From: L. Michael Hall
Meta Reflections – 2010 – #16
April 12, 2010
THE ULTIMATE META-STATE TRANCE
If there is any hypnotic trance state that is the ultimate one for a Neuro-Semanticist, it is the genius state. But no, the use of the word genius does not mean it is a hypnotic state for increasing your I.Q., that’s not the purpose of this particular trance. Instead this is the induction into a state of being all there. It is a state of absolute focus on one thing. Normally, when you experience it, you are in a powerful state of concentration and absorption. And when you are there people may think that you have really tranced out or they may think that you really have fabulous powers of focus and will power. The genius state is a state wherein you are in “flow” and even better, you can turn the flow state on and off at will.
Now while I never present the genius state as a hypnotic process and state, it absolutely is. When you experience this naturally occurring state (and everybody does at some time), it seems to happen to you, to come upon you, and when you look back on it, you typically remember it as a wonderful experience.
What induces it? Usually something that’s very important to you, something that you actively engage with and when you do, you get lost in it. You become thrilled and absorbed in it. It could be reading a book, it could be walking in a Redwood forest, it could be gardening, it could be playing catch with your dogs, writing, watching a great movie, having a fantastic conversation with a friend, making love, climbing a rock wall, playing a video game, and on and on the list goes.
The key is absorption in something that you care about, an absorption that pulls you into it so much so that you can get lost in it. Then, in that moment when you are in that “flow” state, you are not multi-tracking. You have lost all of your meta-mind awarenesses about all of the other things you need to do and track and you have become of one mind about the absorption. Now in that moment, you won’t realize this! If you were aware of it, you would be double-tracking. But you’re not.
It is only later when you look back on the experience that you realize that you during that time you were all there— fully and completely. And during that time you realize that many of the central factors of your consciousness disappeared. Time disappeared and you were lost in the now, this moment, and your awareness of time just vanished. So did the world and others and even your self vanished. These facets of the matrix of your mind were still there, but you lost consciousness of them. You became self-forgetful, time forgetful, world forgetful. All you were aware of was the subject of whatever the focus was about.
Athletes experience this as when a gymnast disappears the audience and they are there alone with the high bars or the floor. A baseball pitcher similarly disappears a whole stadium. In their focus-flow-genius state all that is there is the ball and the batter. When an athlete goes into this special state, they typically call it being in the zone. And a couple years ago Tim Goodenough and Mike Cooper, two Meta-Coaches modeled out 13 distinctions from top South African athletes (Olympiads and national champions) in their Neuro-Semantic book, In the Zone.
In the field of NLP the first work on the prerequisites of the “personal genius state” was developed by John Grinder and Judith DeLozer (1983- 1987). The processes that they came up with were interesting, but quite convoluted and therefore ineffective. They were fooling around with meta-levels as they were trying to figure out how to utilize the guidance of Gregory Bateson and his principles of the higher levels. And they even wrote that they knew the secret would tie in somehow with managing the meta-levels. They got thta from Bateson, they just didn’t know how to apply it. That came later after I created the Meta-States model (1994). One of my very first applications of Meta-States was to the genius state prerequisites and that brought about the Accessing Your Personal Genius state or induction (and hence the APG training).
What Meta-States was able to do as a process, and as the ultimate hypnotic state, was to set the required meta-levels (as meta-states or frames) over the primary state so that you can let go of the meta-awarenesses and be fully present in the primary state. Doing this commissions the higher meta-states to operate as an out-side of conscious awareness structure. It’s paradoxical, as is many hypnotic states. To release the multi-tracking kind of consciousness, you learn how to embrace your meta-level states and use them so that you are freed for letting them go— from your immediate awareness.
Then you can be all there— with all of your resources available for the flow or in-the-zone state. Then when you read, you fully comprehend because you are there (and not elsewhere!). Then when you write, you don’t suffer the dreaded “writer’s block.” Then when you are there with a client or loved one, you are there and they can feel your full presence. And now you know why we use the APG training to create your genius coaching state, genius training state, genius writing state, wealth creation state, etc. It is the ultimate Neuro-Semantic state for operating from your highest and best. So that makes it a self-actualizing state. And now you know why APG — Accessing Personal Genius— is the flagship training of Neuro-Semantics.