How Not to be Hypnotized by Software Consulting Clients

This morning I had a fascinating conversation with my friend Bob. He’s been a consultant since forever. Programming since the 70s. We get together weekly to connect and share about life, technology and spiritual matters.

Since I’ve been struggling with how to talk with potential clients and get to their pain points Bob offered to role play this morning. He was playing the prospective client.

Here’s what happened.

Years of practice and training around being in a heart centered space of awareness went out the window. Sure, I was reaching a surface level of engagement. There was no connection building though. Which meant I wasn’t developing trust and rapport. Which meant I was not getting to the HEART of the problem my “client” was facing.

Why was this happening?


I was in my head. Literally. In. My. Head.

My vision had narrowed. I was aware of ego processes kicking in. Even my awareness of my body below my neck was pretty limited!

As a result we weren’t connecting, the client wasn’t able to share what was really going on in his business, and we never got past surface conversation. This has been happening with me forever! In certain contexts shifting out of my heart awareness is an unconscious habit. I become hypnotized!

Dropping into my heart after debriefing shifted the rest of the conversation dramatically. My friend could feel the difference, too. All of the sudden my ability to ask questions leading to deeper understanding. Ego processes floated off. He could feel the openness and safe space for sharing created by my shift to heart awareness.

Making the shift was pretty simple. I put my attention on my physical heart. My field of vision relaxed. Every inhalation comes in through my heart, every exhalation goes out through my heart.

Two things are happening. First, you are paying attention to your breathing. A practice that goes way back for controlling our thought processes. Second, we are shifting our attention to our hearts.

There’s something about how you direct your physical attention that shifts your mind. I suspect it must light up a bunch of heart neurons that shift how our brains work when we place our attention on our heart. Remembering to stay in our heart awareness when talking with prospective consulting clients is the big trick!