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  • Writer's pictureTom Robinson

The reality of the appalling mental healthcare system, determination to help others, & NLP lesson 4!

Updated: Jan 28, 2022

I have spent hours of my time writing over the weekend as I try to craft out another book proposal and synopsis for my combined memoir/self-help book which I still haven’t managed to find an agent/publisher for.

I have to admit that, although I will never giver up, it is pretty frustrating when I’ve devoted so much of my time gratuitously pouring out blog posts, helping my friends, studying NLP, writing query letters, synopses, book proposals (I’m not even proposing to write this book it’s already written) and still not getting very far!

You would think that someone in the literary world would have noticed the commitment, drive, determination, and passion behind my efforts to help others survive these hideous mental illnesses, but (as yet anyway) they haven’t!

I think this is because people don’t want to go near the heavily stigmatised subjects of mental illness and suicide – which is what much of my writing focuses on. But this is where the real issues in mental ‘health’ reside, and they need tackling sensitively & effectively which only someone who’s been through the hell would know how to do.

I will continue in my quest to get noticed!

Determination to help others

Having spent a lot of time recently, supporting those who are being utterly failed by a system that currently does absolutely nothing to help them, I am now feeling even more fired up this week to get noticed and telegraph some of this important stuff to a wider audience.

The reality of the current system for mental healthcare is that it is worse than useless for the patients (like many of my friends) who go round and round the revolving door of the psychiatric hospital, never getting any better because all that the ‘treatment’ consists of is locking people up, restraining them, and then pounding them full of drugs.

There is currently zero attempt to deal with the root causes of their suffering and the pandemonium of the psych wards only accentuates the problems and deepens the psychological scars.

It’s honestly a miracle if anyone gets out of it alive let alone well.

I managed to get better in spite of the treatment I received on the NHS and I did my own therapy and self-development to get to where I am today – but how are my friends going to be able to do this? I’m determined to do what I can to help.

Seeing my friend ‘D’ on Friday was upsetting because he’s been failed so appallingly by the ‘system’ and has suffered immeasurably. But when I thought about the whole thing over the weekend, I was left with a residual feeling of renewed determination to persist in sharing my story so that I can campaign for improvements in education & healthcare and make a stand for those who are simply too ill (or too scared) to be able to voice their opinions themselves.

I then spent the whole weekend crafting a new synopsis and book proposal (which is still hours and hours away from completion) but I will continue because nothing else matters to me anymore than helping other people. ON WE GO….

NLP lesson 4

Using metaphors to access the unconscious mind

Last week we learnt how to use metaphors as a coaching ‘tool’ for helping people to address their challenges and problems.

The theory behind using metaphors is that the brain seems to be uniquely wired towards stories and responds to them in a positive way, especially when they contain material which is relevant to the client’s likes, hobbies, and interests.

I do have to admit that NLP is pretty ‘whacky’ sometimes but having gone through a role play scenario using metaphors, I am beginning to see how this could be useful!

Metaphors are used to:

  • Access the unconscious mind

  • Loosed a problem before dealing with it

  • Gaining the attention of an audience in public speaking

The metaphor design PULSE

The design behind the use of metaphors can be remembered through the mnemonic

P U L S E:

P – Present the problem

U – Upward chunk (what’s this an example of?)

L – Lateral chunk (what’s another example of this?)

S – Solution

E – Elicit interests

The Meta Model

The Meta Model in NLP is a heuristic set of questions designed to specify information, challenge, and expand the limits to a person’s model of the world.

It takes the distortions and helps to make the connections that were lost in the distortion filter, to return to the sensory based experience.

It is a set of language patterns that focus attention on how people delete, distort, generalize, limit, or specify their realities. It also aims to loosen limited thoughts and belief systems.

For example:

The client says:

‘This is better’


‘Better than what?’

Ask questions, listen to their language pattern, and watch how they respond to things or words.

The Meta Model identifies the following patterns of distortions, deletions, and generalisations in someone’s language, responds, and causes them to recover and specify their experience:


  • Mind reading

  • Lost performatives

  • Cause-Effect

  • Complex equivalence

  • Presuppositions


  • Universal quantifiers

  • Modal operators

  • Modal operators of necessity

  • Modal operators of possibility


  • Nominalisations

  • Unspecified verbs

  • Simple deletions (simple, lack of referential index, comparative deletions)

Examples of Meta Model in action

‘He makes me happy’

Distortion: Cause and Effect – what does he do to make you happy?

‘It's wrong to cheat’

Generalisation: Lost Performative – who says it’s wrong? According to whom?

‘I regret my decision’

Deletion: Simple deletion – what about your decision do you regret?

‘Nobody ever pays any attention to me’

Generalisation: Universal quantifier -Nobody? Ever?

‘Sue loves me’

Deletion: Unspecified verb – how do you know that Sue loves you?

‘Kathy hurt me’

Deletion: Unspecified verb – how specifically?

‘I'm angry’

Deletion: Simple deletion – what specifically are you angry about?

‘I should study harder’

Generalisation: Modal operator of necessity – what would happen if you didn’t?


Submodalities are how we encode and give meaning to our internal representations (the senses).

Changing the submodalities can change the meaning of the internal representations.

Techniques include:

  • Contrastive analysis

  • Mapping Across

  • Swish Patterns

  • Dissociative techniques

  • Perceptual Positions

I will explain more about these submodalities in my next NLP post as we go into more detail over them this afternoon.

I now need to sign off so that I can devote some more time to the book proposal this morning!

When I find a publisher some of this information will actually start reaching the people who need it, so I will continue in my quest to get noticed as I fight my way through the slush pile!

Thanks for reading,

Speak to you soon,


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