Finding the right technique to help clients change their limiting beliefs is one of the key challenges that coaches and psychologists face.
Top 7 techniques to help clients change their limiting beliefs:
- Confrontation by providing evidence
- Helping the client explore contrary evidence
- Asking for exception
- NLP belief change process using submodalities
- Cord Cutting with a belief
- Levels of transformation
- Working with past experiences that are the basis of the clients’ beliefs.
3 Techniques used by almost all coaches and therapists:
In this post, we will explore the first 3 techniques as they can be used by almost all coaches and therapists.
1. Confrontation by giving evidence
Confrontation by giving the client concrete evidence that contradicts the existing limiting beliefs, on the face of it, may sound effective but is generally counter-productive as in most cases the client’s existing belief will find ways to discard or distort the evidence in a way that does not contradict their beliefs. This is the reason why you may come across clients who become more convinced about their existing beliefs when they are confronted with contradictory evidence.
This is also the reason that I do not recommend the use of this technique by itself. If you do use it, use it in combination with other techniques discussed in this post.
2. Helping clients explore and identify evidence that contradicts the limiting beliefs
The difference between this technique and the previous one is that, in this one, the client explores the contrary evidence by themselves instead of the evidence being provided by the therapist. A therapist can help clients through thought journals, mindfulness activities, or effective questioning to be able to help the clients explore their beliefs and find evidence that supports or contradicts the beliefs.
Personally speaking, I have found the NLP meta Model questions to be highly effective for this purpose.
3. Asking for exceptions.
Very effective and highly recommended to use with beliefs that are highly generalized.
Let us take the example of a client who believes he or she is not good at anything.
Ask them to identify the small day-to-day things that they are able to do well. Exceptions may even be as small as I am good at switching on my laptop or I am good at taking a bath. And then keep asking the client to think about more such things that they remember they are good at.
As the client starts getting into the activity, you will notice the client can come up with more exceptions. What we are doing is giving the client’s mind a sense of direction to think in. The technique will not necessarily help you help clients completely change their beliefs but would help you contextualize the belief and make it easier to work on the same.
However, the NLP belief change process can help you help your clients change their beliefs quickly and effectively. Check out this video to know the step-by-step guide.
If you are a coach or aspiring to be one who wants to make it big, we would really recommend that you explore and understand the Cognitive Hypnotic Coaching framework.
If you are already convinced and want to just know how can you become a Cognitive Hypnotic Coach, check out our Comprehensive Coaching Diploma.