What is NLP?
So what is NLP? Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) is a powerful body of information about how the human mind works built up since the 1970`s and continuing to evolve through new research. You are likely to find many different descriptions of NLP.
At the heart of NLP is a wide range of methods and models for understanding how people think, behave and change. It offers a flexible approach which brings about positive, fast change in individuals and organisations and empowers them to adapt to an ever-shifting world.
NLP training provides the skills to define and achieve your outcomes or goals and a heightened awareness of your five senses, allowing you to remain flexible, on track and maintain rapport with those around you.
Definitions of NLP:
‘NLP is an attitude which is an insatiable curiosity about human beings with a methodology that leaves behind it a trail of techniques.’
Richard Bandler (co-creator of NLP).
‘The strategies, tools, and techniques of NLP represent an opportunity unlike any other for the exploration of human functioning, or more precisely, that rare and valuable subset of human functioning known as genius.’
John Grinder (co-creator of NLP).
How does NLP work?
NLP shows you how to understand and model your own successes so that you can reproduce them. It is a way of discovering and unfolding your personal genius, a way of bringing out the best in yourself and others.
NLP is the study of excellence. It is the study of both the conscious and unconscious processes that combine to enable people to do what they do. The key to success is often unknown at a conscious level. Using NLP you can elicit these unknown pieces.
You may want to improve your relationships, or eliminate an anxiety, or become more competitive in the marketplace. The key pieces are found in your inner thoughts, like words or pictures, or feelings or even beliefs. Once you know these unknown pieces you can change them.
One of the principles of NLP is that we are always communicating and a very large proportion of our communication is non-verbal. At times our communication can be misinterpreted by the listener, depending on how they communicate.NLP enables awareness to recognise the cues and adjust our style to enable a more deeper understanding.
Research, sponsored by BT, tells us that 6 out of 10 people in the UK want to be better at communicating. NLP provides practical tools for achieving highly skilled communication.
Language affects how we think and respond. The very process of converting experience into language requires that we condense, distort, and summarise how we perceive the world.
NLP provides questions and patterns to make our communication more clearly understood. NLP teaches us to understand how language affects us through implicit and embedded assumptions.
The English language is full of traps and pitfalls for the unwary communicator… for example; if you are told NOT to think of a kangaroo, you will immediately think of a kangaroo, which is the opposite result from that intended!
Listen for the use of implied assumptions when you use the word “but”. For example, “I like the way that you did that piece of work, but….” The listener tends to forget everything that went before the “but”, waiting for problems to emerge. NLP utilises this and creates a platform for giving effective feedback which is listened to in a positive and meaningful way.
NLP processes and strategies have been developed as a result of discovering how experts or excellent leaders do what they do so well; it is then possible to teach these skills to others.
Modeling skills, based on detailed observations and careful questions about beliefs and values, are the key to competence in NLP. Learning the specific components of how others do something well will provide you with new options and accelerate your learning.
NLP allows you to devise strategies for dealing with challenges. For example, if you find it difficult to get up in the morning, ask someone who does not find it difficult how they motivate themselves to do it. Other applications abound in education, business (e.g. competency modeling), health, sports and personal development.
NLP is about Mastering your Mind and Emotions
NLP describes, in very precise terms, the images, sounds, and feelings that make up our inner and outer world. How do we know what we know? How do we do what we do?
For example, how do you know that a pleasant memory is pleasant? How do you know when to feel scared or happy? How do you know that you like or dislike something? How do you learn a subject easily, or not?
NLP provides us with the equivalent of a user’s manual for our brain – NLP techniques demonstrate how we “code” our experience. When we understand the specific ways that our brains make distinctions, then it is easier to make changes, to learn and to communicate effectively.
The Study of Internal Experience
NLP is a tool to understand how an individual makes sense of the world. NLP studies the experiences of an individual; how our thoughts, actions and feelings work together to produce our experience.
It does NOT assume that we all do this the same way. It does NOT produce formulae for body language or even eye movements without understanding the individual. In NLP we know that each person has a unique style of learning, perceiving and responding to the world. NLP is inherently respectful of differences.