NLP, Learning Difficulties, Eye Movements – What’s the Connection?

Filed Under (NLP coaching learning difficulties) on 01-02-2017

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Have you ever thought of looking for a connection between learning difficulties and the eye movements of people who have them? My NLP work with learning difficulties has proven that there is a connection. Let’s explore it.

Most people with learning difficulties are very ungrounded and distractible.  This distractibility is exactly where the connection between eye movements and learning difficulties lies.  Have you ever asked a person with trouble with e.g. reading comprehension how s/he saw a page of text?  What did the text do?  Did it move?  If yes, how?  Did the person see only one screen in their mind’s eye? Or did s/he see several screens with different action on each screen?  And did s/he see it or did s/he try to hear or feel it first?  Or did s/he try to see, hear, and feel at once – and then blanked out with confusion and overwhelm?

Our eye movements,

pictured here, are unconscious and we all display them when we’re processing information in different sensory channels.  The next time you observe the eyes of someone you’re having a conversation with, you’ll clearly see how their eyes move

  • up to one side [doesn’t matter which side] when the person is describing something that s/he remembers seeing or is imagining,
  • straight ahead or what looks like through you with soft eyes when the person is defocused, daydreaming, pausing in the speech to access the next image in their mind’s eye, or searching for more visual representation of what s/he’s talking about
  • midline to one side when the person is describing something that s/he remembers or is creating as sounds
  • down to one side when the person is describing something that s/he remembers or is creating as feelings, and
  • down to the other side when the person is having an internal dialogue [discussion / chat / talk] with him/herself about what s/he is – or you are – speaking about.

The problem will arise when

the brain of a person, perhaps as the unconscious result of past unpleasant experiences, gets confused under stress and bunches all the sensory processing into one place. The most common place is somewhere near the centre of their visual field and quite close to the face. That will look like the eyes in this picture:

In this case the person from our example won’t even know whether s/he is seeing, hearing, or feeling the text on the page.  So there’s little wonder that reading comprehension will be impossible. To comprehend what we read we must visualise [not hear or feel, let alone all three at once!] the content of what we’re reading.

The solution here will be

to separate all the sensory processing and put each type of processing to where it belongs as shown in picture 1.

Working with eye movements brings the additional benefit of helping people with and without learning difficulties to improve their memory.  If you want to remember a PIN number, visualize its digits and put the image up to the side where you normally look to retrieve something you remember visually: a face, place, or object.  Knowing which side it is will require knowing thyself. And knowing thyself requires observing thyself.  Ask people close to you to observe your eye movements over a few weeks while you converse with them.  Once they confirm which side your eyes move to when you remember a sight, sound, feeling, or have a chat with your internal voice, you’ll be able to consciously employ your eye movements to improve your memory and processing of information in general.

Contact me for more help on how NLP and eye movements speed up unlearning difficulties.

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