I have a growing (excuse the pun) obsession with gardening. I’m sure it’s a symptom of middle age as the gardening magazine I read sports advertisements for ‘comfortable’ trousers with elasticated waists that come in a range of colours, including at least four shades of beige!
So today, while pondering my carrots and the rest of my root vegetable crop, which have not done very well this year, it occurred to me that the soil in which they’d grown was too rich.
Root vegetables (unlike most things we grow) do not do well in very rich soil because, if they have all the nutrients they need, they do not put their efforts into building up roots to forage deeper and wider in search of sustenance. Instead, they concentrate on producing fabulous foliage and flowers so that they can set seed and reproduce.
Humans are more complex than carrots; we need far more than nutrition to thrive. We require a balance of: health; career or job; friends and family; hobbies, interests and fun; relationships; personal space and spirituality. These are the ‘nutrients’ we need in order to send up beautiful flowers and foliage and to reproduce.
As human beings, not just humans who want to have babies, we need to send our ‘roots’ out to find a balance of
‘nutrients’ to feed our minds, bodies and souls. When we do this, we become ‘fertile’ in all aspects of our lives.
Hypnosis for fertility takes prospective parents on a journey of self-discovery, teaching a range of practical techniques to manage stress and address the balance of their lives to make small but effective changes.
Hypnosis is used to generate an altered state of consciousness in which the unconscious mind is more available to respond to these changes.
So, in short, if you are growing carrots, sow them in light soil, but to grow anything else, including babies, we need to sow them in a soil that is as rich and varied as we can get.
Recently, I have been reflecting on the concept of ‘holding space’. In my myriad of roles, I am becoming more aware that, to truly support people, we must empower them. We have to really listen to what they want; give them opportunities to solve their own problems and make their own choices otherwise we are robbing them of a learning opportunity.
I was reminded of a sensitive situation that I encountered as an NQT. A really lovely boy in my year 9 form approached me at the end of school on a Friday and handed me a letter, instructing me to read it after he was gone.
The letter was heart breaking. He was being bullied in his English lessons and was so upset by it that he was struggling to get out of bed in the mornings and had contemplated a number of drastic solutions. He was now, thankfully, reaching out for help. His humble request was to change groups. He stated, flatly, that he would not tell me the names of the bullies as he felt sure this could only make things worse.
The enormity of my responsibility to support this boy weighed heavily, particularly as there was little I could do before Monday. As it happened, this was to be a good thing; it gave me the space and time to find a creative solution.
To begin with, I went to see his English teacher. She was aware of the issue, though not the extent or the impact it was having on this student. She told me that there were a group of boys involved, one of whom was in my form.
I then went home for the weekend to figure out how I was going to tackle the issue without betraying the confidence of the student or making the situation worse. I was determined that the bullies would not ‘get away with it’. The issues and the possible scenarios and outcomes went round and round in my head, but I couldn’t find a solution. I felt terrible.
Finally, I stopped thinking and the solution came to me. I knew it was the right thing to do.
On Monday morning, at the end of registration, I called the student over and told him my plan.
I then summoned the boy in my form who had been playing a part in the bullying. I told him that a student in our form was being bullied and named him. Immediately the boy’s face reddened and he cast his eyes downward. I explained the difficulty I had in dealing with the situation as the student was steadfastly refusing to name the culprits. I requested that he keep an eye out for our form member and report back to me. As he left the room, confusion was still contorting his face.
Later that day the ‘bully’ returned. He had regained his composure and approached me confidently. He had spoken to the boy, he told me, and he knew who the bullies were, but he had been sworn to secrecy. He reassured me that the situation was in hand, that he had spoken to the bullies and they would not be bothering our friend again.
By the end of the year those two were best friends and, though I left the school at the end of that year, when I returned for their prom, they were still thick as thieves.
The ‘bully’ avoided punishment, but learned the true value of making amends and gained an enduring friendship. I was happy with that result.
I recently received some beautiful words from a client, who expressed, far better than I could, how NLP had helped her to come to terms with some issues on her fertility journey:
‘You have really hit on some issues and managed to make me re-look at them from a different perspective, the negative barriers I thought I had were acts of love, protection and survival.
The love for my daughter has got me through the darkest days, she was very much wanted and loved from the moment I was pregnant. I know I shouldn't put so much responsibility on her but I really don't know how I would ever have got through my 4 losses without her.
I wish I had heard your words of wisdom earlier so I wouldn't have punished my body - instead I would have nurtured and appreciated the miracle it performed - to conceive and deliver a perfect baby.
As for my ‘more’ list, forgive myself, nurture myself and use positive language to remind myself how strong I am. My list has been added to and these have become my priority.’
There is a saying in NLP, ‘Perception is projection’ which reminds us that what we perceive to be reality is always distorted by our own experience of the world: our language, our beliefs, our memories, attitudes etc.
You are probably aware that our senses, through which we perceive the world, are limited to begin with. Dogs, for example, can hear sounds that we are not capable of hearing and butterflies can perceive ultra-violet light.
Never-the-less, our five senses take in approximately 2 million bits of information per second. These pieces of information then pass through a number of perception filters where they are deleted, distorted and generalised until we are left with roughly 134 bits of information per second from which we construct our ‘truth’. I’m sure you’ll agree that this doesn’t provide us with a very accurate perception of reality.
Plato, in ‘Republic’, describes the effect of education, using the analogy of a group of people who have lived all their lives chained to the blank wall of a cave. These people watch the shadows cast by things which pass in front of a fire outside the cave’s entrance. They give names and meaning to these shadows. This is as close as they get to the ‘truth’ of their reality.
To Plato, the philosopher was like a prisoner who is freed from the cave and comes to understand that the shadows do not make up reality at all. He believed it was possible to perceive the truth of reality once your eyes adjusted to the light of the sun.
I don’t believe that NLP offers the ‘truth’, but it offers techniques which can allow you to see things from a different angle, to find solutions where none seemed possible, find paths where there had previously been dead ends. As my NLP trainer wisely told me: ‘If perception is projection, you might as well focus on the good shit!’