By Victor Yap

“Do you know that many people including adults are afraid of balloons bursting?”

It may seem quite insignificant as you might ask, “What is the big deal about balloon sculpturing?” My story began last year September when a friend came to know that I perform magic shows and requested for my help in a volunteer event, “Act of Kindness Day”. Imagine my fright when I only managed to learn how to produce a sword on Saturday and had to teach a group of volunteers on Sunday. However, I stayed calm and applied the NLP presupposition – “The person who is the most flexible controls the system”. Thus, on the actual day, I had everybody carrying a sword, but dressed in different costumes such as a pirate, ninja, knight, Viking warrior, Xena and Power Ranger.

My next encounter was when my boss’ niece requested for my help in another volunteer event for the Ang Mo Kio Community Centre Christmas party. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that some of them had “balloon bursting phobia” and some of them did not know how to tie a balloon. However, I stayed calm again and modified the logical steps of therapy. I found out that they were mainly afraid of the sound, and got them to twist the balloons around waist level, away from the face. To have the division of labour, I had some strong volunteers pumping, some butterfingers tying, and some volunteers who were not afraid of balloons bursting doing balloon sculpturing. At the end of the day, we were able to produce more than 100 balloons with reindeer for the MP.

I would thus like to conclude that if you meet any interesting “encounters”, stay cool but do not ‘freeze’. Think of all the NLP lessons which you have learnt and try to apply or modify them to the situation, and you will be able to see that it work wonders for you just like it had worked for me.

Congratulations to Victor (Magician cum Clown) for successfully applying NLP techniques, and appearing on TV news regarding volunteerism on 26 Dec 2001. He is the Business Development Manager of Pro Dynamics Consultants.