May 5-6, 2012 Performance Workshop for The Mind Athlete™ Program

April 12th, 2012 Kevin No comments

Our next Mind Athlete™ Program will be held at Tech Ranch, in Austin, Texas, on May 5-6, 2012. Tech Ranch is located at the intersection of 360, MoPac, and 183. Learn more here: Both days begin at 9am and end by 1 pm. There are four follow up “laboratories” that take place on subsequent weekends. They are optional and help put your learning to good use.

What will the attendees do in the program?

1) Communicate: you use the Language GEMS to “talk” directly with your brain so it really understands you.

2) Lead: you use the Fever Pitch model to rewire your brain to follow your vision and meet your needs.

3) Manage: the Brain Team™ model helps your brain learn to cooperate like a team for your life successes.

What do attendees get for the four hours of commitment each day?

First: more knowledge about how the brain works. This helps you fix and tweak areas in your brain worth fixing and tweaking.

Second: rewiring advice that will improve your performance. You rewire your brain and directly impact your bottom line.

Third: practical methods to deal with your brain directly. You get a united brain and mind and achieve better results at work and in life.

Do you have examples of that third category?

Sure: lift your eyebrows up because gestures change moods (when you lift your eyebrows up, your brain thinks you are in the state of mind of wonder or surprise and therefore you cannot remain angry or frustrated). Do some simple math calculations and watch your negative self-talk stop dead in its tracks (turns out where our brains do math includes different areas than where they do spoken language, such as negative self talk, so doing math leaves few resources for brain areas that ruminate our negative thoughts).

Can you summarize the benefits of the program in one sentence?

The program lets you resource your brain on purpose to achieve what you want. This helps you avoid automatic (and not always helpful) ways the brain resources itself, including too much emotion, not enough focus, or a lack of attention and care for others.

How much does the Mind Athlete Program cost?

Admission is $600 for the complete course, there is a $100 early bird discount and there are group discounts available as well.

Final thoughts?

Graduates of the program are:

1) impressed with how much they now know about their brains and how to help them work better;

2) able to share their learning with coworkers and loved ones to help them improve their own brains as well;

3) on a journey to improve their brains so they can leverage their mental powers and get the most out of life.

I look forward to seeing you in the program. Cheers!

Kevin Leahy

Austin, Texas

Email for more information here:

Categories: Brain power Tags:

Will power is best served cold

February 9th, 2012 Kevin No comments

What’s this post about?

Will power.

What about it?

It’s best served cold.


It turns out in the moment, our ability to control our choices gets balanced by our nonconscious ways of considering how, when, and why to do things. We revert to our instincts and preferences far more than we make new choices in the moment.

Have an example?

Yes. Several come to mind, like eating the third donut, ordering the sixth beer, or telling someone the same thing for the eighth time. These are all symptoms of the underlying problem.

What’s the underlying problem?

The problem is the way will power works. Even if we decide to not eat the donut or not have the beer, that part of us that really enjoys those things can get its way by besting our conscious intentions. That part of us has more friends in our brains, is directly connected to more influential areas up there, and speaks the underlying languages of our brains (chemical, electric, electromagnetic) far better than we do.

Are you saying will power is not all it is cracked up to be?

Exactly, for many of us. Some people have amazing will power. Often, you find them as stalwarts in our companies, churches, and social networks. They mean what they say, and do what they mean. Nice folks.

And for the rest of us– is there any hope that we can enjoy will power?

Sure there is. As this blog post suggests, we can serve our will power cold. In other words, we can work on the important things when they are not happening yet so we are ready for them when they do happen.

Have any specific suggestions?

Yes. Imagine a whole sequence that is likely to happen in the future. In your imagination, change things. For example, as you think of the donut, imagine delaying reaching for it for 10 seconds. Imagine how much better your waist will be without it. Imagine that you are the queen or king of not eating donuts, give yourself a sash and ribbon in your imagination (no worries there, no one but you will be watching!).

You think I can serve will power cold with imagination, anything else?

Sure. Spend more time using your will power in the off moments to create new habits. Also, use your will power to tie emotion and states of mind to specific things that will happen in the future. Keep check lists of how you prefer to do things. Consider distractions that get your nonconscious brain off of its targets. Use self talk that helps see all sides and points of the proposed actions. “Talk” with your brain in language it understands, sensory language, language of intent, and language that expresses the energy of belief and hope more than talking in English about it.

That is a good start, thank you.

You are welcome. Good luck.

Kevin Leahy

Knowledge Advocate, LLC

Austin, Texas

Categories: Brain power Tags:

Join our next Mind Athlete™ Program coming January 21, 2012

December 1st, 2011 Kevin No comments

The next Mind Athlete Program begins on January 21, 2012. Here is what you can expect if you attend.

You will learn the details of how your brain works

You study the brain areas and functions that are “must knows” when it comes to understanding how your brain works; then, you can treat your brain like an integrated team and lead it to great personal successes.

You will focus on at least one of your brain’s unique abilities and strengthen it

You will focus on at least one of three major brain-performance areas: executive function; emotional function; or relationship function. The program helps you build up leadership abilities in those areas.

You will learn exercises that strengthen your brain as if it were a muscle

Mind athletes use exercises that build up their brain functions. When you do that you get better perspective, more control, and you begin to sense that your efforts to improve your brain are paying off.

How much time is involved?

The minimum time commitment averages five hours per week. That includes attendance at sessions; the first session lasts for two hours and the remaining sessions are an hour and a half each. The rest of the time is spent at peer group meetings, watching videos, reading, and performing the mind athlete exercises.

Why so much time?

As with any skill-based effort, the more time you invest, the more return you will get. The times mentioned are minimums, we encourage that you maximize your time and effort to maximize the benefits.

When do you meet?

The formal sessions are held on Saturday, starting January 21, 2012. Formal sessions happen every two weeks, and peer groups arrange for a convenient time to meet during the week between formal sessions.

Why do people take this course?

There are three main reasons people take the course:

Purpose: many of the athletes are business owners, managers, and leaders in their workplaces. They wish to learn more about how brains work so they can help others maximize how they use their brains.

Pain: a few athletes deal with hard to control urges or pain from emotional strain. For example, the program works on regret or frustration that arises from deep within the automatic functioning of our brains.

Performance: most mind athletes seek to improve how they perform at work and in life. They aim for better focus, clarity, and tenacity to plan and act. The program addresses these things, and more.

Are there any other reasons people attend?

Yes. A common reason is curiosity. Many people wonder if the mind athlete program is for them, some attend to find out. As with anything, the best way to participate in a skill-based program is to do the work. That said, curiosity can lead to a deeper understanding of the material and for many, it is the first step in the journey towards exploring a more active practice of mental excellence.

What are mind athlete graduates saying?

Good question. More to the point, how are they doing? The reports are great, from their experiences, here is what you can expect.

First, there is comfort, although some ambivalence remains, in knowing far more about a critical part of you that has historically been off limits due to a lack of information: your brain.

Second, you rely on the mind athlete exercises that have proven most helpful for you, everyone is different and takes to the exercises differently; you find the ones best for you.

Third, you see and feel the benefits when you begin to hold meetings with your brain team, communicate with individual brain team members with respect, and coach them to great results.

Fourth, your eyes are open to the amazing opportunities of brain control, brain management, and brain leadership that you simply had not considered before.

Can you summarize the gains of the program?

Sure. Just like with your physical exercise, the program gives mental exercises context and focus. You tackle routines that help you convert your first nature instincts, or your second nature preferences, into a third nature way of being, which is a way of being mindful in the moment. Then you command, control, and lead your brain to great success. Fewer hijacks, fewer unconscious missteps. As that command and control increases for you, there is a good, authentic, satisfied feeling that emerges. Just like any athlete, you begin to take on more challenges, just for the sport of it. As you do more of that, you raise your performance at work and in life to a whole new level.

I hope you consider the program. We would love to have you.

Kevin Leahy, founder

Knowledge Advocate, LLC

Austin, Texas

Categories: Brain power Tags:

The Back 98™: Ego– Shrink Wrap for Our Selves

October 25th, 2011 Kevin No comments

“The Back 98″ is the name of this blog series. The name refers to parts of our brains that work with or without “us.” Some say 98% of our brains’ efforts are generally off limits to us, no one knows for sure. This series is about controlling more of our nonconscious brains if we choose.

Is my ego part of the Back 98?

It depends on what you call “ego.” Some people can control behaviors associated with their egos, many cannot. For those who cannot, ego behavior is part of the Back 98, and it can pack a wallop.

Are you saying that some egos are like shrink wrap?

Yes. Many egos are like shrink wrap: we see right through them and they can get in the way of proper operation. Over time, people who reduce ego-related behaviors achieve much better performance.

What’s the point of this post?

For many, their egos simply get in their way. This post explores removing or dampening the effect of our egos. Do that and we can improve our relationships and increase our performance too.

What’s the link between the “ego” and claims that we do not use our brains much?

I define “ego” as that essence that seeks to protect our self image from physical and mental injury. By default, egos remain mostly stable throughout our lives, i.e., they don’t change much. Indeed, parts of the brain related to the ego are hard to change… even when we want to change them.

What parts of the brain relate to the ego?

Great question, and one that is hard to pin down exactly. Ego appears to derive from a couple of different areas. The anterior cingulate cortex, insula, and orbitofrontal prefrontal cortex, for example, translate into conscious attention much of the data generated below them by the limbic system and the brain stem. The amygdala, located in the limbic system, is responsible for the threat response that drives much of our “ego behavior.” The hippocampus and hypothalamus are also involved, as are regions of the parietal and temporal lobes that integrate much of our sensory experience that makes up our self image.  The parts of the brain associated with a dampening of those regions are located more to the very front of our brains, areas such as the medial prefrontal cortex and the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. The ventrolateral prefrontal cortex is responsible for blocking some of our egos more pernicious behaviors, like wanting to sock someone in the stomach for hurting our feelings.

Does it matter if I know all of these parts of my brain you just named?

Not really; not for applying this blog in ways that can reduce ego-oriented behaviors for you.

You mention “shrink wrap”; what is that again?

“Shrink wrap” is the plastic material that protects things we buy in the store. We usually remove it when we get home because it gets in the way of the product’s best use.

Can you offer an example?

Sure, most CD cases have shrink wrap surrounding them, that is the clear plastic material that they come in. That wrap is called “shrink wrap” and it protects the product until purchase.

Do you believe we can consciously control our egos?

In a sense, yes, because we can rewire them. Our egos establish our “first natures,” which is the way we are without any changes. We can modify the ego’s wiring to create our “second natures.”

You mean, like this: “do something enough times and it becomes second nature?”

Yes, exactly.

We can create new brain patterns that change our egos for good?

Yes. And because it is hard work, we must consciously do so. When it comes to egos, it takes lots of gumption– that is, will, intent, and belief, to do whatever it takes to get what we want.

What is the “our selves” in your title, is that a type of self that lies behind our egos?

Great question and one that awaits your own discovery. Research suggests the ego-less self may be far more productive, loving, and energetic than the one that the ego protects.

My ego catches me by surprise a lot; so is it part of the Back 98, or not?

It depends. Triggers, or hot buttons, tip us off that the ego is in the “shields up, fire the torpedoes” mode. That is Back 98 stuff. We can change our ego response and it takes lots of practice to do so.

Why bother if it takes so much practice?

Because over time, new wiring in your brain will transform your “first nature,” which is a fight or flight and ego-filled response, to a more desirable “second nature,” one of your choosing.

Alright, can you go over again what you mean by ego?

“Ego” relates to our notion of self. It refers to the set of behaviors we use to contrast how we view ourselves compared to others. It includes the idea of personality, or who we think we are.

We are who we are, right?

Maybe, yet we are always subject to change. Also, it turns out our personalities are not stable. We have proof of this when we act differently on a first date, or, when a policeman pulls us over.

What are you suggesting we do with these see-through egos? Take them off?

We all have the right to remove our egos (or at least calm them down). Our egos have served their purpose. By adulthood, if we are not careful, they can get in the way of our best performances.

I thought I needed to have my ego present and accounted for to do my best work?

You are not alone in your thinking. Commonly, people think the ego is necessary to perform well. That is simply not what the research suggests. During peak performance the ego takes a holiday.

Are you saying we do our best work when our ego is not even present?

Yes. That is exactly right, our best performances happen without the ego being present at all.

Do you have research to back that?

There is a long line of research dealing with this from the 1970s. Investigate the concept of “flow,” as identified first by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. He studied top performers and discovered that during their best performances, their sense of self seemed to reduce, if not go away entirely.

So why do we seem to need our egos to get through challenging performances?

Beats me. All I know is what the research shows: if you have your ego present as you perform something, there is a high chance you are not peak performing at that time.

What do you recommend for removing the ego?

First, figure out your definition of ego.

Second, consider how it helps you.

Third, consider how it gets in your way.

Fourth, do a cost/benefit analysis: should it stay, or should it go? Ask others for help on this one.

Only if you are convinced it should go, or at least, be modified, then go to the next step.

Fifth, if you desire, begin to reduce your ego. Here’s some ideas on how to do just that:

1) meditate: Rick Hanson has some wonderful insights on reducing ego with meditation;

2) love: adopt a specific approach to love, e.g., Jesus Christ offered great insights as did Buddha;

3) share: sharing will bond you to others and expands your intimate circle of trust;

4) question: challenge assumptions by questioning more, do it with a sense of wonder and joy;

5) wait: be patient so that the forward-most part of your brain has time to assess things properly.

That’s it?

That’s a great start. I wish you the best of luck,

Kevin Leahy, founder

Knowledge Advocate, LLC

Categories: Brain power, People, Thoughts Tags:

Is a brain in love more vulnerable to harm? Of course.

October 14th, 2011 Kevin No comments

Brain researchers are confirming something that makes sense.

When we intentionally love some thing or some one, we encourage more glucose to travel to the brain areas associated with love. When we do that, there is less energy available in the areas that help protect us from immediate harm, whether that harm is physical like a punch, or mental, like an insult. In other words, in love our brains’ design makes us more vulnerable to attack.

Does that mean when I am in love I reduce my chance of protecting myself?

In a sense, yes. Love is a risk, we have all heard that. From a brain perspective, when we actively love, our intent to love takes energy away from the areas of our brains that help protect us.

Which areas are those, which brain areas protect us from harm?

Some that come to mind include the amygdala and hypothalamus, the insula, and the anterior cingulate cortex. These parts, which are close to the front center of our brains, help protect us.

Do you mean those areas are responsible for our ego?

They can be. As ego is commonly defined, it is a way of being that relies on a massive network of cells throughout our whole brains. These areas help define who we are in relation to others.

And you are saying in love, the definition of ourselves changes?

It can. In love, the ego seems to dissolve, or at least dampen, the need for separation, contrast, or distinguishing things. In love, the brain connects things and accepts a profound “togetherness.”

So now what? What’s the point of this post?

This post makes clear that we have the right to make a conscious decision to love at every moment and accept that when we do that, we will pull energy away from our brain’s protection system.

Does that make sense?

It can, depending on how you value the long term benefits of love. Love, once built, lasts far longer than the momentary urge to protect, repel, and disconnect. It is your choice.

Anything else?

Not for now. Thank you for being here and have a great day.

Kevin Leahy, founder

Knowledge Advocate, LLC

Categories: Brain power, People, Thoughts Tags:

The subtle difference between a knee jerk and a brain jerk

October 8th, 2011 Kevin No comments

What’s this post about?

Mental reflexes. They can show up as “brain jerks” at times, which is socially awkward and can get in the way of results. In a word, they are “jerky.”

What is the point of the post?

Instead of saying “knee jerk reaction,” let’s say “brain jerk reaction.” That is more accurate because it’s usually a brain, and not a knee, that just jerked.

For what reasons would I change that phrase, I kind of like it?

When we say to ourselves or others a “brain jerk” just happened, we stand a better chance of deciding to do something about it. We can change brain jerk reactions.

They’re “jerk reactions” because they happen fast, without intent, right?

True. So the work of changing brain jerk reactions happens long before the moment when they occur.

So this post simply wants me to say “brain jerk” instead of “knee jerk”?

Exactly. And identify it often, as often as it occurs if you can.

And that lets me pay close attention to the jerky aspect of brain jerks?


I can change my brain so the jerkiness gets dampened, or goes away?

That’s the idea.

Tell me about it here:

Kevin Leahy, founder

Knowledge Advocate, LLC

Categories: Brain power, Thoughts Tags:

Got gumption?

September 19th, 2011 Kevin No comments

Gumption is a Scotch-Irish word that appeared first in the 1700s. There is no specific word origin mentioned. “Gumption” in context: “He’ll make it through this tough time because he’s got so much gumption.”

What does it mean?

It means many things to many people. In business, it means doing whatever it takes to get the job done.

I mean, what’s the real definition?

Well, there are a variety of definitions. They have to do with a person’s fortitude, courage, and certainty for what they are doing. Initiative, resourcefulness, enterprise, these words give you the idea.

So, what is this post about?

This post is about gumption. I believe gumption is critical in today’s business environment. If we’ve “got gumption,” wonderful things will happen for company profits, people, mission and purpose.

Any tips for how to get it?

Yes. There is a formula that helps build gumption. Here’s the formula: with an open mind and generous heart add equal parts of (1) belief, (2) will power, and (3) intention.

Can you give an example of the formula?

Sure. If I hear about a new skill that helps improve my work performance, I will have gumption to learn that skill when I believe the practice will help me improve the skill, have the will power to do the practice, and have the intention to practice the skill as instructed to achieve the maximum benefit.

That’s it?

Well. There is lots more, and that is good for now. See where gumption shows up in your work life and when it is lacking, help folks learn the formula. Good luck!

Kevin Leahy, founder

Knowledge Advocate, LLC

Categories: People, Thoughts Tags:

Introducing the Mind Athlete™ Program

September 2nd, 2011 Kevin No comments

Coming October, 2011. Learn more here:

What is the Mind Athlete™ Program?

It is a brain training program that teaches you about the different areas of your brain and their functions. Exercises and special commands help you control your brain and manage it to best serve your needs.

You’re saying I can communicate directly with specific areas of my brain?

Yes, with coaching techniques. Here’s one way to describe the program to others: it is a coaching program for your brain. For example, the program helps convert negative self-talk into positive self-talk.

Does this program draw on prior traditions?

Yes. Ancient traditions of meditation and prayer tip us off to the benefits of self-regulating our brains. Getting to know ourselves and brains better is a primary instruction of ancient philosophers: “know thyself.” It works.

What about more recent research?

Before the most recent brain breakthroughs positive thinking and self-hypnosis added to the foundation of why direct communication with the brain works. Early researchers applied science to confirm observable benefits, like reduction of pain, overcoming depression, controlling emotions, and the like. Particular individuals include Milton Erickson, working with self-hypnosis to overcome childhood polio, and Lev Vygotsky, working with inner speech to better understand self-regulation and control. During the past 100 years, management science and leadership research also showed us what practices work best when managing and leading others. That work plays a critical role in this program.

And in modern times, what science do you rely on?

The core sciences that form the basis of this work include communications science, neuropsychology, neuroanatomy, behavioral economics, linguistics, and evolutionary biology. The science required to help us understand how our brains work and why must draw on many different disciplines.

What authority do you have to offer this program?

I am a coach and have been one for more than 10 years. Coaching witnesses for trial and executives for better performance focuses on positive reinforcement, examination of beliefs, and intentional control and regulation over thoughts and behaviors. Specifically, I coached scientists and medical doctors how to present information to juries, and cross-examined adversary experts on the basis of their knowledge as well. As a trial lawyer, doubt and proof were corner stones of my approach in the courtroom. Now, they form the ethics of how I share insights about our brains and how to coach and train them. A key area of my work at law was human memory. My experience cross examining medical and scientific witnesses and preparing their testimony made use of the practical application of psychology, behavioral sciences, influence, and control. What I learned at law plays a critical role in how I share this coaching program.

You mention that I can talk to my brain, do I use English to do that?

If English is what you speak, that will be a key asset for you when communicating with your brain.

Do other message systems apply, like the use of images, sounds, and non-verbal cues?

Yes, large areas of our brains respond very well to non-verbal cues and messages. This is why, among other things, imagination and visualization are such critical performance management tools.

I thought my brain communicates with energy, including electromagnetic force?

It does. It also attends to commands in your native language and intentions formed with image, sound, touch, gesture, feeling, etc.

I can coach and manage my own brain with special commands?

Yes. The power of positive attention and mindful intention have been scientifically validated in peer-reviewed articles using tools like fMRI machines, EEG technology, SPECT scans, and the like.

So if I learn more about my brain and communicate directly with it, I become its leader?

That is the goal of the program. It is a process, like any other, that takes time and practice.

Who is in charge of my brain right now?

I don’t know, that depends on your will power, energy resources, and patterns of self-regulation and self-control. Some people are already amazing mind athletes, this introductory program is not for them.

And the point of your program is to let me take direct and conscious control of my brain?


Will your program help me control urges for food and drink better?

It can. The program shows you how to use the section of your brain devoted to will power and focus that energy on the system within your brain responsible for anticipating rewards and release of  dopamine.

So my will power can get together with my dopamine system and help me with my urges?

Yes. Remember that retraining your anticipation system to anticipate differently takes work.

Will your program help me control emotional outbursts?

It can. Emotions bubble up from the middle of your brain. This program lets you integrate the front of your brain more closely with it. You learn to reframe and reconsider things with the front of your brain too.

Can it improve my ability to focus?

That is one of the goals. Many studies indicate focus increases when we exercise the parts responsible for it. We get better at focusing with conscious effort, so with know-how and practice, focus can improve.

Will I listen better to others?

If that is an area you wish to work on, yes, you can. Knowing where your auditory functions reside and how your brain allocates resources to them can help you improve your listening skills over time.

Will I learn how to build rapport and be able to match how other people use their brains?

Yes. A part of the program teaches about where personalities, habits and traits tend to reside. Knowing that helps you call upon those areas as needed to match the traits and behaviors of those important to you.

It sounds like your program treats my brain like a team, is that right?

Exactly. The program relies on the metaphor of a team, and as with a team, you coach it to improve its overall function. Specifically, you use self-talk to call upon specific areas to do specific things for you.

In other words, I become the “team manager”of my brain?

Yes. Best practices from management science guide the process and sound coaching methods lead the way.

I am the”team leader” of my brain?

Yes. The program incorporates best practices and great insights from 100 years of research on leadership.

I can control even the parts of my brain that are normally beyond my intentional control?

Yes, and some parts are easier to manage than others. Please know that this work takes belief and practice. If you do not believe you have the right to control your brain more, I guarantee this program is not for you.

How does your program work?

1) first you learn about the different areas of your brain and what they do

2) then you learn exercises that help you coach those areas and let you interact directly with them

3) finally, you learn special commands that help you control, manage, and lead your brain to great results

The program lets you communicate directly with different areas of your brain and treats them like team members. Best practices from management and leadership science ensure we make the right efforts.

What’s the result of the program?

By doing the exercises and learning the commands, you become a great coach, manager and leader of your brain and a true mental champion. You can then better help others improve their own brains too.

I’m interested; where can I sign up?

Sign up here:

Thank you for your consideration.


Kevin Leahy, founder

Knowledge Advocate, LLC

Communication specialist, master questioner, brain trainer

Categories: Brain power Tags:

Remind –> Reframe –> Rewind — A Formula That Will Change How You Talk

August 28th, 2011 Kevin No comments

What is this post about?

This post is about change. Specifically, it is about “in the moment” change.

What’s “in the moment” change?

That’s the kind of change that happens when you are in the middle of a conversation and you decide “in the moment” to rewind and change what you are saying.

Can you say some more?

“In the moment” change happens when we decide to think or feel differently in the middle of saying something. We say one thing and then we decide to say something else. We remind, reframe, and rewind.

I still don’t get it; do you have an example of “in the moment” change?

Sure. Here is a conversation that benefits from the formula:

John: hey Tim, got a minute?

Time: sure, what’s up?

John: we are off target and you better [John pauses as he reminds himself of the formula]

Step one: John reminds himself of a better word choice than “you”

Step two: he reframes his approach and decides to use “we” instead of “you”

Step three: he rewinds his words and rephrases what he was going to say

John: we are off target and we can fix things. Will you help me as we get a better handle on this?

Tim: [thinking John changed his words, did he really change his mind?] what do you have in mind?

John: well, I think I may have some gaps in my thinking. Will you help me fill them in?

Tim: Okay.

John: how are you sensing where we are?

Tim: thanks for asking. For starters, I feel we can…

And so it goes. This remind, reframe, and rewind formula really works. It will get you better results. Remember to combine the rewind with sincere body language that matches your new approach and intention. That will clear up doubt that the other person may have about your sincerity. Keep at the formula and you’ll get better with practice. And, people will appreciate you more for it. Good luck!

Can you summarize the point of this post please?

We all have the right to change how we approach our conversations, even in the middle of them. This three step formula helps:

(1) remind yourself of what you really want;

(2) reframe how to get there; and

(3) rewind what you said to better align the conversation with your reframed approach.

That’s it?

Yes. Let me know how it goes,

Kevin Leahy, founder

Knowledge Advocate, LLC

Categories: People Tags:

Inner speech, inner voice, and self talk: what do they all have in common?

August 27th, 2011 Kevin No comments

Before we get started, just what are inner speech, inner voice, and self talk?

These terms all refer to the same thing: that is, how we “talk” to ourselves within the privacy of our own heads. We use this kind of talk to script our stories, ask ourselves questions, answer things, and the like.

What do these terms have in common with one another?

Well, we don’t talk much about any of them. In fact, we hardly mention inner speech and inner voice at all.

What are you saying?

Well, when was the last time you told someone that you talk to yourself? Ever? Despite using inner speech daily, almost no one mentions it. We just don’t broadcast to others that we talk to ourselves.

I barely know I am doing it! Say some more?

Exactly, this talk happens so naturally that we barely know that we are doing it at all.

Do you have some examples of self talk?

Sure. We ask ourselves things like: “Will I get the promotion?” Or we say: “I am not good enough,” or maybe, “I am the best.” Or, we answer a question to ourselves: “Well at least it wasn’t my fault.”

When we think (or say) these things we are using inner speech/inner voice/self talk?

You bet.

I never ever talk about this talk; I don’t want people to think I’m a mental case, you know?

I don’t know, but I do know that our self talk is critical for our mental health. When our ability to talk to ourselves stops, that is when our ability to relate to life goes way down or worse, away, if it’s really bad.

You claim we need our inner speech to think and live in a healthy way?

That’s right. Google “Jill Bolte Taylor” and learn how a stroke knocked out her ability to talk to herself. With no inner speech she lost track of things and could not think well. Her book, My Stroke of Insight, is a brilliant exploration into how she survived her stroke and recovered her inner voice. Here is a great video about her story too:

Can you summarize the point of this post for me?

Yes: inner speech is critical to how we think. We deserve to become more aware of self talk and spend time improving how we do it. It makes good sense to talk well to our brains and to work hard to get better at it.

Any other suggestions… how should I talk to my brain?

That’s a long answer. I teach a course on commanding your inner speech. You learn to use inner speech to communicate with, manage, and lead your brain. Happy to tell you more about it.

How can I contact you?

Use this email:

Thank you for your attention,

Kevin Leahy

Knowledge Advocate, LLC

Categories: Brain power, Consulting, People, Thoughts Tags: