How many dreams or great ideas have you ever had and…never followed through?
In memory of Walt Disney whose birthday is today, I thought I would share a simple NLP Technique called the Disney Model; it is based on an approach Walt Disney used when considering how to bring his dreams to reality – and he certainly succeeded didn’t he?
Imagine you have just purchased a cupboard of flat pack furniture; if you attempted to put it together without checking the instructions at all you may end up with bits left over at the end or something that really doesn’t look like the picture on the box.
This can be a similar problem with our dreams or ideas; if we don’t think through the different aspects we may not take the right action or may not achieve what we really want.
The Disney Strategy Model is a very simple approach. It was developed as a NLP tool by NLP pioneer Robert Dilts who said, “Walt Disney’s ability to connect his innovative creativity with successful business strategy and popular appeal certainly qualifies him as a genius in the field of entertainment. In a way, Disney’s chosen medium of expression, the animated film, characterizes the fundamental process of all genius: the ability to take something that exists in the imagination only and forge it into a physical existence that directly influences the experience of others in a positive way.”
When Walt Disney had a plan for a new film he would consider it from 3 perspectives; the Dreamer, the Realist and the Critic and he would use each of these 3 styles one after the other.
Habitually, we will muddle the 3 levels of thinking and therefore this creates confusion, doubt and therefore often limited or no action. This approach helps to clarify thinking whether for an individual goal or whether for a team and each role should be done in a separate space or location within the room and sequentially.
Step 1 – The Dreamer
This is the first position; the creative position. Usually creative ideas start with passion and excitement and then are quelled by problems. In this position though, it is only creative ideas that are brought to the table. Let your imagination run free, imagine how it will be when achieved and the benefits of doing it.
Step 2 – The Realist
Move to a second position where you consider what needs to happen to turn the dream into a reality. The aim is to find ways to make it happen and, again, do not be put off by considering blockers, just focus on what has to happen and generate a high level plan to make it happen.
Step 3 – The Critic
Move to the third position and act as the Constructive Critic. Here you test the plan and look for flaws and loopholes that mean the plan may not work. In Critic role you only interact with the Planner – not with the Dreamer. Search for weaknesses in the plan and how to pre-empt problems to ensure success but leave the resolution of these to the Planner.
Step 4 – Step Outside
Step into a fourth position and review what you have done so far and how well you are approaching each role. Are you really challeging yourself in each role? Some roles are more naturual for us than others so consider whether there are any improvements to be made.
Step 5 – Recycle
Depending on the complexity of the goal you may need to recycle through the Realist and Critic stages until you are certain that the plan can be achieved. The dream need not change, just the way to achieve it!
As a NLP Coach and Trainer using this technique works with in different client settings. It helps with the process of generating creative ideas and translating them into reality by providing a greater clarity of ideas and making the dreams more achievable rather than feeling overwhelming.
How will you use it?
If you want to know more about NLP and how it can help you in your perosnal life or your business, then sign up to my newsletter or book yourself on one of my courses at www.tracywardcoaching.co.uk
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