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How was NLP developed?

NLP (neuro-linguistic programming) was created by John Grinder, assistant professor of linguistics at the University of California and Richard Bandler, a student of psychology at the same university.

Their work started in the early seventies and included the studying of the practices of Fritz Perls, a psychotherapist, Virginia Satir, a famous family therapist and Milton Erickson, a world-famous hypnotherapist.

NLP and the modelling of excellence

By studying and modelling outstanding therapists, they could identify patterns of therapy that other practitioners could use to produce similar successful results.

It could be asserted that NLP is about defining excellence through the discovery of patterns and then creating strategies for others to use those patterns to achieve similar outcomes.

NLP also builds on the earlier works of Ivan Pavlov’s conditioned reflexes (1904).

These conditioned reflexes are called anchoring in the NLP.

NLP takes the theoretical results that others have produced and makes them available to you and me so that we can better our lives and well-being.

However, NLP is more than a bunch of techniques.

It’s a curiosity about how high-achieving people achieve what they set out to do.

It’s also a technique that lets you uncover the habits of thought and communication that keep you from becoming successful.

Furthermore, it can show you how to achieve the results of successful people.

In other words, NLP is a method of finding the patterns of excellence used by successful people.

Thus, making these successful ways of thinking and communicating accessible to others for their benefit.

NLP has its roots in therapy and is now used in all fields of human experienceeducation, fitness, sports, industry and perhaps most importantly, interpersonal relations.

Let’s break down and analyse the term neuro-linguistic programming

Neuro refers to your neurology – sense organs

It is about how you process and absorb information.

For example, you use your eyes to see things in your world.

You also experience or perceive events through your other senses: auditory (hearing), kinaesthetic (tactile touch or emotional feeling), gustatory (taste) and olfactory (smell).

Linguistic refers to the language we use

The language includes pictures, sounds, feelings (kinaesthetic), tastes, smells and words – that you use to remember and make sense of a particular experience (or to predict a future experience).

For example, can you recall your breakfast this morning?

When you remember having breakfast, can you see a picture in your mind, or can you hear sounds (perhaps a radio was on or you were engaged in discussion with your family)?

What about tastes and smells? And how were you feeling – happy, tired, excited?

Now, think about a significant event in your near future.

Do you see yourself succeeding or failing?

The pictures, sounds, feelings, tastes, smells and words that you use to describe future experiences will have an effect on what happens.

You do create your reality!

Programming refers to your habits, patterns, programs and strategies

If it’s a typical workday, do you follow a specific routine as you prepare for work?

Maybe you like to lie in bed a little after the alarm goes off.

Do you shower right away or have breakfast first?

If you take time to look at what you do, I am confident you will see a pattern a routine that you follow in getting ready for work.

If for whatever reason you don’t follow that routine, do you find yourself feeling that something is missing?

Your unconscious habits influence your future

You have routines, habits, strategies and programs for everything you do.

Some of these routines serve you, but others don’t – resulting in unwanted outcomes.

You may be fully aware of some of your routines.

You may become aware of others only when someone else brings them to your attention.

And you may choose to quickly forget about these routines because you want to avoid addressing that part of your life.

And there are still other routines that you are not aware of at all.

Yet, they continue to influence how you look after yourself, communicate with others and perform your daily tasks.

If the routines serve you – that is, generate positive results in your life – fantastic!

However, if you find that some don’t help you, would it not be useful to identify them and to change them, so they work to your advantage?

Question: Who put your routines, habits, strategies and programs in place? You did, of course.

So, who can change them? Only you.

But first, you must become aware that you run these routines.

One of the essential benefits of NLP is being aware of the routines, behaviours, strategies and programs you continuously run.

And then using NLP techniques to modify them to achieve the results you want.

The use of NLP

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), helps you make sense of how you think and feel.

It also examines the language we use to represent our experiences in the world.

NLP looks very closely at human interactions and achievement; this understanding helps you ‘model’ excellence in every aspect of your life to achieve your desired outcome.

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