glass memory jar

I expect all my clients to get something useful or valuable from every session. Reassuringly, they tell me that they do. Sometime it is an ‘Aha’ moment, or a complete re-frame of a conflict or problem. Other times it is a new tool, a new idea or a new perspective.

As a therapist and coach I get ‘takeaways’ from my clients too. Like the one I had today:

At this time of year I often provide clients with a list of questions to help them review the past year. Hopefully they gain some learning from their answers. My first question on the list is: ‘What were the 10 best things that happened to you and your family last year?’

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In the last blog I visited the concept of ‘metaprograms’ – the general approaches to life that influence our view of the world and affect the success of our choices and outcomes, both positively and negatively. There are no ‘wrong’ metaprograms, and they are preferences rather than hard and fast rules. So in the last example, having a preference for a ‘toward’ metaprogram, or an ‘away from’ metaprogram each has their own benefits and disadvantages.

Another metaprogram that can have a significant effect on your world view is ‘chunk-size’.Read more »

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man singing on stageStage-fright on some level, is pretty much a given with many of the performers and speakers that I work with.

On one level it is completely understandable. Few of us like the idea of standing up there in front of an audience of hundreds, maybe even thousands and singing, dancing or even just speaking.

At the same time, many of my clients are hugely talented people.As one successful client put it ‘I beat myself up over being so nervous. I should be used to it by now.’

The thing that frustrates many performers is that they know that having this fear over performing can mean that they actually perform less well. Read more »

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teddy bear on a cold winter day.Most people have heard of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), the condition that is believed to occur during the months of short days, when we are less exposed to vitamin D and this, in consequence, results in low mood or even depression in the Winter months. It’s a definite thing and there are various ways you can help yourself if you have this condition – daylight lamps, vitamin supplements, or just going away to somewhere sunny (I personally would advocate the last of these if you can afford it!).

There are lots of reasons why we can feel more down and less motivated in the Winter however, and while I wouldn’t rule out SAD, I do think that the awareness of this condition can steal some of our power. There are several very common influences on our mood that tend to occur more commonly at this time of year:Read more »

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One of the core principles of NLP is the idea that we view the world through a range of filters. repsystem

The thing is that there is just so much information in our day to day experience that it is impossible to take it all in. The human brain is only consciously able to process around 7 pieces of information simultaneously. It stands to reason that we are subject to a great deal more than this every minute of every day.

For instance if you are sitting in a coffee shop talking to a friend you are listening to her words, looking at the expressions on her face, thinking about what she is saying, or about what you are going to say next. You may be aware of the taste of your coffee and a general awareness of people around you. You cannot possibly, in the same moment, also be conscious of the feel of the chair on your legs, the words of the music that is playing, the colour of that lady’s handbag or the words on the sign in the window. Read more »

I experienced a powerful period of growth, success and self-development during my late thirties and early forties.  As I said in my last blog, this was largely due to putting into action the practices and philosophy of Steven Covey’s ‘Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’.  It’s an excellent work and I refer back to it often, along with Covey’s other masterpieces – particularly ‘First Things First’. which is his book on time management.

Something went seriously wrong in my 40s.Read more »


We’re just about still in the season of renewal, rebirth, resolutions and rehabilitation I think. There definitely is an urge among many of us to consider new directions and find new ways of seeing things in the early weeks of the year and many of us turn to books for our inspiration.  After my last rather flippant blog I thought I would look more seriously at the books that have really made an impact on my life.

I personally have had periods where just the right book found its way into my life and helped me move forward and even re-invent myself completely.  There are many powerful books out there, but there are some classic works in the genre that I really think everyone who is interested should read. Read more »

Love strategiesSometimes when you meet a person for the very first time it can really feel like you are a great match. As you improve your relationship you may notice how much you have in common. You:

  • like the same films
  • come from the same town
  • have the same dark sense of humour
  • both like running, or knitting, or bottle collecting, …etc

It’s a frequent pattern in forming relationships that we delight in our connections and our similarities.  There will be many differences to add excitement, interest and imagination to the mix of course. In many relationships the focus is still on how similar, or how in tune we are.

As you get to know that person better you begin to realise that while there are many things about them that match your own experience, there are many significant differences at a deeper level.Read more »

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