SO, WHAT IS NLP?
By Bernie Rogers
I was in a conversation with someone recently, they’d never heard of NLP and asked me ‘So, what is NLP?’, and in true coaching fashion I answered that question by asking several other questions:
• Have you ever on a long summer’s day stood in the sun feeling the warmth on your skin, captured that moment and brought it to mind on a cold winter’s day to warm you up? That’s NLP.
• Have you ever remembered a time as a child, when you fell around laughing? And as you think of it now it brings a smile to your face? That’s NLP.
• Have you ever tried to explain something to someone and they just didn’t get it, so you changed the words you used to explain it, maybe even showed them how and they got it? That’s NLP.
• Have you ever looked at someone doing something and thought ‘I’d like to be able to do that too!’? So you carefully watched how they did it, and then you practiced and refined until you could do what they did and make it your own so that it was even better for you? That’s NLP.
As I watched all of that land and the person smile quietly, the next question was asked curiously, ‘Those letters, what do they stand for?’
NLP stands for Neuro Linguistic Programming, that is, knowing what works in your thinking, behaviour and language patterns so that you achieve the results you want in your business and personal life.
Neuro is the internal workings of how you take in information through your senses, process it and make sense of the world around you through your neurology. It is your mind/body system.
Linguistic covers the words you use and your body language and most importantly how these influence yourself and others. It’s how you use your language to create your life and impact the lives of those around you, professionally and personally.
Programming relates to the fact that you are a creature of habit and you run unconscious patterns internally which create your daily life, from getting up in the morning, to running meetings, to dealing with stressful or enjoyable situations. These patterns may or may not be useful for you. Becoming aware of your patterns gives you choice, to repeat them and flexibility do something differently.
When we put all three letters together NLP is all about communication, awareness and understanding of yourself and others and using all of that to gain clarity, reproduce excellence and consistently achieve the goals you set professionally and personally.
NLP is fun, exciting and all about you; it’s about creating awareness and choice in what you do and how you do it. It’s about replicating excellence and making a difference in your own life and the lives of those you work with and live with. The focus is on positive communication with yourself and others and subtle change from the inside out. If you change, those around you change too.
That question was followed up with ‘Hmmm, that's all well and good, but what specifically does all of that mean in reality?’
In reality it means that you can learn to tap, even more strongly, into your attitudes of excellence, consciously learning a set of tools, techniques and processes which you can use to assist you to model your own excellence and the excellence of others and to replicate it across your professional and personal life.
Having this awareness and flexibility allows you to, amongst other things:
• To understand yourself as a manager, trainer, team leader and communicate more effectively, effortlessly and easily with your team members and clients
• To connect and build stronger, more positive work and personal relationships
• To manage on-going change (including the effects of the pandemic), bringing balance across all areas of your life
• To have a greater competitive edge as a result of your improved communication skills
Try it for yourself!
Over the rest of the day, or tomorrow, notice when you experience a positive way of being for yourself (a resourceful state) e.g. a moment of calm, happiness, energy or motivation. When you notice it, really experience it (really feel, see and hear what it’s like for you in that moment), consciously store that feeling inside of you.
Then several times later in the day and over the coming days, tap back into that resourceful state for yourself and simply notice what you notice. Enjoy the noticing!
With practice, re-experiencing that resourceful state in the moment will become effortless and easy.
Bernie Rogers is a member of the IITD since 1994. She is an INPTA-trained NLP Trainer and Coach, who brings her love of language and facilitating people to tap into their natural resources to her training and coaching. Bernie is also an mBIT Trainer and Coach (multiple Brain Integration Techniques) and an ICF certified professional coach. Providing NLP, mBIT Certified trainings and coaching allows Bernie to work with those who also wish to make a difference in the world.