A baseball swing is a very finely tuned instrument.

It is repetition, and more repetition, then a little more after that.

Reggie Jackson



In a previous post, I addressed the question I get asked periodically by my NLP and Huna students: “I was doing so well but now I feel stuck. What am I doing wrong?” In that post,  I talked about the possibility of “operator error as well as the natural “spiral” of personal and spiritual growth.


But there’s one aspect I didn’t mention: Repetition.


One of the beauties of NLP is how instantly people experience positive results. A skilled practitioner takes clients through a 15 minute process and—Voila!—a life-long habit or anxiety disappears! Even our Mental Emotional Release® process that unearths and releases some of our deepest blocks and limitations typically takes around 10 hours of intensive work.


And that’s great! But it’s also unfortunate.


Because personal and spiritual growth is not a one-shot deal. It’s a lifetime practice.


Think of it this way: Doesn’t it make sense that becoming a “virtuoso of life” would take the same amount of practice as becoming a virtuoso of anything else? If you want to learn to play just one short song on the piano, you might be able to take a few lessons and you’re done. But to become a world-class pianist? That’s an ongoing process.


In his book, Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell wrote about the “10,000 hour rule,” that it takes 10,000 hours to achieve mastery in any field. Though some psychologists argue that the “rule” is not a clear predictor of mastery, Gladwell cites some interesting studies:


Psychologist John Hayes studied the lives and work of seventy-six famous classical composers. He found that, in almost every case, these well-known composers did not create their greatest work until they’d been composing for ten years or more.


Another psychologist, K. Anders Ericsson, studied violin students at the elite Music Academy of West Berlin. He found that on average the best violinists practiced much more than the students who were just “good.” All of these students were similarly talented, but what separated the “best from the rest” was how intently and how long they practiced their craft.


Researcher Robert Howard, of the University of New South Wales, published a paper about eight grandmasters in chess. He found that those in this group practiced for over fourteen thousand hours before they hit their highest ranking.


Is this 10,000 hour rule set in stone? Of course not. Some people required less time to become masters at their art while others required much more. The point is that no one becomes a virtuoso without a commitment to practice.


And so it is on the path of personal and spiritual growth. No matter how “evolved” you are, if you want to become a virtuoso of life, you need to commit to put in some hours of practice regularly. If you want to stay in physical shape, you need to keep exercising, right? If you want to be clean, you probably need to bathe daily, right?


I’ve been doing personal and spiritual growth work for over 30 years now, and I still use many of the most basic NLP techniques and Huna processes on a regular basis— just like I exercise and bathe on a regular basis!


The interesting thing is that your “practice” doesn’t have to become more and more complex. Your practice just has to be consistent. It can include your consistent practice of ho’opono’pono or forgiveness. It can be consistently using your NLP re-framing techniques or noticing and releasing your limited beliefs as they pop up.


The good news is that life will give you plenty of material to work with, a constant flow of people and situations to help you peel back the many levels of who you are!


Until next time. . .



Dr Matt