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Pink Elephants

Don' think about them!
Posted by Nick Grantham

I want you to NOT think about pink elephants. Think of anything else but the PINK ELEPHANTS.

What are you thinking of?

How many times did the pink elephant cross your mind? Quite a few times, right? In fact, it’s probably the only thing you can think of!

What has this got to do with coaching?

How often do you tell your clients “don’t let your knees fall in” or “don’t round your back during the lift” or “don’t eat X” or “don’t go to bed late”…the list could go on.

During our PFCA workshops we spend a lot of time looking at how the coaches deliver their key messages to their clients.

More often than not they constantly remind their clients to “not do something”…so just like the pink elephants, the one thing you are reminding your clients not to do…is probably the only thing they then focus on…it’s all a bit negative.

How about reframing the message…figure out the thing you want your client to stop doing and then reframe it with a positive message.

So instead of “don’t let your knees fall in during the squat”…you would say “keep pushing your knees out during the squat”…instead of saying “don’t let your back round out during the lift”…you may say “keep your chest up during the lift”…instead of saying “don’t go to bed late”...you could say “get settled down to sleep before 10pm”. By reinforcing the positive actions you’ll get the changes you are looking for and your clients will be focusing on the positives rather than constantly thinking about what not to do.

Reinforce the behaviours that you want to see instead of focusing on the things you DON’T want to see!


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