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How to create a great relationship in 2021

How to create a great relationship in 2021

tribe_like_minded_people

What’s important to you?

Our weekly Team NLP blog where you will find inspiration and actionable advice on how to build healthy habits, resilience, and connections in our unprecedented times.

I hope you enjoyed the new e-book we sent out last week called ‘The Year that Changed Everything’.  I have appreciated all the great feedback and many of you have passed it onto friends and family too. 

As I write this week’s blog it is Valentines Day.  I hope you are having fun.  I ran a session with my Master Practitioners this morning and was reminded that it doesn’t matter if you are alone or with a partner, it is important to practice some self-love today too!  I will certainly be finding time for some quiet reading.  As it is Valentine’s Day, I want to talk about how do you create a relationship that fits your needs?  This could be important if you are single and searching for that next special person or you want to improve the relationship you are in.  One way of doing this is to find out your relationship values and to reflect on whether they are being met if you are in a relationship, or, to use them to make a more informed choice next time. 

When things are not going well in our relationship it is often because there is a values conflict between what is important to us and what is important to our partner. For example, if one of my top three relationship values is excitement and my partner’s is security, we could have an issue as I want to experiment and experience new things whilst they want to keep things as they are.  Got the idea?  However, as our values are largely unconscious so it can be very useful to find out what they are…often my clients get a real lightbulb moment when they say to me ‘now I know why that just doesn’t work for me’.

Aligning your values to your goals

I’m going to show you a powerful process that you can use to discover your values in relation to your relationship.  If your values are aligned to your partners, it will become much easier to achieve them as you’ll naturally feel motivated and willing to do whatever it takes to achieve them.  So, once you have done this for yourself it is a good idea to elicit your partner’s values too. 

When eliciting values, it is best to find someone who can work with you to ask you the questions. Choose a friend who can act as your coach.  One of the rules of this exercise is to ask them to keep going with the questioning, even when your answers dry up. This is because your conscious values come out first, as they are at surface level. Your unconscious values are those that you are least aware of and are likely to come out later and may prove to be the most important of all the values you identify.

Step 1: Elicitation

Get your exercise partner to ask you the following question: ‘What’s important to you about your relationship?’ By the way, these should be relationship in general and not necessarily the one you are in.  That is because we’re going to check out your current relationship against your values later in this exercise to ensure that they are fully aligned.

Your partner must write down the words that you say and not suggest any answers, as these are their own values, not yours. Here is an example to help you get the idea.  When you are asked what is important to you about your relationship, you say in quick succession:

  • Love
  • Security
  • Learning
  • Independence
  • Flexibility
  • Variety

You then say you can’t think of anymore. That means you are at the end of the first wave. Your partner carries on asking ‘What is important to you about your relationship?’ regardless to discover your second wave or those values held at a more unconscious level. You then say:

  • Passion
  • Communication
  • Fun
  • Inspiration
  • Personal Growth
  • Authenticity

So, six more values are identified from the second wave. 

Here is the list so far:

  • Love
  • Security
  • Learning
  • Independence
  • Flexibility
  • Variety
  • Passion
  • Communication
  • Fun
  • Inspiration
  • Personal Growth
  • Authenticity

Step 2: Hierarchy of values

Your exercise partner should now give you the list of values and ask you to pick the top 8, and then rank them in order of priority. This may seem a challenge, and yet it is important to understand the most important through to the least important.

Step 3: Re-write your list

Your exercise partner should then re-write your list in the order you have given. You may find that some of your most important values came out in the second wave of elicitation. This is quite common and means that some of your most important values were those held at an unconscious level. Let’s assume that this is the final list in our example:

  1. Passion
  2. Fun
  3. Flexibility
  4. Personal growth
  5. Authenticity
  6. Security
  7. Love
  8. Inspiration

You’ll notice that passion and fun from the second wave are now at no. 1 & 2 on the list demonstrating the importance of carrying on with the questioning. 

Step 4: How does your relationship stack up?

Now ask yourself how does my relationship stack up against these values?  Go through your list of 8 values and score your current relationship out of 10 against each value.  See the hypothetical example below for guidance.

  1. Passion – 2/10
  2. Fun – 10/10
  3. Flexibility – 6/10
  4. Personal Growth – 8/10
  5. Authenticity – 3/10
  6. Security – 4/10
  7. Love – 9/10
  8. Inspiration – 10/10

I normally break the scores into three categories:

0–4                       High risk area

5–7                       Medium risk area

8–10                     Low risk area for the relationship.

In our example, the two highest values are a high risk and low risk area for the relationship.  Unless this relationship can develop more passion your motivation to continue it will likely decline over time.    

Ask yourself where the high and medium risk areas for your relationship are and what can you do about it.  

Download our ‘Keeping Well’ video and e-book for free here !

Take care and keep safe.

Until next time.

Lindsey Agness and Team NLP

Launching our new free e-book ‘The Year that Changed Everything’

Launching our new free e-book ‘The Year that Changed Everything’

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Something for everyone to help keep you going

Our weekly Team NLP blog where you will find inspiration and actionable advice on how to build healthy habits, resilience, and connections in our unprecedented times.

I have talked before about the fact that last year I set myself an audacious goal to write a blog every week in 2020.  And I nearly did it! What a year it turned out to be with the onset of the pandemic early in the year. We were in Canada just before the UK went into its first lockdown and got one of the last flights out from Canada to get back home.  It was a testing time.  Nearly a year on, as I look back at my blogs, I realise that they tell a story of a remarkable year…the year that changed everything.  So, I decided to put them altogether in a new e-book that not only tells the story of a remarkable year, it is filled with our best tips to keep going with grace and hope.  This is a gift to you, and I hope that you will refresh yourself on how to get to or stay in a positive place where the gift of life is more important than anything else.  Please find the e-book attached to this blog.   

How did your life shift in 2020?  We talk about our values being those things that are most important to us.  How did your values shift in 2020 and what can you learn from that?  My values moved away from business and towards family and good health and I am sure that will not change once life moves into a new place of connection.  That doesn’t mean to say that work dropped off my priority list….in fact I was probably at my most creative in 2020 it’s just that I spend less time staring at the screen these days.  How about you? 

I also thought going into 2021 that it is important to explore our boundaries.  How do you protect yourself and your ‘me time’ during the pandemic?  A friend of mine just last week said that she needed to learn how to say ‘no’ to keep herself sane.  Here are some ideas building on the work of Gill Mathias:

>>> Download our new e-book !

Here are seven ways you can set better boundaries and spend less energy people-pleasing:

1 – Get Crystal clear on your priorities.

Getting clear on your priorities will help you figure out what you’re willing to spend your time and energy on. If you find yourself always putting other people’s priorities above your own, it is time to change that.

2 – Communicate what you will not tolerate.

If the people around you are always doing or saying things that frustrate you to your core, you have to put your foot down. People will never know that what they’re doing is unacceptable if you never tell them. Be that person who speaks up when people are behaving in a way that makes you feel inferior or unappreciated. If something doesn’t feel right to you, you should make every effort to avoid it.

3 – Listen to your gut instinct.

Your gut instinct is usually right. You know the difference between excitement and dread. Use that instinct to help you make decisions. Don’t feel like you need to say yes to avoid hurting someone’s feelings. If you can’t decide whether to say yes or no to someone, this post I wrote about when to say no to an invitation will make the decision easier for you.

4 – Think about the impact of your actions.

Something that’s helped me to say no is asking what type of impact an opportunity will have on myself and others. Will it improve our lives or is there something that could make a bigger impact? Think about the amount of time something will take compared to the amount of positive impact it will have. If it will take up more time than it’s worth, say no.

5 – Do things because they make you feel good.

If you find it all too easy to try and make others happy, why not let yourself be happy for once? Make sure you spend time doing things that bring you joy and help you create a better work-life balanceWe all know that self-care is not selfish – it’s necessary to live a healthy life. Schedule downtime and fun activities into your calendar. Treat them like important meetings with a client.

6 – Offer an alternative

If someone asks you to do something and you don’t think you’re the right person for the job, offer an alternative. Recommend a friend, a co-worker, or some kind of tool that could help get the job done. If you hate being unhelpful, this option gives you the opportunity to be cooperative without having to take on the task yourself.

7 – Be direct and firm with your answers.

Don’t let people talk you into or out of things. You can still be kind yet firm at the same time. Your friends might be bummed that you won’t make it to the party, but they should be able to get over it and respect your decision.

How to set boundaries

Remember that you are in control of your choices and your life. Don’t let other people dictate this for you. Set healthy boundaries and give yourself permission to do less people-pleasing.

Download our ‘Keeping Well’ video and e-book for free here !

Take care and keep safe.

Until next time.

Lindsey Agness and Team NLP

Are you searching for a tribe of like-minded people?

Are you searching for a tribe of like-minded people?

tribe_like_minded_people

Keeping connected during challenging times in 2021.

 

Our weekly Team NLP blog where you will find inspiration and actionable advice on how to build healthy habits, resilience, and connections in our unprecedented times.

It was lovely last week to hear from many of you that you found inspiration in the poem I posted by Siri Barker.  If you missed it here is the link !

This week I wanted to talk about the importance of connection during these challenging lockdowns.  I am so thankful to have my colleagues and many students in Team NLP to help me keep grounded, focused, and supported.  Connection in these times can mean a check in or a simple question ‘how are you feeling today?’ or an offer of support.  Just over a year ago we established our Team NLP Members Club and we have been developing our ideas around it and improving it ever since.  I wanted to remind you about it as we would be delighted to have you join our tribe.  Our members club is open to any of our previous students for ongoing support beyond your training, for those who have trained with other NLP schools and are seeking an NLP community to join or for those who are curious and contemplating studying NLP in the future.  Wherever you are we want you to succeed and to help you along your success pathway.  Just imagine if you could spend some of your lockdown time continuing your learning and being part of a vibrant community. 

You are probably wondering what is included in your membership?

You will get access to:

  • Our core team of five NLP trainers and master trainer
  • Our learning platform which is full of learning resources for you
  • Monthly video recorded by one of our team and posted to the platform to continue your ongoing personal development.
  • Monthly 1-hour live practice and social learning group where we deal with current issues and challenges.
  • Private Facebook community where you can interact and share ideas with others.
  • Weekly live Facebook session.
  • 5% off all Team NLP products and services.
  • Regular blog.
  • Opportunity to be a paid coach on Team NLP courses.
  • Join our annual transformation conference and even get the chance to speak!

I ran last month’s development session called ‘Don’t think of a Bar of Chocolate’.  I talked about the importance of focus and the impact of this of sustaining a healthy weight.  We also included our eating styles questionnaire.  In February we will cover the topic of ‘What’s stopping you?’ where we will explore the concept of cause and effect and give you some very practical tips on how to get rid of those excuses that have held you back until now.  In March we will cover ‘Who do you think you are?’ and the impact of our thoughts and beliefs on what we feel is possible for us.  We will link to perception is projection and the different lenses we use.  Sounds exciting doesn’t it! 

The cost to join is £4.99 per month (the cost of two coffees!) or £50 for the year. 

Take care and keep safe

Lindsey and Team NLP

A Blessing for 2021

A Blessing for 2021

How to Stay Calm during the Corona Crisis

Wishing You Everything Good

Our weekly Team NLP blog where you will find inspiration and actionable advice on how to build healthy habits, resilience, and connections in our unprecedented times.

More years ago than I care to remember, I met a very special woman, Siri Barker, on an NLP Practitioner.  We have remained strongly connected since then and I watched in awe as she became a Sangoma or South African Shaman. Last week Siri published an amazing poem that inspired me and filled my heart with hope and so I asked her if I could share it with you too. 

Here it is. 

Find a quiet space, light a candle and be open to this prayer & blessing.

My prayer for you….
That you walk gently on the earth
That you stay within your heart centre
That you find that small steps enlighten your path
That your mind is open to the creativity your spirit seeks
That you deepen your sense and connection to your Ancestors and your place in this world
That you stay connected, grounded and alive in the presence of our earth
That you care for your well-being and give yourself moments to ‘top up’ regularly
That you find courage in moments when courage is needed
That you reach out when it is required
That you open to all those parts of your transformation and that you can see this transformation
That you cleanse the wounds of the past and allow bitterness to fade
That you sit in prayer and deepen your prayerful aspect so your family and the world receive your blessings
That you know you are loved
That you know you are worthy and wonderful
That you find peace with all the change
That you stand tall & strong throughout, still allowing tenderness, vulnerability, and the shadow self to all exist together
That you hear and feel the blessings from me and my ancestors to you at this moment
Thank you

Makhosi Siri, Jan 2021

Take care and keep safe

Lindsey and Team NLP

Don’t think of a bar of chocolate

Don’t think of a bar of chocolate

Bar of chocolate

Steps to keep your weight where you want it to be! 

Our weekly Team NLP blog where you will find inspiration and actionable advice on how to build healthy habits, resilience, and connections in our unprecedented times.

How did you get on with the tips last week to keep well?  If you missed it here is the link to our free online course on ‘Keeping Well’ that includes a video and workbook.

This week I want to explore another challenging topic of lockdown – how to keep your weight at the level you want it to be.  Have you put weight on during lockdown?  Research from the covid symptoms study app shows that 29% of those surveyed had put on weight since the start of the pandemic. The factors that may have contributed to weight gain during lockdown include increased snacking (35%), decreased levels of physical activity (34%), increased alcohol consumption (27%) and a less healthy diet (19%). 

How might this affect future health? 

Once weight has been gained it is hard to lose and research from many other studies shows that each kg (~2.2 lbs) of weight gained annually over 10 years was associated with a 49% increase in risk of developing type 2 diabetes and a 5 kg (~11 lbs) increment in adult body weight was associated with a 12% higher risk of heart disease over 10 years. Sarah Berry, Associate Professor in the Department of Nutritional Sciences at King’s College London  comments: 

“Typically people snack 2-3 times a day and this accounts for 22% of total energy intake. The increase in snacking during lockdown, especially with unhealthy, highly processed foods is likely to be a contributing factor in our observed weight gain of the UK population.’’

Replacing unhealthy sugary snacks with healthy snacks, and limiting late-night snacking, is a simple dietary strategy to improve health.  If you have sugar cravings it’s important to remember that highly refined sugar, such as that found in biscuits, cakes, etc., is not food at all, it is a chemical. Sugar makes you fat, ages your skin, rots your teeth, disrupts your digestion and is extremely addictive. It doesn’t really have much going for it, does it?  

This Thursday at 8pm I am running our first Team NLP Members group of the year and the focus is on keeping a healthy weight.  It is only £50 a year and we post a developmental video and hold a live meet up every month.  If you feel like joining our tribe will give you the motivation you need to keep going find out more here :

Your brain is very clever and sets out to get you whatever you focus on. For example, if I say to you ‘don’t think about a blue elephant’, what happens? Exactly. The same works for weight. So, if you focus on what you don’t want (‘I don’t want to be fat’), your focus is still on being fat. And, because everything we focus on grows in our awareness, being fat is most likely what you get. However, the opposite is also true. If you carry a positive image of yourself in your thoughts and are excited about your future, you will feel much better about yourself and will be much more motivated to achieve what you want.  

Here is a technique to help you banish those cravings for unhealthy food:

Step 1: Think of a food or drink that you hate – one that really revolts you. You can make it so that it’s gone off for even more effect! You should be on the point of retching as you think about it now.

Step 2: Now vividly imagine a plate of that food or a glass of that drink right front of you. Imagine smelling it and then putting some large mouthfuls right into your mouth and on to your tongue. Notice the texture of it in your mouth. As you start to feel awful, squeeze your thumb and index finger together. Keep your fingers squeezed together until you start to feel better (typically up to 15 seconds). Repeat several times, ramping up your revulsion each time. When you are nauseous, stop and relax your fingers.

Step 3: Now think of the food or drink you crave and notice that you have a picture of it in you eating or drinking it in your mind.

Step 4: Now make that picture of you eating or drinking it much bigger and brighter. Imagine turning up the dials on the colour, brightness and size, and bring it closer and closer to you.

Step 5: Now this is the exciting part! While you have the picture of the food or drink you like in your mind, squeeze your thumb and index finger together. Remember the taste and texture of the food or drink you hate and imagine some of it mixed in with the food or drink you love. Notice how the food or drink you like begins to change now. Imagine eating both foods together, especially the taste and the texture. Keep eating them both in your mind and imagine swallowing them down and how awful they taste. Keep squeezing your thumb and index finger together as you eat. Continue until you can’t eat any more it’s so awful. Then stop.

Step 6: Think about that food that you used to like and notice how you feel differently about it now. You can repeat this process as often as you like until you have completely eliminated your desire for that particular food.

Hope to see you on Thursday.

Take care and keep safe out there from Lindsey and Team NLP