What is NLP?
NLP stands for Neuro Linguistic Programming and is the study of how people organize their thinking, feeling, language and behaviour to produce the results they do.
All humans take in data or information received via their 5 senses (Sensory Based Information) and the human nervous system (Neuro) converts this into mental images or descriptions (linguistic) which then determine their behaviours (programming). NLP enables you to better understand the process that your mind goes through that drives the way that you think and behave.
Neuro refers to the human nervous system/mind and how it filters and processes all of the Sensory Based Information that it receives from the outside world.
Linguistic refers to the meanings that we attach to the information that we receive based on individual conditioning.
Programming refers to the thought processes and decisions that we make based on the meanings that we attach to the information that we receive and these determine the actions that we take and therefore our results.
NLP puts you in control of your mind, which means that you are in control of your behaviors and therefore in control of your results.
NLP explores the inner workings of the human mind; how we think, how we develop our desires, goals and fears and how we motivate ourselves, make connections, and give meaning to our experiences. NLP presents specific skills and patterns necessary to make positive changes, create new choices, be more effective with others, break free of old habits, self-destructive patterns and behaviors, and think more clearly about what it is we want and how to get it.
Who uses NLP?
NLP methodology is extremely flexible and it is this flexibility that has enabled it to be applied effectively by both Businesses and Individuals in many areas of life and work resulting in significant positive change and massively improved results (see uses of NLP).
NLP was founded approx 30 years ago when an Associate Professor from the University of California, Santa Cruz, John Grinder, teamed up with an undergraduate Richard Bandler. Both men had a fascination with human excellence and were curious as to what made extremely successful people successful. How did successful people do what they did to get the results that they consistently achieved? What did they do that was different to what others did that resulted in outstanding results? It was this wanton curiosity that lead Grinder and Bandler to begin their research into NLP.
Grinder and Bandler used a process of Modelling to carry out their research. Modelling is the core activity in NLP, and is the process of eliciting and replicating the language structure and behavioural patterns of an individual who is excellent at a given activity.
Grinder and Bandler began their NLP quest by modelling three particular people, Fritz Perls, Virginia Satir and Milton Erickson. These geniuses were outstanding as professional agents of change, working in the domain of therapy.
With little direct knowledge of each of the geniuses speciality and little knowledge of the field of psychotherapy on the whole, Grinder and Bandler over a two year period set out with enthusiasm bordering on fervour, to explicate selected portions of the geniuses’ behaviour. They coded the results of their work in language-based models using the patterns of transformational grammar as the descriptive vocabulary. Through NLP Modelling Grinder and Bandler made explicit the skills of the geniuses and NLP was born.