We structure our internal representations through our five senses – sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell. In other words, we experience the world in the form of visual, auditory, kinesthetic, gustatory, or olfactory sensations. So whatever experiences we have stored in the mind are represented through these senses, primarily through the three major modalities – the visual, auditory, or kinesthetic messages. This is the back ground of our decision making process even at work place.
These modalities are broad groupings of the way we form internal representations. You might consider your five senses or representational systems the ingredients from which you build any experience or result. Remember that if anyone is able to produce a particular result, that result is created by specific actions, both mental and physical. If you duplicate the exact same actions, you can duplicate the results that person produces. In order to produce a result, you must now what ingredients are necessary. The ingredients of all human experiences are derived from our five senses, or modalities. However, it’s not enough just to know what ingredients are needed. To produce the precise result you want, you must know exactly how much of each ingredient is needed. If you put in too much or too little of any particular ingredient, you will not produce the kind and quality of results you want.
When human beings want to change something, they usually want to change one or both of two things: how they feel that is, their state and/or how they behave. For example, a smoker often wants to change how he physically and emotionally feels (state) and also his behavioral pattern of reaching for cigarette after cigarette. On the power of state, we made it clear that there are two ways to change people’s states and thus their behaviors either to change their physiology, which will change how they feel and the kind of behavior they product, or to change their internal representations. This article is about learning how to specifically change the way we represent things so that they empower us to feel and to produce the kinds of behavior that support us in the achievement of our goals.
There are two things we can change about our internal representations. We can change what we represent thus, for example, if we imagine the worst possible scenario, we can change to picturing the best possible scenario. Or we can change how we represent something. Many of us have certain keys within our own mind that trigger our brain to respond in a particular way. For example, some people find that picturing something as being very large motivates them greatly. Other people find that the tone of voice they use when talk to themselves about something makes a major differences in their motivation. Almost all of us have certain key sub-modalities that trigger immediate responses within us. Once we discover the different ways we represent things and how they affect us, we can take charge of our own mind and begin to represent things in a way that empowers rather than limits us.
If someone produces a result that we would like to model, we need to know more than the fact that he pictured something in his mind and said something to himself. We need sharper tools to really access what’s going on in the mind. That’s where sub-modalities come in.
They are like the precise amounts of ingredients required to create a result. They’re the smallest and most precise building blocks that make up the structure of human experience. To be able to understand and thus control a visual experience, we need to know more about it. We need to know if it’s bright or dark, in black and white or in color, moving or stationary. In the same way, we’d want if an auditory communication is loud or quiet, near or far. We’d want to know if a kinesthetic experience is soft or hard, sharp or smooth, flexible or stiff.
Another important distinction is whether an image is associated or disassociated. An associated image is one you experience as if you were really there. You see it through your own eyes, hear and feel what you would if you were actually at the time and place in your own body. A disassociated image is one you experience as if you were watching it from outside yourself.