Hypothetical reader(s): “Wow! The climax of your latest novella, ‘The Self-Construction of Couch’, was really something! How did you come up with the magic system used to send your dragon protagonist through time??”
I’m glad you hypothetically asked, friend(s)! Like much of the stuff my ‘Big City, Little Magics’ stories are made on, I based Couch’s renovative journey on aspects of my actual life – in this case, my exposure to a little magic (and by ‘little’, I do somewhat mean ‘massive’) magic known as Transformational NLP.
But I’m really not the best person to talk to you about that. If you want to hear from someone better informed, allow me to introduce (and interview) my most beloved friend, Tavern Duncan!
– What even is Transformational NLP? (as asked and answered on Tavern Duncan’s website)
Tavern: NLP, or Neuro-Linguistic Programming, seeks to offer a user’s guide to the human brain.
Transformational NLP takes a more holistic and flexible approach than more traditional iterations, respecting the vast complexity of human experience, recognizing that creating deep and lasting change takes more than a recipe book of techniques, and honoring the original value of maladaptive thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.
We use precise questions and physical anchors to create new neurological connections, working with your inner landscape until the path to your desires becomes the path of least resistance.
– How did Transformational NLP come into your life?
Tavern: It all started with my next sibling up, who walked this path long before me. They didn’t hasten me into their footsteps, but when my life was at a point of particular despair, they gifted me a book – Money Magic, by Michelle Masters, who was trained by NLP Marin – and I grabbed it like a lifeline. When the book wasn’t enough to do the trick for me, I decided to attend a 2-day course of the same name. (“It didn’t work? Try it harder!” is probably not an ideal way to approach my life, and it’s certainly gotten me into trouble before, but I lucked out in this instance.) In-person practitioners brought NLP to life in a way a book simply can’t. 30 days after the course, I had a new job in the location we wanted to live in. 30 days after that, we were unpacking in the apartment of our choice.
I kept taking NLP Marin’s courses whenever I could afford the time and money, and everything in my life – professionally, relationally, psychologically – kept improving. That trajectory definitely… took a nosedive when the pandemic hit. But NLP had positioned me to survive it, in a way I genuinely might not have without it. And now my trajectory is recovering from the trauma of the pandemic, even while we’re still very much in the thick of it.
– What motivated you to go into this field professionally?
Tavern: NLP Marin extended me a unique opportunity to take one of their biggest courses, The Core Competencies of Communication and Change, on a payment plan I could afford. Unlike the little 2-day or evening courses I’d done before, this 100+ hour training is their practitioner certification course. I wasn’t planning to be a practitioner when I started – I just wanted the tools, to use for myself and for, well, you. 🙂 But it wasn’t long before I realized that, not only do I have a knack for the work, I find it deeply satisfying and exciting.
Having earned my NLP Marin certification last month, I’ve continued on to their Master’s course even while I begin my practice!
– Who is your target clientele?
Tavern: On the one hand, I’m naturally inclined to want to help people whose struggles have been similar to mine – namely, neurodivergent and/or queer people dealing with trauma and/or anxiety. People who feel overwhelmed and desperate, like the treadmill of life is too fast and too steep – I would feel honored to help that treadmill slow down and even out, to give them a chance to breathe.
But I’ve enjoyed working with people struggling with work/life balance, addiction, procrastination, perfectionism, and relationship issues – basically, I’m happy to work with anyone who doesn’t like their current experience, or wants an experience they’re not having!
– How does a session with you work? (as answered on Tavern Duncan’s website)
Tavern: My sessions are an hour and a half long and conducted via Zoom – and we dive straight into the work of change!
We’ll talk about your current experience, determine what you would like to be different, and find ways that you, your habits, and your brain can get on the same page about creating your desired reality.
(I might ask you to do a few odd things, like hold your eyes in a certain direction, squeeze your own arm at a certain time, or exercise your imagination.)
We give the effects a month to get settled – even when your mind is past ready for change, the body needs time to integrate! – then we can have another session.
Many outcomes can be reached within 6 monthly sessions, so that is my recommended course, though you would be free to opt out sooner, or keep going for as long as you choose.
– Now that you’re officially open for business, what are you most excited to achieve?
Tavern: I really look forward to being a part of people’s journey to better. I feel like I’ve found my true work, in a way I haven’t felt with any other job, or even with my art. I want to wake up looking forward to working with people, and go to bed happy that I did. I am most excited to turn this practice into a way of life!
Thank you, Tavern! – on behalf of both Couch and myself. ^_^ If any readers of this blog post feel that there’s an overlap between what they would like and what Tavern has to offer, I encourage them to visit Tavern’s website – ReachDeepChange.com – and, well, reach for the deep change they desire.
‘Til next our paths of transformation traverse,