Yesterday after a rowdy and somewhat chaotic session of perceptual positions with my Y6 group, I sat in the hall waiting to see if anyone would show up for a drop in session with me. This is like counselling for problems that crop up on the playground, but NLP child therapy style. At NLP4Kids we frequently work with young people experiencing bad behavior via their school and try to reduce the negative impact of bad behavior in schools.
This poor little boy was forcefully shoved into the room with a couple of other boys who are in my respect workshop. I asked him if he has a problem and he said “Well yes but I thought this was a joke so that’s why I didn’t want to come in. But my problem is that I argued with George. We used to be friends but he just said he would punch me because I told the teacher that he and a load of others hadn’t washed their hands.”
I got him to talk me through it very slowly then said: “Ok, I’ll pretend I’m you. You be George and then you two (indicating to the two who attend my workshop) tell me the names of other people who were also there – you can be them. Now I’m going to go and tell the teacher that all of you did not wash your hands and now you’re all in trouble. How are you feeling?”
One boy said “I’m cross” The one who had the problem said “I’m really angry with you!”
“So what do you think you should have done _instead_ of going straight to the teacher?” I asked.
“Oh I should have just had a quiet word with George, I’ve really upset him!”
Then I said “Well what are you going to do about it?”
“I think I should say sorry as I didn’t mean to upset him. I just thought he should wash his hands.”
One of the others said “But what if you apologise and he just tells you to go away?”
The other boy from my group said “Well then you know you did your best. You can just ignore him then, what’s important is that you tried to put it right.”
“Yes, I’ll do that. I’ll apologise and if he ignores me then I’ll get on.”
“I think boys, you may have just solved your own problem!” I said.
They shouted “Thanks Miss Bailey!” as they blasted back out through the door.
Despite the constant battle of them talking when I’m talking, despite the fidgeting and the back chatting, I realised at the halfway point of my 10 weeks with them, something very special is starting to happen.
Gemma Bailey is the director of NLP4Kids, a children’s therapy service that provides teen therapy and child counselling using NLP, a proactive alternative to conventional child psychology. If you are looking for a child counsellor to help your child overcome stress, depression or anxiety related problems or if you wish to book a workshop to help your child improve their mental health call 0203 6677294 or email Gemma@NLP4Kids.org Gemma is based in Hertfordshire and works with clients in and around Hemel Hempstead, St Albans, Watford, Potters Bar, Berkhamsted, North London and Hertfordshire.