Following on from previous articles about rapport and how to improve it, here are some ways you can develop your sensory acuity and rapport skills. Remember, it’s one thing to read about NLP and to know about it intellectually, quite another to be able to do it. That takes constant practice.
With sensory acuity, there’s a lot to take in. I suggest you bring one area into conscious focus at a time, practice noticing it for a while, and they let your unconscious mind handle it while you focus on another area.
Take a list of all the areas you could focus on, and pick one: “Today I am going to notice lip size”, or “today I am going to notice shifts in skin colour.” Tomorrow, go on to the next area, and so on down the list. You will be amazed at the subtle changes you can notice when you look for them.
With practice, you will get to the point where your unconscious mind will bring any significant changes to your attention without having to consciously look.
With rapport, there are a number of ways you can practise and sharpen your skills. If you actually do these exercises you will soon become better than most NLP master practitioners, if they haven’t bothered to put the practice time in.
- Notice examples of people in rapport around you – on the train, in a bar, at work, anywhere that people gather.
- Practise non-verbal rapport with strangers. You can unobtrusively match someone’s posture or breathing (just as you have done unconsciously many times in the past). Don’t be surprised if they strike up a conversation with you.
- Choose a different aspect of rapport to practice every day, or even for a week. One week you could do voice tone; when you’ve mastered that you could move on to breathing, then representational system, and so on.
- Turn the sound down on the TV and watch the non-verbal interaction of the people on the show. Real-life documentaries, news interviews, chat shows, and even ‘reality’ shows will give you more ‘raw’ examples than scripted dramas.
Finally, go to your nearest NLP practice group or meetup group and practice with other people – this has the added advantage that you’ll meet some interesting and friendly people.
If you’re a trainer and need some exercises for practising sensory acuity, rapport and listening skills, get my new e-book 15 Exercises For Training Listening Skills And Rapport from the Amazon Kindle store.
What’s your favourite tip for sharpening your rapport skills? Let us know in the comments below!
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