What is NLP?
|Included on this page:
- What is NLP ... about
- A brief history of NLP
- So what is NLP really (a metaphor)
- Business applications: call center,
hiring (job fit), coaching
| Neuro-Linguistic Programming
(NLP) is a model for achieving excellence in human behaviour and
While NLP has been
around since the late 1970s, many of the ideas and beliefs underpinning the
model have only been acknowledged as valid through recent advances in
neuroscience - brain scan technology and neural imaging.
Now that neuroscientists have provided
evidence of how decisions, emotions and behaviour work ... NLP offers a
deeper understanding of how non-verbal communications reveal thoughts,
feelings and intentions ... And even more, how words, images and other
sensory impressions can be used to empower, tap inner resources, manage
emotional states and change personal behaviours.
If you've already completed
a training in NLP, have you ever tried to explain to a friend what it is?
What you spent ten or more days of your life learning? Not easy to
explain in 25 words or less, is it?
It's much easier to say what NLP is
is something you practice - a way of being and interacting with the
world - that increases ResponsAbility and activates more of your
- It's about having more
everyday of your life, taking control of how you respond to life's pressures and
enjoying the process of excelling and living up to
your full potential!
A Little History
Keep in mind that
has a number of specialized branches and the following information represents only one way of explaining
this discipline we call
developed as a model for understanding and enhancing human behaviour.
Creating excellence and ResponsAbility.
It began with the study of people who consistently achieved excellence within their
professions—individuals recognized for their outstanding performance.
Studies date back to the 1970s and have
included experts from
fields as diverse as psychology, professional sales, negotiation, music and
the arts, sports, medicine, education and the military.
Over time, NLP evolved into a protocol for
modeling excellence and creating a blue print
others can use to replicate that excellence.
NLP begins with a set of beliefs
shown to nurture excellence in any field. Then adds an Aladdin's Cave full
tools, techniques and practical applications that make it easy for people to change—in ways
Be clear on this point.
The PROGRAMMING in NLP is about you having the ability to change your
own mental programs. The only person you can change is you. There is a
mistaken belief that NLP is about programming or inappropriately
influencing others, and while that belief may sell a lot of books it is
simply untrue. If you miss-use NLP, sooner or later and usually sooner,
people will feel it – and you will lose their trust. Without trust
The techniques and applications have been refined and
honed over the years by thousands of people from all walks of
life—business and finance, medical and scientific fields, sports, education,
coaching and training, music and the arts.
Some people consider
the ultimate resource for effective communications,
because of the powerful insights it provides on how people think and
make decisions. And today you can find elements of
NLP in many popular seminars and books.
So whether you'd like to be more effective
managing yourself or coaching and training others, promoting products and
services or simply selling concepts and ideas, NLP
offers many valuable resources you can use to achieve higher levels of
used by many of today's top achievers
and business gurus. Charismatic leaders, speakers and authors, sales professionals,
executive coaches, mediators and negotiators very often have one discipline
in common. They have been trained in NLP and use it as a resource for
more personally and professionally.
|So What Is NLP...
is first a
mental model—a way of looking at and thinking about the
world—that expands choice and taps into powerful personal resources.
includes a growing collection of specific skills, techniques and practical real-world applications
you can use for more effective communications. And you can change mental programs
– unconscious habits running your behaviour – so
that you achieve different and better results.
|The computer analogy
is useful for explaining mental programs, like software running in the
background, and responsible for much of our behaviour.
And just like a computer hard drive, from time to time
significant events occur that distort our ‘mental’ software. We're susceptible to thought viruses and indiscriminate programming.
NLP gives you the ability to update, delete
or replace programs that no longer serve you, just as you update your
Yet an even better metaphor might be a rain
forest. Science has shown that the human
brain and nervous system is dynamic – capable of changing, growing and
adapting in ways we are only beginning to understand – with capabilities far beyond the tasks we
ask of them.
The Knowing-Doing Gap
Have you ever thought about the gap between knowing and doing? Most of us
know what we need to be doing to enjoy more success. Yet conscious
understanding hardly ever guarantees success. The real challenge is in
actually getting ourselves to do what we know needs doing. And doing it
Neuroscientists estimate that up to 95% of our decisions, emotions and
behaviours are the result of unconscious mental processing. We simply use
conscious thinking to justify our actions and generate plausible reasons for
why we do what we do.
The key to making better decisions, learning and changing easily, is in
working with the unconscious mind. The field of
NLP has been teaching people how to harness the power of their
unconscious minds for over thirty years – long before many would even
acknowledge the concept. Thirty years to model, test and refine techniques.
1If you'd like to gather your own proof we recommend work by
Joseph Le Doux and Thomas Damasio, both authors and internationally
So how would you be feeling if
- You had the power to develop new software, new mental
programming for yourself?
And what if ...
- You had the ability
to ‘uninstall’ old programs and delete files that cluttering up your
‘mental’ hard drive?
When you learn to use
NLP it's like getting
the source code — the keys to your own personal programming.
With NLP you
can create your own software and achieve more of the
success you want. Some people would say NLP
is a sure route to the personal mastery described by Peter Senge in The Fifth Discipline.
Applications Of NLP
center managers and customer service representatives in NLP communication
skills see the following improvements:
- CSRs who have this specialized training
are better at gathering the critical information needed to resolve
complaints or sell additional services.
- And are able to quickly neutralize anger
and emotional outbursts.
- Customer satisfaction levels show dramatic
improvements and sales volumes increase.
- Call handle time is reduced.
- CSRs feel better better about themselves
and are able to manage job stress more effectively.
|When a chemistry company used
NLP motivation and
behaviour assessment interviews during recruitment they were able to achieve a better job fit
- Predicting a candidate's behaviour in an
organizational setting, enabled them to match the person with functional demands and
the working environment.
- Employee retention went up.
- Productivity increased, stress was
- Cooperation among teams and between
|Sales professionals using motivation and
behaviour questions quickly create deep levels of trust, while identifying
what really matters to each customer.
- They uncover the unique emotional triggers
for each client.
- They learn to use the ‘language of
action,’ specific words that will create compelling
motivation in each customer.
- As a result, sales increase.
- And relationships are strengthened as
clients feel their needs are truly understood.
Coaches using NLP
accelerate their clients progress towards realizing their full potential.
- Outdated beliefs and fears
that may be blocking performance are dissolved easily and comfortably!
- Unwanted habits are replaced with new empowering behaviours.
- Their clients resolve internal conflicts
that in the past may have caused them to spin their wheels, draining
their energy and wasting time.
- Both Important and Urgent
tasks are handled with comfort.
- Their clients' have more energy and
motivation to move toward their goals for the future.
Training Certification Programs
follow the American Board of NLP
guidelines and include concepts and techniques from Humanistic
adds concepts from studies in Quantum Physics plus a large helping of Ericksonian hypnosis
to standard NLP content.
questions? Visit our
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