Intrapersonal Communications

Lizzie and Chris define intrapersonal communications as the way we communicate with ourselves – through our thoughts, the stories we tell ourselves, our imaginings, our feelings etc.

It is key to determining our physical and emotional state – which, in turn, influences the quality of our business performance – making successful sales calls, leading productive meetings, making good decisions, managing change – it is relevant in every context!

Top Tip: Learn how to manage your own intrapersonal communications, so you create the desired state before you operate.

Podcast transcript:

Lizzie
Hello, welcome to Lizzie and Chris Communication Podcast and today we are talking about Intrapersonal Communication.

So, mmm, it’s quite a big word, that’s what I always find Intrapersonal Communications – what exactly does that mean?

Chris
Ha ha – It means the way we communicate with ourselves.

It’s talking about that communication that happens within us, the thoughts that we create that we treat as if they are so important, sometimes we turn them into stories, and some stories, of course, we keep repeating.

You know the apochryphal middle eastern mystic Epiah Khan, wrote about the libraries in our mind that we create, you know those thoughts and stories which we go back to and back to, and of course some of those are good for us but we’re so good at creating stories and imaginings that’s part of intrapersonal communications, that get in the way.

So, it’s our thoughts, the stories we tell, how our imagination works, it’s the feelings we create, it’s the images we might have in our minds eye. Different people will favour different structures in their intrapersonal communications just like they would in their interpersonal communications, but, it’s vitally important right.

Lizzie
Yeah it is. This one, as you know this one for me, I’ve done a lot of work on intrapersonal communications; the management of thoughts, for myself, personally and also professionally and I wanted to get you to define it because the way I think about intrapersonal communications it’s those conversations that we have with ourself and probably, it must be, it must be over I don’t know 2, 2 and a half years now and at that time I was probably at the height of having a lot of internal thoughts if you like, and people who I talk to and I see now, we all do this.

Chris
Positive or Negative?

Lizzie
At that time, at that time negative thoughts, lots of doubt as well and it’s surprising how, it’s surprising how unbelievably good I was at making myself feel really bad. You know, if there was, you know I like winning, well if there was a trophy, I would’ve won, because I was SO good at making myself feel dreadful, really.

Chris
I heard you were awarded a 5th degree black belt at making yourself feel bad.
(Lizzie and Chris laugh)

Lizzie
Yeah exactly. Now, I don’t want to dwell on that part, that’s what it is to me. But when I learnt how to manage, control and also use it as well, not only did I see myself change personally, and for the better, this ultimately goes hand-in-hand professionally.

Chris
Well you’re doing a whole different career now right?

Lizzie
Yeah, that’s right

Chris
I mean you’re here for a start.

Lizzie
Yeah, and interestingly now you see, I know that if I have too many thoughts in my head then it’s either a bad process or a bad decision or, it means, for me I’m just not there yet. So now, I just tone them down and they just fade away.

Chris
What you literally quieten them down?

Lizzie
Yeah, well not literally, in my head I do.

Chris
Yeah, that’s what I meant.

Lizzie
Yeah, yeah. In my head, I literally (Lizzie laughs), now I’m saying it yeah I switch the voices off and I tell myself you’re not ready yet. You’re not ready for this decision or whatever it may be.

Chris
When you switch the voices off, do you do this as well (Chris action) or is that just for the camera.

Lizzie
Always. Because this is where they come from.

Chris
Good job I’m sat over here then

Lizzie
Actually no, when there’s lots of them they come here (action), this is my good one (action) and it’s just one, it’s just one voice so now if I’m going to make any decision, I know what my decision making process looks like using my intrapersonal skills.
So I know for me, I have one really clear picture.

Chris
That’s in your mind’s eye?

Lizzie
That’s in my mind’s eye. It’s clear because whatever the decision is, it’s actually a movie from start to finish, so I’ve already done it, and I have one voice that says “yes you’ve got this” or “you’ve done this” and I have a feeling (Lizzie points), here.

Chris
I was going to ask you does it create a physical sensation?

Lizzie
Yeah – so clear picture, one voice, one strong feeling and if those three tally, I do it.

Chris
And just out of interest then, because you’ve obviously worked this and you’re managing this yourself now, the voice; is it a voice you know, is it your voice?

Lizzie
Gosh, yeah that’s a good question actually. It’s a very calm voice, it’s got a deep pitch and it’s just secure and I just know that… where as, when I’m confused, or something’s not quite right it’s just noise, noise, everywhere, so I know to ignore that.

Chris
That’s a really fascinating insight actually into you working out your process for negative intrapersonal communication and then working out a process, the best process for you. And it’s that personalised thing again, you doing communication your way.

Lizzie
And it’s great for business, and it’s great for business leaders in terms of process management. Whether it’s a planning process or whether it’s an execution process; we all know when things just don’t quite feel right. Mmmm We might not know why, but if you can manage and you can control your intrapersonal skills or state, then you can run the process, from start to finish, and by doing that you can pinpoint the area which is not quite fixed or it’s not going to quite run right.

And so people who come to me in business, who maybe they have a new product, or maybe a new service, and they want to share it; that part of the process, I get them to run it from start to finish because then they’ll say “oh, but I’m not sure about this” and we’ll talk, and you know it’s whether, could just be a straight resource issue and then the conversation is well, what are we going to put in its place, how are we going to overcome that issue, and have a solution sort of thing. And also be mindful of the fact though that we are trading in difficult times so we may have a solution to that problem today….and that’s what we have got to do. Because that’s what we’ve got. We haven’t got an endless wallet, that’s what we’ve got.
Chris

You touched on a really important thing then again didn’t you, because we are possibly in the most uncertain of times, who knows, and so the ability to, use the NLP term, create the state by managing your intrapersonal communication; to create the right state before you operate in any context so you know when a right decision looks right, seems right, for yourself; you’re in the right state to network, or present or motivate your teams or lead people through change. You’ve got to know how to do that with yourself first, through your intrapersonal communication management before you can go out and manage and lead your business and steer your business to success.

Lizzie
Exactly. And the same with Sales. If you’re completely, 100%, behind what you’re selling, and you know why you’re selling it and you know the benefits to the customer on what they will receive, then you’re going to sell, and you’re going to see your results and you’re going to see that in your performance as well. And you’re going to build and create a really supportive network. But you’ve got to know it yourself and it’s got to be the truth and it’s got to be honest because if you try and go a different way, it sounds a bit I’m not sure but, the only way I can describe it is your body will go against it and when you meet people they will pick up on that.

Chris
I think that whole topic of selling and what we might think of as ethical selling is something we should come back to in another podcast.

I think for now, The Top Tip for today:
Learn to manage you own intrapersonal communications so you can always create the best state before you operate.

Intrapersonal Communications

 

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Intrapersonal Communications | Lizzie Butler Communications