Swish Pattern

The Swish Pattern is a quick way of setting a different direction. It basically consists of replacing a scenario the client doesn't want, that makes her feel bad, with a scenario she does want, that makes her feel good. It is done by repeatedly switching from one to the other, using the most effective perceptual distinctions, and showing the sub-conscious: "we want this, not this".

We need two pictures for the Swish Pattern. One will be the situation where one feels bad, the other the desirable state where one feels good. The present situation would be associated, seen out of one's eyes, and the desirable situation would be dissociated, seeing oneself from a distance.

Let's say the client often feels powerless. We would find an example of that, a situation where she felt "powerless". We would get all the perceptual distinctions of the picture associated with it. How big is it, what distance and direction, color or black/white, clear or fuzzy, bright or dim, 3 dimensional or flat, bordered or unlimited. We would find out what two qualities are the most important in increasing the feeling or powerlessness. Let's say it is size and closeness, the closer and bigger the picture, the worse it is.

Then we make a picture of a resourceful state, the way she would like to feel instead, powerful and confident. We have her really get into the details, as evidenced by her showing the signs of feeling good and empowered by it. The picture she makes should be dissociated, seeing herself from a distance.

The idea is now that we will quickly swap out one picture with the other by using the controlling perceptual qualities. Here where they are size and closeness, we can do like this:

F: "The picture of you feeling powerful, let's just temporarily shrink that into a little bright dot that we will put out on the horizon, like a star. ... Did you do that?"
C: "Yes"
F: "Good. Now see on a movie screen in front of you what you would see out of your eyes when you would usually feel powerless."
C: "OK"
F: "Good. Now I'd like you to bring in the little star with the picture with the powerful feeling. Let it quickly come closer and get bigger. As it comes really close and big, let it overwhelm the powerless picture with the powerful and confident feelings you will have, and at the same time, let the powerless picture get really small and disappear into the distance." (Making gestures with hands to show it)
C: "OK"
F: "Good. Now, clear the screen. Again, see on the screen what you would see out of your eyes when you would have felt powerless. Have the little star come in from the horizon, and SWISH, overwhelm the picture with powerful feelings." (Making the same gestures again)
C: "OK"
F: "Good. Let's do it again. SWISH" (repeats this a few times)
F: "Now, do it yourself a few times, until the powerful picture comes in all by itself"
C: "Yes" (looks empowered like she did in the powerful state)

This is a really effective technique for setting up a positive habit or motivation. It is no replacement for clearing the underlying issues, but it is very useful for rounding off a deeper clearing and for setting the future direction.

If the issue is a simple "bad habit", this might be all that is needed. For example, if the client is biting her nails, the "before" picture would probably be of her hand coming up to her mouth and the "after" picture would be of her feeling good and confident with well-manicured nails.


- Practice the swish pattern

- Do the swish pattern on another person

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