I had a great evening yesterday attending a lecture entitled: The Craft of Magic – “A Transformational Conversation”. It was presented by the world-class magician Michael Vincent. The philosophy behind Michael’s approach to his art can easily be transferred into any area of life. He has a mastery, based on a dedication to a craft he loves, and an ability to make a memorable connection with a person in just a few minutes. Doing what he loves, developing relationships with his clients and creating a successful life. In my opinion, three essential elements to any person in business.
I have been excited by magic since seeing David Nixon on TV in the 1960s and Bill Bixby playing the “The Magician” in the early 1970s. Since the age of nine I have enjoyed performing close-up-magic and sleight of hand. I met Michael in the early 1980s and was privileged to watch him gain membership of the Magic Circle during their annual “Close-up” competition. I experienced the murmur of astonishment, from an audience of magicians, as a teenager surprised even them. His love of magic created a dedication that has allowed him to learn from the best of the best and to travel the world doing what he loves.
Last night (5th April 2011) he spoke about mastery. He displayed mastery at a very young age, compared to his peers. Michael spoke about how privileged he was to have spent time with his mentors; stars of magic from the nineteen forties, fifties, sixties, seventies to the present day. I know that they saw in him a commitment to their art that caused them to want to spend time with him. They knew that they were leaving their art in safe hands because of his obvious commitment to practice, excellence and the “magic of Magic”. I encourage my clients to create a vivid mental image of their future; designing it in every detail. Michael was able to see examples of excellence right before his eyes. That must have created a real motivation. Mastery has been his companion on his magical journey for more than four decades.
(Video inserted 31st July 2013)
So much of what he does; he does without conscious thought. This gives him the space to create meaningful relationships with his clients. In NLP terms he has reached “Unconscious Competence”. The “four stages of learning” NLP process model is something that each of us has gone through time and time again; from learning to walk, riding a bike, driving a car, learning to swim or play a musical instrument.
1. “Unconscious incompetence”: I don’t know how difficult a trick is before I try it.
2. “Conscious incompetence”: I realise that the trick is very difficult to perform and I question if the practice is worth the trouble. However, with practice I reach the next stage….
3. “Conscious competence”: If I really concentrate then I can perform the intricate moves without messing it up (unless I try and show someone!).
4. “Unconscious Competence”: Being able to chat and engage in a conversation while the magic just happens.
Understanding this process allows a person to understand where they are in the mastery process and keep motivated. Author George Leonard talks of the importance of having a mentor in his book “Mastery”. Getting a good instructor, or coach, is the first of the “Five Mastery Keys”. The rest are “Practice” (training); to “Surrender” to your coach or mentor, and the demands of your discipline; “Intentionality” (having that image of what you are going to get) and lastly “The Edge” – taking a chance and learning by taking action.
Michael is an embodiment of enjoying the journey of mastery and is now mentoring other people. You can book Michael for mentoring or performance (and see his latest TV performance) via his web site: http://www.michaelvincent.co.uk