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Sleight of Mouth Patterns

copyright David Barron 1997 By David Barron

The Slight of Mouth Patterns are extreamly pithy comments/questions that are des
igned to attack the heart of a belief.
It is important to note that SoM can be used equally to reinforce an existing be
The origin of Sleight of Mouth patterns comes from people whom it was observed n
ever lost an arguement. Who they were
able to do this was then sythisized and model into these simple and tremendously
powerful patterns.
These patterns are so powerful that a combination of three or four of them deliv
ered in a row are enough to alter what
someone believes. They are also very invasive and one risks of induceing a hos
tile or threatened responce if use
without the proper care. This is important especially when dealing in a theraput
ic setting.
Note that SoM all "chunk up" to a higher level of awareness. It is also importan
t to *ALWAYS* be cautious with these
language patterns because they are very comfrontational and require a liberal us
e of "softeners"
The purpose of Softeners is to a) distance yourself from the abrasive and confro
ntational aspect of SoM and b) ease
the SoM into a more conversational format.
Examples of Softeners are
"I had a brother who used to believe <Belief> and then he realize <SoM>.
"This may sound silly but <SoM>."
"I am curious as to <SoM>."
"Let me ask you <SoM>."
"I'm just wondering...<SoM>"
In addition to Softeners you can make delivery of SoM patterns easier by establi
shing and maintaining rapport.
Changing Beliefs
It's been asked how does a belief change when SoM patterns are effectively used?
There is no accurate evidence to
precisely measure that. What can be assumed is that the belief tends to become
more general and more flexable.
From the questioning of the person using SoM the beliefs can be guided. It can a
lso be assumed that the if there is
a high degree of transferance going on (and high rapport as in a teacher-student
relationship) that the belief will
move closer to that of the person using the SoM.
Sleight of Mouth Patterns
1) Attacking the Source of the Belief.
2) Meta Frame.
3) Using Criteria Against Itself (Apply A to A) & (Apply B to B).
4) Focusing on the Intent of the Belief.
5) Attacking the Methodology of the Belief.
6) Changing Frame Size.
7) Redefine.
8) Metaphore.
9) Cosequenses.
10) Reality.
11) Counter Example.
12) Another Outcome.
13) The Threshold
14) Appealing to a Higher Criteria
15) Model of the World (Switch referential index)
16) Reverseing Presuppositions
I will offer you some examples here on sleight of mouth. I will use three differ
ent (complex/equivlence Cause/effect)
examples and apply various slight of mouth patterns to them. I will apply numbe
rs to these examples of slight of
mouth, but only for the convience of seperation here in this post. When you hav
e learned these patterns behavioirly,
and have them installed at a more unconscious level, they can be used in any or
Someone says....
1. "Your yelling at people means you are a bad person."
2. "Cancer causes death."
3. "Your being late means you don't care about me"
(Your yelling at people means you are a bad person)
a. I'm the only one who cares enough to do what it takes to be helpful.
b. You just said that because you have yet to realize just how helpful yelling c
an be at times.
c. I don't know? What would you do when you see a child about to run in front of
a moving car? Whisper softly?
(Your yelling at people means you are a bad person)
a. I can understand how your not having all of the facts about why I had to yell
, could have caused you to say that.
b. No! But it's perfectly alright for you to so sharply criticize me?
(Your being late means you don't care about me)
c. Judging by the loving response I am receiving from you now, I ought to have r
isked life and limb just to get here
on time?
(Your being late means you don't care about me)
a. What an uncaring thing for you to say to me!
b. No you tell me?!? If you really cared about me you certainly would have told
me this sooner!
(Cancer causes death)
a. Your intent to protect any false hope is wonderful, but do you really want to
eliminate all hope completely?
(Your being late means you don't care about me)
b. I didn't intend to be late or uncaring, but rather to make certain that when
I did get here, I didn't take any
of my work home with me.
(Your being late means you don't care about me)
a. I'm not sure how it is you have drawn that conclusion. Are you? I'm curious?
How did
you do it?
b. How would you know if it wasn't true?
(Your being late means you don't care about me)
a. Have you ever been late and still cared?
b. Have you ever been on time and not cared?
c. Always? Have you never heard of anyone who had had cancer, but survived?
(Cancer causes death)
a. Cancer doesn't cause death, it causes people to reexamine their lives.
b. Belief like that are dangerous, removing all hope of survival.
c. It's not that cancer causes death, but rather some of the treatments currentl
y used cause
the body to become weak.
(Your being late means you don't care about me)
a. Wow! Now that I have been late, I have lost my ability to care about you ..ev
er again.
Is there any way I can be fixed? Or should I simply kill myself right now?!?
a. You are only saying that because you are not fully familiar with how the body
on a cellular level, considering the exact functioning of the immune system, and
how that relates to it functioning
as it deals with some small diseased part of the body.
b. Considering our entire relationship through time, this one instance of my hav
ing been late means nothing more,
or less, than my having been late.
(Your yelling at people means you are a bad person)
a. How interesting you should say that. Growing up in my family, yelling at some
one was a way of showing how much
you cared. It's fascinating the cultural differences, even from people who can l
ive right next door to one another.
b. Thats funny you should say that. Many Doctors today are of the belief that ca
ncer is not what kills, but the
weakened immune systems ability to fight it off. That is why so many people are
successfully overcoming cancer.
The doctors are now thinking more holistically, as they are finding new ways to
help strengthen the immune system.
(Your being late means you don't care about me)
a. I didn't start off late, I was delayed on my way here.
a. You can spend your time thinking about what causes death, me, I would rather
my time thinking of the many ways I can improve my own health and well being. Ev
er think about spending your time
doing that?
(Your being late means you don't care about me)
b. Sure, it can mean that, but the real issue is that you are feeling hurt. Is t
here any way you can think of that
will help you move past this? Let's explore what the possibilities can be so th
at you can get onto enjoying the
time that you do have with me.
(Your yelling at people means you are a bad person)
a. Do you not think it is more important to hide your true feelings rather than
to share them openly?
(Your being late means you don't care about me)
a. How late do I have to be before you start feeling bad?
b. How specifically am I not caring about you?
c. Exactly which cancers are you referring to here?