do you believe you can do it?
For as long as I can remember, I have noticed a difference between those with self-belief and those who, for whatever reason, have found it harder to access. Even at primary school, those, for example, who had the belief that they could spell (like me) and those who were stronger in other areas, say maths (definitely not me).
But where do these beliefs come from and how do they impact us?
Remember a subject you studied at school: one year you may have flourished at it and another year found it challenging. Why? Likely to be a number of things, but most likely the quality of the teaching, your rapport with the teacher and the belief they, and others around you, instilled in you that you could do it.
After 35 years, I put to rest the comment made to me in my first maths class, age 4, by my teacher: ‘Nicola, you are thick’. A throw away line for her at the time perhaps, but it stuck with me and the barrier was up in my brain about me & maths.
For over 10 years, as a physiotherapist, I worked with a massive cross section of people, from those who had been tortured, had had emergency amputations to those who had something seemingly simple, like a sprained ankle as their ‘issue’. These experiences only heightened my fascination in people’s beliefs.
Five people, all with a similar medical history, all with a similar injury, all a similar age and they will recover in five, very different ways.
Well, put simply, their belief. Their belief that they can get better, that they deserve to get better, that the health professionals they are working with are guiding them on the right path and (and this is often sub-conscious) that they actually want to get better.
Thousands of patient encounters taught me to build rapport, engage, work alongside an enormous range of people to enable them to reach their goal. People from every corner of the globe, with every possible advantage and disadvantage. Increasingly, I worked ‘hands off’ - only touching a patient to assess them or to check a particular issue.
So what did I do? I built strong rapport with every patient, through listening, really listening; treated them as an individual, not a stat and by asking the questions other professionals hadn’t either had the time for, hadn’t thought of or hadn’t dared ask. Most importantly of all, I let them tell their story. Patients got better quickly and easily, even from seemingly complex issues and this fascinated me.
I studied psychology, continued mentoring students and my team, learning from my patients and other healthcare professionals every day. This was the best conceivable grounding I could imagine for me, to help others reach their goal.
As time went on, I realised increasingly, I was coaching my patients to reach their goal, easily & successfully. I had first hand experience of how Neuro-Linguisitic Programming (NLP) can improve one’s life and started to use NLP and other psychological modalities I had studied with patients and more and more with coaching clients outside a medical setting.
I feel very lucky to learn from the thousands of people I have worked with to be where I am today: working with teams and individuals from businesses, big and small, to help them realise their beliefs and to create the best environment they can to operate in: