Do You Know the Logical Levels for Successful Change? (Part 2)

In my last post I shared the lower levels of logical change: environment, behaviors and capabilities. Now I’m going to move on to the upper levels. Changes that occur at one or more of these levels—for you or your clients—are more likely to be successful and sustained.

  • Beliefs and Values: this level addresses how you organize your experience in the world; remember, a belief is a generalization from experience. Beliefs are adopted early on and become our guiding force, not learning from life. For example, if I believe the world is safe, my experiences will be very different from those of someone who thinks the world is dangerous. Given that beliefs rarely exist independent of one another, we each have systems of beliefs that can create problems when they don’t work together.

    Underlying beliefs affect the lower levels of change. Oftentimes changes at the lower levels—environment, behaviors and capabilities—won’t last if the beliefs that hold them in place are not addressed.

  • Identity: this level is crucial because it determines who you are in the world and how you think of yourself in relation to others. For example, saying “I am a golfer” represents an identity—who you are—and is different from saying “I play golf,” which only refers to something you do.

    Your identity influences how you move through the world and what you do or don’t do. Saying “I’m not the kind of person who takes risks” means that your new learning experiences will be limited. Describing yourself as a “risk taker” has different implications and may result in dangerous behaviors that do not serve you well.

    What I understand when I’m working with people is that the identity you hold may need to be adapted or shifted in order for a significant change to happen in your life. Identity has an impact on all the levels beneath it.

  • Mission or Purpose: this speaks to, “What’s more important than me?” or “What’s larger than me?” Teachers often answer this by saying that they get to have an impact on children—that it’s the most important thing they can do. Mission is crucial. That’s why people struggle at a job that to them has no purpose. When people recover from illnesses that were supposedly terminal, it is often because of mission, or remission—acquiring a new sense of purpose. For many, having a connection with God or a higher power makes a difference, feeling a bond with something larger than themselves.

Change can happen at any one of these levels, but you need to recognize at what level the work is being done. For example, sometimes a reframe doesn’t quite sell because it’s at the wrong level.

It’s also essential to know at what level a problem exists. Coaches are often trained to work at the behavioral level, yet problems usually are not behavioral—or not just behavioral. There’s often an underlying belief at another, higher level that may prevent a change at this lower level from making a difference.

Understanding the relationships between and among all these levels can profoundly influence the way you work with people. Ultimately, you want to create alignment at all six levels. When everything is aligned for a client, their actions will be more effective and precise, they won’t waste energy, and they’ll have more success.

Are your values, identity and mission congruent with your goals? Do you have a client who needs to make a change at one of these levels to support his or her goals?

P.S. Do you want to reprint this article? Please do. Just be sure that it remains intact and includes the following bio.

About Terry: Terry Hickey, M.S., is a Certified NLP Professional Coach, Business Trainer and Consultant, a Certified Master Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming and the co-owner of NLP Advantage Group. Originator of the Belief Breakthrough Method™, Terry specializes in teaching coaches and entrepreneurs how to rapidly resolve limiting beliefs about wealth and success. His tips and strategies can help you launch yourself into the future you want… NOW. http://terryhickey.com/

Categories : Beliefs, Coaching Tips

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