From Guinea Pig to Pioneer….

Jim Maguire
Community and Leisure Manager South Lakeland District Council,
NLP Business Practitioner and now NLP Coaching Diploma

4 days and 2 stones lighter our three intrepid heroes set off on a quest…… a quest that would take them through raging torrents, over burning heather and to a brave new world of peace and tranquillity.

They commence the journey as Guinea Pigs and end as Pioneers, hailed by all for enduring the rigours of yet another excellent course with Sansei Madden, the great and all-knowing leader, mentor and coach.

As our intrepid heroes (or Guinea Pigs) arrived at the pre-arranged rendezvous, they are met by a scene of wild animals roaming the land and are soon lulled into a false sense of security with the offer of tea and bacon buns. The weather is sunny, birds are singing in the trees and our clan makes good progress as they discover frames and well-formed outcomes. As they travel they encounter strange new worlds and “thinking environments”; they have a flutter at the TOTE.

Lunch is provided by Sansei and cooked by her own fair hand. After a snooze under a bush at the bottom of the garden (lunch had been rather too filling for some), our team is assembled and on it canters. The day ends with feedback (more foodie themes!) and the tastes and smells of the day are recounted and appreciated. Our band disembarks and travels home, vowing to return again to this mystical land.

Day 2 commences once again with the temptations of the kitchen. French cuisine awaits….. with croissants, jam and proper coffee. As they gain speed and confidence the clan moves more carefully and starts to “walk the logical levels” to a land of wonderment and adventure where behaviours are altered, skills are considered and empowered with new values and identities, their mission for lunch continues. Once again lunch is served with wild animals roaming the lands where summer fruits are picked and served with locally-sourced coconut into a pudding (the best summer fruits pudding this side of anywhere you may care to mention I might add). The incisive question on all our explorer’s lips was “shall I have seconds?”

On the third day of our brave quest it begins much the same as the others with hearty breakfasts and merriment around the kitchen table (we could easily get used to this). Their guide soon has the crew exploring new dark corners as we whisk our way towards “Meta Model” land where their patterns and language are soon exposed for all the world to see. They had all pre-supposed that their journey was nearing an end (after another tiny dinner) and yet no they still had further to go.
The journey was now nearing an end.

The final day began in the office. It was just another Friday at work. Our travellers had now been back in the real world for a couple of weeks and much had changed. “Why” you ask? Even “why” had actually changed… and is now just a three letter word that is seldom if ever heard from our clan’s lips these days. Their guide couldn’t let the opportunity pass without once again taking pity on our poor band of heroes and brought yet more gifts in the form of clean questions and cake (lemon drizzle yum).

The intrepid band of colleagues and friends had reached journey’s end. Hailed no longer as Guinea Pigs and now acclaimed by all the world as Pioneers. The first ever NLP Coaching Diploma holders with Florence Madden Associates.

Footnote: Florence Madden would like to point out that the catering so described is not a normal part of the syllabus …………………and to offer deep gratitude to Jim, Andrea and Andrew who were the inspiration behind the development of this new course !!