Saturday, November 27, 2010

Messages from the Unconscious

As we explored in last week’s post on Exquisite Immuning, your health is one of the most important and life enhancing assets you have. Symptoms of un-wellness are often messages from your mind/body that all is not well in how you are living and healthing in your life. In today’s post we are going to learn an NLP technique for communicating and negotiating with your unconscious mind to work with those signals and to support greater healthing and wellnessing.

Symptom’s as signals

Your unconscious mind communicates in many ways. Pain and disease are signals. Disease is often a symptom of ‘dis-ease’ in your system. It’s your unconscious mind’s way of communicating via your cybernetic loop about stress and dysfunction in your mind-body.

The unconscious mind is a patterning system. It learns to repeat and replicate patterns and behaviours. The conscious mind allows choice. It provides the means of volitional control so that you can select and change the patterns.

The symptoms of disease can often be a signal or message from your unconscious mind to your conscious mind. Alerting you to processes that need attention and change. You ignore these messages at your peril.

Pain and disease are natures signal that something is wrong. Listen to the symptoms and ask them what needs changing. Maybe there’s something you need to attend to in your life. Or are you deleting or blocking something from your awareness? What do you need to change? Underlying all stress is a reason or cause. It may be physical, emotional or mental.

NLP: Communicating with the unconscious mind

In NLP there is a technique called the Six-Step Reframe that is used to communicate with the unconscious part responsible for any particular process or outcome in your life. In this technique you literally talk to the part and ask what its positive intention is. You speak to it and ask what positive thing it is trying to achieve for you.

There is a presupposition in NLP that every behaviour has a positive intention. By exploring and finding the underlying positive intentions of the part producing the dis-ease, you can then negotiate within yourself to find a better and more generative way of achieving and satisfying the positive purpose or need that exists in your life.

Six-Step Reframe

The steps of the Six-Step Reframe technique are:

1. Identify the behaviour, response or signal you want to change
2. Communicate with the part responsible for the behaviour
Literally talk to the part. Respectfully ask “Will the part responsible for X communicate with me consciously now?” Then carefully notice the signals or response you get. It may be words, sounds, images or feelings.
3. Determine the positive intention of the behaviour
Thank the part for communicating with you and ask it “Please tell me what your positive intention is. What are you trying to do for me?” Notice the response you get. What intuitions or messages does the unconscious part respond with?
4. Ask the part to work with the whole of your unconscious mind, including your creative parts, to generate new and more generative ways of accomplishing the outcome
Ask the part to communicate internally with the other parts of your mind to find new behaviours and ways of achieving the positive purpose. If the part has been signalling to you that the way you are living is doing you harm, then your unconscious mind can generate new patterns of behaviour that are more healing and healthful. Your conscious mind can respect this process and support the new behaviours.
5.    Ask the part if it will agree to use the new behaviours and choices rather than the old behaviour to achieve its outcome
If you don’t get a yes signal from the part, then return to step 4 until all parts of you have worked together to find behaviours and choices that work and that the part in question will support.
6. Do an ecology check of all parts of your mind
Ask “Does any other part object to my new choices?” If you get a response that indicates there is an issue of ecology or potential negative consequences then return to step 3 and ask what positive intentions this new part is attempting to communicate about and work with it and the original part to generate behaviours and choices that work for the whole of you.

Trust your unconscious mind

This technique can work quite powerfully. You’ll be surprised at just how clearly parts can communicate. You need to trust your unconscious mind and work with it respectfully. It is trying to do the best it can with the knowledge and skills it has at this point in your life. You may need to support yourself with new skills and patterns, and reading and studying this blog is a great step in that direction.

Do this technique in a quiet place. Relax, calm your mind and then gently talk to the parts of your mind that have a message for you. Be very positive and explicit in your communicating. With a bit of trust, you’ll be surprised at how amazing this communication process can be.

It’s about getting in touch with your intuitions. It’s about hearing the messages from your gut brain, your heart brain, your non-dominant hemisphere and other distributed intelligences around your brain and body. It’s about aligning all the parts of you to support wellness in your life. By looking deeply within and explicitly communicating with the parts of your multi-mind, you can gain important insights and messages from your unconscious mind.

And using these insights, you can generate more life enhancing wellness and healthing in every aspect of you mind, body and life.

Life enhancing wishes

Reframing: Neuro-Linguistic Programming and the Transformation of Meaning

Richard Bandler's Guide to Trance-formation: How to Harness the Power of Hypnosis to Ignite Effortless and Lasting Change

Neuro-linguistic programming: NLP and science, Meta-model, Reframing


  1. Grant, I know NLP works. I know people who have a lot of success with it. But I'm not one of them. Looking forward to trying the Six-Step Reframe you've described here.

  2. Internal communication -- sticky wicket for the home team. Given the capacity of homo sapien for delusion/illusion, there is plenty of room for serious personal error here within a given individual. I would avail myself of the tremendous potential for a working ally in a positive system like this, and if it went on-line in my paper thin skull with all lights blazing, that would be the proof and the benefit. But I see it as ancillary. Not sure I could trust it -- trust myself -- to rely on it as any kind of replacement for other interventions. Doubting Thomas? :-)

    Your fearless pursuit of bridges between the physical and the metaphysical always captures me, Grant. Hard science is inevitably made up of yesterday's spooky stuff. This is the kind of exploration that will discover tomorrow's gains in control over one's well-being, and gains in both quality and quantity of life. Thanks for conceiving of such a beneficial web site backed by your considerable research.


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