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The KEY Questions: Am I being professional?

9 December 17

I was asked to give a short talk. It’s something I’ve done more times than I can remember. In fact you might say that among other things I’m a ‘professional speaker’. I motivate people and try to change them for the better through my words. I don’t really have any special technique for doing this. Generally how I approach the task is to prepare a few notes, go through a little sort of meditation that I’ve devised for myself, get in front of an audience and open my mouth, trusting that what comes out will resonate with my audience. It works.

This time was different. This time I was being ‘tested’, if you like, by a mentor figure, someone whose opinion I totally trust. He asked me to talk to a small group of other coaches for fifteen minutes on the subject dearest to my heart: the three principles underlying, and guiding, our human experience. And I was to do it like it was going to be the last talk I would ever give.

So far so good. The purpose of this was purely and simply to help me to focus on the message that I wish to deliver in the course of my work, to help me to ‘find my voice’ as my mentor put it. It wasn’t a test at all.

But boy did it feel like one!

This little exercise, which I had only one evening to prepare for, brought out a whole shed-load of insecurities that I didn’t even know I had. The one thing that you might say I pride myself on – though pride is possibly the wrong word – is that I show up authentically with my ciients. I serve them by being ‘in the moment’ and part of that is not thinking too hard about what I’m going to say. The Principles have taught me that I only need a quiet mind and the willingness to share what I know. The rest I leave to chance – or rather to Mind. Now here I was being asked to approach this perfectly normal everyday task from a different angle, and I won’t say it freaked me (I’m a professional after all) but it unsettled me. It threw me a little bit.

I didn’t want to add to the potential problem by over-thinking or dwelling on it, so I took my own advice and went through my usual ritual. I got a rough idea of what I wanted to say, calmed myself the best I could and turned up the next morning to deliver my speech to the small ‘audience’ of about eight people.

It went well. I felt very emotional throughout the fifteen minutes, and that very real emotion was infectious. By the end of my talk it seemed to me that one or two people looked genuinely moved. Afterwards, in a private moment, my mentor complemented me on the words I had spoken, saying that for the most part I had come across very focused, very ‘connected to Mind’. However …

… At times it had felt a bit ‘professional’.

I wonder if you can imagine how it felt to hear that word used about me – not as a compliment but as a put-down, a criticism, albeit a very mild one. It stung at first. But in fact I had been given a great lesson, one that I’m hugely grateful for.

There’s something very satisfying about a job well done. Isn’t that right? We want to give good value for the money we get paid. Our clients worked hard to get it by being equally diligent in their own jobs, and they deserve total commitment from those professionals, like myself, in whom they place their trust. The way that we deliver on our part of the bargain is by holding fast to what has worked in the past while always trying to deepen our understanding of the truth we are sharing.

But there’s something more. Transformational coaching of the kind I teach goes far beyond mere transfer of information. If the truth of the principles could be quickly and easily put across in words then Sydney Banks’ prophecy about an end to wars and conflict would have come true sometime back in the seventies. It doesn’t matter how well meaning I am, or how accurately I can convey the message. It doesn’t matter that I do a professional job, however I define the term. The only thing that matters is that I ‘walk the walk’, that I embody the transformation that I am asking people to make within themselves. So any ideas that I have about acting in a professional manner or ‘giving value for money’ are, thankfully, irrelevant.

So my ‘profession’ consists of nothing more than deepening my understanding of the Three Principles day by day – or even moment by moment – and then sharing what I’ve learned with my clients.

How cool is that?

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  • Having attended David's course and then had some one to one sessions with him my approach to my life has changed dramatically and improved. David has a very gentle and empathic way about him, yet managed to challenge my habitual way of being and thinking. As a result of our time together I now practice his "way of being" and I truly find that I am getting far better results in all of the relationships that I encounter. My inner chatter is under control, most of the time, and I am learning to pause and push away harmful thinking . It's surprising how habitual thinking can do so much damage and how, once you really focus on what comes into your mind you start to realise that you can be bigger than your random thoughts. So David thank you for putting me on a better pathway. Looking forward to sharing another journey with the Auspicium family!
    Rowena Wild

  • The course I attended with David Key was marvellous, every moment being filled with joy and laughter. David has a unique talent to teach, unlocking the full potential of every person he encounters. His course opened up an infinite number of ways for me to get the life I want, right now, today, and in the future. It made me realise that thought is fluid and that I can mould it the way I want to suit my day. I would highly recommend this course to anyone in search of a new professional career or for those who simply want a happier life. Thank You!
    Lucia Pohrebnyak

  • It took me about 5 years of 'dithering' before committing, and in that time I attended several introductory days from various training providers. David's accessible style and the unforced flow of the day is what persuaded me to choose his company. David provides a training model that helps you become your best self - as a student, as a practitioner, as a person. By 'best', I mean more open, less fearful, more confident, less judgemental - whether you attend the course to make a change personally or professionally, to build on existing success, or with no idea where it might go, simply because you are interested (that was me!) you will be impressed at what you are able to achieve with David's expert guidance showing you how to use your curiosity as a pathway to growth. In the first week following the course, I dealt with several potentially difficult situations both at work and home, coming from a changed perspective - resulting in no conflict, calmer colleagues, less stressed family. And this without actively using any techniques; the biggest change has been inside my own headspace. I can't wait to do the next course. Now that I know, unequivocally, the benefits to be had, I wish I had come down off the fence years ago! Added bonus, a bunch of fabulous new friends. And a final thought about cost; some of you reading this will be struggling to justify spending a chunk of hard earned money "just" for yourself. Well, I will be using these tools every day for the rest of my life - pennies a day investment! I am SO worth it. And so are you!
    Sue Bee

  • I first met David at an evening business club a couple of years ago. During his presentation something “clicked” with me and I felt compelled to further my understanding of NLP. I attended the Auspicium free trial day. My earlier feelings were confirmed. This guy knows what he’s talking about and has a passion for helping people. I duly signed up for the NLP and Hypnotherapy practitioner course. What a week. All in the class left in such high spirits with a very different outlook on life. Following on I have attended the NLP and Hypnotherapy Master Practitioner course. Again excellent. There was something about the Hypnotherapy element of the course that I loved so on to the Hypnotherapy Trainers Training (another absolutely brilliant week). All the courses that I have attended have been very well organised, have a great team of trainers and support volunteers. The documentation is well put together and the exercises are all structured to push yourself to show you have a grasp of the given subject. I now have a fantastic group of new friends who I have a deep link with. We still meet up when we can to catch up on what we are all doing. As of March this year I have been participating in the Auspicium Freedom Project. This is a yearlong “conversation” about the 3 Principles – Mind, Thought and Consciousness. It took me a while to “get” it but now just by “doing nothing” I find myself doing more with better results and no stress. There are no models or techniques to learn. We all have the Principles inside us. We just need to be woken up to how to use them. It’s a great journey that will take the rest of my life. David is a superb trainer and fully deserves all the praise he receives.
    Phillip Warris

  • Before going on David’s Practitioner course, I thought I knew what I wanted, where I was headed and how I was going to get it. All I wanted an additional skill to add to my portfolio. I thought my life was in reasonably good order, nothing that needed fixing. I can sum up my experience of working with David in two words: life-changing. Instead of just learning a new skill, David encouraged us to apply his teaching, our learning, to ourselves. In a very safe environment, I gradually dropped the barriers I had painstakingly built up over a long time. This change happened very quickly and I continued growing as a person, studying 2 more courses with David and joining him on the Freedom project. Why David? He is disarmingly honest, genuine and engaging. He has a very broad knowledge of human behaviour and passes his knowledge on with grace. As a result of working with David, I have changed, and my life has changed. In myself I am very happy and contented person. My marriage is better and stronger. My business plans have taken a different route - one that is exciting and feels very right for me.
    Valerie