B ecause identity and mission form the larger framework which surrounds our belief s and values, establishing or remembering significant relationships can exert a strong influence on beliefs. Thus, clarifying key relationships, and messages re ceived in the context of those relationships, often spontaneously facilitates ch anges in beliefs. Mentors are generally significant others who have helped us to discover our own unconscious competencies, and strengthen beliefs and values often through their ow n example. Mentors are typically individuals who have helped to shape or influen ce our lives in a positive way by "resonating" with, releasing, or unveiling som ething deeply within us. Identifying such mentors with respect to the beliefs in the Belief Assessment process can help to spontaneously strengthen our confiden

ce and congruence . **Sleight of Mouth Patterns The NLP Sleight of Mouth patterns were formulated by Robert Dilts in 1980 as a r esult of modeling the verbal patterns of people such as Plato's Socrates, Jesus, Abraham Lincoln, Mohandas Gandhi, Clarence Darrow, Shakespeare's Mark Anthony, Milton Erickson, and Richard Bandler, among others. Dilts attempted to encode so me of the key linguistic mechanisms that these individuals used to effectively p ersuade others and to influence beliefs and belief systems. These patterns provi de a powerful tool for conversational belief change. Generally, Sleight of Mouth patterns can be characterized as "verbal reframes" w hich influence beliefs, and the mental maps from which beliefs have been formed. The term "Sleight of Mouth" is drawn from the notion of "Sleight of Hand." The word sleight comes from an Old Norse word meaning "crafty," "cunning," "artful" or "dexterous." Sleight of hand is a type of magic done by close-up card magicia ns. This form of magic is characterized by the experience, "now you see it, now you don't." A person may place an ace of spades at the top of the deck, for exam ple, but, when the magician picks up the card, it has "transformed" into a queen of hearts. The verbals patterns of Sleight of Mouth have a similar sort of "mag ical" quality because they can often create dramatic shifts in perception and th e assumptions upon which particular perceptions are based. To understand Sleight of Mouth patterns it is important to clarify the relations hip between beliefs and values. Values are defined by Webster's Dictionary as "p rinciples, qualities or entities that are intrinsically valuable or desirable." From the NLP perspective, values are a classic example of "deep structures," whi ch are very important subjective experiences, but are also distant from specific surface expressions in the form of concrete behaviors and sensory experiences. Values are expressed by words such as "success," "safety," "love," "integrity," etc. These types of words, known as "nominalizations" in NLP, are notorious "sli ppery." As labels, they tend to be much farther removed from any specific sensor y experience than words like "chair," "run," "sit," "house," etc. This makes the m much more susceptible to the processes of generalization, deletion and distort ion. It is not uncommon for two individuals to claim to share the same values an d yet act quite differently in similar situations, because their subjective defi nitions of the values vary so widely. To gain practical meaning, values must be connected to experiences through belie fs. Beliefs connect values to the environment, behaviors, thoughts and represent ations, or to other beliefs and values. Beliefs define the relationship between values and their causes, indicators and consequences. A typical belief statement links a particular value to some other part of our experience. The belief state ment, "Success requires hard work," for instance, links the value "success" to a class of activity ("hard work"). The statement, "Success is mainly a matter of luck," connects the same value to a different class of activity. Depending upon which of these beliefs a person had, he or she would most likely adopt a differe nt approach to attempting to reach success. Beliefs are typically expressed in the form of the Meta Model patterns known as "complex equivalence" and "cause-effect." Complex equivalences are linguistic statements which imply "equivalences" betwee n different aspects of our experience ("A=B," or "A means B"). This type of lang uage pattern is typically used to make definitions of values and establish evide nces for whether or not values have been met or violated. To say that "A resting heart rate of 60 beats per minute is healthy," or "Having a lot of money means you are successful," are examples of complex equivalences reflecting beliefs. Cause-effect statements (characterized by words such as "cause," "make," "force, " "leads to," "results in," etc.) link values causally to other aspects of our e xperience. Such linguistic structures are used to define the causes and consequences of particular values. Benjamin Franklin's classic adage, "Early to bed and early to rise makes a man h

ealthy, wealthy and wise," is an assertion of causal factors leading to the achi evement of certain values. The saying that "power corrupts" or "love heals" are statements relating to the consequences of values related to experiences. Beliefs Are Typically Expressed in the Form of Either a Complex Equivalence or C ause-Effect Thus, from the perspective of the Meta Model, belief statements involve nominali zations and lost performatives which are linked to other nominalizations, lost p erformatives, or unspecified nouns and verbs, through complex equivalences and a ssertions of cause-effect. In the model of Sleight of Mouth, a complete "belief statement" must contain eit her a complex equivalence or cause-effect assertion. A verbalization such as, "P eople don't care about me," for instance, is not yet a full "belief statement." It is a generalization related to the value of "caring"; but does not yet reveal the beliefs associated with the generalization. To get the beliefs related to t his generalization, one would need to ask, "How do you know that people don't ca re about you?" "What makes people not care about you?" "What are the consequence s of people not caring about you?" and "What does it mean that people don't care about you?" Beliefs Connect Values to Various Aspects of Our Experience Such beliefs are often elicited through "connective" words, such as "because," " whenever," "if," "after," "therefore," etc. i.e., "People don't care about me beca use. . .." "People don't care about me if.. . ." "People don't care about me the refore. . .." Sleight of Mouth patterns can be viewed as verbal operations that shift or refra me the various elements and linkages which make up the complex equivalences and cause-effects that form beliefs and belief statements. They are essentially a de scription of the ways in which one can make content or context reframes for part icular belief statements. The purpose of Sleight of Mouth is not to attack or humiliate someone for having a limiting belief; rather, it is to help the person widen and enrich his or her map of the world in order to become "open to doubt" the limiting belief and "op en to believe" something more empowering. **The Meta Structure of Beliefs There are a number of dimensions of our experience that are influenced by our be liefs, and which are also involved in forming and sustaining our beliefs. Our sensory experience is what provides the raw materials from which we construc t our maps of the world. Beliefs are generalizations drawn from the data of our experience, and are typically updated and corrected by experience. As a model of our experience, beliefs necessarily delete and distort aspects of the experienc es that they have been developed to represent. This gives beliefs the potential to limit us as easily as empower us. Values are what give our beliefs and experience meaning. They are the higher lev el 'positive intentions' which the belief has been established to support or ref lect. Beliefs connect values to our experiences through statements of 'cause-eff ect' and 'complex equivalence'. Expectations provide the motivation for maintaining a particular generalization or belief. Expectations relate to the consequences that we anticipate will come from holding a particular belief. The particular consequences a belief or genera lization produces determines the usefulness of belief. Our internal states act as both filters upon our experience and the impetus for our actions. Our internal states are often the container or foundation supportin g a particular belief or generalization, and determine the emotional energy inve sted in sustaining the belief. It is the interconnections between these various components of our life experien ce that forms what Richard Bandler refers to as the "fabric of reality." The fun ction of our beliefs is to provide key links between these basic elements that m

ake up our map of the world. Our Beliefs are Generalizations Which Link Together Experiences, Values, Interna l States and Expectations, and Form the Fabric of Our Reality Consider, for example, a child learning to ride a bicycle. An empowering belief such as, "I can learn," might link together key values associated with learning su ch as 'fun' and 'self improvement' with an internal state of 'confidence', and the expectation that, "I will get better and better." These provide the motivation and impetus for the child to keep trying, even though he or she might fall quite frequently. As the child is able to experience longer periods in which he or sh e maintains balance before falling, it reinforces the generalization, "I can lea rn," as well as the state of confidence, the expectation of improvement and the values of fun and self improvement. Healthy beliefs maintain their connection with all of these various dimensions. Our beliefs naturally shift and update themselves as we go through changes in va lues, expectations, internal states, and as we have new experiences. Limiting beliefs can arise as a result of a shift in any one of these components to a negative formulation or 'problem frame'. Once established, limiting belief s can exert an influence on any or all of these various components. For instance , let's say that a child who is learning to ride a bicycle has an older brother or sister who is already able to ride a bike competently. While this may provide a strong motivation for the younger child to learn to ride, he or she may also develop inappropriate expectations. The child may expect to ride as well as his or her older sibling, and compare his or her performance negatively to that of t he older child. Because the younger child's performance does not match his or he r expectations, the child my shift into a problem frame or failure frame, leadin g to an internal state of frustration. In addition to producing uncomfortable fe elings, the negative internal state may affect the child's performance, causing him or her to fall more frequently. The child may also begin to build the expect ation, "I will fall again," feeding a self-fulfilling prophesy. Eventually, in o rder to avoid continued discomfort and frustration, the child may establish the belief, "I will never be able to ride a bicycle," and quit trying to ride any lo nger. Limiting Beliefs Create a 'Problem Frame When limiting beliefs and generalizations stay connected with the intentions and experiences from which they have been established, the deletions and distortion s eventually become updated or corrected as a result of new experiences, changed in internal state, and revised expectations. New data or 'counter examples' tha t do not fit with the generalization will lead the person to reconsider the vali dity of his or her limiting belief. If a child who has built the generalization, "I can't ride a bike," is encourage d and supported to continue to try riding (and is able to perceive his or her "f ailure" as "feedback") he or she will eventually learn to maintain balance, and begin to have some success. This will typically lead the child to begin to think , "Well, maybe I can learn this after all." With continued success, the child wi ll reverse his or her earlier belief, naturally reframing it on his or her J own . The child becomes more 'open to believe' that he or she is capable of learning to ride the bicycle, and 'open to doubt' his or her perceived limitations. The basic questions one can ask, then, to either challenge or strengthen a belie f are: 1. What internal state supports (or inhibits) the belief? 2. What values (priorities, intentions) strengthen (or weaken) your commitment t o the belief? 3. What expectations will either drive or motivate (or deflate or derail) the be lief?

4. What experiences will reinforce (erode) the belief?

**Definitions and Examples of Sleight ofMouth Patterns There are fourteen distinct Sleight of Mouth patterns which each help to shift a ttention, or widen a person's map in different directions. Consider the belief; "I have had this belief for such a long time that it will be difficult to change ."This is actually a common belief that many people struggle with when attemptin g to make changes in their lives. While it reflects a valid perspective, it can be quite a limiting belief if taken at face value and interpreted narrowly or ri gidly. (It is also particularly tricky, because it is a belief about other belie fs and the process of changing beliefs. This'self-referential'quality increases the likelihood that it could become 'circular' and a possible 'thought virus'.) Applying the various Sleight of Mouth patterns can help to add new perspective a nd 'widen the map' associated with this belief. Structure of a Limiting Belief Statement About Change The following are definitions and examples of how the fourteen different Sleight of Mouth patterns can be applied to this particular belief statement. Again, re member that the purpose of Sleight of Mouth is not to attack the person or the b elief, but rather to reframe the belief and widen the person's map of the world in such a way that the positive intention behind the belief can be maintained th rough other choices. 1. Intention: Directing attention to the purpose or intention behind the belief. e.g., "I very much admire and support your desire to be honest with yourself." Positive intention = "honesty" "It is so important to be realistic about changing one's beliefs. Let's look rea listically at this belief and what will be required to change it." . Positive intention = "being realistic" 2. Redefine: Substituting a new word for one of the words used in the belief sta tement that means something similar but has different implications. e.g., "Yes, something that you've held onto so tenaciously can be challenging to let go of." "had a long time" => "held onto tenaciously" "difficult to change" => "challeng ing to let go of "I agree that it can initially feel strange to go beyond familiar boundaries." "belief => "familiar boundary" "difficult to change" => "initially feel strange to go beyond" 3. Consequence: Directing attention to an effect (positive or negative) of the b elief, or the generalization defined by the belief, which changes (or reinforces ) the belief. e.g., "Anticipating that something will be difficult often makes it seem that mu ch easier when you finally do it." "Genuinely acknowledging our concerns allows us to be able to put them aside so that we can focus on what we want." 4. Chunk Down: Breaking the elements of the belief into smaller pieces such that it changes (or reinforces) the generalization defined by the belief. e.g., "Since having the belief only a short time would make it much easier to ch ange, perhaps you can remember what it was like back at the time you had just fo rmed the belief and imagine having changed it at that time." "long time" => "short time" "Perhaps if, instead of trying to change the whole belief at once, if you just a ltered it in small increments, it would feel easy and even fun."

"changing a belief => "altering it in increments" 5. Chunk Up: Generalizing an element of the belief to a larger classification th at changes (or reinforces) the relationship defined by the belief. e.g., "I guess it is possible for any form of knowledge to become disconnected f rom the processes which naturally update it." "belief => "a form of knowledge" difficult to change => "disconnected from the processes which naturally update if "All processes of change have a natural cycle that cannot be rushed. The questi on is, what is the length of the natural life cycle for the particular belief yo u have?" "difficult to change" => "natural cycle that cannot be rushed" had the bel ief a . long time => "length of the belief's 'life cycle'" 6. Counter-Example: Finding an example or "exception to the rule" s or enriches the generalization defined by the belief. e.g., "Most other mental processes (such as old memories) seem to tense and more susceptible to distortion and change the longer we her than become stronger. What makes beliefs so different?" "I have seen many beliefs established and changed instantaneously are provided with the appropriate experiences and support." that challenge become less in have them, rat when people

7. Analogy: Finding a relationship analogous to that defined by the belief which challenges (or reinforces) the generalization defined by the belief. . e.g., "A belief is like a law. Even very old laws can be changed quickly if enou gh people vote for something new." "A belief is like a computer program. The issue is not how old the program is, it is whether or not you know the programming language ." . 8. Apply to Self: Evaluating the belief statement itself according to the relati onship or criteria defined by the belief. e.g., "How long have you held the opinion that the difficulty in changing belief s is primarily a matter of time?" "How difficult do you think it would be to change your belief that long held generalizations are difficult to change?" 9. Another Outcome: Switching to a different goal than that addressed or implied by the belief, in order to challenge (or reinforce) the relevancy of the belief . e.g., "It is not necessary to change the belief. It just needs to be updated." "The issue is not so much about changing beliefs. It is about making your map of the world congruent with who you are now." 10. Hierarchy of Criteria: Re-evaluating (or reinforcing) the belief according t o a criterion that is more important than any addressed by the belief. e.g., "The degree to which a belief fits with and supports one's vision and miss ion is more important than how long one has had the belief." "Personal congruence and integrity are worth whatever effort it takes to achieve them." Hierarchy of Criteria 11. Change Frame Size: Re-evaluating (or reinforcing) the implication of the bel ief in the context of a longer (or shorter) time frame, a larger number of peopl e (or from an individual point of view) or a bigger or smaller perspective. e.g., "Your probably not the first or only one to change have this belief. Perha ps the more people there are who are successfully able to change it, the easier it will become for others change this type of belief in the future." "Years from now, you will probably have difficulty remembering that you ever had this belief." "I am sure that your children will appreciate that you have put out the effort t

o change this belief, rather than passing it on to them." Change Frame Size 12. Meta Frame: Evaluating the belief from the frame of an ongoing, personally o riented context -establishing a belief about the belief. e.g., "Perhaps you have the belief that beliefs are difficult to change, because you have previously lacked the tools and understandings necessary to change the m easily." "Has it occurred to you that maybe your belief that this particular belief will be difficult to change is a good justification for staying the way you are. Mayb e there is something that you like, or a a part of you likes, about the way you are now." 13. Model of the World: Re-evaluating (or reinforcing) the belief from the frame work of a different model of the world. e.g., "You are lucky. Many people don't even recognize that their limitations ar e a function of beliefs that can be changed at all. You are a lot farther ahead than they are." "Artists frequently use their inner struggles as a source of inspiration for cre ativity. I wonder what type of creativity your efforts to change your belief mig ht bring out in you." 14. Reality Strategy: Reevaluating (or reinforcing) the belief accounting for th e fact that people operate from cognitive perceptions of the world to build beli efs. e.g., "How do you know that you have had this belief for a long time'?" "What particular qualities of what you see or hear when you think about changing this belief make it seem 'difficult'?"

**The Sleight of Mouth Patterns as a System of Verbal Interventions As the following diagram illustrates, the fourteen Sleight of Mouth Patterns for m a system of interventions which may be applied to the cause-effect or complex equivalence statement at the foundation of a particular belief, in order to eith er become more 'open to doubt' or 'open to believe' that particular generalizati on. The Whole System of Sleight of Mouth Patterns **Sleight of Mouth Questions One of the best ways to both learn and apply Sleight of Mouth is by asking quest ions related to the various Sleight of Mouth patterns. In a way, each of the Sle ight of Mouth patterns could be considered an answer to a key questions leading to different perspectives and perceptual positions. Start by writing down a limiting belief statement that you would like to work wi th. Make sure that it is a "complete" belief statement in the form of either a c omplex equivalence or cause- effect assertion. A typical structure would be: Referent (am/is/are) judgment because reason. Limiting Belief: ______________________ means/causes ________________________ 1. Intention: What is the positive purpose or intention of this belief? 2. Redefine: What is another word for one of the words used in the belief statem ent that means something similar but has more positive implications? 3. Consequence: What is a positive effect of the belief or the relationship defi ned by the belief?

4. Chunk Down: What smaller elements or chunks are implied by the belief but hav e a richer or more positive relationship than the ones stated in the belief? 5. Chunk Up: What larger elements or classes are implied by the belief but have a richer or more positive relationship than the ones stated in the belief? 6. Counter Example: What is an example or experience that is an exception to the rule defined by the belief? 7. Analogy: What is some other relationship which is analogous to that defined b y the belief (a metaphor for the belief), but which has different implications? 8. Apply to Self: How can you evaluate the belief statement itself according to the relationship or criteria defined by the belief? 9. Another Outcome: What other outcome or issue could be more relevant than the one stated or implied by the belief? 10. Hierarchy of Criteria: What is a criterion that is potentially more importan t than those addressed by the belief that has not yet been considered? 11. Change Frame Size: What is a longer (or shorter) time frame, a larger number or smaller number of people, or a bigger or smaller perspective that would chan ge the implications of the belief to be something more positive? 12. Meta Frame: What is a belief about this belief that could change or enrich t he perception of the belief? 13. Model of the World: What is a different model of the world that would provid e a very different perspective on this belief? 14. Reality Strategy: What cognitive perceptions of the world are necessary to h ave built this belief? How would one need to perceive the world in order for thi s belief to be true? **Applications of Sleight of Mouth Sometimes a simple Sleight of Mouth statement can make a big difference in helpi ng to shift a person's attitude and responses. Consider the example of the woman who had just received news that she had an unusual form of cancer, and that, co nsequently, the doctors were not certain how to treat it. Fearing the worst, the woman was anxious and distraught over the situation. She consulted an NLP pract itioner, who pointed out to her that, "In unusual circumstances, unusual things can happen." This simple statement helped her to shift her perspective such that she could view uncertainty as a possible advantage, not necessarily a problem. The woman began to take more action on her own, and was given more freedom of ch oice by her doctors, because her situation was "unusual." The woman went on to h ave a remarkable recovery (also "unusual") with minimal intervention from her do ctors, completely regaining her health. There are also many historical examples of how Sleight of Mouth statements, made at the right time, have changed the course of history and saved lives. Consider the following account, taken from the Gospel of John (8:3-11), of a particularl y powerful and moving example of how Jesus used the Sleight of Mouth pattern of 'apply to self to save a woman's life. "And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and w hen they had set her in the midst, They said unto him, Master, this woman was ta ken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such s hould be stoned: but what sayest thou? This they said, tempting him, that they might have cause to accuse him. But Jesu s stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. And again he s tooped down, and wrote on the ground. And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one b y one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, an d the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had lifted himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Wom an, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? She said, No man , Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.

" Jesus' statement, "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her," is a classic example of applying the values asserted by a belief statem ent back onto the belief itself. To do so, Jesus first 'chunked up' "adultery" t o "sin," and then invited the crowd to apply the same criterion to their own beh avior. Jesus' Application of Apply to Self Saved a Woman's Life Notice that Jesus did not challenge the belief itself. Rather he "outframed," ca using the group to shift their perceptual position and widen their map of the si tuation to include their own behavior. Sleight of Mouth and 'Thought Viruses' Sleight of Mouth patterns are sometimes effective in situations where other beli ef change techniques and interventions are difficult to apply or are inappropria te. Sleight of Mouth is often necessary in order to deal with "though viruses," for example. A thought virus is a special class of limiting belief. A typical li miting belief is a generalization drawn from experience. Consequently, it can be updated or corrected as a result of experience. New data or 'counter examples' that do not fit with the generalization will lead the person to reconsider the v alidity of his or her belief. If a child falls down several times while attempti ng to learn to ride his or her bicycle, for example, the child may build the gen eralization, "I can't ride a bike." This may even lead to a type of 'self fulfil and accompanying frustration make it eve ling' cycle in which the child's belief n more difficult for the child to be in the appropriate state of attention to le arn the skill. The increased interference confirms the child's limiting belief, and he or she may give up trying if not encouraged by others. A Normal Belief Is Drawn from (and thus Naturally Corrected by) Experience and S upports Positive Intentions and Values If the child is encouraged and supported to continue to try riding, however, he or she will eventually learn to maintain balance and begin to have some success. This will t ypically lead the child to begin to think, "Well, maybe I can learn this after a ll." With continued success, the child will reverse his or her earlier belief, n aturally reframing it on his or her own. Thought viruses, on the other hand, are based on other limiting beliefs rather t han on direct experiences. They are usually generalizations, drawn from other be liefs or assumptions; frequently beliefs that are not even our own, but that hav e been installed by others. Thus, thought viruses are not naturally corrected or updated by experience. Rather, the beliefs upon which they are based (and which hold them in place) must be identified and transformed. While techniques such as the Belief Change Cycle can be used with many typical l imiting beliefs, Sleight of Mouth is often most effective for 'thought viruses'. This is probably no more evident than in situations involving political, philoso phical and theological debate. Many of the individuals who served as models for the Sleight of Mouth patterns had missions in the area of social change, and use d Sleight of Mouth in order to transform limiting cultural beliefs through orato ry and debate. Within the framework of Sleight of Mouth, the goal of all speeches, oratory, deb ate, etc., is to create, reinforce, challenge, outframe, or recode a particular belief or belief system. To effectively install a new belief system, it is also sometimes necessary to first create a "double bind" or dilemma with respect to t he existing belief system. One cannot simply assert alternative beliefs and expe ct them to be considered or accepted based on their own merit. Belief change oft en requires destabilizing current beliefs by introducing doubt. This sometimes i ncludes addressing or reframing a number of alternatives which may challenge the new belief one desires to install (see the entry on Polya Patterns). The following excerpt from a speech by Abraham Lincoln challenging pro-slavery t heology (October 1, 1858) is another classic example of how Sleight of Mouth pat

terns are used to outframe existing limiting beliefs and create a wider map of t he world. "Suppose it is true, that the Negro is inferior to the white, in the gifts of na ture; is it not the exact reverse justice that the white should, for that reason, take from the Negro, any part of the little which has been given him? "Give to him that is nee dy" is the Christian rule of charity; but "Take from him that is needy" is the rule of slavery. The sum of pro-slavery theology seems to be this: "Slavery is not universally ri ght, nor yet universally wrong; it is better for some people to be slaves; and, in su ch cases, it is the Will of God that they be such." Certainly there is no contendin g against the Will of God; but still there is some difficulty in ascertaining, and applying it, to particular cases. For instance we will suppose the Rev. Dr. Ross has a sl ave " named Sambo, and the question is "Is it the Will of God that Sambo shall remai n a slave, or be set free?" The Almighty gives no audible answer to the question, an d his revelation the Bible gives none or, at most, none but such as admits of a squabble, as to its meaning. No one thinks of asking Sambo's opinion on it. So, at last, it comes to this, that Dr. Ross is to decide the question. And while he co nsiders , it, he sits in the shade, with gloves on his hand, and subsists on the bread t hat Sambo is earning in the burning sun. If he decides that God wills Sambo to continue a slave, he thereby retains his own comfortable position; but if he dec ides that God wills Sambo to be free, he thereby has to walk out of the shade, throw off his gloves, and delve for his own bread. Will Dr. Ross be actuated by that perf ect impartiality, which has ever been considered most favorable to correct decisions ? But, slavery is good for some people!!! As a good thing, slavery is strikingly p eculiar, in this, that it is the only good thing which no man ever seeks the good of, for himself. Nonsense! Wolves devouring lambs, not because it is good for their own greedy maws, but because it is good for the lambs!!!" As with all effective change processes, Lincoln's primary approach is one of Pac ing and Leading. Lincoln systematically begins by first acknowledging or "pacing " the existing belief or belief statement. He then applies several different Sle ight of Mouth strategies within his speech, however, to begin to "lead" his list eners into doubt about the validity of the belief. Lincoln's first intervention "paces" the belief that "the Negro is inferior to t he white," but then redefines the notion of "inferiority" as "having less" or be ing "needy." He also redefines "slavery" as "taking something away from" somebod y. The consequence "take from the needy" suddenly stands out as being clearly op posed to the "Christian rule of charity." In his next intervention, Lincoln takes a slightly different angle. He first "pa ces" again by summarizing "pro-slavery theology" as the belief that, "Slavery is

not universally right, nor yet universally wrong; it is better for some people to be slaves; and, in such cases, it is the Will of God that they be such." Agai n, Lincoln does not challenge the belief directly, claiming that "there is no co ntending against the Will of God." Instead, he uses the Sleight of Mouth pattern of chunking down; attempting to apply the belief to the "particular case" of "D r. Ross and Sambo." The question is, "Is it the Will of God that Sambo shall rem ain a slave, or be set free?" Lincoln quickly establishes the meta frame that "D r. Ross is to decide the question," pointing out that "while he considers it, he sits in the shade, with gloves on his hand, and subsists on the bread that Samb o is earning in the burning sun." (This level of detail is clearly indicative of much more "sensory based" chunking than the abstract language originally used t o state the belief). Lincoln points out the consequences that if Dr. Ross decides that "God" wills Sa mbo to continue to be a slave, "he thereby retains his own comfortable position" and does not have to "walk out of the shade, throw off his gloves, and delve fo r his own bread." This leads to the meta frame that it will not be possible for Dr. Ross to make an impartial decision related to "God's will" for Sambo; again introducing doubt about the validity of the belief. Lincoln then shifts to using counter example and analogy to outframe the notion that "slavery is 'better' for some people." He first redefines "better" to "good ," and then points out that "as a good thing, slavery is strikingly peculiar" in that "it is the only good thing which no man ever seeks the good of, for himsel f." He draws out the power of the counter example even more by making the analog y to "wolves devouring lambs because it is good for the lambs."

**Strategies for Using Sleight of MouthPatterns As the example of Lincoln's speech illustrates, Sleight of Mouth patterns can be sequenced and combined to form strategies for influencing beliefs and belief sy stems. In order to avoid being (or appearing) combative or confrontative, the fu ndamental strategy for using Sleight of Mouth is that of Pacing and Leading. The following strategies outline some of the methods that can be used to apply Slei ght of Mouth patterns to 'pace and lead' limiting beliefs to more positive refor mulations by taking them through a series of intermediate steps. In this way, th e belief is shifted incrementally in a more gentle fashion, rather than attempti ng to change it all at once. 1. Belief Chaining In NLP, the term "chaining" refers to a form of anchoring in which experiences a re linked together in a particular sequence, leading from a starting state to a desired st ate. The key element in establishing an effective "chain" is the selection of the transition states chosen to link the problem state to the desired state. These transition states function as "stepping stones" to help the individual move more easily in the direction of the goal sta te. It is often difficult for a person to cross the gap between their current st ate and some desired state. Let's say, for example, a person is stuck in a state of frustration, and wants to be motivated to learn something new. It is difficu lt to just switch from frustration to motivation and would most likely simply cr eate tension or conflict to attempt to force oneself from one to the other. Chai ning would involve establishing two or three intermediate steps or states betwee n frustration and motivation. The most effective chains are those which incrementally pace and lead from the p roblem state to the desired state. If the problem state is negative and the desi red state is positive, this would involve moving incrementally from the negative state to another state which is only somewhat negative; confusion, for example. From the somewhat negative state, a small

but significant step can be made to a state that is slightly positive; let's say curiosity about what might happen next. It is then relatively simple to take a step from the somewhat positive state to the desired state of motivation. Of cou rse, depending on the physiological and emotional distance between the present a nd desired states, more intermediate steps may need to be added. Chaining States - From Frustration to Motivation When selecting the states which are to be part of a chain, it is best if contigu ous states have some degree of physiological, cognitive or emotional overlap. Fr ustration and confusion, for example, share some features. Likewise, confusion a nd curiosity overlap in relation to certain characteristics - they both involve uncertainty about an outcome, for example. Curiosity and motivation also have si milarities in that they both involve wanting to go in a particular direction. Basic Belief Chaining Procedure The establishment of the sequence of states in a chain, and the linking of one s tate to another is most easily done through the process of anchoring. Historical ly, the NLP technique of "Chaining Anchors" has used kinesthetic anchoring. One way of creating a belief chain is to add linguistic distinctions, such as Sleigh t of Mouth patterns, to the sequence of kinesthetic anchors. As an example, to work with a limiting belief, you can lay out four spaces to fo rm a 'chain' going from the Problem State (the limiting belief) to the Desired S tate (a more empowering belief) with two intermediate steps: Location #1: The limiting belief (Problem State) Location #2: The positive intention of the limiting belief Location #3: A redefinition of some aspect of the limiting belief statement whic h makes it somewhat positive Location #4: An empowering belief that is a consequence of both the positive int ention and redefinition (Desired State)

1. Standing in the location for the problem state, choose a limiting belief that you would like to work with (e.g., "It is hard for me to learn language pattern s, because I get confused and bored by words.") Pay attention to the internal st ate that is associated with the limiting belief. Then, step out of the location and change your state, "shaking off the affect associated with the limiting beli ef. 2. Now, walk over to the desired state location and enter into an internal state in which you feel 'aligned' and 'wise'. It isn't necessary to know the empoweri ng belief that will accompany this belief at this time; it is only necessary to experience the positive internal state that will be associated with it.

3. Return to the 'problem state' location, and physically walk through other ste ps of the chain to get a sense of the movement from the present state to the des ired state. Again, it is only important to begin to a feeling for the changes in the internal state. You do not yet need to be conscious of any changes in the b elief just yet. 4. Go back to the limiting belief space and then take a step forward to the loca tion representing the 'positive intention'. Explore the positive purpose of your limiting belief, trying out different words until you find an expression that r eally shifts your feeling and internal state to something more positive, (e.g., "To feel associated and connected with what I am learning.") 5. Step forward again, into the 'redefining' space. Restate the limiting belief, but redefine the key words of the belief to better reflect what you have discov

ered about the positive intention. Explore how different verbal reframes can hel p give you different perspectives on the belief. Again, keep trying different wo rds, until you have found some that significantly change your feeling with respe ct to the belief, (e.g., "It is hard for me to pay attention to language pattern s, when I get confused and bored because I am listening only to the words and no t paying attention to my feelings and relationships with other people.") 6. Step forward again, to the desired state location, and formulate a positive b elief statement that incorporates the positive intention of the limiting belief, but that is empowering and enriching. Again make sure that the words really sti mulate positive feelings when you say them, (e.g., "I can really enjoy learning language patterns, when I stay associated and connected to my feelings and relat ionships with other people while I am listening to the words.") 7. Walk through the chain several times, repeating the statements associated wit h each location, until it feels like there is an easy and smooth flow from prese nt state desired state, both linguistically and kinesthetically. 2. Chains of Meaning A Chain of Meaning is a type of Belief Chain which can be used to link a limitin g belief to more empowering possibilities through the Sleight of Mouth pattern o f redefining. Chains of meaning use the structure: In a Chain of Meaning, a negative label or evaluation (A-) is linked to a more p ositive conclusion (D+) by creating a chain of 'complex equivalences' (B and C), which each redefine the limiting judgment in a more positive direction. In the following example, the negative label "learning disabled" is linked to being "a thorough learner" through a simple chain of meaning. "jf being learning disabled (A-) means that one is a slow learner (B), and being a slow learner means that it takes longer to learn (C), and taking longer to le arn something means one is a more thorough learner (D+), then being learning dis abled means one is a more thorough learner." Fill in the blank spaces below to practice creating a chain of meaning with resp ect to some limiting belief or generalization. a) A- (a negative quality, situat ion or experience) ___________________________ (e.g., "failure") b ) means B (a neutral or not so negative quality or characteristic) _________________; _______ _________ __ (e.g., "what I tried did not work") c) which means C (another neutr al or slightly positive quality or characteristic) _____________________________ ______ (e.g., "I have more experience about what is and is not effective") d) wh ich means D+ (a positive quality, characteristic or experience) ___________ ____ _ e.g., "it will be easier to find a proper solution") Therefore ____________________________(A-: "failure") means ______________________________(D+: "it will be easier to find a proper sol ution"). 3. Chains of Causes A Chain of Causes is another type of belief chaining method which links a partic ular belief to a more enriched map of the world through a series of consequences . Establishing a Chain of Causes involves connecting a particular phenomenon to other behaviors and experiences through 'cause-and-effect' statements (similar to the way 'causal modeling' is used in the Milton Model as a way to form hypnot ic suggestions). Chains of Causes use the structure: This structure is illustrated in the following example: "If visualizing oneself as a healthy person (A) makes a person more hopeful (B), and hope reduces stress (C), and reducing stress reduces the chance of illness (D-), then visualizing oneself as a healthy person reduces the chances of illnes s." In this case, the reduction of a problem state ("illness") is connected to the p rocess of visualization by establishing a series of consequences stemming from v isualization as the root cause.

Defining a Chain of Causes can be done by answering the following questions: a) What is a negative quality, characteristic or experience (D-) that you would like to change? (e.g., "anger") _______________________ b) What process, situation or occurrence (C) causes that negative quality, chara cteristic or experience? (e.g., "disappointment") c) What process, situation or occurrence (B) causes C? (e.g., "expectations") d) What process, situation or occurrence (A) causes B? (e.g., "focusing on a particular path or outcome") _______________________ Since A causes B, B causes C, and C causes D; then adjusting A _________________ ___ (e.g., "the path or outcome one is focusing on") will shift D-______________ _______ (e.g., "anger"). Chains of Causes can also be used to enhance a positive belief or generalization by linking a desired state or conclusion to other behaviors and activities whic h give a person a greater sense of participation and influence. Again, this is d one by establishing a series of consequences, as is demonstrated in the followin g exercise. a) What is a positive quality, characteristic or experience (D+) that you would like to have more of? ______________________________________ (e.g., "patience") b) What process, situation or occurrence (C) causes that positive quality, chara cteristic or experience? _______________________________________(e.g., "acceptan ce") c) What process, situation or occurrence (B) causes C? _________________________ _______ (e.g., "trust that things will turn out OK") d) What process, situation or occurrence (A) causes B? _________________________ ________ (e.g., "shifting to a longer term perspective") Since A causes B, B causes C, and C causes D; then enhancing A _________________ __ ("shifting to a longer term perspective") will enhance D+ ___________________ _ ("patience"). 4. Values Bridging Positive intentions often take the form of key values (i.e., safety, achievement , respect, quality, etc.). Verbal reframing can be used to help people resolve c onflicts or incongruences with respect their values or beliefs. Situations often arise in which there seem to be clashes in the core values of individuals or gr oups. One person, for example, may desire "growth" while another values "securit y." The second person may believe that the steps necessary to promote growth thr eaten his or her sense of security and thus resist it. These types of seemingly fundamental incompatibilities can create conflict and resistance if not properly addressed. One way to deal with seeming values conflicts is to use verbal reframing to crea te a "chain" linking the differing values. As an example, "growth" can be easily reframed to "expanding possibilities and choices." "Security" can be reframed t o "not having all your eggs in one basket." In many ways, "expanding possibiliti es and options" and "not putting all your eggs in one basket" are quite similar. Thus, the simple verbal reframes have closed the gap between the two seemingly incompatible values. As another example, let's say one person has a core value of "quality;" whereas another is keen on "creativity." These two values might initially seem at odds w ith one another ("quality" is about "keeping to standards" but "creativity" is a bout "changing things"). "Quality," however, could be reframed as "continual imp rovement." "Creativity" could be reframed as "producing better alternatives." Ag ain, the simple reframes can help people to create a bridge and see the connecti on between the two seemingly disparate values. To try this, use the following format. 1. Identify an area in which people from different social or organizational cult ures seem in conflict. 2. Specify the seemingly incompatible values related to the conflict or incongru ence. Write the two values in the spaces titled Value #1 and Value #2.

3. Reframe each value using a word or phrase that overlaps with the value but of fers a different perspective. See if you can find two reframes that "chain" the seemingly incompatible values together in a way that makes them more harmonious or complementary. Value #1 Reframe #1 Reframe #2 Value #2 e.g.: "". Professionalism Personal Integrity Self Expression Freedom Value #1 Reframe #1 Reframe #2 Value #2 5. Comparisons and Framing Another strategy for shifting perceptions related to limiting beliefs and genera lizations is by making comparisons and establishing frames. A particular experie nce may seem either more positive or more negative depending on what you compare it with. In general, if you compare A+ to B to C-, then B is negative compared to A+, but positive compared to C-; e.g., "Compared to Gandhi (A+) I'm a sinner. Compared to Hitler (C-), I'm a saint." Frequently, people make only one side of the comparison, or no comparison at all, thus biasing their perspective. One method of using Sleight of Mouth to 'reframe' limiting beliefs and generaliz ations is to create a chain of consequences that "frames" the problem experience as the consequence of some positive cause (such as a positive intention), and a s leading to some positive end, as in the following example: "Fear (B-) is caused by the desire to protect oneself (A+). Fear also prevents p eople from rushing into something (C), which helps them to act more ecologically (D+). Therefore fear isn't such a bad thing because its positive intention is p rotection and it causes people to act more ecologically." This process can be summarized using the following structure: The following questions can be used to create this type of belief 'reframe': a) What is the problematic quality, characteristic or experience (B)? ________________ (e.g., "self doubt") b) What is the positive intention (A) behind the problematic quality, characteri stic or experience? ______________________________________(e.g., "desire to improve") c) What is a neutral, or slightly positive consequence (C) resulting from the pr oblematic quality, characteristic or experience? _________________________________(e.g., "self doubt" makes a person more "aware of his or her own limitations") d) What is a positive consequence (D+) that results from this first consequence? ______________________________________(e.g., being more "humble and careful") Therefore self doubt (B-) comes from the desire to improve (A+). Self doubt also makes people more aware of their own limitations (C), which helps them to be mo re humble and careful (D+). Therefore self doubt isn't such a bad thing because its positive intention is improvement and it causes people to have more humility and be more careful." 6. Changing Logical Levels One of the most common and effective Sleight of Mouth tactics involves re-catego rizing a characteristic or experience from one logical level to another (e.g., s eparating a person's identity from his or her capabilities or behavior). Negativ e identity judgments are often the result of interpreting particular behaviors, or the lack of ability to produce certain behavioral results, as statements abou t one's identity. Shifting a negative identity judgment back to a statement abou t a person's behavior or capabilities greatly reduces the impact it has on the p erson mentally and emotionally. As an example, a person might be depressed about having cancer, and refer to him self or herself as a "cancer victim." This could be 'retrained' with the respons e, "You are not a cancer victim (A = identity), you are a normal person who has not yet developed the capability to take full advantage of the mind-body connect ion (B = capability)." This can help the person to shift his or her relationship

to the illness, open up to other possibilities, and to view himself or herself as a participant in the healing process. The same type of reframe could be done with a belief like "I am a failure." One could point out, "It is not that you are a 'failure', it is just that you have n ot yet mastered all of the elements necessary for success." Again, this puts the limiting identity level judgment back into a more proactive and solvable framew ork. Formally, this process can be expressed in the following way: If element {d} is a member of set {C} and {C} is a member of a larger set {B} an d {B} is a member of an even larger set {A} Then {d}^{C}^{B}#{A}. In human behav ior, what we {d}o is organized into sets of {C}apabilties which are organized in to a system of {B}eliefs which are organized into the set of what we {A}re our ide ntities. Categorizing something into a different logical level changes its meani ng and impact. These types of reframes can be designed using the following steps: a) Identify the negative identity judgment (A-): lam________________________ (e. g., "I am a burden to others.'") b) Identify a specific capability or behavior that is related to either the pres ent state or desired state implied by the identity judgment (B): Ability to ____ ___________________ (e.g., "Ability to resolve problems on one's own"). c) Substitute the capability or behavior for the negative identity judgme nt: Perhaps it is not that you are a ___ ___________________ (negative identity: e.g., "burden to others"), it is just that you don't yet have the ability to __ ____________________ (specific capability or behavior: e.g., "resolve problems o n your own"). **Sleight of Mouth Exercise The following exercise is a way to practice some simple Sleight of Mouth Strateg ies: 1. Identify a Limiting Belief about yourself. Express it in the form: Referent (am/is/are) judgment because reason. not good complex equivalent incapa ble cause-effect unworthy e.g., / am selfish because I don't make enough time for my family. 2. Find the Positive Intention behind the limiting belief. e.g., I want to be a good, well-balanced person and show others that I value the m. 3. Move negative Identity statements to lower logical levels e.g.. / act selfish ly because I don't know how to balance time for myself with family commitments, e.g., I feel selfish when I am unable to spend the amount of time that I would l ike to with my family. 4. Reformulate negative statements to neutral or positive statements. e.g., I focus on personal goals because I have many projects that I am passionat e about. **Natural Examples of Sleight of MouthPatterns From Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare Brutus: Romans, countrymen, and lovers! hear me for my cause, and be silent, tha t you may hear: believe me for mine honour, that you may believe: censure me in your wisdom, and awake your senses, that you may the better judge. If there be a ny in this assembly, any dear friend of Caesar's, to him I say, that Brutus' lov e to Caesar was no less than his. If that friend demand why Brutus rose against Caesar, this is my answer: Not that I loved Caesar less, but that I loved Rome m ore. Had you rather Caesar were living and die all slaves than that Caesar were dead to live all free men? As Caesar loved me, I weep for him; as he was fortuna te, I rejoice at it; as he was valiant, I honour him; but, as he was ambitious, I slew him. There is tears for his love; joy for his fortune; honour for his val our; and death for his ambition. Who here is so base that would be a bondsman? I

f any, speak; for him have I offended. Who here is so rude that would not be a R oman? If any speak; for him have I offended. I pause for a reply. All: None, Brutus, none. Brutus: Then none have I offended. I have done no more to Caesar than you shall do to Brutus. The question of his death is enrolled in the Capital; his glory no t extenuated, wherein he was worthy, nor his offenses enforced, for which he suf fered death. Enter Antony and others with Caesar's body. Here comes his body, mourned by Mark Antony: who, though he had no hand in his d eath, shall receive the benefit of his dying, a place in the commonwealth; as wh ich of you shall not? With this I depart, that, as I slew my best lover for the good of Rome, I have the same dagger for myself, when it shall please my country to need my death. Antony: Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears; I have come to bury Caes ar, not to praise him. The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft in terred with their bones; So let it be with Caesar. The noble Brutus Hath told yo u Caesar was ambitious: If it were so, it was a grievous fault, And grievously h ath Caesar answer'd it. Here, under the leave of Brutus and the rest - For Brutu s is an honourable man; So are they all, all honourable men - Come I to speak at Caesar's funeral. He was my friend, faithful and just to me: But Brutus says he was ambitious; and Brutus is an honourable man. He hath brought many captives h ome to Rome, whose ransoms did the general coffers fill: Did this in Caesar seem ambitious? When that the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept: Ambition should be made of sterner stuff: Yet Brutus says he was ambitious; and Brutus is an honou rable man. You all did see that on the Lupercal I thrice presented him a kingly crown, which he did thrice refuse: was this ambition? Yet Brutus says he was a mbitious; and, sure, he is an honourable man. I speak not to disprove what Brutu s spoke, but I am here to speak what I do know. You all did love him once, not w ithout cause: What cause withholds you then to mourn for him? O judgment! thou a rt fled to brutish beasts, and men have lost their reason. Bear with me; My hear t is in the coffin there with Caesar, And I must pause till it come back to me. But yesterday the word of Caesar might have stood against the world; now he lies there, O masters, if I were disposed to stir your hearts and minds to mutiny an d rage, I should do Brutus wrong, and Cassius wrong, who, you all know are hono urable men: I will not do them wrong; I rather choose to wrong the dead, to wro ng myself and you, than I will wrong such honourable men. But here's a parchment with the seal of Caesar; I found it in his closet,'tis his will: Let but the co mmons hear this testament - which, pardon me, I do not mean to read - and they w ould go and kiss dead Caesar's wounds and dip their napkins in his sacred blood, Yea, beg a hair of him for memory, and, dying, mention it in t heir wills, bequeathing it as rich legacy unto their issue. Fourth Citizen: We'll hear the will. Read it, Mark Antony. All: The will, the will! We will hear Caesar's will. Antony: Have patience, gentle friends; I must not read it. It is not meet you kn ow how Caesar loved you. You are not wood, you are not stones, but men; and, bei ng men, hearing the will of Caesar, it will inflame you, it will make you mad. T is good you know not that you are his heirs; for, if you should, O, what would c ome of it? Mahatma Gandhi - On Passive Resistance Passive resistance is a method of securing rights by personal suffering; it is t he reverse of resistance by arms. When I refuse to do a thing that is repugnant to my conscience,...if I do not obey the law and accept the penalty for its brea ch, I use soul-force. It involves sacrifice of self. Everybody admits that sacrifice of self is infinitely superior to sacrifice of o thers. Moreover, if this kind of force is used in a cause that is unjust, only t he person using it suffers. He does not make others suffer for his mistakes. Men have before now done many things which were subsequently found to have been wro ng. No man can claim that he is absolutely in the right and that a particular th ing is 'wrong' because he thinks so, but it is 'wrong' for him so long as that i s his deliberate judgment. It is therefore meet that he should not do that which

he knows to be 'wrong', and suffer the consequence [of not doing it] whatever i t may be. This is the key to the use of soul force. ...But you ask for historical evidence...Thousands, indeed tens of thousands, de pend for their existence on a very active working of this force. Little quarrels of millions of families in their daily lives disappear before the exercise if t his force. Hundreds of nations live at peace History does not and cannot take no te of this fact. History is really a record of every interruption of the even working of the force of true love or of the soul...History then, is a recor d of the interruption of the course of nature. Soul-force, being natural, is not noted in history. ...How, then, can it be considered only a weapon of the we ak? Physical-force men are strangers to the courage that is requisite in a passi ve resister. Do you believe that a coward can ever disobey a law that he dislike s? But a passive resister will say he will not obey a law that is against his co nscience, even though he may be blown to pieces at the mouth of a cannon. What do you think? Wherein is courage required - in blowing others to pieces fro m behind a cannon, or with a smiling face to approach the cannon and be blown to pieces? Who is the true warrior-he who keeps death always as a bosom-friend, or he who controls the death of others? Believe me that a man devoid of courage an d manhood can never be a passive resister. This however, I will admit: that even a man weak in body is capable of offering his resistance. One man can offer it just as well as millions. Both men and wome n can indulge in it. It does not require the training of an army; it needs no ju i-jistu. Control over the mind is alone necessary, and when that is attained, ma n is free like the king of the forest and his every glance withers the enemy. From Henry V by William Shakespeare WESTMORELAND. O that we now had here But one ten thousand of those men in Englan d That do no work to-day! KING. What's he that wishes so? My cousin Westmoreland? No, my fair cousin; If w e are mark'd to die, we are enow To do our country loss; and if to live, The few er men, the greater share of honour. God's will! I pray thee, wish not one man m ore. Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host, That he which hath no stomach to this fight, Let him depart; his passport shall be made, And crowns for convo y put into his purse; We would not die in that man's company That fears his fell owship to die with us. This day is call'd the feast of Crispian. He that outlives this day, and comes s afe home, Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam'd, And rouse him at the name of Crispian. He that shall live this day, and see old age, Will yearly on the v igil feast his neighbours, And say 'To-morrow is Saint Crispian.' Then will he s trip his sleeve and show his scars, And say 'These wounds I had on Crispian's da y.' Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot, But he'll remember, with advantages, Wh at feats he did that day. Then shall our names, Familiar in his mouth as househo ld words- Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter, Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester- Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb'red. This story shall the good man teach his son; And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by, From this day to the ending of the world, But we in it shall be rememberedWe few, we happy few, we band of brothers; For he to-day that sheds his blood wi th me Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile, This day shall gentle his condit ion; And gentlemen in England now-a-bed Shall think themselves accurs'd they wer e not here, And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day. Conversational Magic: Words to Awaken New Visions for Our World - 57 Martin Luther King -1 Have a Dream I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of difficulties and frustrations o f the moment I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American d ream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meani ng of its creed, "We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are crea ted equal."

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slave s and sons of former slave-owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state swelte ring with heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their c haracter. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor's lips are pres ently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transf ormed into a situation where little black boys and black girls and little white boys and white girls will walk together as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted; every hill and mounta in shall be made low, the rough places will be made plains, and the crooked plac es will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all f lesh shall see it together. This is our hope. This is the faith with which I return to the South. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. Wit h this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation in to a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will able to work tog ether, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day. This will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with new me aning: My country,'tis of thee, Sweet land of liberty, Of thee I sing: Land where my fathers died, Land of the pilgrim's pride, From every mountain-side Let freedom ring. If America is to be a great nation this must become true. So let freedom ring fr om the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mo untains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsy lvania! Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado! Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California! But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia! Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee! Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi. From every mountai nside, let freedom ring. When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamle t, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when al l of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and wing in the words of the old Negro sp iritual, "Free at last! Free at last! Thank God almighty, we are free at last!"