Storyteller of Love – interview with Paul Burr (21 February 2010)

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PaulBurrIntroduction

Last year, I worked on a manuscript and I am so happy to say that the book is now published. In the process, I got to know a little about Paul and his work. His energy, drive and determination to get this book published impressed me. Without further ado, I have great pleasure in introducing to you, Paul Burr …


Aneeta: Paul, thank you for agreeing to this interview.

Paul: Thank you Aneeta, first of all, for helping me with the sequencing and logical presentation of my book. I appreciate greatly the advice you gave me. And thank you for inviting me to this interview.

Aneeta: My pleasure. Let’s start with a little about you – tell me where you were born, where you grew up, where you live now and what you do for a living?

Paul : I’m a ‘Geordie’. I was born and raised in North East of England. My favourite childhood memories hail from Tynemouth which is on the coast, as its name implies, at the mouth of the River Tyne. There are beautiful beaches there, a towering castle that has greens and lawns where children run and play. Geordies are very friendly people. It was the perfect place to grow as a child.

I ventured south to London in 1969 where I took a first and second degree in Mathematics and Statistics. Seven years later I joined IBM and developed a career in Sales and Management. After a couple of further transitions in the mid 90’s I chose to become a business coach. I found myself working with top performers in large corporations. Specifically, I researched what they did differently from everyone else. Strangely, it was this research that led me to key questions that would be the catalyst that inspired me to write Learn to Love and Be Loved in Return.

I am still primarily a business coach. I also work with private clients. I use NLP, Time Line TherapyTM and, more recently, metaphysical therapies to help clients live the lives they want to live.

These days I live in a Georgian apartment overlooking the seafront at Hove, in East Sussex, UK. I am a practicing Druid, a member of The Druid Order in London. In hindsight, becoming a Druid was an instrumental part of my journey towards writing my book, Learn to Love and Be Loved in Return. I could not have written it without the wisdom of my companion Druids and our Chief, David Loxley. David was one of two mentors whose input was invaluable. The other was Romilla Ready, Lead Author of NLP for Dummies® and a ‘Relationships Wizard’.

Aneeta: OK, let’s talk about your newest book, Learn to Love and Be Loved in Return; tell me what it’s about?

To buy in the US, from Amazon.com, click here.

To buy Kindle version, click here.

Paul: The book centres around finding Truth. Expressing our Truth or our True Self is after all, I suggest, our purpose in life: to find, get as close to, live and hopefully be our real selves – safe in the wisdom that we know, speak and act out our Truth. We find Truth in ourselves through the relationships we create, especially loving relationships.

When two people come together I found that we only ask 4 questions of one another. And there is a sequence to these questions we answer, whereby we decide if a long term relationship is worth pursuing.

Once the relationship starts and passes the early stages of passion and excitement, I reveal a framework that consists of ‘3 pillars’. The pillars determine whether the relationship will last or not. The first pillar is Love. I discuss what is  Love and what is not Love. In addition to Love I explore Trust, Security, Resonance, Purpose and, most of all I focus on, finding Truth.

Truth comes from biblical figure, Ruth, which is pronounced “root” in Ancient Hebrew. For a relationship to achieve its fullest purpose it must be firmly rooted in Truth. This is the first of 7 Stages a relationship can go through. Most couples do not get past Stage 4. It is there that the full spiritual nature of their relationship develops and transcends, in order to pass through the remaining stages.

We, eventually, arrive at a place where we find that the summation of all the relationships we have in life are, in fact, a mirror. A mirror of the relationship we have with ourselves. I devote a chapter to coaching tips and stories so that the reader can nurture the relationship they have with themselves. I help the reader to ‘happen to the world rather than have the world happen to them’.

The book is packed with clients’ ‘Case Stories’ in order to bring the key points to life. I call them stories. All the events happened but I changed the contexts, ages and names to preserve anonymity.

In the final chapter, I compile a sequence of 7 easy-to-use, everyday, self-coaching tools to help the reader in their journey, to achieve all the things they want to give and receive in their relationships and life. Learn to Love and Be Loved in Return is a DIY guide to starting and making a fulfilling relationship last.

Aneeta: What are the three most memorable things about getting this book published?

Paul: I sent some work in progress to Romilla Ready last July. A couple of weeks later I asked Romilla “What do you think?” She replied “As I started to read your book Paul, I found myself saying ‘This is very professional, did Paul write this?’”. “Hoy cheeky!” I replied and we laughed out loudly together. Romilla kindly offered to approach a publisher on my behalf.

Romilla introduced me to Debbie Jenkins and Joe Gregory who run bookshaker.com, a publishing house that focuses on non-fiction. I sent in written answers to a number of questions they asked. I used extracts and examples from the book, where I could, to answer them. A few days later they offered me a contract. Wow! I was offered a contract by the first publisher I had approached. I said to myself “Surely, this is a sign!”

The publishers, Debbie and Joe, have been great. They have gone beyond the call of duty to help me, a newbie, get the book right. The editing-for-print process was a very steep learning curve for me. It is vital to get the logic and the sequence right before you do the proof reading. I didn’t – oops! It is also vital that the cover represents the tone of the book. I say so myself, and everyone I speak to tells me that, the book cover that Debbie and Joe came up with is top class. It exceeded all my expectations. Early on they said “Leave it to us, Paul!” How right they were!

Aneeta: Clearly, you’ve used lots of storytelling techniques. What aspect, in particular, of storytelling have you found most useful?

Paul: The stories told come from clients’ personal detailed histories. In therapy, I use techniques to get clients safely to the heart of the major experiences that have influenced their lives. These experiences are often cathartic. I know how to get clients to dissolve the intense emotions they attach to these experiences. They learn their ‘Truth’ from the significant emotional events in their lives and the repeating patterns that occur as a result.

My stories are not rose-tinted. Although they contain moments of bliss and joy, they describe the types of painful journeys most of us have to take in order to find our Truth. That, I find, is the nature of Life. I write from the heart about events that have happened and can happen to anyone. When I achieve this, the reader is getting the best I can do.

Aneeta: Although its launch date is not until 10th March 2010, Learn to Love and Be Loved in Return has already received accolades. Please pick three that mean more to you than others and explain why.

Paul: David Loxley uses the words:

“This book falls into a gap between too simple and too difficult to understand. If it were either, it would fail in its mission. Paul has put all of his experiences together and created something unique. This book is a DIY guide on how to build in the roots that support what kind of relationship you want and how long you want it to last. And be philosophical and learn when it doesn’t work out that way.

Paul shows us how we can choose freely, to start and sustain a loving relationship, rather than be driven by circumstances to make choices apparently beyond our control.”

David is my Chief, responsible for ‘chiefing’ my consciousness development. That’s what Druidism is all about. And my consciousness development is part of what I choose my life to be all about. Getting the endorsement of my Chief, who is probably the wisest man I have ever met, gives me the inspiration and encouragement to write my second book.

Romilla Ready is a top selling author. Her simple phrase ‘very professional’ meant that an expert in my new role was giving me the thumbs up. That made a huge impact on my self-belief that I could write something of value for the world.

Kelly Scales, Yoga Teacher and Entrepreneur wrote:

“I loved the book – thanks so much for sharing. What did I like? – the combination of case stories and personal experience and insight combined with NLP, Druidism and quotes. The dashboard is a really great tool and I’m still working my way through it. Well done you, I really felt it gave a huge sense of possibility – i.e. start with X and then who knows…. which is so lovely and uplifting for the reader. and for me (and I’m sure many of those who will read it) it was also a call to action …

About time I faced up to and broke my relationship patterns. yep, here goes….!”

Kelly’s comments reflect what I want every reader to get out of the book – practical advice and guidance that gets them to commit to moving on in their lives.

Aneeta: As you know, this website caters for storytellers. What advice would you like to give others who would like to venture into storytelling?

Paul: I shall be honest with you Aneeta. When I first spoke to David Loxley about writing the book, he told me “You might have to live this book in order to write it”. Little did I know how profound those words were. When writing the book I attracted both blissful and cathartic relationship experiences which I shall keep privy. This is part of the ‘mojo’ of writing that is impossible to prove but life changing to experience. My clients’ and my own experiences allowed me to write from the heart, hopefully to reach the hearts of readers. If I found myself writing from my head I stopped, took a break (once for a whole month), until I was ready to start again.

If I found myself enjoying a writing session and felt satisfied at the end of it, I knew I was giving my best. If I wasn’t enjoying a session, I would work out what the problem was and fix it, before I carried on.

Aneeta: Paul, this is all I have to ask. Is there anything else you’d like to add?

Paul: David Loxley told me what I needed to know to decide to write the book.

“If you have a book inside of you, your duty is to get it out there. It doesn’t matter how the world responds. It’s the process of writing it that’s important. What the world thinks of it is immaterial. It may get it. It may take 100 years for people to make sense of what you will have lived. It may take 500 years. When the world is ready, it’ll get it.”

At this precise moment, a hundred limiting beliefs I had about myself and my writing capabilities kicked in. They were too late though.

Aneeta: Paul, thank you.

Paul: It’s been a real pleasure. And thank you, Aneeta. I would like to mention that there is a Facebook Group I’ve created. I want members around the world to share their experiences and wisdom about Love and Relationships. It’s found at  http://www.facebook.com/Doctapaul?v=feed#!/group.php?gid=284873991120


This piece may NOT be freely reprinted. Please contact editor @ howtotellagreatstory.com for reprint rights.

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