Clean Language: Core Skills

2nd-4th November & 30th November-2nd December 2020 10.00am - 5.30pm
Portchester, Hampshire, United Kingdom
With Marian Way


Join us for an exciting 6-day journey where you'll start from scratch and learn how to uncover the metaphors and patterns that are beneath the surface. Find out how to develop a person's metaphor landscape and to encourage the conditions needed for deep and lasting change. 


Marian Way's photo

Marian Way

A highly skilled facilitator and trainer, Marian, who founded Clean Learning in 2001, has developed and delivered training across the world. She is the author of Clean Approaches for Coaches and co-author, with James Lawley, of Insights in Space. Marian is...

Who's it for?

  • Coaches, counsellors, psychotherapists and psychologists
  • Therapists and health workers
  • Managers and directors from all sectors - private, public and third
  • HR professionals, team leaders and mentors
  • NLP Practitioners 
  • Salespeople. mediators and negotiators
  • Students of modalities such as Motivational Interviewing, Appreciative Inquiry, Servant Leadership, Solution-Focus Coaching/Therapy or Non-Violent Communication
  • Teachers, parents, social workers, youth workers, family therapists and others who work with children
  • Interviewers and researchers - or anyone who uses questioning techniques in their work
  • Visual recorders / facilitators
  • Independent thinkers
  • Anyone who wants to improve their ability to communicate well
  • Anyone whose role involves helping other people to think
  • Leaders who prefer to empower people rather than telling them what to do
  • People who are future-oriented, outcome focussed and fascinated by what makes themselves and others tick
  • People who enjoy learning new tools and different ways of thinking

What will I gain?

  • The Clean Language questions and how to ask them for maximum impact
  • A way to help people feel understood and to gain new perspectives
  • Awareness of the assumptions you're making a split second after someone speaks - and how to keep them to yourself so you can work with clients’ actual experiences
  • The principles of Clean Language and how to apply them in many different contexts
  • How to help someone to uncover the structure of their own thinking by developing the metaphors they use to express themselves
  • How to identify and work with a client’s desired outcomes and encourage the conditions for change to emerge naturally within their ‘metaphor landscape’.
  • Strategies for where to direct your client’s attention at different stages of the facilitation process
  • A greater understanding of the role that language, especially metaphor, plays in our lives, and how you can utilise that to create deep sustainable change

You will also gain masses of personal development as you learn more about your own patterns, mental models and desired outcomes.

What's involved?

Days 1 to 3: Build a Strong Foundation

  • What would you like to know before we begin? We start cleanlywith an opportunity for you to pose your burning questions about us, about Clean Language and about the training, so that we start from where you are in your learning process – and not where weimagine you are.
  • Clean Set Up:Learn this basic coaching process that involves accurate listening and asking questions to help a fellow participant to expand their ideas about what they want from the training and what conditions need to be in place for them to get what they want. We’ll also discuss how you can use these first two activities in your own context.
  • Why Clean Language? Join in with a simple group activity which clearly demonstrates that people have different ways of perceiving the same thing – and so why it can be important to minimise your assumptions and keep your questions as clean as possible.
  • Clean Questions: Learn the basic Clean Questions of David Grove and how to ask them for maximum impact – including the structure and delivery of the questions
  • Paying exquisite attention: Discover the difference it makes when you pay attention to voice tone and gestures as well as the words a person uses to describe their experience.
  • What is Clean Language and what is Symbolic Modelling? Learn about Clean Language and Symbolic Modelling and how they were developed
  • Metaphor: Learn to identify and develop the metaphors a person uses to describe their experience, so they can tap into their unconscious wisdom and resources
  • Developing a Symbol: How to develop an individual symbol to represent an experience so it has location, form and an identity.
  • Focus on Resources: Develop metaphors for your own resources and those of your fellow participants. Discover the ‘source’ of your resource and notice what happens when you know more about it.
  • Learning at Your Best: Develop your own metaphor for when you are learning at your best and use this to enhance the way you learn Clean Language.
  • Keeping Track: Tips and tactics for keeping track of the client’s information so it can inform your next question.
  • Relating symbols across time and space:  Working with more than one symbol and building up a ‘metaphor landscape’. 
  • Calibration: Learn to identify the subtle clues that let you know whether what you are doing is working – and what to do if it isn’t.
  • Starting and Finishing Cleanly: How to start and finish a session cleanly and some tasks for helping people to gain deeper understanding of their metaphor landscapes.

As well as the above, you will gain knowledge of your own resources and learn the ‘nuances’ of clean questioning as you work with one another in the group. The learning process is iterative: you will take what you learn from one activity and apply it in the next, getting feedback from your peers and trainers throughout the process.

Learning Clean Language, like learning any other language, requires time and practice. At the end of the first module, we’ll set up peer coaching groups and offer set tasks for you to practise between modules.

In the first module, as you are building your skills, the emphasis will be on developing resources – skills, qualities or attributes that people value. Then in module 2, you can use these skills to help people to identify and develop desired outcomes.

Days 4 to 6:  Working With Outcomes

  • Clean Set Up: Recap of the Clean Set Up process; thinking about what you would like these three days to be like, what you’d like to be like, and what support and resources you will need.
  • Problem, Remedy, Outcome (P.R.O.) Model: Learn how to differentiate between problems, remedies and outcomes and what questions to ask to direct someone’s attention towards what they would like to have happen.
  • Overview of a Symbolic Modelling Session: Understand the shape of an ‘idealised’ session – and how it can vary from client to client.
  • Why Desired Outcomes? Consider why it can be beneficial to use the P.R.O. Model and to help someone to develop their desired outcome.
  • Navigating a Desired Outcome Landscape:  Deepen your knowledge about what questions to ask when, and how to move around in the client’s landscape.
  • Conditions for Change: Consider the general conditions that encourage change and how the impetus for change must come from within the client’s system because the coach doesn’t introduce any ideas.
  • Maturing a Change:  Learn how to identify and develop changes as they happen and how to elicit the effects of the change.
  • Applications: Find out how you can use what you’ve been learning in a multitude of contexts.

All the models introduced in the first module will come into play during the second, as you build your knowledge and skills in working cleanly and experience the powerful changes that can ensue.

The trainer will utilise clean games, practice sessions and group discussions to aid your learning and will personalise the training to match your individual training needs.

Frequently asked questions

What is Symbolic Modelling?

Symbolic Modelling was created by Penny Tompkins and James Lawley when they worked with and observed David Grove over several years, to discover what he was doing to achieve his phenomenal results. They combined David’s ideas with ideas from the fields of cognitive linguistics, systems thinking and NLP to produce a model which could be taught to others to enable them to achieve the same kinds of results as David.

More detail

What is Clean Language?

Clean Language is a simple set of questions developed by counselling psychologist David Grove. These questions are used with a person's own words to direct their attention to some aspect of their own experience. Asking these questions in the right context often results in an interesting new insight or the recognition of some new possibility. And if that new possibility is then questioned using Clean Language, the result can be quite profound. Clean questions invite people to consider their experience from different perspectives and they are often surprised by their own capacity to generate new, powerful and useful ideas about their own experience.

More detail

What people say

"The training was so well put together. It offered me the opportunity to learn a different way of thinking and reflecting as well as learning the fabulous skills of Clean Language. Marian is a truly trustworthy facilitator."
Janine Clark Business Consultant

"A great course that really allows you to see the power of using Clean Language and Symbolic Modelling and is conducted at the perfect pace. I am really excited to put all I have learnt into practice. Marian is an excellent trainer and her hospitality is second to none!"
Jo Wilson NLP Trainer

"The Core Skills course run by Clean Learning is a dream of a course for those with a bit of an idea about Clean Language and who wish to learn more from those who know a whole lot more about it. The trainers are highly professional, extremely approachable and positively critical as appropriate!"
Karon Rickatson

"I went on the Core Skills course because I wanted to learn a new skill. I left with a commitment to learning more and to creating the balanced portfolio career of my dreams. Thanks guys!"
Nick Simmonds Coach, Dynamic Coaching Ltd.

"I thoroughly enjoyed the training. The delivery was great, a very special space was created where we could all learn from each other. The variety of methods used created a fun way of learning in a very supportive environment."
Tina Mayfield

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