What’s on your mind?

Master your mind and take your leadership skills to the next level!

The Meta Model is the most important element to understand if you want to master your mind and take your leadership skills to the next level. The more familiar you are with this model, the better you can communicate with greater flexibility, whilst understanding other people’s point of view and build rapport with them. This helps you to relate to people easier, respond in their terms and therefore achieve win-win situations in leadership, negotiation and conflict situations. This in turn means you will experience more fulfilment, mental freedom and self-empowerment. Successful leaders are aware of their thought processes, whereas unsuccessful people fall consistently victim to their own negative thoughts.

The Meta Model is quite complex and therefore, as an introduction to this concept, I will explain it in simple terms in this blog. Models are descriptions of simulations of how something works in a certain area – sort of a blueprint or a map.

But what is the Meta Model and how can it be useful to you?

We perceive the world through our five senses, and through an internal process, the sensory perceptions are transformed into external behaviour. Based on our observation and the filtering of the information we form an internal representation, or a thought pattern, which in turn creates our behaviour. This internal representation is composed of images, sounds, feelings, internal dialogue (words that you say to yourself), smell and taste. We call this process, from perception to behaviour, the Meta Communication Model.

We have over 2 million pieces of information presented to us every single second. If we had to consciously process and absorb all this information, we would be overwhelmed, close down and no longer be able to function. It would take millions and millions of decisions to know what to do. Therefore, we unconsciously filter this information through deletion, distortion and generalisation.

We have several filters for this information flood, some of which are our values, beliefs and past experiences. Your beliefs are feelings of certainty about what something means and what we consider is right or wrong. And your values are emotions that you want to experience. And your experiences are anything that has happened in your life until now.

Back to the 2 million units of information per second you are bombarded with. Fortunately, your mind protects you, and deletes nearly all that information, until you are left with 134 bits out of 2 million. These are then chunked into around 7 +/-2 per second. And the 7 chunks out of 2 million units of information is what we call OUR REALITY!?

Your mind protects you and filters out everything that it considers irrelevant. Before the internal representation is even created, the information from the outside world is already filtered on the unconscious level. The key question is: how does your mind decide what is irrelevant? Well, what you filter in is what you believe you need or will need in the future. And you filter the information based on your understanding of your environment (time, space, matter and energy), your capacity for language, your memories, decisions, meta programs, values, beliefs and attitudes.

No matter what is happening in your life, you can only interpret the events according to how you perceive the world. And that explains why no two people can view the same event and recall it in the exact same way. They will recall it differently. Because their minds have trained themselves to delete and distort what is not relevant to that person. The true reality consists of much more information than we consciously perceive. Our internal representation cannot possibly contain the reality. Dr Milton Erickson most famously said:

“Everyone’s model of the world is as unique as their thumb print”.

We delete all the time what we unconsciously decide is not relevant. We distort what we experience so it fits in with what we are familiar with. And we generalise and draw conclusions based on a few experiences. Non-stop, filters are shaping your life and your ability to lead with authenticity.

You need to ask yourself: Is what you are leaving out, what you would actually need? What if you are filtering out the very things that would create success and fulfilment?  What have you deleted, distorted and generalised in the past? What is it you are leaving out and what do you need to start filtering in? If you are not satisfied with the way you perceive the world and the results you get, you need to change your filters.

When you are on the verge of filtering in evidence of “I can’t”, then it is time to ask yourself some great questions: “Is deleting, distorting and generalising, and is filtering out all of the great things I am capable of really going to get me the results I want?”, “What is it that I need to start filtering in?”. To accomplish a task or job to get done, you need to connect with the possibilities.

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right!”
~ Henry Ford

To shift your mindset involves trusting that everything you need lies within you already. You must learn to understand your belief systems, what you value, what you’re noticing, what you’re filtering in and what you’re filtering out. You get what you focus on to the exclusion of everything else. So, you need to start making conscious choices about your filters, so you can start creating the changes that you want.

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