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Neuro-Linguistic Programming

The name, Neuro-Linguistic Programming or “NLP” says exactly what it does. The simplest way I can describe it is…, the use of language to program, or re-program, our nervous system – our thoughts, beliefs, behaviors, and actions.

Said another way, NLP is a model that studies and describes how the subjective human experience of each one of us is created.  It is the practice of understanding how people organize their thinking, feeling, language and behavior to produce the results they do.

NLP was co-founded in the 1970s by Richard Bandler and Linguistics Professor John Grinder, Ph.D.  Together they undertook a study on excellence in communication by researching the successful results of three outstanding therapists: Fritz Perls, founder of Gestalt therapy; Virginia Satir, a prestigious family therapist; and Milton Erickson, renowned hypnotherapist.  By studying these three highly successful professionals, they set out to find the formula that consistently leads to successful outcomes.  Ultimately, their work led to the birth of NLP, which was initially devised as an alternative approach to psychotherapy.  However, Richard Bandler soon realized that the ability to understand the way people think and feel has benefits beyond mental health and can apply to business acumen as well.  This led him to study the ways that great communicators in the world of business got their message across, how people motivate themselves and others, how people present more effectively and how they powerfully persuade.  He realized these skills could be modeled and replicated by anyone willing to learn the techniques.

Essentially, NLP is an effective interpersonal communication model.  It is a therapeutic, self-help technique that focuses on behavior and language. By enlightening people to healthy patterns of communication, therapists teaching NLP can show clients how to transform their behaviors in order to achieve a desired outcome.  Additionally, therapists who practice NLP believe it is beneficial for relieving psychological symptoms related to various problems, such as depression, anxiety, and phobias.

Eventually NLP found its way to be used by teachers to improve the teaching-learning experience and by psychologists to improve their therapy methods.

Today NLP has been extrapolated for use in many contexts and disciplines: Lawyers, Salespeople, Managers, Navy SEALS, Coaches, HR Professionals, etc.  All of them recognized NLP as an effective tool for any communicative situation and any context with a specific purpose: interviews, meetings, seminars, remaining calm under stress, speeches, negotiations, etc.

NLP is made-up of the following areas:  Programming, Neurology, and Linguistics.

  • Programing – Knowing how thought, behavior and emotion are structured and understanding how the human being has been programmed so that they can be reprogrammed.
  • Neurology (Neuro) – Knowing that all behavior originates from neurological mental processes and that we make contact with the world via the processing of millions of bits of information that we take in from the five senses, and that our brain will filter and interpret this information. And according to our conceptual map, our “programming”, we assign meaning, subjective meaning, to the information we’ve filtered and processed and emit an emotional and behavioral response in a way we believe is appropriate.
  • Linguistics – Language is used to convey ideas and concepts, to communicate with ourselves and others. It is a process that has a specific representation, order, and sequence.   Neurological processes are encoded in the form of words, the words create concepts, concepts create ideas and theories, and these form the vision of reality.

Once we understand that how we respond to inputs (situations/stimulus), our actions, thoughts & feelings are based on our filtered, interpreted, version of reality and not reality itself, we understand that the meaning we ascribe to these inputs is subjective.  So, knowing that all meaning is subjective, that it is truly fiction created in our mind, we can open ourselves up to suggestions that challenge our beliefs and change our reality.

Change doesn’t come easy, but NLP and/or Hypnosis can help make change more effectively and quickly.

With NLP, you can go from a limited set of what is possible to inspiring yourself to begin the process of questioning all the things you decided years ago that you can’t do or that you shouldn’t try.  NLP is a tool that will help you challenge and reconsider the validity of those self-limiting beliefs – whether they are really true or not.

Think of the possibilities

What if using a technology like NLP you discover that there is another way to acquire a skill, to learn, to overcome phobias, anxiety and gain the confidence you need?

Or that with NLP you realize that all those negative, limiting stories that you told yourself, or your parents or teachers told you over the years weren’t true.

Ask yourself, if you reversed those beliefs…,

  • What would that mean to you now / how would you benefit?
  • How much further in your education would you go?
  • Where would you be in your career?
  • What would you do differently going forward?
  • What would you change?
  • What doors would open for you?

To help open your mind, to question what is possible, to inspire yourself and to learn to question what you are capable of, or decided you can’t do, I recommend three great books to study on your journey:

  • Unlimited Power – Anthony Robbins
  • Awaken the Giant Within – Anthony Robbins
  • The Strangest Secret – Earl Nightingale

What is NLP good for?

  • Developing the ability to manage your internal state – how you feel inside.
  • Helps you stay resourceful during normally stressful situations – personally or professionally.
  • Increases your behavior flexibility – broadens your range of behavior response during difficult situations.
  • Dramatically increases the speed of learning.
  • Helps you become more influential, a more effective, persuasive communicator.
  • A tool that can be used to model and reproduce excellence in any field. A tool the top performers utilize to be better than everyone else.

NLP modelling is great for identifying the key elements in a system, or in a process to optimize results.  The NLP model is simple: study excellence, determine what works, model it, test it, then reproduce it.

NLP for Business

Inter-staff Communication:  Since NLP approaches communication on many levels, employers worldwide have seen the benefit of developing interpersonal skills with emotional intelligence including the use of powerful language patterns, including non-verbal communication, to fine tune and empower their most effective managers and leaders to achieve successful outcomes.

Leadership:  NLP is designed to make good managers effective leaders.  Managers are able to lead teams more effectively when they are tuned into the staff and more aware of the way they are communicating.  Very often people are unaware of the assumptions they make in the language they use and are thus unaware of how those assumptions make other people feel.  Leaders that develop effective communication skills make people feel more at ease, happier and more motivated.  And most importantly, a leader must convey his/her vision for the business and the staff.  And this vision must be worked out properly, sensibly and communicated clearly in order to have a positive effect on morale and productivity.

Presentations:  NLP can be used to deliver internal training and presentations

  1. NLP teaches how to reduce stress levels when speaking in public. Fear of public speaking is the world’s most common phobia and very talented people often find public speaking to be a major stumbling block.
  2. People with NLP training are aware of the way the emotional state of the trainer affects and influences the state of the audience. Those trained in NLP understand how important it is for an effective trainer to raise his or her own state to an optimal level so as to bring the audience there as well.
  3. The specific use of body language and of spoken language combine to make a far more powerful effect on the audience, eliminating the “death by PowerPoint” experience that is far too common in business presentations and training sessions.

Improving personal effectiveness: 
NLP can positively change long term behavioral patterns and provides the tools to change unwanted behavior in yourself and others.  In the workplace, colleagues understand each other better and are more equipped to respond adequately to the needs of colleagues and customers.  It allows managers to motivate and inspire staff every day.

Confidence and Presence:   Using NLP techniques leads to greater confidence and presence.  By maximizing your ability to communicate concisely, with greater precision and the ability to make compelling and persuasive arguments.  It enables you to identify and be clear about what really matters to you and supports setting achievable and compelling goals.  It allows you to master your emotions to remain calm & focused in stressful situations or during critical negotiations.  NLP is a tool to maximize your effectiveness in all business situations and relationships.

Sales, Negotiation and Persuasion:  Those trained in NLP recognize that there is a particular structure to the way that positive negotiations work.  This includes – eliminating doubt, building rapport, reframing objectives, sharing a vision, setting out a positive & clear course of action and energizing those to follow that course.  Success stems from being able to recognize the particular state in which the client is currently in and shifting them to the desired state of agreement and approval.  Awareness of the “state” of yourself and others is absolutely critical to closing a deal.


NLP Vs Hypnosis