Let’s avoid the temptation to make everything about NLP. In other words… Speak English, please!


We were at a recent training and I announced from stage that my wife Sumi does not like Facebook. In fact, she can’t stand it. After making a couple of jokes, a student responded from the audience that she has a “limiting belief.”


I found this response to be curious.


You see, a limiting belief (by definition) prevents you from doing something you want to do. For example, if I didn’t believe I could teach but I really wanted to, that would be a limiting belief. If I thought I was a bad father, that would be a limiting belief.


However, if it does not limit you, it is just a belief.


The reason why this is important to understand is that we tend to make mistakes with our communication that end up getting our feet inserted into our mouths.


Now, if I don’t like nato (a Japanese dish that deserves further research on your part) that is not a limiting belief. I just can’t stand nato because it is disgusting to me. (On a side not, my wife loves it!)


You see, I don’t like nato, and my wife doesn’t like Facebook. I don’t want to like nato, and she really doesn’t want to like Facebook. She has no need to be on Facebook, she has no desire to be on Facebook. I feel the same way about nato.


Yet we still love each other!


You might be sitting there, reading this and saying, “Yes Dr. Matt, but all businesses need to be on Facebook. It has become a necessity.” I agree… That is why I am on Facebook. I spend enough time on the web to handle business and keep connected with my students. Sumi doesn’t have to.




In life, when you learn something like NLP, The Law of Attraction, Psychology, Huna, etc., you have a reflex to apply it everywhere. That is great! That means you want to learn and incorporate it into your life. Keep it up, because that is a great strategy.


At the same time, avoid becoming a fanatic by finding some balance.


When I went to school for my PhD and learned about Freud, I didn’t go around asking everyone to tell me about his or her mother. Nor did I wonder if some students were still in the oral phase (or any other phase). I found a balance.


An even deeper lesson is to realize that the speaker – not the listener – should define negative beliefs and limitations. When I communicate, I do my best to communicate as if I am speaking to a non-NLP trained person. Even when I am teaching NLP!


When you learn NLP or any skill that improves your communication, you will begin to hear how other people communicate in a very clear way. You will begin to wonder what they mean. The moment you assign meaning to the words of another, that is a mind read, and that will get you in trouble eventually.


Avoid mind reads, and enjoy communication.


Dr. Matt



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