Dutch contributions to the NLP Encyclopedia

The Inside/Outside

(Dutch: ’Binnen-Buiten Model’), developed by Dutch psychologist and NLP trainer Anneke Meijer, is specifically designed for the solution of problems in relationships.

The model presupposes that – barring cases of physical abuse – other people can only have an undesired effect on our emotional state if there is a ’resonating’ or ’corresponding’ part within ourselves. In other words: the behaviors of another person must activate important existing aspects of our model of the world, in order to change our emotional state. The technique stemming from this model (usually also referred to as ’the Inside/Outside Model’) involves identifying and communicating with this resonating or corresponding part. The technique is a special application of the general principles of ’Communicating with a Part’. Some of the steps are the same as or very similar to steps in Six Step Reframing.

The steps involved are:

  1. Define the disturbing behavior in the other person.
    Think of a moment when someone said or did something that disturbed you, e.i. irritated you, saddened you, infuriated you, depressed you, or similar emotional effects.
  2. Find the corresponding part within yourself.
    This would be the part that is just like the disturbing other person, or the part that would like to be like this person or the part that enjoys or endorses what the other person does. Concentrate on you inner experience and say: “I would like to communicate with the part of me (or the part of my un conscious mind) that is just like this other person. Or the part of me that would like to be like that person, or the part that agrees with what that person does or that endorses it.” Any ensuing images, feelings, sounds or words may be responses from the part, just as in Six Step Reframing.
  3. Find the positive intentions of this part.
    This step may involve more acceptance of the part and understanding how it defends personal boundaries, achieves valued goals, etc.
  4. Find behavioral alternatives.
    Defining what alternative behaviors the corresponding part – often in cooperation with other creative parts – can find, that will serve the same purpose.
  5. Translate into behavior (future pace)
    The insights and alternatives are then translated into behaviors towards the disturbing other person. “Next time when you are confronted with this person and his/her behavior, how can you respond differently?”.
  6. Downside planning and ecology.
    Other parts are asked if they have objections. These are integrated – if necessary – along the lines of six step reframing. The behavior of the other person is then described in a way representing the very pinnacle of disturbance to see whether the new solutions ’hold’.

The I Wonder Strategy

This is a compact technique for involving the unconscious mind in the exploration of conscious issues. This technique, developed by Dutch psychologist and NLP trainer Anneke Meijer after modeling Gene Early, is a reflection of the idea that “There are things that only the mind can seek, but which, on its own, it will never find. These things only instinct can find, but it will never seek them” (H. Bergson, 1933).

The steps in this technique are:

  1. Define the process you want to optimize.
    Where does my thinking/feeling/doing become difficult, or stiff or unsatisfactory? Where is it being held up?
  2. Generate images of the present and the desired state.
    Visualize where you are now, regarding this issue – the issue you were representing when your process stiffened or stopped – and where you want to be.
  3. Ask the I Wonder question.
    This involves:
    a. A basic attitude of curiosity.
    b. An ’upward’, visual physiology: sitting with your back straight, your head high and tilted slightly upward.
    c. Looking at an inner screen, like a movie screen or a billboard..
    d. Asking the question: “I wonder how….. I can take a next step….. in this process of …..”.
  4. Respect any answer that emerges.
    Respect whatever appears or emerges on the screen, or elsewhere in your inner experience. Consider it to be a response to your question. Don’t dismiss any responses as illogical or irrelevant. Take everything that – mentally or emotionally – occurs within minutes of the question seriously.

The Nano Tech Power Deck

Developed by Dutch psychologist and NLP trainer Jaap Hollander, in cooperation with is Graham Dawes, Jennifer DeGandt and Anneke Meijer, is a card game designed to provide a source of NLP that is not limited by the amount of time and energy available from an NLP-trained professional. It embodies many of the principles and procedures of NLP in a playful format. It is only a deck of cards, and yet it often brings about personal developments and insights that people had wanted but not achieved before. The Deck helps people, each time in a different way, to achieve goals, to solve problems, to develop personal strengths, to overcome personal weaknesses, to obtain unexpected advice and last but not least: to relate in a new way to the other people they play with. No need to make an appointment or to go to someone’s office. With the Deck at hand, one has a readily available source of NLP, one that is especially effective when people have already had some NLP training.

Structure of the Nano Tech Game

Essentially, the Nano Tech Deck combines the modern psychological techniques of NLP with the old principles of the oracle, as they were passed on to us from Greek, Celtic and Germanic civilizations. The NLP-aspect is represented by the general structure of the game, which has a phase where an issue is defined and a phase of general orientation followed by a series of small change techniques. The game ends with a systematic future pace. The oracle aspect comes in where a live NLP practitioner would normally determine the general direction the change work should take. In the game this general direction is offered by an oracle system that gives advice on a high level of abstraction. This general direction is developed further by the use of three small change techniques. The change techniques used are called Nano Techniques, ’nano’ meaning ’very small’. A nanosecond for instance, is one billionth of a second. The word Nano Technique refers to a very small NLP-technique that only takes a few minutes. There are 32 different Nano Techniques in the Deck, most of which are adaptations of ’full size’ NLP techniques and can have very similar effects. After having done the three Nano techniques, the player combines the three results. The whole game, including finding an issue to play with, obtaining the advice from the oracle, doing the three Nano Techniques and doing the future pace, takes between fifteen and forty five minutes.

The game progresses through four steps or phases:

  1. The Entrance
  2. Consulting the Life Processes Oracle
  3. Doing Three Nano Techniques
  4. The Future Pace

Games as a way of presenting NLP

How can a game be an effective change agent? A game can obviously never offer the relationship, the nonverbal communication and the complexity of a live person. A game can not operate within the TOTE-model. A live person can do that and more. Generally speaking, we would therefore expect a live person to achieve far more in terms of change and development than a game ever can. That having been said, we have observed that a game like the Nano Tech Power Deck can occasionally be more effective than a live person. We have been surprised by this and we suspect there are interesting lessons to be learned from this observation. We believe it is possible for a game to be an effective change agent because (a) a game maintains, by rules, procedures and spatial markers an often highly complex structure in which relationships between players can take new forms, (b) a game does not respond to unconscious messages to avoid certain issues nor does it qualify its own messages and (c) people have a striking ability to construct a coherent whole from the random elements a game offers them (d) a game uses all of its distinctions, principles and procedures, rather than a limited part of them.


After having met Brazilian psychiatrist David Akstein, Dutch psychologist and NLP trainer Jaap Hollander embarked on a long modeling-voyage that led him to diverse trance rituals. Somewhere along the way he realized that magical practices are the dominant psychotherapeutic method on the planet, both culturally and historically speaking. For what does a person do when they have psychosocial problems they cannot solve? If we look beyond the limits of our own time and culture, we see that the common pattern is to ’take it higher up’. People with problems turn to a priest, a shaman or a witchdoctor in order to enlist the help of spirits, demons, ancestral souls or other powerful non-material entities. The global pattern of goal-directed psychosocial change is not one where a therapist or a doctor speaks with a patient. The dominant pattern is one where a priest or a shaman performs a ritual in order to regulate cosmic energies to the benefit of his client. And this regulation, viewed from the belief systems belonging with it, ensures that the sick will heal, the insecure will gain confidence, the unemployed will find work, marital conflicts are settled, businesses find new customers, unruly children will do what his parents tell them, et cetera. From this perspective he started modeling magic (although this term may not be anthropologically proper for some of the practices we studied). In other words: he started approaching the magical powers of priests, witchdoctors and shamans with the classical NLP-question: `How does he (or she) do it?’. This entailed him going to Brazil to observe Candombl possession rituals, for instance, or to Morocco to observe Gnawa dancers. Based on both his direct experience and his dissociated observation, he endeavored to define the beliefs, the mental strategies and the overt behaviors of both priest/shaman and believer/client. Subsequently, he translated these `pragmagical patterns’ into structured techniques adapted to our own culture. By using them in his `Pragmagics’-workshops in Europe and the USA, he further adapted and refined these techniques. His mission with pragmagics then, is one of transmission: his aim is to translate the magical practices of traditional cultures into procedures that Westerners can benefit from, just like David Akstein once did with the trance rituals of Umbanda.

Example of a Pragmagical Technique
So what do we end up with when we model magic? To answer this question, we will describe a technique we adapted mainly from a Gnawa ritual. The Gnawa is a mystical tradition within Islam, related to Sufi. We participated in Marrakech, Morocco, in one of their `djerdeba’s. This is a ritual lasting from sundown to dawn in which participants go into an ecstatic trance, using rhythmic dancing, fast and fierce drum or castanet rhythms and a slow monotonous, repetitive string or flute melody. During the resulting trance they are possessed – understood from their belief system – by spirit entities. From this possession they derive spiritual energy which they then use to their own benefit or transfer to large shawls with which they promote the healing of the ill. We combined some patterns of the Gnawa with elements from two different, but culturally related Afro-Brazilian rituals: one Candomble ritual (or `party’) where several deities (Orixa’s) are summoned simultaneously and one Umbanda ritual where possessed’ mediums give advice to interested onlookers that have come to their terreiro (temple). To `build’ the technique, we used NLP concepts like pacing and leading, mapping over submodalities, association and dissociation. Some experimentation in different pragmagics groups resulted in the pragmagical technique of the `Associated Oracle’

The three main ingredients of this technique are:

  1. Kinetic trance induction
    (Inducing an ecstatic trance using emotional/motorical synesthesia and rhythmic movement on fast drum rhythms)
  2. Association with a non-material (spirit) entity
    (Visualizing and entity, giving is submodalities of reality and stepping into it, i.e. going in second position with it)
  3. Oracular communication from a spirit state
    (Observing another person from the `entity-state’ and giving them verbal, metaphorical advice or `energy’ through touch).

As we describe the technique the meaning of this pragmagical jargon will hopefully become more clear to you.

Step 1: Representing the spiritual panorama
The first step in this technique is for the participant (usually called the `dancer’ in pragmagics work) to form a representation of his personal spiritual panorama. In his mind, he creates an overview of all Gods, spirits, deities, ancestor-souls, cosmic energies, forces of nature, totem animals, universal principles, core states, ghosts or any other non-material entities that play a role in his life. As you can see from our listing, we leave the content entirely up to the participant. Pragmagics is non-sectarian, meaning that we don’t presume to prescribe anyone which entities they must or must not represent although we do suggest an anthropomorphic form, meaning the representation of the entity in the form of a person. Some people will have a well-populated spiritual panorama, while others will have a fairly barren one. This seems to depend simply on the extent to which they have given thought (and feeling) to spiritual matters in the past. Generally a participants spiritual panorama will become more densely populated as they do more pragamgics work. At first they represents the spiritual panorama where it is usually located spontaneously: high above (and sometimes deep below) themselves. Thereupon the participant is asked to `lower’ his spiritual panorama, bringing it down the level where he is standing. This is the level where normally the social panorama is located. The participant now finds himself in the middle of his spiritual panorama with all his important spiritual entities around him. The metaphorical message of this intervention is something like: `You can communicate with these entities on a basis of equal merit’. It is also, in a sense, an integration the two great spiritual traditions. It combines aspects of the traditional spirituality of hunter-gatherer tribes, where a human traveler communicates with the spirits on a basis of equality, with the tradition of agricultural spirituality, where a worshipper’s body is possessed’ or `ridden’ by a spirit. It does not matter whether or not the participant believes these entities are `real’. The issue is representation, not reality. If the representation of the entities eventually releases new resources in the participant, it is a good representation.

Step 2: Realization of the spiritual entities
In the next step in this technique, the dancer `realizes’ his entities. This may sound strange, but what we mean is simply that he gives his representation of the entities submodalities of `realness’. There are submodalities that tell us whether something is real or not. Someone may experience something as real when it has color, it moves visibly and he can touch it. He may experience something as `unreal’ or `a dream’ or `a hallucination’ or `a fantasy’, when it is less colorful, it doesn’t move and he can not touch it. In theory the critical submodalities that distinguish `real’ from `unreal’ can vary greatly depending on the individual, but in actual practice they seem to be the same for most people, although the emphasis can differ:

  • Real: strong, clear colors
  • Unreal: vague, dull, pale colors or black-and-white images
  • Real: moving visual image
  • Unreal: stationary visual image
  • Real: clear kinesthetic experience, especially tactile
  • Unreal: minimal or no kinesthetics
  • Real: feelings of movement
  • Unreal: no feelings of movement
  • Real: close (location)
  • Unreal: far away (location)
  • Real: clear or vague smell
  • Unreal: no smell

By giving the entities in his spiritual panorama submodalities of realty, the participant can literally `realize’ them, make them more real. The opposite is also true and also important. Some experiences with spirit entities lead to a less resourceful state. In that case the dancer can do the opposite and `derealize’ the entity and all his communications with it, by giving it submodalities of unrealty. This is one way out of the `athroloplogists’ trap’ we described earlier and it gives a participant freedom to experiment with pragmagical procedures. We have found that `realization’ and `derealization’ work especially well in hindsight. It is certainly possible to change submodalities of reality in `real time’, but it is easier to `realize’ or derealize’ memories.

Step 3: Kinetic trance induction
In the third step in this procedure, the dancer goes into an ecstatic trance. It may sound odd when we put it that simply, but basically going into an ecstatic trance is not that difficult or complicated. The dancer simply concentrates on his spiritual panorama, registers his feelings and allows his body to let a a simple movement develop from this. This is emotional/motorical synesthesia: a feeling is translated into a movement. We have found, by the way, that uncommon synesthesias often play a role in ritual practices. We know a Hungarian shaman. for instance, who is adept in translating emotions into sounds. The movement the dancer develops needs to be easily repeatable, which means that has to be quite simple. In this technique the dancer works together with an `auxilar’, a personal helper who will catch and protect him if necessary and who plays a drum for him. We often have a professional percussionist drum for the whole group simultaneously, distilling a general rhythm from all the individual rhythms produced by the auxilars. As soon as the dancer starts moving, the auxilar, will beat his drum (or rattle his rattle) in the rhythm of the dancer’s movements. He sets up a kinesthetic/auditory loop for the dancer, which is also a way of making rapport. The dancer keeps repeating the same movement to the rhythm of the drum. When the auxilar notices that he has rapport, meaning that the dancer follows slight variations in his drum rhythm, he increases the tempo, that is, he starts drumming faster and faster. This results in a trance state, a kinetic (movement-) trance in which all hypnotic phenomena known to traditional Western hypnosis can occur (we will list these in a later article). By this time, the situation in the pragmagical working space is quite reminiscent of a Gnawa djerdeba.

Step 4:
Association with a spiritual entity
Once in a trance, the dancer oversees his spiritual panorama once more, as he has been instructed to do beforehand. He waits until one of the entities approaches him. If this doesn’t happen spontaneously, he invites an entity. We do not specify the manner in which he is to do this, but usually he will simply dance in the direction of an entity. At first he dances together with the entity and he asks the entity to give him advice about his goal (which he has defined at the beginning of the pragmagics session). Therupon he steps into the entity. He associates with the entity, goes into second position with it, becomes one with it. That is, if he feels this to be ecologically justified. Once associated, he dances with the movements of the entity. breathes the entities breath, perceives with its senses and understands with its understandings. Some new participants, especially if they have recently watched movies like `The Exorcist’, feel some apprehension about doing this. We interpret this as fear of representations within one’s own bio-psycho-social system, but of course we will not force anyone to do this and consider just representing the entity a valuable option too.

Step 5: The associated oracle
From second position with the entity, being the entity so to speak, the dancer ends his dancing and starts giving advice to other participants. The associated participants stay wherever they are standing or sitting in the room, while the auxilars (who are other participants who will later become dancers) seek them out to receive advice and guidance. The dancers identify the entity from which they speak, observe the other with whatever sensory filters they posses in their entity-state and give their advice. This is a direct, practical application of what we have described in our earlier article about possession trance. The dancer has access to resources they do not normally have entry to, and these resources are strongly contextualized, as soon as they step out of the entity, these resources are no longer active.

We sometimes have associated dancers give three different forms of advice:

  1. Direct suggestion
    They give direct advice.
  2. Metaphorical suggestion
    They tell a story that contains the message
  3. Energetic suggestion
    They do not speak, but convey their message through touches and `passes’.

In this stage of the procedure, the situation in the pragmagical working space bears a strong resemblance to an Umbanda terreiro where mediums possessed by the spirit of the `Old Indian’ or the `Old Negro Slave’ give advice to their (non-possessed) fellow believers.

Step 6:
Dissociation from the entity
In this final step of the technique, the dancer thanks the entity and says goodbye to it. He steps out of the entity and represents it once more as separate from himself, visualizing it outside himself. The entity is invited to take its place in the spiritual panorama again and the spiritual panorama as a whole is lifted up to its original location high above (or deep below, as the case may be). Usually this is done with a meditative dance on a slow rhythm.

There are several possible issues that can be addressed in this final phase. One possibility is for the dancer to make arrangements with the entity about future cooperation outside the pragmagical space. Another possibility is to generalize and future-pace the different oracular recommendations the dancer has received (from his own entity and from other associated dancers). What is the common denominator in these different pieces of advice? This procedure is similar to the `Resonance pattern’ taught by Robert Dilts. A final issue is future pacing: how precisely will the dancer implement the recommendations he has received in the future? Should there be any disagreeable side-effects, negative emotional states, new limiting beliefs, or ecological problems, the dancer also has the option of `derealizing’ some or all of his experiences by giving them submodalities of unreality. We have also found that negative emotional states resulting from this kind of work are highly probable to disappear after a second round of ecstatic trance, although we don’t understand why this should be so.

With this technique of the `associated oracle’ we have transferred to our own culture, on a modest scale to be sure, some of the magical patterns found in Gnawa, Umabanda and Candomble.


The NLP Lifeboat

(known in Europe as the ’NLP Capsule’) is a procedure for simultaneous interpersonal support and bottom-to-top organizational restructuring, developed by Dutch psychologist and NLP trainer Jaap Hollander. A Lifeboat project offers coaching, mentoring and general human support in a small group, meeting bi-weekly within their organization. When the ship starts keeling over, it’s good to have something that floats. Lifeboat groups (called Crews) consist of six people from different departments and different hierarchical levels of the organization. In their Lifeboat meetings (called Journeys) they support each other on a human level. As an added result members learn problem solving skills, basic experiential skills and communication skills. Also, they come to better understand each others ways of thinking an feeling, which is an important benefit given that they work in different departments and at different hierarchical levels in their organization. Lifeboat sessions are conducted in a clearly structured manner, in which roles and methods are precisely defined. They are led by a Lifeboat Chief, who trains the crew in lifeboat procedures.

Presuppositions of the Lifeboat
The Lifeboat project is based on the following three presuppositions:

  • Presupposition 1: Human survival is based on (a) tools, (b) intelligence and (c) social organization. Organizations will achieve more and people will be more effective when they receive human support (social organization) and have a chance to think problems through systematically and productively (intelligence).
  • Presupposition 2. Human thinking consists of sensory representations. Human thinking consists of sensory representations (mental representations of images, sounds, feelings, smells, tastes and movements). A certain train of thought consists of a series of these representations. Humans organize these representations by language, which they use to ascribe meaning to their sensory impressions and memories. Therefore, people will gain new understandings and find new solutions, when they learn to systematically change their inner representations and/or the meanings they ascribe to them. The Lifeboat is a social tool to achieve precisely this.
  • Presupposition 3: Organic development is a bottom-to-top affair. Natural development in any organization emerges from below, rather than being dictated from above. Although there is definitely a place for top-down, centrally organized development, most organic growth occurs as a result of simple patterns being repeated many times at lower organizational levels. Organic, stable, systemic development is most often a bottom-to-top, rather than a top-to-bottom process. Therefore, in order to achieve elegant organizational change, it is best to
    (a) set up relatively small and simple processes at a low level in the organization,
    (b) have these simple processes repeated as many times as possible and
    (c) let structural change emerge naturally.

Lifeboat roles
In the lifeboat meetings, the roles of the crew members (participants) are very clearly defined. Different people will be in different role during different journeys (sessions). These roles are:

  • Role 1. The Traveler
    The Traveler is the hero of the Lifeboat session. He is the person who formulates a problem he wants to solve. The Traveler describes the problem, the situation in which it most commonly occurs and how he would like to be different when the same circumstances occur in the future. He mentally steps into the problem situation and specifies his experience; he describes in minute detail what he sees, hears, imagines, thinks, feels, says and does. The other Crew members assist the Traveler in this. After the rest of the Crew have processed the problem, the Traveler listens to their advice with an open mind and mentally tries out the solutions they present him with.
  • Role 2 and 3: The Pilot of Experience and The Pilot of Meaning
    The Pilots help the Traveler to clarify the problem and to find solutions. They first help the Traveler to precisely specify his experience in the problem situation. Then they identify with the Traveler; they ’take on’ the Traveler’s experience. Having done this, they go into a creative state and ask themselves: “What would I do, when I experienced this?”, “How would I solve this?”. They allow answers to emerge from their unconscious as well as their conscious minds. They give the Traveler their advice.
  • Role 4: The Ghost
    The Ghost’s task is to register the Traveler’s emotional state and any unconscious messages that he expresses nonverbally. To this end the Ghost sits or stands next to the Traveler and precisely mirrors the Traveler’s body posture, movements, gestures, facial expressions, breathing rhythm, etc. The Ghosts registers the thoughts and feelings that result from these nonverbal expressions for him or her and comments on them. Like the Pilots, the Ghosts gives the Traveler suggestions for solutions.
  • Role 5: The Tailgunner
    The Tailgunner has two tasks. 1. He protects the Lifeboat against interruptions from the outside and 2. He does everything within his power to ridicule the goals and solutions the Traveler selects. This inoculates the Traveler against doubts and negative expectations encountered after the Lifeboat session.
  • Role 6. The Chief
    The Chief’s task is to steer the Crew safely and productively through the Journeying Format. He helps the Crew to help the Traveler. The Chief actively structures and coordinates the activities of the Crew. He keeps a record of the Lifeboat’s journeys and monitors the Traveler’s progress in solving the problem in daily working life. The Chief stimulates Lifeboat Loyalty as best he can. Eventually, the Chief asks the Crew to invite new members and when they are ready to form a new Lifeboat, he appoints a Chief for it.

Procedure: The Journeying Format
The procedure with which the Crew helps the Traveller solve his problem, is defined in the Journeying Format. The Journeying Format is a sequence of steps which lead to the clarification and solution of a problem. It is the systematic problem-solving method the Crew uses. In addition to this standard Journey, the Lifeboat also has special procedures (called ’Excursions’) for special categories of problems, like unclear outcomes, inner conflict or limiting beliefs. The Journeying Format is divided into six steps (as most NLP-techniques traditionally are) and proceeds as follows, using the roles described earlier:

  • Step 1: The Chief reconfirms roles and methods
    The Chief discusses which Crew members will take which roles for the current Journey. He briefly summarizes the tasks for each role and the Journeying Format. He asks for a confirmation from each Crew member.
  • Step 2: The Traveller describes a problem and the Pilots help him or her clarify it.
    The Traveller describes his problem. He describes the situation in which it occurs and how he would like to be different when they occur again in the future. He mentally steps into the problem situation and specifies his experience; he describes in minute detail what he sees, hears, imagines, thinks, feels, says and does. The Pilot of Experiences asks the Traveller questions to help with the specification. The Pilot of Meaning asks questions that help the Traveller specify the meanings of these experiences. All Crew members have cue-cards which spell out some of the questions they may ask. The Ghost mentions any relevant emotions and other nonverbal signals he picks up by mirroring the Traveller. At this point the Tailgunner may already suggest that the Traveller will never be able to solve the problem.
  • Step 3: The Pilots identify with the Traveller and seek solutions
    When they have enough information to be able to step into the Traveller’s experience, the Pilots elicit a creative state in themselves and think about solutions for a few minutes. In their creative state, the Pilots may seek contact with the Wholeness or Spirit of Unity that is an important aspect of their spirituality. They may use this to receive healing energy and ideas. On the one hand, many of the solutions that the Pilots come up with will be relevant to the Traveller, because they are based on a precise sensory specification of the Traveller’s experience. On the other hand the solutions will be different from what the Traveller has come up with himself, simply because the Pilots have different perceptions and different life experiences.

Suggestion phase
After they have thought about if for a few minutes, the Pilots and the Chief stand behind the Traveller and make contact again with any spiritual forces they are in touch with. In a state of wholeness they put heir hands lightly on his shoulders and give as many suggestions as they can. At the same time they visualize a stream of healing, inspiring energy flowing into the body of the Traveller. Because of the large number of suggestions, some of them will be remembered by the Traveller, while others go straight into the Traveller’s unconscious. It is often funny to hear how someone who was the Traveller in a Journey, reports in a following Lifeboat session that he has spontaneously come up with a solution or an idea, while hiss fellow crew members recognize it as one of the suggestions that were given to him in a previous session.

  • Step 4: The Traveller tests the solutions
    The Traveller listens to the suggestions attentively in a very receptive state while he visualizes the healing, inspiring energies flowing into himself. He pauses for a few moments and chooses one or more suggestions he will bring into practice. Often he will combine several suggestions. He mentally goes back to the problem situation, to a moment just before the problematic emotional state occurred. He now tries out the suggested solutions in his mind and comments on their result. The Ghost mirrors the Traveller’s physiology and checks whether a positive shift in emotional state occurs. The Chief will accept a solution as valid only when the Ghost registers this shift. This prevents the Traveller from selecting solutions that sound logical but that he knows (on an unconscious level) will not work in actual practice.
  • Step 5: The Tailgunner challenges the selected solutions
    The Tailgunner now does everything within his power to ridicule the selected solutions and undermine the Traveller’s faith in them. The Tailgunner has a disgusted expression in his face and he has a stick with which he stamps on the ground, He talks in a loud belligerent and condescending tone of voice. He claims that the solution is impossible to put into practice, or at any rate that it is impossible for the Traveller. And even if it were possible for the Traveller, he doesn’t deserve it of it will have hosts of negative side effects. The Traveller defends his chosen solutions against this attack, supported, if necessary, by the Chief and the Pilots.
    Step 6: The selected solution is stabilized and generalized
    As a finishing step, the Traveller internalizes the Pilots, that is, the Chief suggests the Traveller take a few moments to imagine the Pilots are with him in problem situation. The Traveller practices mentally hearing them give even more suggestions. This is an important step. Having multiple mental mentors available in many situations can be a valuable resource.

The Chief registers the Journey in his Chiefs Log, noting down the problem, some of the specifications, the selected solutions and a date and phone number for checking with the Traveller how he did in actual practice.

The Chief asks the other Crew members what they will do outside the Lifeboat context to help the Traveller. Some of them will pledge to do some specific activities for the Traveller, like call him at a certain time to encourage him, or bring him in contact with certain people, or buy him something that expresses his intentions, et cetera.


Jaap Hollander and Anneke Meijer

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