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The Impact of Words & Psycho-Cybernetics

The prescription for charity is three fold: (1) try to develop a genuine appreciation for people by realizing the truth about them; they are children of God, unique personalities, creative beings. (2) Take the trouble to stop and think of the other person’s feelings, viewpoints, desires, and needs. Think more of what the other fellow wants, and how he must feel. A friend of mine kids his wife by telling her, whenever she asks him, “Do you love me?” “Yes, whenever I stop and think about it.” There is a lot of truth in this. We cannot feel anything about other people unless we “stop and think” about them. (3) Act as if other people are important and treat them accordingly.

Maxwell Maltz The New Psycho-Cybernetics (2002). The original Psycho-Cybernetics (of which this is a modernised update) was published in 1960

When I started my Clinical Hypnosis training way back in 1997 one of the books on the recommended reading list was Maxwell Maltz’s Psycho-Cybernetics. Since it didn’t seem directly related to hypnosis, and had a slightly odd title, I never bought a copy. Every now and again, since that time I come across references to it and think, I really should read it. Then just a month or so ago it came to my attention again so I had a look on Amazon and finally got hold of a copy. The only thing is the copy I got hold of is not the original, it is The New Psycho-cybernetics which is the orginal re-worked a little to bring it up to date with modern technology and stories that relate better to the modern reader.

I must admit that by the end of the first chapter I was wondering why on earth I hadn’t got hold of a copy way back in 1997, as I could see the life-changing potential of Maxwell Maltz’s ideas.

Still, I’m enjoying it and I came across this ‘Prescription’ yesterday morning. It got me thinking about how I relate to other people and about how my clients relate to other people in their worlds. As I reflected on the quote above I felt quite a deep connection with the words and their meaning and promised myself to be more present with others.

I appreciate that the mention of God might put more people off now than it would in the ’60’s when it was written, but looking beyond the mere words the keys in the message here are appreciation – which is key to our well-being; awareness that to each of us our own personal viewpoint makes total sense – even if it is at odds with the sense of everyone else; and respect for self and others – without which life is extremely difficult and with tends to flow much more smoothly.

So perhaps you could be present with a stranger today: a checkout operator at the supermarket; a waiter; a teller; taxi driver; nurse; customer; the list is endless, but it takes just a few moments of wondering perhaps what their life is like, what kind of a day they are having, whether they are stressed or at peace. As soon as you become present with them in this way you will find that they not only warm to you (whether or not you speak) but also have their lives enriched.

Michael Hadfield


So, what do you think?