Influence Psychology and Persuasion - Mike Sweet - 10 Minute Coach - Develop and Discover

Influence Psychology and Persuasion is a Podcast by Mike Sweet. In these episodes, Mike will go through the individual parts of this ever evolving and amazing studies of proven psychological principles a give a practical understanding of what it is and how you can use it. Mike Sweet is the 10 Minute Coach.
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Influence Psychology and Persuasion - Mike Sweet - 10 Minute Coach - Develop and Discover




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Jul 14, 2016

This is session number 015 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. In this show, I'll be discussing confidence and a misunderstanding about feelings in general.

I’m not very confident doing that. Or, I’m just not confident in those situations. These are common sayings for people every day, and as the listener, we seem to accept, without challenge this type of statement.

But….. as confidence is just a feeling, and we have to create our own feelings, why do we seem to think, this magic confidence dust happens by itself without our control or input. We seem to assume this “confidence” thing is a mystery.

The facts about Generating Confidence

Well, today I’ll go over some interesting facts about feelings and more importantly confidence. No longer will you have to be subject to the confidence fairy to see whether you’ll be blessed with confidence whenever and wherever you need it. It's time to gain control and have it when you need the stuff.

The first principle we need to cover should hopefully be clear. You have to “do” all of your feelings. No one else is in charge and no one can make you feel anything. Did you get that? No one else can make you feel anything. Just to reiterate as an example. Your neighbour didn't make you angry, your spouse didn't try to frustrate you. Feelings aren't given, they are taken. And feelings don't just appear, you create them.

So how do we create feelings that we want? The first answer that you will hear most often, will be to think confidently or positively. This is totally true and a reasonable start You do need to think and talk to yourself positively and confidently. However, there is a slight issue that most of us face. When we try to put on a brave face or brave attitude, and we start the positive internal incantations, the other little voices kick-in. You know the ones? The little guys on your shoulders that seem to bring you back down. Those voices are real and have a real impact on how we feel, but, there are ways to bring those on side too.

Jun 26, 2016

This is session number 014 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. This show is something that has been showing up lots of the last few months. It seems people all over are all talking of Fixed vs Growth mindsets. But whats the deal, why now, and is this really important? Well, in this show I hope you'll find out.

Definition of Fixed and Growth Mindsets

First and foremost, is important to understand that this topic of fixed and growth mindset stems from lots of studies carried out by Prof of psychology from Stanford University Dr Carol Dweck. I'm simply relaying my learnings from this and how I can, and others around me have applied some of these learnings.

The takeaways to create a growth mindset

  • Embrace challenges. Challenges something you initially find difficult, this means you're about to learn and discover something new.
  • Be persistent when you're faced with setbacks and even failures. Sometimes you win and sometimes you learn either way being persistent gives you what you need.
  • Effort is your path to mastering a growth mindset.
  • Learn from criticisms. Be careful not to simply accept them all verbatim but certainly, look at adopting an understanding what's being said.
  • Find inspiration from others that have succeeded where you want to. Finding out their path will break down some old self-limiting beliefs to what's possible and what's necessary to achieve.
Mar 18, 2016

This is session number 013 of Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast and this show is all about cognitive dissonance and how we can use it to improve our lives and outcomes dramatically.

What is Cognitive Dissonance?

This term refers to the situation where you have an internal conflict about your attitude, behaviours or a certain belief. Whenever you have this conflict, it is known as cognitive dissonance and it comes with a feeling of discomfort and in most cases the need to rationalise or reframe to realign those beliefs, thoughts, actions etc.

An example would be: people smoking (their behaviour) yet they know it causes cancer and other serious diseases (their cognition). The cognitive dissonance would then show when a person would try to rationalise, reframe or make it right for them. “I've always done it, and it gives me a timeout”

This is a theory that was presented by Leon Festinger in 1957. When he proposed this cognitive dissonance theory he explained that people want to remain consistent in their initial actions, and beliefs and this can give rise to irrational thinking and even maladaptive behaviour.

A fantastic study that was done by Leon Festinger when he was observing as a participant of a cult that believed the earth was going to be destroyed by a flood. Some of the extremely committed members of this cult had even given up their jobs and their homes to work for the cult full time. Festinger wondered what would happen to the members beliefs when the time arose and the flood did not happen. When the time did arise, some of the fringe members recognised that they had been misinformed or perhaps began building beliefs unnecessarily left the group. However, those more experienced or committed members began to reinterpret or re-frame the evidence to show that there were right all along. Even though before the event was to happen they were absolutely certain that the Earth would end through flood and that members of the cult would be taken away to safety.

Almost instantly, the most committed and experienced of the group fabricated a new justification of why the earth didn't flood or come to an end and this further compounded their belief.


Mar 11, 2016

This is session number 12 of the influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. This show is all about Lazy Thinking.

Lazy thinking is responsible for so many critical thinking errors. Lazy thinking occurs because we need to limit our inputs and piece together our responses and choices based upon what we have done before and what has served us up to this point. Lazy thinking allows us to function normally, easily but it is defining our choices, decisions and lives as a whole. Action must be taken.

The psychological principle of lazy thinking, like most other principles certainly serves a purpose. Every day our life is full of lessons. Each of these lessons are stored and allow us to shortcut critical thinking by using these lessons at a later date. Sometimes we even package these lessons to allow us to come up with a seemingly rapid accurate gut feel. Here is where the problem lies.

What's the Issue?

Marketeers, sales professionals and even manipulators fully understand that we will go through most of our day on autopilot, lazily thinking and making decisions as we have done in the past.

This topic jumped out at me today whilst I was on the school run with the kids, I heard some mums talking about diet, and foods. One of them sounded extremely pleased that they purchased a microwaveable dinner that was gluten-free. The other one also responded in amazement, and clearly wanted to try some of this gluten-free microwaveable dinner. As it was gluten-free, it's obviously healthy isn't it?  Nnow this isn't a show about diet, but the facts are this. Gluten is fine for most people, but for those who do suffer, the suffering can be quite intense. So a gluten-free option is certainly, an option. However, we come to think that foods that are fat-free, gluten free, sugarfree are the best options in all cases to choose regardless of our own dietary needs.

The lazy thinker would assume that if it didn't have one of the above ingredients in, therefore it must be the healthier choice. The critical, active thinker may be wondering if these items have been taken out what specifically has gone back in?  Kknown neurotoxic sweeteners sometimes replace sugar, simply to have the label sugar free. Artificial thickeners are put in foods to replace fats. In most cases, fats that are beneficial to us replaced with thickeners that have no nutritional benefit whatsoever. But marketers get away with labelling something as fat-free, or even low-fat and make us want this more. Chips are meat free, it doesn't tell you anything.

Lazy brain, and lazy thinking affects us in so many ways. And it's time to step in and make a cognitive assessment of your brains thinking. Let me give you some more examples.

Lazy thinkers tend to be more selfish, and will use certain languages and make specific judgements based on their social situations and things that seem to fit at that time. Think about it for a minute, how many times have you thought about something after an event, and realised that your initial decision was a mistake. “ thinking about it now I can……….”

When a person is admired, or believed to be right in a particular subject. People also then believe more of what that person says, it seems that once a person has passed a validation test in some way or another. Then there other suggestions, comments and stories seem to be more plausible and believable. Manipulators can use this to set the scene. They can create a story or situation that they can prove to be true, and then follow it up with an illusion that you will simply adopt more easily.

Mar 4, 2016

This is session number 011 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. Be careful what you expect. Expectation will sway your choices, decisions actions and behaviours. There are so many examples of this and on different levels too. For example, if you expect to have a rubbish day at work, then that's what your RAS (Reticular Activating System. See

There are so many examples of this and on different levels too. For example, if you expect to have a rubbish day at work, then that's what your RAS (Reticular Activating System. See this podcast for more on this) will see and experience.

However to add another example inline with the persuasion element I'll explain this principle in the buying and selling field. Sales people use and should use this.

Here's how it goes:
You and your partner go to look for a new mattress. While your shopping around to try a few and one really takes your fancy. The sale agent approaches. You ask "How much is this mattress?" "The deluxe medium firm is £1200. What is it you like about it?" The couple will now give their explanation and desire to buy this, but something very important has happened. The level of expectation has been set. The figure £1200 now have a tangible product and expectancy attached to it in their minds.

The level of expectation has been set. The figure £1200 now have a tangible product and expectancy attached to it in their minds. Here for the magic. The sales assistant can now say something like "The medium firm is a popular choice (Social Proof) and those people who like this mattress, love the Platinum version. would you like me to tell you about it and show it to you?" Who wouldn't? "This is the platinum version. There are twice as many springs for an unrivalled support, there is also the addition of a cool-tech top layer keeps you warm in the winter and prevents sweating in the summer. This mattress also comes with a 10-year shape warranty instead of 5 years like the rest of our mattresses. And the final and most major difference is that this comes with 2 cool tech pillows to guarantee the best nights sleep"  So, at this stage the couple can see and appreciate all of those additions and they already have a bench mark of what they get for £1200. So what do you think they would price or should I say value this mattress at? 

Feb 26, 2016

This is session number 010 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. I have a confession! I have just covered this in another one of my Podcast on NLP titled Representational systems, but this just had to be added here too. It's a completely new recording and I'll be explaining it in another way. More aligned with Influence and persuasion.

Using representational systems to get people on board is a skill not to be missed. This is very easily practiced and very simple to implement too.

What are Representational Systems?

Simply put, representational systems are our 5 senses. Each of us senses and experiences the world very differently as you probably well-know. The senses are V.A.K.O.G. and these stand for visual, auditory, kinesthetic, olfactory, and gustatory.  typically, and to the purpose of this session I'll be just talking about the first three, visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. Most people do not experience the world through smell or taste so will leave those out for simplicity. People have preferences in the type of representational system that they use mostly. This is their dominant, or preferred representational system, But typically, people will use all of the senses to experience at some point or another.

How Is This Useful For Influence And Persuasion?

This gets interesting when you can use a person's preference  in your own dialogue while you are communicating in with them. This connection or matching of representational systems is what makes people feel greater levels of rapport and more comfort. And we know by now, report and feeling comfortable always allows for interactions to flow more smoothly and therefore allow the communicator to direct the situation conversation into the desired outcome more easily. The easiest example that you will know and understand is when two people meet for the first time, but get on so well for no reason known to them that they make a statement like " it feels like we were on the same wavelength"  or even " we just talk the same language". this is a great sign, That two people are aligned in how they represent the world and its meaning.

Feb 9, 2016

This is session number 009 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. And I honestly don't know why this wasn't the very first show. I really don't. It came to me this week while I attended some sale training and concurrently completed the book ASK by Ryan Levesque. The secret sauce in this show is.......... ask and keep it simple! OK, there is a little more to this than I am making out here but, the real key here is simplicity, honesty, curiosity and asking quality questions. This needs to be your default position at all times. Forget the advanced tac-ticks and body language for now. Get very good at getting very simple.

Get smart, get simple

People like simplicity. Simplicity allows us to run on autopilot, act and communicate on a level we are comfortable. We tend to stick to things we like, and to what feels the most comfortable to us. Simplicity just feels right. This is why I'm suggesting before you look to upskill, down skill. haha, you know what I mean? First thing is first and it's time to go back to basics. Simplicity, honesty, and curiosity. These are the key to a curious mind, and a mindset that will naturally enquire and allow you into a person's world, this is the place where the magic can happen.

Where is this useful and where can I apply?

As I said above, this needs to be your default position and therefore, this is an area you should spend some time in. Practice here will ensure you have mastered simplicity. A great basis to work on before you begin to layer all other techniques or principles onto it.

  • Work with colleagues
  • Home with spouse and children
  • Friends
  • On the phone

Do you get the picture? Practice and use this everywhere from now on. Practice makes permanent and this needs to become your default position for you to become naturally charismatic and influential. So what exactly do you need to do to simplify?

Jan 29, 2016

This is session number 008 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. Adding typical Mike fashion I've given you a strange title that seems oxymoronic. Agree, even when you don't.

Why I suggest you always agree! Initially.

Okay, I have given a bit more away now I've added the "initially" part at the end of the title. But bear with me here because there are some very important factors to consider and why I have made this statement about agreement.  Agreeing with a person first and foremost allows for rapport to be built and for the interaction to flow. And in any interaction, we are always looking for a good level of rapport and to ensure that we feel comfortable enough at the conversation stays in flow. Agreement is the very best way to do this! Agreed? lol

Examples of agreement

You are selling gas and electricity for a small not very known distribution company. You do have very competitive rates and the switch over from their existing large supplier over to you can be seamless and involve very little of their time. But, right at the end of the interaction before the person is about to sign their new agreement, they say that they have some concerns. "As you are only a small company, how do I know you will stay in business, and be able to provide me with the service I want, I feel a little uneasy".   the untrained person here would try to explain to that person that they needn't feel uneasy and they would try to reassure in any way they could, simply saying that they're not that small and they do have 3% of the entire market. this is a great example of not agreeing, trying to dissuade a person's opinion by telling. Creating an agreement though allows a person to feel as if you understand their situation, and also lets them know that it's fine for them to feel that way, as others have to. In this case, you'd use something called the feel, felt, found method, and it goes a little something like this. " Well Mrs Jackson I completely understand a you feel about switching to a smaller company for your gas and electricity services even though we are cheaper than your current supplier, in fact, every day I hear similar thoughts from people like you who felt the same way as you, however, once the switch has happened almost seamlessly, those people found that they were pleased that they trusted in smaller company to provide them with the similar great service, at a much reduced cost. This agreement twists the angle and makes a disagreement, agreeable.

Jan 22, 2016

This is session number 007 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. In this episode, I'll be explaining all about familiarity and how it affects our interactions and decisions. First and foremost, and more obviously, we, as a species like what's familiar. From an evolutionary angle, if what you did yesterday was good enough to keep you here, alive and well today, then repeating that makes so much sense. But..... how can this psychological principle be used to your advantage, and what do you need to be aware of to prevent falling into the trap of following a pre-programmed responses.

Familiarity and similarity go hand-in-hand. You've heard the saying, “birds of a feather flock together". And the reason why this is known so well, is because in so many cases it's absolutely true. We like people who are like us. This recognition of being similar confirms to us that we are on the right path and that our way, our beliefs, and how personality traits are exactly where they need to be, which is why there are other people just like us. This acts as a confirmation bias.

Jan 15, 2016

This is session number 006 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. This podcast is all about understanding hypnosis. What it is, how it's induced, and why it seems so effective at producing rapid amazing change.

First I need to start off by saying, hypnosis is absolutely a "real thing", and you should not view this in terms of magic, or things like sorcery. You'd be surprised how many people seem to classify hypnosis is something not of this world, or simply made up.

So let's start with what is hypnosis?
This can be defined in so many ways but let's drag a little excerpts from Wikipedia as they have a nice neat, and concise description, here is what It is said here.

"Hypnosis is a state of human consciousness involving focused attention and reduced peripheral awareness and an enhanced capacity for response to suggestion.

To give you an example of what hypnosis is, and something that is commonly taught throughout hypnotherapy training practices around the world. Hypnosis is a state of trance. The most common example of day to day trance is while you are driving, think for a moment, perhaps you're on a route that you know all too well, you may have the radio on in the background and you're thinking about what the day has to offer, and things that you may have to do. When you get to where you're going, more often than not you won't remember the route you took, what cars were in front of you, what happened at the roundabout. so many people actually say they don't remember any of the journey. then the strange addition! While you are driving, without seemingly paying any attention to the journey, the radio was on in the background. If you are asked what was playing, you prog you wouldn't remember. However! You will most likely be singing that, or humming it throughout the day without giving it a second thought.

Jan 5, 2016

This is session number 005 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. This is very topical as we have just started 2016. Why do nearly 50% of the population set a new years resolution, only 25 % of those who start, make it to February and then only 8% are said to achieve their goals?  Here are 7 simple ideas to allow you to stay on track.......... This time.

Dec 16, 2015

This is session number 004 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. In this show, I'll be talking all about the commitment and consistency principle. This a Psychological principle details by Robert Cialdini and it has so many interesting caveats and discoveries. Typically, we value consistency and commitment. However, you need to be aware that this psychological process of remaining consistent and committed can sometimes lead you down the wrong path.

Dec 16, 2015

This is session number 003 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. This show is all about the halo effect and understanding this amazing psychological principle that means we will judge people and circumstances based upon how much we like them or perceive them to fit into a certain role or level.

Dec 16, 2015

This is session number 002 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. In this show, I'll be explaining a very common sales and influence technique called the Yes Set. This is perhaps one of these principles that people use without even realising that they use it.

In fact, it is so effective that children learn this principle very quickly and very easily without, in most cases being told. I give an example in this during the podcast about my daughter, influencing me even after I explained this principle to her.

Dec 16, 2015

This is session number 001 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. In this first of the 10 minute shows, I'll be sharing some information on attention, awareness and how it really directs your life. What you focus on increases.

Have a look at the Awareness Test on YouTube for a great demonstration on "what you focus on increases". And, what you don't, you'll most probably miss. You can hedge your bets to get more of what you want by understanding and applying this principle.