When using universal quantifiers, you are saying, “there are no exceptions and therefore there are no choices.” Sometimes this can be useful. If you believe you will always find a way if you persevere for instance.
Mostly, this kind of language pattern creates limitations for us. We don’t even look for a solution because we assume there isn’t one. We can limit ourselves especially when it comes to the kind of person we think we are.
Universals are words such as all, every, never, always.
When you hear these words, the person (or youself) is showing you their beliefs. Pay attention when you use them, particularly if it’s to do with a problem you’ve had for a while.
- “I’ll never get this right”
- “I always try to get along with her, but she hates me”
- “Every woman I know is jealous and possessive”
- “He never listens to me”
- “We all know how hard it is too lose weight”
- “My credit card is always maxed by the end of the month”
- “I never seem to get ahead”
- “I always do badly in job interviews – they never give me a chance”
- “you can never get it right”
- “You always find a way to mess things up”
- “You are all against me”
- “Every time I try to do something nice, it backfires”
The Meta Model response involves opening choices using exaggeration and searching for counter examples.
- “Has there ever been a time when I did get it right?”
- “You mean every single person is against you?”
- “So I have messed up every thing I have ever done?”
- “Has there ever been a time in your whole life when doing something nice didn’t backfire?”