Resistance, Behaviour, and Feedback - NLP Matters, Episode #032


In this episode, we’ll explore three more presuppositions of NLP. First, is that resistance to communication is a sign of a lack of rapport. Second, is that the most important information about a person is their behaviour. And lastly, that there is no failure, only feedback.

These 3 presuppositions share a common emphasis on looking for meaning beyond just our words or actions or outcomes. They focus on acknowledging and accepting our personal power through redefining our responsibility as communicators.

Responsibility for communicating means that we need to notice more than just what is said and encompass behaviour as being a primary indicator of meaning. Finally, we also need to take on board the feedback available to us in a way that means we can use it to grow, adapt, and continuously improve our communication and connection both to ourselves and others. 

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Here are some key takeaways from this episode:

Resistance to communication is a sign of a lack of rapport.

  • When we want to communicate something to another person, we are the ones who take personal responsibility for getting the message across. 
  • The way in which a message is received is what matters. If the message is not received as we intended then it is up to us to make the change. 
  • Resistance from people we're communicating with in our day to day lives either at work or in our close relationships is an indication that there is a lack of rapport, and that's a great time for us to reflect on who are we being, and what are we doing in order to have this result with the person we’re trying to communicate with.
  • Rapport is one of the foundation stones of effective communication. To ensure we have rapport, we must bring sensory acuity, build trust, be in sync, and focus on the other person, because their response is our feedback.

The most important information about a person is their behaviour. 

  • We look at our behaviour and check – does this line-up? Does it align with my goals? Do my actions match my words? We look for congruence between our behaviour and words. If there is a mismatch, then, it is the behaviour that is the most revealing.
  • Our behaviour reveals not just what we are consciously aware of, it also reveals our unconscious thinking. When behaviour and words don’t match then we want to take on that feedback and be curious – what is the behaviour aligned with? It may be that there is an underlying limiting belief, or that there is a value conflict or lack of skills/capabilities that is being revealed.
  • Our behaviour alerts us of any misalignment. This means we can begin exploring - what do I really value? What are my beliefs? Do I have a role model to follow? As we explore this misalignment, we increase our awareness, and with this increased awareness we can then choose to make a change.
  • It is essential to calibrate on behavior rather than just on what people say. 
  • Our behavior tells us about things we are not consciously aware of. It reveals to us where we are in alignment and where we are not. 
  • Calibrating our behaviour allows us to quickly discover if there are potential obstacles to our success. It also shows us where we have superpowers – where our achievement will flow because it is already totally aligned. It is in exploring, and being really curious about our behavior that we can discover and bring into our awareness specifically what is misaligned.
  • Our behaviour reveals the most powerful information. Once we can identify limiting beliefs or values that don't align with goals, or we discover missing skills and capabilities, then, armed with this awareness we can work through each different level making changes, clearing our own pathway to successfully achieve what we want.

There is no failure, only feedback.

  • Even when it seems we have failed, all we are really doing is still learning. 
  • We either succeed or we fail is a limiting perspective of reality that dismisses the learning journey.
  • As human beings, we are constantly evolving and learning. 
  • When we can accept that in all learning we will get feedback, our approach both with ourselves and others brings a whole new mindset. As we learn from feedback, we get to bring curiosity, focus, clarity and perhaps even some empathy and understanding.
  • Accepting feedback gives us the opportunity to adapt our behaviour and establish rapport, which means we will then be able to communicate effectively.
  • When we accept feedback and resist the habit of indulging our strong inner critic who constantly points out all the things that we have failed at, we can bring curiosity and a hunger for learning. 

There is no failure, only feedback; is a very powerful NLP presupposition, because it creates the space for us to encourage ourselves and others to embrace learning and embrace new things. I invite you to give up the haunting fear of failure, and embrace the exceptional value feedback gives us which means we can clear and build our pathway to growth and even more success.

In our next episode, we’ll explore two more of the NLP Presuppositions –  that people are not their behaviours and that everyone is doing the best they can with the resources they have available.

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Joanne Clark

Joanne Clark is an Internationally accredited Master Trainer of NLP who has been delivering NLP training since 2011.  Being on her feet in front of training rooms is where Jo loves to be and her passion for inclusive and immersive training that delivers outstanding learning outcomes is apparent to everyone in her training rooms.  On average Jo delivers 140 days of training per year in addition to online webinars, guest speaker events and group coaching. 

“NLP is at the core of all my training and coaching, it is at the core of who I am, how I interact and connect with people.  I am absolutely passionate about spreading the NLP tools across the planet as I endeavour to support Robert Dilts’s vision of Creating a world to which people want to belong.” Joanne Clark

Certified Master Trainer of NLP; Master Practitioner NLP, Hypnotherapy & Matrix Therapies; Performance Coach; Cert IV Coaching; Advanced Practitioner in Coaching; Cert IV in Business; BA(Hons); Majors in Sociology and Psychology; Parent Education Leadership Training (PELT) Certificate; Mother of four children; Private Pilot (PPL); Diploma in Life Coaching