What is Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP)?

Neuro – Meaning “of the mind”
Linguistic – Having to do with language
Programming – Creating a process for changing the thoughts and language we use, ultimately leading to changing our behaviors to create permanent transformation.

Man's Search for HappinessBy changing the mind we change the way we view the problem that therefore results in resolving the issue. We change the mind by changing our use of internal words and pictures. This is NLP.

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) is a set of techniques, axioms and beliefs that adherents use primarily as an approach to personal development. It is based on the idea that mind, body and language interact to create an individual’s perception of the world and that these perceptions, and hence behaviors, can be changed by the application of a variety of techniques. The underlying source of these techniques, called “modeling”, involves the careful reproduction of the behaviors and beliefs of those who have achieved “success”. The early focus of NLP was the study of the underlying patterns in the language and techniques of noted and successful therapists in hypnotherapy, gestalt therapy and family therapy. The patterns discovered were adapted for general communication and effecting change.

The basic ideas of NLP were developed around 1973 by Richard Bandler, a student, and John Grinder, a professor of linguistics, in association with the social scientist Gregory Bateson. They focused on learning (modeling) the communication and influence patterns of successful people in various fields. Although the underlying theoretical principles have not been supported by scientific research, a number of its techniques are based on existing therapeutic techniques, its early focus having been on “modeling” successful therapists

As a personal development system, NLP is applied in the form of group trainings, seminars, or individual client/practitioner consultations. It is also applied as a therapy in itself or as an adjunct by therapists in other disciplines. NLP practitioners deal with personal issues ranging from reframing negative beliefs, to dealing with stage fright and simple phobias, to self-help, depression, or addiction. More generally they deal with peak performance assistance in business or sports and communications and motivation. Professionals in other fields take up NLP as professional training for coaching, consulting, counseling and therapy.

NLP and its techniques have been widely adopted for use in motivational seminars, adult learning, and management and sales training, often being mixed with popular psychology and other applications that are outside of the mainstream.

Case Studies

“Christina facilitated reprogramming of my most painful memories.

She used an NLP, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, technique where she asked me to close my eyes and fly over the time line of my life and drop down into whatever scene reached out for me. I would replay the scenario in detail as I remembered it. She would then ask me to rewind the scene and witness myself as a little girl growing big and tall and towering over all the other actors in the skit. As I grew larger the other people in my memory would become smaller. I would then replay the scene as a giant version of me as a little girl, but this time I got to rewrite the scene as it was happening – this time with a voice, a choice, with power and control. I got to speak up for myself and defend my little girl. I got to change what actually happened in my memory and now when I access those memories I have been rewired to remember the amended version. I no longer suffer from the pain of my childhood memories. I walk out of her office, into my life and set boundaries, defend my self and I have the ability to create my present life, as it occurs.

I have seen Christina every other Monday for eight months. I have recently graduated to a level of completion where I am armed to handle any scenario that is placed in front of me. Christina promises a breakthrough in a set number of sessions and once completed, my visits to her are as needed. My personal ability to access power, freedom, self expression, contribution, compassion, forgiveness and partnership is incomparable. I feel as though I have been given a second chance on life. I have the confidence and safety to create any reality I choose. I have finally stepped into my own power and I wake up everyday with a skip in my step and the promise of a new day. I actually get to live each day as if it is new. Before my relationship with Christina I felt like everyday was the exact same, the only thing that changed was my outfit.”

Reema was a client who came to me because she felt that she could not

be in a relationship with out sabotaging it. She had what I call “black or white syndrome” She would create high expectations for her partner and they either lived up to these completely or they were deemed “wrong for her.”

In this way she made it impossible for her mate to succeed in making her happy.

I felt that since she was continually looking outside of herself for happiness we had to address the problem of what she was missing inside

After talking to Reema for about an hour, I found out that her mother had had a series of relationships including Reema’s own father who had disempowered her (the mother). Reema felt that men and relationships with men were nothing but a disappointment. I used a technique I call “Timeline Reconstruction Technique”, A variation on NLP Timeline Therapy, to go back over her childhood memories. By changing the “picture of the memory”, we were actually able to change the way she FELT about the memories. She reported back after two sessions that she was able to be much more confident and comfortable in her current relationship and that she found it easier to communicate with her partner. She also reported that she no longer had that “desperate feeling” that she had had in her previous relationships.

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