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Eye Accesing Cues1

Eye Accesing Cues1

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Published by Rich
Communications tool
Communications tool

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Published by: Rich on Oct 20, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Visual Creative (Imagination) Auditory Creative Kinaesthetic

Visual Remembered (Memory) Auditory Remembered Auditory Self-talk

We think primarily in one of three representational systems; pictures, sounds or feelings. By paying close attention your unconscious eye movements you are able to determine which representational system you are using to access information... and by consciously moving your eyes to a specific location you are able to access different representational systems that will aid with remembering or constructing thoughts! Once you are aware of which system another is using you can speak to them in their language. For example, if they keep looking up during the conversation they are accessing visual information and a greater sense of rapport would be gained by using visual terminology, such as, ‘That looks great!’ ‘What a bright idea.’ Or, ‘I see what you mean.’ (Visual thinkers also speak a little faster, their breathing is shallow and they make many hand gestures during conversation. All of these things can be subtly paced to encourage trust.) If a person looks up they are accessing visual information. If a right-handed individual looked up and to there left (my right) it would indicate that they are visually remembering a past event. However, if the person was left-handed, it is very probably that whilst looking up and to (their) left (my right) they are constructing a visual image. A great way to get people to do this, just to check which side they look to (as some people do stray from the norm! …And a few are ambidextrous!) Is to ask questions that require visually remembering, such as, ‘what colour is your front door?’ and visual construction, such as, ‘What would a bright orange and green spotted cat look like?’ Similarly, if we look to the side it can help us to remember or imagine sounds. As with the visual thinkers there are exceptions but generally speaking, if a right hand person's eyes move to their left they are remembering a sound and to their right they are constructing one. Auditory thinkers spend a lot of time looking down and to their left whilst thinking. They also use phrases containing auditory representations, such as, 'that sounds great!'. Or, 'that rings a bell' etc. auditory thinkers tend to talk a little slower than visual thinkers; they also touch their mouth and chin a lot! I often catch myself pulling at my lips while thinking; it is as though my hands are uncontrollably trying to reveal my representation system to anybody that is watching! Another indication of an auditory thinker is their lip movements.


They often sub-vocalize as they are thinking and lip movements are common.... some take this a step further and are happy to talk aloud to themselves!

A kinaesthetic thinker will look down and to their right; they need to grasp an idea until it feels right. They make decisions with gut feelings and tend to talk a lot slowly than others. Kinaesthetic thinkers are very aware of their body and are masters of its abilities. A common misconception of kinaesthetic thinkers is that they are of low intelligence; this is primarily due to the lack of speed in communication. A footballer would most probably be a kinaesthetic thinker, obviously masters of their body’s abilities yet commonly misinterpreted as unintelligent! Eye movements can also be used consciously. If you were trying to remember how a song goes, then it would help to look for the information where it is stored! By consciously moving your eyes to your left it is easier to remember auditory information. This tool can be very useful during a reminiscent conversation with an old friend! When we meet people we engage in small talk to find out what things we have in common. This either develops into a relationship or it does not. When we meet a person that is like us this process is nothing less than electric! One thing that Bandler and Grinder did back in the early 70s was to label people using colored stickers according to their preferred representation system. They then sat these people in couples, and watched the results. If the colored stickers were different the couples displayed little rapport. They felt uncomfortable in the situation and the conversations were rather brief. However, when the couples were matched they got on like reunited friends! Quickly gaining rapport and mirroring gestures and position. The conversations flowed effortlessly and the couples liked each other. This is the basis of rapport building. If the patient perceives us as being like them then they trust us, and they like us. A conversation between a visual and a kinaesthetic thinker can be a disaster. The later calling the former untrustworthy! This ridiculous conclusion can be made simply because someone seems to talk too fast! The visual thinker might look down on the kinaesthetic thinker. Believing them to be slow, dull and boring. As people we stick to our own, this is the reason that a person using a particular representation system prefers to converse with another from his ‘pack’. It is also the reason that therapists and salespeople need to be adaptable! Being an auditory thinker (and a therapist) I am fortunate that it is such a small step to the visual or the kinaesthetic experience, ensuring that I can adapt to all of my clients and obviously they all like me! ;)


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