Bobby Teng is no ordinary counsellor – he’s also a hypnotherapist and Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP) master coach and trainer.
Now, at the age of 34, he has already accumulated experiences working in numerous fields as both a case manager and clinical counsellor in various sectors.
His unexpected foray into this industry was at the age of 15.
“I went cycling in the middle of the night against my parents’ wishes and crashed into a drain while going downslope,” he says.
Although the fall did hurt, the long-term pain wasn’t felt instantly.
“I came home, got scolded, then realised that my legs weren’t working well after a few weeks.”
“Without trying to sound like I’m trying too hard, I lived my life for 18 years with screws and metal rods in my back.”
Although no nerves were damaged, he had fractured his spine. He was unable to walk for eight months.
“The surgery had impaired my walking. After implanting screws and metal rods into my spine to hold it together, I had to go through an intense period of my life where I was angry at anyone and everyone – depressed if you may. Learning to walk all over again as a teenager really makes you rethink life,” he explains.
When asked if he has completely recovered, he said: “You never really recover from such incidents, do you?”
Even so, Bobby admits that this incident has reshaped his world, opening up his eyes to what is really important. It made him reconsider how he had been living his life.
“That was the turning point where I reconnected with my parents, started studying on my own and working to pay off my school fees.”
“Because of NLP, the pain has gone away. NLP, for me, only happened in 2017. I lived with the pain from 15 till 32 years old.”
His ordeal made him realise the importance of being physically and mentally strong. It inspired him to take up psychology till he eventually stumbled upon NLP.
“Psychology is all research and statistics. NLP changed my life – from the way you think about things to how you process information.”
What Is NLP?
NLP, according to Bobby, is nothing short of awesome.
It uses personal development, psychotherapy and communication to treat anxiety, conquer phobias and aid personal developments.
“When you purchase a microwave, would it not come with a set of instructions? NLP is the instruction manual for our brain,” he postulates.
He was not always a believer in the effects of NLP.
“In the early years of my education, I was exposed to NLP and strongly believed it to be a sham. Only after being truly exposed to it and seeing the changes in my clients, did I start believing in it.”
Eventually, he became a Master Coach for NLP whereby he incorporates coaching into his usual counselling.
As An NLP Trainer
Although Bobby completed a Degree in Psychology, he went on to do a Masters in Social Science focusing on counselling instead.
“An individual that says “I am depressed, I feel depressed, work is depressing” everyday – how do you think their outlook on life would be? How do you think their behaviour would be based on that?”
While a psychology trained individual would diagnose the person accordingly and provide psychodynamic psychotherapy, counselling and other forms of therapy, this could take years, or even a lifetime to “help” these people.
“When a person comes to me saying “I am feeling depressed” – in NLP, we challenge those thoughts,” he says.
“Because depression is not an emotion, you can’t feel depressed. And when people’s minds are opened, then we can help reshape and reprogram them by removing all the negative thoughts and feelings associated to the word “depression”.”
“This is where the magic happens – when people start taking back control in their lives; controlling their own thoughts and feelings.”
He adds that anti-depressants are commonly prescribed to those who display depressive symptoms.
“Have you ever seen a person on anti-depressants? Their eyes seem soulless? The lights are on but no one’s home? That’s when people who are not depressed take anti-depressants. It screws up with the neurochemicals in the brain.”
“If a person is correctly diagnosed with depression, taking anti-depressants actually helps them function like a normal person,” he adds.
Thus, he decided to be a full-time NLP Trainer instead.
Having been in this field for years, Bobby has encountered numerous students and patients.
For him, one of his patients stood out the most.
“She had been on anti-depressants since she was 18, and when I first met her she was 36.”
After a session with Bobby, she went to the hospital to seek a second option. It turned out that she was misdiagnosed 18 years ago, taking anti-depressants even though she does not have depression.
“Doctors in the hospital did a full body checkup only to find out that she has “Hashimoto Disease”, a condition that affects the thyroid which regulates hormones, causing her to feel low and sad for prolonged periods.”
“Since then, she is much better taking the right medications for her condition,” he affirms.
Beyond the four walls of his office, Bobby actively shares his expertise via talks locally and internationally.
“Doing talks overseas has opened up my eyes only to show how hungry people can be,” he explains.
He aims to equip the masses with the skills and tools needed to achieve their own success.
Through his work, Bobby finds satisfaction through the fact that he’s able to empower people’s lives.
Bobby aims to set up a new clinic in five years, along with his own company that is able to organise talks and coaching workshops in the near future.
Companies and clinics aside, he’s planning on pushing his physical and mental limits to greater heights by competing in the IRONMAN triathlon.