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What Does Your Choice of Words Reveal About You?

One fascination I have with therapy is the client’s use of language. Language can represent their experience of the world. Careful listening can give you insight into their reality.

Hypnosis is an invitation to review the client’s inner world. This is a “Reality Tunnel.”

What is a Reality Tunnel?

It was first popularized by author Robert Anton Wilson. A “Reality Tunnel” is our understanding of the world. It is based on our personal experiences. Our experiences then influence our beliefs. Beliefs are the building blocks of our reality. They define our place in the world and define our reality tunnel.

“All kinds of ignorance in the world result from not realizing that our perceptions are bets. We believe what we see and then we believe our interpretation of it, we don’t even know that we are making an interpretation most of the time. We believe this to be reality.” – Robert Anton Wilson

Exploring the beliefs within the unconscious mind leads to new insights. Language expresses our beliefs. Exploring the use of language is common throughout therapy.

Carl Jung analyzed hidden clues in language. He believed this would lead to a better understanding of the world around us.

“Freudian slips” are named after Sigmund Freud. He believed that “parapraxia” in speech revealed unconscious desires.

David Grove devised a set of questions called “Clean Language”. The client’s own words can draw their attention to valuable insights. Later, the client’s comments will be used to write an audio recording. This will be used in an audio recording. This audio will be listened to between sessions.

This allows powerful suggestions to pass effortlessly into the unconscious.

Idioms and Metaphors in Our Language

In the 18th century, the rise of hydraulics shaped how people used language. Their experience of the world was expressed in metaphors of the day. It had become quite common to “run out of steam”. Or “let off steam”. One might release “pent-up” frustrations.

This changed in the 20th century. Electricity ‘recharged’ our use of language. Television gave us a reason to ‘turn off’. Computers allow us to ‘refresh our memory’.

“The limits of my language mean the limits of my world” – Ludwig Wittgenstein.

In “Politics and the English LanguageGeorge Orwell wrote of this. He explained what he saw as the decline of society and the use of language. We shouldn’t accept the misuse of language. If we do, our politicians can hide their nefarious lies!

Orwell believed that the way we express ourselves reveals our thinking. He believed how we describe our inner world meant taking back control of our thoughts.

“If people can’t write well, they can’t think well, and if they can’t think well, others will think for them.”

You can’t achieve great things if you can’t put these ideas into words. Similarly, without words, how can thought become meaningful action?

“Never use the passive where you can use the active.”

Here Orwell talks about the use of active language. But he could be talking about our attitude towards life. Don’t be passive when you speak or write. Use language as a weapon against complacent thoughts.

Life is a story we tell ourselves. Using richer language can empower our unconscious metaphors! This is how we create new tunnels of reality. And this means we can ultimately change our lives.

If you would like to learn more about therapy and hypnosis, please click HERE.

Adrian Jackson

Specialist in Anxiety & Depression (DipHyp, CNHC (Acc), HPD) I am a Cognitive Hypnotherapist in North London, providing hypnotherapy for anxiety and depression to clients in Pinner, Northwood, Harrow, and Rickmansworth. My flexible, modern approach helps clients relieve unwanted patterns of behaviour.