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The Core Principles Of NLP Part 2: Sensory Acuity

Following on from my first post on  Core Principles Of NLP and outcome thinking I’m now moving on to talk about Sensory Acuity. This is the process of using our senses to understand and perceive the world around us. The core senses we use to do this are;

Kinaesthetic (the way we feel internally and the use of touch externally)

Visual (what we see externally and internally)

Auditory (again our internal dialogue and our sensitivity to external sounds)

To a lesser degree (as far as the way we use our senses to interpret our realities) there is also our sense of taste and smell.

We all use these senses in different ways, yet typically there will be one dominant sense that stands out above the others, that we use more often. Some people may be more aware of the internal pictures they make and the importance of their surroundings and images and colours, others talk to themselves and others more and have more awareness of sounds, and others are more aware of their feelings and body sensations, the importance of touch and learning through doing and keeping active.

Why is this helpful?

Recognising which senses are more dominant allows us to understand and communicate more effectively, both with ourselves and others. Being in tune with how we use our senses allows us to then use this information to know if we are reaching our goals. It will tell us whether we need to keep doing more of the same or whether an adjustment is necessary. Being aware of how other people use their senses allows us to tailor our approach so we build more rapport with them. Noticing this kind of information requires a state of curiosity that is essential for us to apply this knowledge.

This includes the language we use so for instance a very visual person will most likely say things like ‘I see what you mean’ or ‘I am more focused on where we are going now’, whereas a more kinaesthetic person might say ‘I’m feeling more comfortable’ or ‘I’m getting in touch with this in a more concrete way now’. Recognising and paying attention to the words others use, especially in our written communication, is a really helpful way of building rapport and showing we understand them. Likewise not using their language can break rapport!

This is just a taste…there’s lots more that can be said on this subject!

For your free consultation please do contact me or another blog post of mine gives a specific exercise to anchor an emotional state using our senses.

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