change the metaphor

Change the metaphor to fit the 21st Century

It is time to change the metaphor hypnotherapy uses

Time to change the metaphor

I am always trying to think up new ways of dealing with old problems. I like writing scripts that use a fresh approach. However, on looking through some recent scripts I realized that I have unconsciously been using the same tired old metaphors as everyone else. It is time to change the metaphor.

The classic example is the NLP Fast Phobia Technique. This consists of imagining you are sitting in a cinema and watching your phobia play out on the cinema screen. Then you are told that you can change the speed of the movie or run it backwards. This metaphor has to be sixty or seventy years old. It is based on technology that was once glamorous and exciting, and part of everyone’s life. But that time is long gone. Cinema attendances plummeted years ago. People now get entertainment from their cellphones. 

Think of all the standard induction scripts. They are all about stairs and escalators, opening doors, walking through a pubic park. We still do all these things but walking through public gardens is hardly an everyday event for most people. In fact going for a walk isn’t a daily event either, or even something a lot of people look forward to. And what about the swinging watch. When was the last time you saw someone wearing a pocket watch? Kids don’t even wear wristwatches these days.

Change the metaphor to include new technology

So I think we need to re-connect to the technology that people use every day. I have never seen a script that uses GPS as the metaphor, although it has been around for ten years. I have never seen a script about getting a fax. Or email. What about a script about Facebook? Are there any scripts about self-driving cars?

And what about popular culture?  Where are the scripts based on Harry Potter. Or Star Wars? Sherlock Holmes is a major TV event. How about using Sherlock as a way to find the source of your problems?

I think I need to start thinking about what technology is new and exciting today. The world is full of marvelous, almost magical technology, and we need to use that to make a better connection to our clients. We really need to bring our metaphors into the 21st century.

David Mason

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