BBC Phobia Sessions with Nick Kemp
Working with Fears and Phobias Issues Live on BBC Radio
Early March 2006 I received this call on my answer phone – “Hello this is Chris Sandys from BBC radio Leeds, would you like to appear on our show on March 19th to talk about NLP?” After some consideration I agreed to appear on the show even though it was my birthday and I had other plans for that particular day! However I thought “It will be good advertising, so why not?” The BBC is also highly respected and I especially like the medium of radio as it’s very immediate and there is a great opportunity to speak out about important issues relating to health and wellbeing.
The first session was on a Sunday afternoon and during this slot I happened to mention that I work extensively with clients who have extreme fears and phobias. After the interview I was asked to stay behind and talk to the show host and the producer. I agreed and they asked me if I would be interested in appearing on some future slots to work with listeners seeking help. I agreed on the condition that each client completed a full set of notes ahead of time which is how I work in my UK clinics. Little did I know at this time that my guest slot would run for 26 consecutive weeks and I would during this six month period be working with a wide range of clients with all manner of issues!
The usual format for the show is that I will take calls from listeners and we will then select a series of members of the public for me to work with. The selected members of the public would appear on the show to tell their story and then before the following week’s programme, I would work with them, so they could reappear and feedback the results. Many of these including were helped live in the studio before we then went on air to 50,000 listeners! One of the most memorable sessions was working with Mary Craven who had a phobia of birds for five decades! Of course in using my Provocative Change Works approach, the duration of time a person has had the problem is not the issue. The key to changing any behaviour is figuring out how the person is creating the problem and then being able to give them a new way of thinking and feeling.
When somebody has any kind of feeling, it is nearly always created by how they are thinking. By changing the thought process we can easily change how the person feels and how they then behave as a consequence of these new changes. Most phobias can be treated in a very short period of time and in this case even I was impressed that within twenty minutes we had not only removed any anxiety but Mary was now feeding the pigeons in Leeds city market. Her husband Steve was speechless and the BBC host and producer were similarly astonished!
Here’s what Mary said after the BBC session with Nick Kemp:
“It was good to see you again last Wednesday, and to be able to demonstrate how your NLP has helped me to deal with my “Bird flapping wings” fear. I can honestly state that following the NLP session, my fear of being near birds has gone. I am now able to walk outdoors, and I notice less and less as time is passing, any presence of birds. What can I say, I am a changed person with a higher level of confidence in dealing with not just birds, but other matters also. I’ve carried this burden throughout my adult life, and you’ve eradicated it with just one short session of NLP. This has been a life changing moment for me, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. No more free, free, because now I am FREE of this fear.” – Mary (BBC Phobia client)
These BBC sessions really taught me to work quickly and with precision. We only had an hour each week with each client and I had never met any of them previously, so there was a lot to do in a short time. It’s also important with PCW to work in a conversational manner, so these sessions really helped me develop the PCW model and to avoid unhelpful analysis of past events that in many cases only reconfirms the problem behaviour. Another of the 26 clients was Beverley who had severe anxiety issues, especially related to public speaking. This was also resolved during the sixty minute slot and here is what she said afterwards
“After having difficulties being heard in a crowd of people and a serious knock to my confidence 3yrs ago, talking out to the public and media had been an issue I would stand back from. Since doing some of the NLP training with Nick, it has helped a lot with my everyday communicating with colleges and friends. The first instance was helping my husband’s band come up with a new name and help organise the band with gigs etc… It has also helped control any anxiety other than the public speaking as I have kept a copy of the session with Nick to run over any of the ground that was covered.” – Beverly (BBC Phobia client)
Since 2006 I have travelled the world and taught PCW in Japan, India, USA, Spain, Israel, Hungary, Poland, Austria, Holland, and Switzerland among many other countries. I have also appeared extensively on national radio and TV. However I always look fondly back at this baptism of fire on the BBC as a great learning experience in developing my skills and more importantly really helping a number of different people with some quite serious problems.