ARE you ready to get into the festive spirit? Or will you be eating your turkey and stuffing through gritted teeth as the annual family get-together turns into anything other than a Christmas cracker?
If it’s the latter, you are not alone. And yet, wouldn’t it be far more beneficial to make the most of the whole experience by allowing yourself to make it more interesting, enjoyable even?
Bob Perry, who is a leading expert in Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) for the Naked Leader, has some tips to help you do that.
Such as getting curious with family members, tapping into their world, matching their ‘sensory language’ while using positive ‘self-talk’ yourself in those moments where you too are getting a little frayed around the edges!
Bob continues: ‘To paraphrase Eleanor Roosevelt, “Nobody can make you bored without you own consent”. For bored you can substitute stressed or irritated or anxious or any other state that so often seems to interfere with peoples’ enjoyment of the Festive Season.
‘However, if you would like to approach and enjoy the whole affair in a more positive and resourceful frame of mind, why not seize this fantastic opportunity to try and sharpen your NLP skills. With a variety of friends, neighbours, and relatives to choose from, most of whom will be behaving with a little less constraint, why not make a conscious decision to get curious about them and what their behaviour can tell you?’
This can work with present selection too, as Bob explains: ‘Uncertain what to buy Aunty Mabel? Meet her in her world with the ‘Outcome Thinking’ approach. Cycle round these three question until you have a clear and consistent response:
1. What does she want?
2. What would that do for her?
3. Why is that important to her?
4. So, what does she really want?
And Bob encourages people to interact with those family members they might not normally make time for.
‘Getting fed-up with Uncle George going on at great length about how un-commercial Christmas was in his day?,’ continues Bob. ‘Focus instead on how he is expressing himself with visual, auditory, or kinaesthetic language. Match his sensory language and start to see eye-to-eye with him.
‘Play with body language. Try matching (not mimicking) the body shape, energy levels and broad gestures of people you are in dialogue with; notice how you find it easier to tune into their wavelength.
‘Above all, maintain a resourceful state yourself. When you feel yourself getting a bit frayed at the edges, break your state, find somewhere quiet and peaceful and use the positive language self-talk (as deployed extensively by high achievers in business and in sport) to get yourself back in the right state, instead of a right state!’
‘There’s so much to notice, so much fun to be had! Enjoy it all and have a great holiday.’