How do you know what to feed back?

Having just mentioned feedback, it is worth remembering that you do not want to come across as someone who is simply repeating every single thing they say, not actually listening or interested in what they are saying. So, it can be tricky at first to know exactly what to feed back and what to utilise in other ways.

A helpful reminder is to keep in mind the embedded command function of some of this repetition. So, if I think repeating a word or two fulfils that function then I will almost always do so.

I also find it helpful to pick out the ‘trancey’ words that my clients use and feed them back. Words like relax, freedom, float, bliss, ease, dream and so on can be useful nominalisations to feed back.

At other times, I might want to unpack a nominalisation, if I feel that doing so will provide valuable information for me to use. For example, they may say that they like fishing because it “restores my soul”.

may want to find out what the essence of this is for them, so that I can unpack the experience of “restoring their soul”. To do this I might ask, “And what does ‘it restores my soul’ feel like?” and I may get the response “magical”. I have now encouraged them to explore the experience at greater depth, got 2 nominalisations to use and come up with the word to feed back as an embedded command: magical. So I say, “you feel magical”.