meet neil moore
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Imagine: You have a child who hasn’t yet learned to play any instrument. Or, you may be an adult, who doesn’t know how to read music, or have long forgotten how to do it since grade school. Can you learn how to play the piano today?
The answer is yes and…
Neil Moore believes everyone is musical.
He is the Founder and Executive Director of the Simply Music Institute of Learning & Education. He is also the creator of the Simply Music Piano Method. Born in 1957 in Melbourne, Australia, and began studying piano at the age of 7, he has since then spent most of his life actively involved in ‘playing-based’ music learning.
This is also an exploratory conversation about behavior mechanics.
Neil has a few things to say about Behavior Mechanics. He shared his own struggles with addiction (food, exercise, business) and how the understanding of behavior mechanics changed his life and many of clients’ lives.
The video is in post-production. We’ll be uploading it soon. To get it as soon as it comes out, please subscribe to our newsletter.
To learn more about Neil and his company Simply Music, visit https://simplymusic.com/
When I look at the instrument, I see one note playing to the next and the next, I can see the it’s drawing pictures. And I developed the ability as an adult to be able to communicate that to people to allow them to see music the way I do. People have the ability to see music in shapes and patterns completely changed the way they are able to connect to their natural musicianship, how quickly they are able to learn how to play.
I’ve been pursuing money to one day do what I love and what I think I belong to. To me, that’s a broken equation. I should be doing what I love. If it’s meant to be, we will reveal a pathway that it will feel authentic.
You develop a practice where you are constantly talking about “where are we at?” Here’s what I see, here’s what I’m up to. I said I was going to do this, but something has fundamentally changed, I feel different about it now, I’m going to change what I’m doing. OK, I can get behind that, I can support that.
[05:00] Could you tell us a bit about your origin story? Where were you born and were are you now?
[06:00] What kind of shapes do you see when you listen to music?
[08:00] Do you think this skill happened naturally to you or is this something that you saw an opportunity?
[10:00] How did you end up leaving your businesses back in Australia to come to the US?
[13:00] Have you always felt optimistic and wanting to help people or is that something you developed over time? Did you change your perspective on that?
[16:00] How did you meet your wife? What has her taught you about relationships?
[18:00] As part of your consulting services, you help other people ‘come home to themselves’. Is this something you learned from your own relationship with your wife? How do you manage to keep the passion alive for many years?
[22:00] Do you have an example of a situation where it is difficult to find alignment with other people in relationships? It is a current struggle for many people, to align with husbands, wife, partners.
[31:00] What is behavioral mechanics? How did you get into that? What are the fundamentals?
[37:00] What would be an example of an addiction, in the behavioral mechanics context?
[40:00] How could someone tell between a real problem vs. Something that is manufactured/manifested on your own?
[41:00] How can people get more aware of these issues and start working towards better behavioral mechanics. Do they need to ask for help/treatment or is there something they could actively do?
Transcript of Interview with Neil Moore.
Could you tell us about a bit about your origin story?
Neil [5:03] I\’m 62 years of age this year. I was born in Melbourne, Australia, and immigrated with my wife and three children to the United States in 1994, so that was over 25 years ago. And I came here to launch an organization and materialize an idea that I had about music and music education. From a very early age, about three or four years of age, I became aware of the fact that I see music in terms of two and three-dimensional shapes.
I was also growing up in a musical household, I\’m the youngest of five kids, only seven years between the five of us. And me and my older brothers, when we turned seven, we began piano lessons. So by the time I was born, the piano was already being implied in our home every day. I had a very strong ear for music, I think, as a result of that, and also this recognition of music in terms of shapes and patterns by the age of three or four.
And then when I began studying piano at the age of seven, my teacher would play, and as he would play the songs that I was to be learning, I could see those same shapes and patterns that I previously pictured in my mind I could actually see them laid across the instrument.
Fei Wu [6:24] What type of shapes are you seeing?
Neil [6:27] It\’s a little bit like if we were to go out to the sky at nighttime, and we look up and see a sky of stars, but someone\’s points out on that bright star, and then the one to the right, and then they can actually identify some stars that come together as a constellation. So we can look up at the sky and distinguish a particular constellation shape or a pattern. It\’s sort of like that.
One of the things that exist in any country in the world where music is taught formally, is a predominant approach. The traditional, most typical approach to learning how to play music is by firstly teaching students how to read music. And one of the things about that – I actually think that\’s one of the problems with music education – that when you now look at music and treat it as math, and start by firstly learning how to decode symbols on the page, it accesses the brain very differently. But in its most organic and natural state, the brain is a pattern-seeking device, and really, this perspective is all about the ability to recognize shapes and patterns.
So what happens with me is that when I look at the instrument, and I see one note playing to the next and so on, I can see that it\’s drawing pictures. And I developed an ability as an adult to be able to communicate it to people that allows them to see music as I do. And then I discovered, that this ability to music transforms how quickly people are able to connect to their natural musicianship, how quickly they\’re able to learn how to play, the quantity, the quality of music, how easy it is to learn how to play really great sounding music immediately.
Do you think it happened to you naturally when you were just a little kid? Or was there something missing in the teaching that you engaged with and then you just learned there was a better way to memorize things?
Neil [8:37] That way of hearing music and seeing it in terms of shapes and patterns, that was with me before I was even conscious of my own existence. My mother says that even as a very young infant, I had a particular affinity to music that was more evident than in my older siblings. So if the music was playing in the house, I would roll down to where to it was and I would just lie there, transfixed. And if the music started playing on another part of the house, I would roll down there.
It’s like it was in my DNA, some relationship to music that was more dominant in me. Then this perspective of hearing music and seeing shapes and patterns, I was ashamed of that because my older brothers were all learning traditionally, they were learning how to read, and they were all playing well. But I didn\’t have that relationship, reading was confusing, I saw no need for it. So I just had this relationship with shapes and patterns. My teacher would play the songs I was to be learning, and I could already remember them. I could see it in terms of shapes and patterns and reconstruct the song that way during the week. But as we got close to Saturday, the day I had my music lesson, I\’d get more and more anxious. I was thinking: “Is this the week where I\’m going to get found out as being a fraud because I\’m not learning how I\’m supposed to be learning (which was learning how to read music)?” So during my lesson I just sort of sat there, blankly staring at the page, but reconstructing it all in shapes and patterns, and actually didn\’t learn to read or learn anything about the theory of music until I was in my 30s. I always knew that I belonged to music and that I wanted to do music, but I didn\’t even know what that meant.
Also, in Australia, there are 18 million people and there are hundreds of millions of people here, in the US, so there aren\’t the same opportunities and it\’s more complicated to try to develop a profession around music.
I, actually, came from a family of self-employed people, so I didn\’t pursue music professionally and I got into restaurants. I had restaurants in Australia.
Fei Wu [10:35] Wow. And then you had to leave all that behind to come to the states and start fresh.
Neil [10:41] I had several restaurants. When I bought my first restaurant, it was already a successful restaurant that has been established a long time ago. I took it over from another chef, built the business very quickly, learned very early on that people were hungrier for the recognition, and they were for food.
Any business I\’ve ever had I\’ve built on relationships. I love people the interaction with them, and I saw how critically important that was. I always had really beautiful people working for me, so that created particular energy and grew successful businesses. But even though I was successful, I was unsatisfied. So I was like “Well, what should I do? Okay, I\’m unsatisfied, maybe I should get another one”. Then I ended up trying a bunch of different things, and then the stock market crashed in the late 80s when that hit Australia, and we just lost everything. It was a Wipeout, complete financial Wipeout. And I remember there was a day when they were taking away our cars, the house was being sold, so they were putting a “full sail” board outside the home. And I remember looking at that and thinking: “I\’m losing everything that I have, but I\’m losing nothing of who I am”. And then I thought: “Wow, I\’ve been pursuing money to one day do what I love and what I think I belong to”. And it occurred to me as a broken equation, that no, I should be doing what I love. And from that day forward I’ve committed myself to doing what I love.
Have you always felt that way?
Fei Wu [12:59] I mean, a lot of people say part of that is genetic, like, some people are born more optimistic, and some people know or learn to be like that either from their family or friends or from their own experiences.
Neil [13:14] I do believe that I am optimistic by design. And these issues that I\’ve struggled with, I\’m really grateful for those. You know, I\’ve had all sorts of issues and struggles with different types of addiction. And I had long term inappropriate relationships with food and alcohol and weed and narcotics and things like that. And have not really been until much later in life that I\’ve learned how to address those. I\’d like to even tell you a little bit about my wife because there\’s an extraordinary role that she\’s playing.
Fei Wu [13:57] Let\’s talk about her.
Neil [13:59] We met on November, the 21st, 1970 at 2 PM. I remember the moment I had just turned 13 and she had just turned 12 years of age. We met through a mutual friend, we didn\’t go to school together. In fact, we\’ve done other sides of the city. But we had this day where we were going ice skating and her friend who I knew through my sister, she said: “I\’m going ice skating, I\’ll bring a friend and you bring a friend from school”. And so the four of us met up and I shook hands with my wife, and I just had this experience, as if I had come home. You know, I\’ve always had this outward appearance of being very comfortable with people, but I\’m an introvert. I’m shy and uncomfortable around people, but I felt at ease around her and I have literally loved her for 17,601 days! Wow.
So we\’re in our 49th year of having this extraordinary relationship, we married 38 years ago. She\’s amazing. The gifts that I was given with regards to my worldview, have come hand in hand with all sorts of complexities, and all sorts of issues and all sorts of challenges. But the payoff was that I was given her as my wife and I experience myself as being the wealthiest person that I know.
Fei Wu [16:18] That is like the most authentic love story I\’ve heard! You know, a lot of the descriptions I\’ve heard of (maybe it has something to do with my younger age) are driven by beauty and something that you can see, but what you\’re describing is everything you could feel. And I suppose your wife has taught you something that it\’s not just your relationship with her, but your relationship with other people as well.
Neil [17:07] Yeah. I mean, I don\’t own my wife, my job is to have her be the very best, fully self-expressed version of herself that she can possibly be, and she sees that being her job with me. So it\’s sort of like three entities – there\’s me as an individual, her as an individual, and then there\’s us as a unified individual. That sounds a little weird, but that synergy. In our case, it works for us.
Fei Wu [17:39] As part of your consulting service, you help other people really come home to themselves. And you guys have been in a relationship – let\’s just count since day one – for almost 50 years. A lot of people who listen to the show are in relationships or married, some for a long time.
How do you keep a marriage or a long-term relationship alive?
Neil [18:18] I think it\’s simple, but when I say “simple”, I don\’t mean “easy”. I think as far as we\’re concerned, there are just a few components. In fact, we tend to think of it in terms of a “relationship trinity”: likability, alignment, and clarity. So what I mean by that is if you\’re gonna hang out with someone for 40-50-60-70-80 years, it works if you like each other. So the love will take care of itself, but you live off the likability on a day by day basis, and those things are incredibly important because they impact the climate of the relationship. If we just simplify it – hot weather is a hatred with one another, cold weather is distant and not communicating, and then there is this really cozy, great, warm spot in the middle. Likability has an extraordinary degree of impact on having just that beautiful climate. And that it is something they can actually work on. Now, there are all sorts of practices and ways of doing that, but it is simpler than people think.
The other one is alignment. If you and your partner are in agreement with however it looks and it works for you both, then that\’s what matters. Part of the problem we see is that as people go through their life, they hold on to the expectation that the person should be the same. We are constantly evolving. I never want to know my wife! You think after nearly 49 years that I would know her, but for me, she evolves, she changes and I love that! I never want to know her. I want to be continually surprised by how she can grow and alter and change. And I want to be behind that happening. I\’m not looking to hold on to her fixed way of being that suits me at any particular time. It\’s up to me to remain likable and interesting and desirable as we both grow.
So that means that as we grow and our perspectives change, it affects every thread of the web. And what becomes critical as you develop practices where you are constantly talking about “Where are we at?”, “Here\’s what I see, here\’s what I\’m up to”, “I said I was going to do this, but things have changed, I feel fundamentally different about it, he is where I\’m at”. And it\’s like “Okay, I get that, I can get behind that, I can support that”. It doesn\’t really matter what your version of it is, provided that there is a conscious input towards open, honest communication and working towards finding alignment. And what\’s great about that, is if you get to a stage where you say “This is where I\’m at”, and “Here\’s where I\’m at”, and these aren\’t aligned, you can now talk about if you still want to hang out together given that you’re not aligned, or are those fundamentally different directions and it\’s time for you to no longer hang out together. That can happen as well.
Fei Wu [21:56] I know that for most people it\’s one thing to help other people, but it\’s the other to look inside yourself and your relationship.
Do you have an example of finding alignment with your wife? How did the process look?
Neil [22:35] We\’ve had an extraordinary friendship, always. And generally, we both value politeness and gratitude, and we\’re courteous and respectful, we still say “Please” and “Thank you”. There\’s also great affection between my wife, we\’ve always been a very affectionate couple. Always touching, holding – it\’s just something that we both feel a magnetism towards one another. However, particularly in the early stages, my wife was never as intimately, sexually self-expressed. She just wasn\’t drawn to that. So there was a period of time maybe 10-12 years ago, where that had become a concern for me in our relationship, and we wouldn\’t have opportunities to talk about that. It was one of those things where we hadn\’t achieved alignment in practice, even though they\’d been clarity and communication. All of that just became an issue for me, I wanted more physical intimacy. It wasn\’t nice, being in a relationship where that wasn\’t there. And I’m clear that I\’m never leaving her, I\’m committed to this woman being in my life forever, so never has that been in question. I\’m also very aware of the depth of my love for her, it\’s extraordinary to me how it can continue to deepen. However, there wasn\’t an alignment. And our agreement was that there would be no intimacy outside of the relationship, but there was also no intimacy inside of the relationship. And I remember talking and saying: “Look, I\’m never leaving, I\’m not going anywhere. And at the same point of time, I see that I don\’t have the rights to require that you change. But if that\’s isn\’t something that we\’re able to reconcile, then it\’s something that I would need to fulfill outside of the relationship, and it has no effects on how I want to be around you, how much I love you”. So that was in one of those times where I talked about the Trinity and clarity, where the communication must be very, very clear towards achieving that alignment. And so this was just one of those conversations where I was saying “I\’m not going anywhere, I promise you, I\’ll be with you for the rest of my life. I love you to the depths of my soul, but this isn\’t working for me and it\’s something that I can\’t ask you to change. It\’s wrong with me to even do that, but I need to satisfy it outside of that”. And that was one of those things where for her it was like “Is that something that I can be okay, with?”, and the bigger question – “Is it time for me to discover who I need to become in order to transform this?” So she thought about that for a while and came back and said: “Well, why don\’t we go on a pilgrimage together and see if we can learn about this and transform our relationship and our physical intimacy, and take it up to an entirely new level”. And it became a massive direction change for her. She ended up doing all sorts of fringe studies.
Fei Wu [26:04] And it becomes her profession! I just remember that.
Neil [26:07] That\’s right. She\’s trained in so many modalities and disciplines, but then along the pathway, she felt that hypnotherapy could play a very unique role, so she became a clinical hypnotherapist, and she was like “Look, I\’ve known physically that my commitment is every year I get older, I\’m going to get younger. Every year I get older, I\’m going to get more vital, more alive, physically stronger, more flexible. I\’m not going there. I\’m not following the traditional path of stopping. I\’m not going to do that. I\’m just going to keep growing”. And also the typical paradigm of getting older is that we get less inclined, less sexual, which I tend to think it\’s more of that we start turning on all “off” switches.
Fei Wu [26:58] Thanks for sharing that. Clearly, she made the change, but I think what\’s important about the story is that it was her decision to make that change. And it was you who brought up the conversation in a very honest way. I think most relationships will not have that level of confidence and transparency for someone to actually sit down and have the conversation. Instead, we just assume our partner might not be able to even take this conversation and it may just end the relationship. You know, I\’ve had friends of different ages who had the same question. And some really surprised me, because I remember people are as young as in their 20s, and they met each other only about a year ago. How could have intimacy died so early? But it was truly an issue that is present in many relationships. But I think you have a very happy ending!
Neil [27:58] It\’s given us the privilege and the opportunity to be able to work with people. That\’s one of the things that my wife focuses her practice on, which deals almost exclusively with the areas of intimacy and sexuality, whether it\’s men or women. So that\’s very much her playground. And I mean, it\’s not common, firstly, for people to come off 40 years of marriage and to be able to maintain such a uniquely high degree of satisfaction within the relationship.
The critical thing of the design of human beings is that we are addicts, and that gets us into this whole other area. We get very attached to the complexities and the problems and the conflicts in our relationships. So as much as coming over here to launch my idea about music, you know, I\’ve had the fortune of being able to turn that into a multinational organization that teaches in about 700 teachers in 12 countries, and we have thousands of students in 92 countries, and I sort of run that organization.
Most of our educators are self-employed, so I get that opportunity to coach people in that area, but we also get the opportunity to be able to work with people in the area of relationships. Also, as I mentioned earlier, I\’m sort of an addict. But most recently, the last several years, my whole understanding of that has changed dramatically, and I\’ve had some insights in that area that have completely transformed my relationship to my own addictions, as well as of those other people.
Can you tell more about this conversation on feelings that we are having now?
Neil [31:00] So I call this whole conversation “behavioral mechanics”. I\’ve had an interest in the design of behavior since I was 19 years old when I first had an extraordinary experience in working with a psychiatrist. It was a life-changing experience for me. And I’ve always wanted to understand the design of people because, as I said earlier, I\’ve had struggles with food, my weight, exercise, business, excessive use of alcohol, excessive use of weed, excessive use of prescription narcotics – clearly an addictive behavior surrounding all of those. And I\’m grateful for that dimension of myself because I also understand that the organization that I\’ve built, was contributed to by that addictive mindset. But the flip side is that it has had a real consequence in my life, I\’ve been fortunate that I have a high degree of harm containment, the majority of the harm has been self-contained. And it\’s not like I\’ve delivered and dropped it on to other people. What I\’m talking about here, in this conversation, I believe, includes everybody. I actually don\’t think anybody escapes this.
But I want to have a conversation about problems, I\’m not talking about incidents. I\’m talking about those problems that you and I and everybody else face every day, whatever that might be – “I\’m annoyed in my relationship”, “She always does this”, “She says that”, “I get so angry when he does this” and so on. We all have this array of complications which I\’m just going to call “problems”, regardless of the complexity.
And we know that humans have the ability to think in layers, but we also develop very comprehensive explanations, very complex justifications. I\’m going to simplify it and say we could take any problem and we can distill it down to two things: either there is a “want” that is not being met or there is a “don\’t want” that is happening. And the same problem can be seen through those two perspectives.
So I\’ve got a problem. What\’s the problem? – We\’re fighting in a relationship. – Okay, well, what\’s the want that\’s not happening? – Well, I wanted to be more placid and that\’s not happening. – What\’s the don\’t want? – Well, I don\’t want to be fighting and that is happening. So we can look at the same problem through the respective lens of a “want” and “don’t want”. And bear in mind, this is really important, – you don\’t have to believe this. I am not saying that this is true, I don\’t even know whether there is such a thing as truth, it seems to me like it\’s all interpretation, really. But I don\’t need anybody who\’s looking at this or hearing this to believe what I\’m saying. All I\’m saying is that I want you to just put on this pair of glasses that you can take off at any time. But if you just consider your issues from this perspective, you will be the one to determine whether it offers any insight or any sort of opening.
Now, whenever you want something that isn\’t happening, or we don\’t want something that is happening, it leaves us feeling a particular way. It\’s a crappy feeling. It\’s any version of annoyed, frustrated, upset, sad, angry, depressed, frustrated. No one\’s got a problem saying “I\’m thrilled! This is just so wonderful for me, I love this”. When we are talking about the things that are crappy, we know they\’re crappy.
As effective and as valuable and as important as it is, there are so many models of therapy, and coaching, and guiding and counseling and mentoring that work in these areas here. We can look at the problem and go: “Okay, so let\’s get into this problem. What\’s going on? Can you clarify the problem? Are you clear about the problem? Have you articulated the problem? Are you struggling to communicate the problem, maybe we need to work on your communication, maybe you need to get better in expressing what the problem is”. So there\’s a whole world of approaches that would deal with getting into the nitty-gritty of the problem and getting a better handle on that. Not only do I believe that it\’s not getting to the heart of the issue, but I also don\’t think it\’s even coming close.
I would consider all of this to be “above the radar”, and there is a whole other world that is going on underneath this that I think we need to understand. And if we can understand it, we may just find that it offers us a completely different perspective. Whenever we have a problem, that leaves us feeling a particular way. Those feelings are underscored by neurochemistry. They are chemically driven. There\’s a chemical structure to the feeling. This neurochemistry is intense, it\’s highly corrosive, it burns very deep neural pathways. And what happens is we develop addictions to the neurochemistry. If I\’m working with any person, it takes very little time to be able to get out of the story of the problem, to get out of the complexities of the “wants” and “don\’t wants”, to get out of all of the feeling and just go “I get it about the feeling, but I need you to take a look at this from a different perspective”. Firstly, those feelings that we feel are not new to us. This is not a new occurrence. If we look at it, a version of those feelings has been with us for a very, very long time.
What would be an example of an addiction?
Fei Wu [37:08] I can think of something like when people say “You have the tendency to do something like that”. And even for some things that we do in our lives, it\’s almost predictable by ourselves, we tend to go there, it\’s almost a “happy place”.
Neil [37:34] So what I am saying is – this is not an addiction that just got established because I\’ve got this problem in my relationship. If we get into this, we will discover that there were incidents that occurred at a very young age. The foundation of these addictions begins in the womb. The difference between a want and a need is that want is optional, but a need is not optional. Food is not optional, water is not optional, the air is not optional. Addiction will override your best effort, the very best that your identity can produce. Addiction is not optional. So we need to create problems, we have an addiction. Well, an addiction to what? The truth of the matter is if I create a problem, the problem is actually a solution. We think of them as problems. In fact, I say that the problem with problems is thinking that the problem is the problem because it\’s not a problem. It\’s a solution, but a solution to what? Well, it\’s a solution to the fact that it feeds the addiction. The addiction to what? The addiction to the neurochemistry. Well, how do I get the neurochemistry? Well, you get the neurochemistry by having these particular feelings. Well, how do I get the feelings? By making sure that you\’ve got a “want” or a “don\’t want” happening in your life that will leave you feeling that way. Well, how do I get the “want” or a “don’t want”? Well, you\’ve got to actually orchestrate circumstances that appear to you as though they are a problem at means of feeding an addiction. And not only that – we need to make sure that you aren\’t aware of the fact that this is an addiction, it has to be set up in a way where the brain can have a state when it\’s dealing with a problem.
So these play out in extraordinary ways. All these decisions that we make are always a version of something being wrong with us, something broken or not being enough.
How could someone tell the difference between a real problem and something that you’ve manufactured on your own?
Neil [39:53] What happens here is that we develop very, very complex ways. It\’s a masterful thing. Addiction is like this 300-pound gorilla that you’re getting in the ring with.
It will allow you to address the problem. For example – “I\’m overweight”. We know people can go and address their weight and lose weight and keep it off. That happens. I mean, for most people, it\’s a yo-yo, but other people can resolve that. And it leaves them with the illusion that they’ve actually addressed the problem. And in some respects they have, but what they\’re really doing – the brain, when it\’s dealing with addiction, it will replace and displace. If it can\’t get the chemistry now from losing weight, it\’ll just take that neurochemistry and it will displace it on the other issues. Or it will orchestrate the emergence of another seemingly very different problem that it looks like it\’s completely unrelated, but ultimately, what\’s the same is there is a “want” or “don\’t want” that leaves you feeling a particular way. And that\’s the same feeling that\’s been there all along. And that\’s an addiction.
Is there anything that people can work on or even just begin to think about in terms of how they can break that connection?
Fei Wu [41:10] When my mom was pregnant with me, she was under a tremendous amount of stress. She had relationship issues with my dad, and it\’s this recurring theme that I\’ve been told for over 30 years. And I know something happened, but I\’m also worried about how do we detach ourselves and say “You know what, I need to be responsible. I want to solve this, I wasn\’t in control of what happened”. So how do people approach that?
Neil [41:50] Firstly, thank you for the question, because it\’s so important.
I have found that this is a process. And this is not therapy, I\’m not qualified to do that. I\’m an individual with my own struggles. But in developing this interpretation, it has transformed my experience of myself and my life. And it\’s given me the ability to be able to develop an entirely new relationship with issues and problems.
And I think that there are four parts to it. Firstly, we need to reveal the extent to which this addiction encompasses our lives. The second thing is that very often problems arise, and they seem and feel and look like they are new problems. And because they are new, we think that they belong to the present, so we try to address them in the present, but they\’re not present problems. These are replays, the circumstances have been uniquely designed. You will not really solve the problem in the present. You might address it circumstantially, but the addiction will replace, so you\’ll be celebrating your victory, but meanwhile, you’ll have your addictions doing push-ups in the backyard. And what will happen is it will displace that chemistry on to other issues, or wait a while and allow you to bask in the feeling like you\’ve solved the problem, and then it will reemerge.
So part of the way of beginning to get a handle on this is understanding the structure of this model: the problem is a “want” or a “don\’t want”. Understand that when you stop and think, if you can just start to develop a physiological sensitivity to this chemistry, you will see the presence of this feeling. Once you understand this model, if you are willing to look at it through the point of view of this particular structure that I\’m presenting, then the next part is really what I call “the web”: Where is this playing out in my life? I can see the big-ticket items. But when I start to look at it, there\’s an extraordinary similarity between the big-ticket items and these little low hanging fruits.
So we need to really be willing to just get into the ring with this and start to get our hands and head around the extent to which this is playing out in our lives. The really important thing here is to see that if this is an addiction, and we begin to threaten it, your brain is going to freak out. So there\’s a very easy way of being able to tell am I on the money here, and that is by looking at the low hanging fruit.
Fei Wu [45:14] I think it\’s really fascinating. I think people who will reach out to you will be the ones who have a higher capacity to accept a change in their lives or perhaps more ready. And I think that separation between yourself and the incident is really important. The process is also important. Working with someone, coming home to someone, to actually be able to trust that person and get to the bottom of it is quite important.
Neil [45:52] My pleasure. I don\’t know any fun or light ways of having this conversation.