Posts tagged: state

Taking Shortcuts

What does this doodle say to you?

 doodle od a dark cloud gradually lifting to reveal the sun and the possibility of a short cut

Doodling is a great way to explore ideas without too much conscious attention. 

What does this doodle say to you? My guess is that it will say different things to different people. It depends upon your current experience, your thoughts and your mood or ‘state’ as we might label it in NLP terms.

Here’s a closer look…

a closer look at the image reveals that there is more than one way to reach your goal

sometimes a closer look reveals something unexpected


Click on the image to open it fully and look even more closely. begin to notice details that you hadn’t previously noticed.

I have shown it to a few people and asked the question… “If this doodle had a message for you, what would it be?” and got a surprising number of different replies:

  • “It’s about how the sun is always in the sky, even when all you’re thinking of is the clouds.”
  • “Even when you think you’ve solved a problem, something can come up that seems to set you right back to the beginning again and yet it’s not quite the same this time and you can keep going.”
  • “The clouds are your problems. The sunshine is feeling better, sorting something out.”
  • “Is it about depression and the depression can lift and come back and then lift again?”
  • “The arrows are all the different paths if you want to escape from something.”
  • “It’s about shortcuts. Sometimes you have to go the long way round to get out from under the grey sky but sometimes you might spot a short cut, and sometimes there’s an even shorter one.”

There isn’t a ‘right answer’. I was concentrating on something else at the time (my most interesting doodles seem to come during online meet-ups, TED talks or Tony Robbins videos). I would love to hear from you about what you make of it.

Better still, have a go yourself and maybe ask a few people what they make of your unconscious doodling.

Playing with Words

Yesterday I tried too hard to write for National Poetry Writing Month so this morning I decided to be more playful.  I picked a lovely word (I collect words.  If I hear one I like, I save it at the top of a blank word file) and just let my mind wander. This is where it led me…


I approach the boundary
when liminal guards are slipping
into nocturnes of their own
somnambulently trusting.
Beyond them lie notions
whose scope is universal
whose reach profound.

Like creatures under rule of ocean
declining to be found
they lie beyond compare
beyond perception
of me
as I of them.

The facade of wakefulness
until I reinstate
the mist cloud
at the night garden gate.


Life Coaching with Narrative NLP

So what does this have to do with life-coaching, Narrative Practice and NLP?

Sometimes it’s useful, as well as fun, to simply play with words for a while without worrying about things ‘making sense’; ‘sounding right’ or ‘meaning’ something.

Playing is a useful way of learning; children do it all the time but as adults it may not be something we allow ourselves to ‘indulge’ in.  I suggest we do exactly that, indulge our inner child and we might learn something surprising; confirm something we suspected or affirm a positive belief.

This morning I let myself play because yesterday had seemed like hard work. What I discovered was that I don’t have to make life difficult for myself in order to achieve.  That may sound simple but many of us hold ourselves to account by demanding that we live up to words like hard-working, doing what’s right, should, must, always, never.  What words would you add to the list?

Discover your own expectations of yourself and then set yourself free from them for a while.  You may well be surprised.

If this sounds risky then a session with a creative life coach could provide you with the safe environment for your exploration.

If it sounds like fun but you don’t know where to start you could try Beyond Expectations.  It’s a Narrative NLP coaching App which gives you weekly prompts or exercises that will help you find your own luminescent mist cloud.


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