Beliefs: Colliding and Colluding

Replace stress and frustration with empowerment and confidence, by resolving conflicting and colluding beliefs. This technique is primarily for interpersonal situations. By colluding, we mean beliefs that unconsciously interfere with our success in a way that is interlaced with other beliefs. 

The Situation

Identify a situation in which your beliefs conflict with those of another person.

Your Belief

Describe specific beliefs that collide with this person’s beliefs.

Their Belief

Describe the other person’s beliefs that collide with yours. Associate fully into these beliefs. Identify which belief is the primary focus of the conflict. Below are generic beliefs. One of these is likely to apply here. Mark it with “OT” for “other” (meaning the other party’s conflicting belief), and circle the word choice that applies (i.e. “is/is not”). Remember, you are identifying the other party’s limiting belief.

a. The objective is/is not desirable and worthwhile. 

b. This goal can/cannot be achieved. 

c. The actions necessary to achieve this goal are/are not sufficiently detailed, understandable, appropriate, or ecologically sound. 

d. I do/don’t have the skills or talents that I would need in order to reach this goal.

e. I do/don’t deserve to attain this goal.

f. I am/am not responsible for this goal.

Colluding Belief

Move out of your conflicting belief state. Look for colluding beliefs, that is, beliefs of YOURS that in some way reinforce the OTHER person’s limiting belief that you perceive as troublesome. Use the list above. Mark the applicable belief with a “CL” for “colluding.”


Move to a meta-position where you can be free of the conflict/collusion reality. From this fresh position, find alternative frames of reference and concepts that can help you find innovative and practical solutions. The following steps are helpful Neuro Linguistic Programming maneuvers intended for transformational processes such as this one.

a. Presuppositions: Note the presuppositions that underlie the beliefs. Typically, these are not conscious, so you will need to be sure you are thinking outside of your current, conventional frame. The following presuppositions can help you here.

1) “There is no single correct map,” versus, “I have the one true map.” 

2) “There is a positive intention behind every behavior and belief,” versus, “The behavior (or belief) is negative and must be eliminated.” 

3) “People have the capabilities they need,” versus, “Some people are just defective.” 

4) “We are all part of the larger ecosystem,” versus, “We are independent entities, and context does not matter.” 

b. Positive Intentions: Associate back into the three belief states, and clarify the positive intentions underlying each of them. 

c. Meta-Program Level: Move back into the meta-position you established, and identify the similarities and differences at the meta-program level that exist between these beliefs. Refer to the meta-program chapter as needed. 

d. Supportive State: Associate into each belief position again, this time identifying the state that most likely supports each of the beliefs. 

Positive Foundation

Return to your first meta-position, and answer these questions for each of the beliefs you have identified: How could you fill in the missing NLP presupposition? How could you realize the positive intentions of the beliefs in a constructive manner? How could you align and balance the meta program patterns? How could you alter your state, or that of the other party, so that it is more open to a constructive and ecologically sound resolution? 

Resourceful State

Develop a resourceful state that embraces the emerging positive beliefs. Maintain that state as you step into your first position. From there, mentally role play new ways of responding to the other party.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *