Blog Reviews

Review: Christina Hall's Video Series: Discover the Difference

Discover the Difference Video Series
by Christina Hall
Christina Hall has been training NLP since 1977. She collaborated closely with Richard Bandler for many years and was also closely involved with the development of many important NLP innovations including Submodalities, The Swish Pattern, and The Compulsion Blowout Technique. She also reportedly wrote or co-wrote some of the early manuals for NLP training, the influence of which is still felt today in trainings around the world. She is also a licensed psychotherapist, a Certified Hypnotherapist, and holds a Doctorate in Psychology and Neuro-Semantic Linguistics.
Apart from these qualifications and her long association with NLP, what is most significant for this review is her reputation as ‘the language master’. Her knowledge and expertise with using language is the primary attraction of this video series.
The video series examines the Meta Model in more detail than I have ever seen elsewhere. The Meta Model still lies at the heart of NLP, allowing practitioners to help people move back from their maps of the world to real sensory experience. Our maps of the world get encoded in language and we label experience with such words as ‘depression’, ‘success’, and ‘problem’. All of these nominalizations take us further from the simple fact that life is a series of ongoing processes – things that happen in time, right now. The Meta Model allows us to recognize the distortions, generalizations, and deletions that we have made from original experience when we represent them in language and memories. By using the Meta Model to revisit the original experience or recode it in more useful terms, it is possible to change our perception of the experience, to update our map. Thus, the Meta Model is fundamental to all NLP processes – the link that allows us to move between map and territory, and this video series explores all of the linguistic patterns in amazing detail.
The contents of the video series is shown below. Keeping in mind that each video is 90 minutes or more in length, you can begin to understand the depth to which Christina is taking the participants in understanding and using the Meta Model.

  1. Language as a Perceptual Tool
  2. Neurological Shifts and Temporal Perspectives
  3. Presuppositions and the Structure of Time
  4. Thinking Skills and Logical Levels 1
  5. Thinking Skills and Logical Levels 2
  6. Open Q&A Session on Language Patterns
  7. Universals and State Elicitation
  8. The Meta-Model as a System of Relations
  9. Chunking – Creating a Multi-Dimensional Network of Perspectives 1
  10. Chunking – Creating a Multi-Dimensional Network of Perspectives 2
  11. Building Intensity
  12. Guiding a Process of generalization
  13. Lost Performatives and Sorting Markers 1
  14. Lost Performatives and Sorting Markers 2
  15. Structuring Implications
  16. Complex Equivalencies

I wish I had been at the workshops where these videos were made. It is clear that a huge amount of learning was achieved, but watching it on video does not achieve nearly as much. One of the great advantages of being a participant would have been the ability to ask questions, to interpret Christina’s talk in the context that it was presented, and to enjoy the flow of learning as it naturally emerged. That is, of course, one of the disadvantages in watching it on video because much of the context and the perspective of being a live participant is lost. Perhaps the best way to understand this is to think of the fourth NLP metaprogram: Perceiver vs Judger. Being in the workshop is like being a Perceiver – enjoying the flow as it emerges. Watching in on video makes me wish that it had be created with a Judger in mind because the emergent organization is often not clear on the video. I would love to see an edited book version of this series, or perhaps to listen to a properly recorded straightforward lecture series based on the same material. Christina Hall has an awful lot of useful stuff to say about the Meta Model and other linguistic tools used in NLP, but watching these videos is a poor substitute for being there in person. Apart from the lack of structure, the video quality is not high enough to show what is being written on the board, so it is difficult for the viewer to follow along with the examples. Christina Hall hasn’t published much in NLP. I see that there is a Japanese language version of a book based on her seminars in Japan. I’m going to pick up a copy of that in a while, and will eventually get around to writing a review. However, I read English a whole lot better than Japanese, so it may take a while.
Complaints aside, this is an amazing resource for people who want to understand the Meta Model at a deeper level. It is definitely not for beginners in NLP. Not just Christian Hall, but also the participants in workshop are obviously extremely familiar with the linguistic distinctions and tools of NLP. If you are willing to take the time to watch the entirety of this series, and perhaps to watch it again and again, there is a wealth of material here that can benefit your NLP work. For me, I think it will probably be quicker to read the book in Japanese, and hopefully Christina or her publisher will get around to producing an English version one of these days that gets her great knowledge out to a wider audience. And one of these years, I’m going to take a few days off and listen to the whole thing again. This is worthwhile material.
The DVD series can be purchased here.
Here is a good summary of the topics covered from Christina’s website.
Tape 1: Opening: Language As A Perceptual Tool
A lot has been written in NLP about teaching to the unconscious. This tape shows a master of this valued skill at work. I counted four sets of embedded loops (with three to four stories each), three embedded trances,  and nine spatial anchors, just to set up the seminar. And I’m sure I missed some. If you want to take your presentations to a new level,  this tape is a must.
Tape 2: Neuro-Logical Shifts and Temporal Perspectives
Chris explains some of the primary Submodality differences among various parts of speech and temporal (time) sorts.  This facilitates a change in the organization of a perceived “problem, ” setting a new orientation without necessarily having to do a formal NLP technique.  She also shows how changes in language,  even subtle ones,  can enrich the traditional NLP Outcome Frame.
Tape 3: Presuppositions & the Structure of Time
Chris focuses on phonological ambiguities and gives a number of specific examples of common questions that can be improved.  She also begins discussion on how certain words trigger Meta-Programs.
Tape 4 & 5: Thinking Skills and Logical Levels
Chris shows how prefixes and suffixes set the direction in someone’s thinking.  She also uses them to form double and triple nominalizations.
Tape 6: An Open Session With Questions & Answers: Language Patterns
Chris answers questions including such topics as Lost Performatives, Modal Operators, Tag Questions,  Meta-Programs, Polya patterns, implications and chunk size.
Tape 7: Universals and State Elicitation
If your idea of state elicitation is “Think of a time…  ” you will be amazed at the information on this tape.  Chris demonstrates how eliciting and pacing universal experiences are powerful tools of change.
Tape 8: The Meta-Model as a System of Relations
Most of us leaned the Meta-Model as a set of challenges to “violations”.   Chris takes the Meta Model to a whole new level of utilization in demonstrating its reflexive and nested structure as an underlying matrix of patterning. With a touch of genius, Chris has transformed and redefined the Meta-Model beyond a mere information-gathering tool into an understandable and vastly more useful organizing skill.
Tape 9 & 10: Chunking: Creating a Multi-Dimensional Network of Perspectives.
Every person categorizes their experience to make sense of and organize the events of their life. Chris demonstrates how guiding an individual to change the ways in which they perceive and internally organize an event can access freedom to think more resourcefully.
Tapes 11: Building Intensity
Chris shows how to find the strategy that an individual already uses to build intensity to set a different direction creating and developing resources using the person’s own strategy.
Tape 12: Guiding the Process of Generalization
Chris uses backtracking and the art of questioning thereby opening up choices where someone thought there were none.  She demonstrates how the Meta-Model questions you ask set a direction for any context.
Tape 13 & 14: Lost Performatives and Sorting Markers
Chris explores the interplay of Lost Performatives and Meta-Programs to track a person’s strategy.  She also talks about the impact that Modal Operators and temporal markers play in the creation of Generalizations.
Tape 15: Structuring Implications
Chris leads an in-depth exploration of the power of implication through presupposition… a nested structure of the 1st,  2nd and 3rd order which support the universals in all languages.
Tape 16: Complex Equivalencies
Generalizations that map across logical levels,  creating semantic confusion and resulting in unresourceful “behavior-to-identity” equivalents are a major source of what Korzybski refers to as “unsanity.”  Here you will find tools to identify,  unlock and render powerless those previously limited “realities”.

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