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When to use it |
How to use it | Example |
How it works | See also
When to use it
Use it when you are stuck and cannot find the way forward.
Use it to let your subconscious tell you something.
Use it as another method of exploring for ideas.
How to use it
This is usually done as an individual, but there is no reason why it
cannot be done with a group of people, who all listen to the same script
and then report on their findings afterwards.
Write a script to guide thinking. An example is given below.
You typically need at least two people: one to read the
script and one or more to relax and listen (although you can do it alone by
replacing the reader with a tape recording of your own voice). This must be
done in a quiet and relaxing place, of course, and read in a calm and
sympathetic way. It will not work if you read it quickly in the middle of a
Read the script
The listener first must get comfortable, sitting or lying
down. Closing their eyes avoids distractions of the room around them. The
person who is reading should take care to pace their reading to the listener’s
state of relaxation. The voice should be slow and gently expressive, helping
the listener to visualise.
The listener then just goes with the story, noticing what they experience in
terms of what they hear, see and feel.
Reflect on what happens
The subconscious moves in mysterious ways and is highly symbolic. What
you experience thus needs a certain amount of translation.
This is an example of a script you can use. You can also make up your
|“Are you comfortable? Good. Now stretch and take a few moments to
relax. Close your eyes and notice any tensions in your body and just let
each of them go….That’s right.
Now, imagine yourself sitting in a field, the grass soft and
sweet-smelling beneath you, the sun comfortably warm above and a soft
breeze gently rustling the leaves of the trees around the field. You smile
within and stand up. As you look around the field, you spot an old gate on
one side. You walk over to it, open it and go through into the deserted
Beneath the archway of branches from the trees either side, you walk
slowly down the lane, listening to the soft sounds of the breeze in the
trees and distant birds calling to one another. Seeing a stile at the side
of the road which leads to a path up a hill, you walk up to it, grasp the
stile firmly and climb over. Just as you are about to walk on up the path,
you notice a piece of paper on the ground. It seems to have something
written on it. With a sense of anticipation, you pick it up and look
carefully at it.
Walking on up the path, you gaze around at the placid woodland scenery
as you stride easily between the trees. As the hill starts to level out,
the trees end and you see that the upper part of the hill is grassy.
Continuing upwards, you see that there is a stone tower at the top, with a
single wooden door at the bottom and deep windows at various points on the
walls. You reach the door, turn the handle and enter into a single,
musty-smelling, dimly-lit room, from which a stairway goes up the tower.
You walk up the musty-smelling stairway until you come to a closed door
at the top. You knock on the door and a vaguely familiar voice bids you
enter. You turn the handle and walk into the tower room, which is bare
apart from a table and couple of chairs, from one of which a person is
rising. The person smiles, walk over to you and greet you warmly.
Knowing you can trust this person, you talk about important things. They
listen carefully, then pause for a while, considering, before giving you a
valuable reply. You continue in deep discussion for a while, and then both
go to the window to look out across the trees and the fields, pondering
what has been said.
Eventually, you feel that is time to go, and say so. The person agrees
and leads you over to the door. Just before you leave, they hand you
something. Surprised, you thank them, and then depart, going back down the
stairs and out into the sunlight. You then retrace your steps, back to the
trees, down the hill, over the stile, along the lane and through the gate,
back into the field.
There, you sit down on the flattened grass where you were before and,
holding the gift that the person in the tower gave you, you look carefully
at it, turning it about in your hand…..You then muse for a while,
remembering your conversation in the tower…..Then you recall the paper you
found by the stile, take it out and look at it again.
After a while, you stretch, open your eyes and come back into the room,
bringing with you the insights and discoveries you found on your journey.”
How it works
First of all, it uses sensory language, encouraging the listener to
concentrate on the imagined world rather than the real world. The story
then leads them on a journey of discovery. The paper, the conversation and
the gift, are all opportunities for the subconscious to slip through ideas
to the conscious mind. The paper is visual and picture- or word-based. The
conversation is aural and word-based, with the context of a wise advisor.
The gift is physical and tactile. These different media increase the
opportunity for subconscious-conscious connection.
What appears in these connections may well not appear to be of much
relevance as the problem with the subconscious is that it is rather fickle
and often appears to communicate in metaphors (hence using the story form
to communicate with it). Thus a gift of a glass hedgehog might be about a
prickly problem that can become beautiful. A drawing of a map might be
about the need to plan your future. Often the easiest to interpret is the
This method can give you significant ‘aha’s on deep problems. The
trouble is that it is highly unpredictable. It can work one day and not
the next. It can be difficult to work out what the communications are
about. You might just draw a complete blank. But if you persist and give
your subconscious space and permission to come through, this method can
lead to insights and ideas that cannot be found through any other