by Dr. Becky Spelman on 01/06/2019
What is NLP?
We all experience the world in a subjective manner because we are all unique individuals with a unique history and set of experiences. These experiences are mediated through the senses, processed in the form of thoughts, and influence our behaviour, which includes how we communicate with others (both verbally and in gestures, etc.)—including forms of behaviour that are not useful or productive. We also experience the world, and react to it, on both a conscious and an unconscious level.
Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP) works on the assumption that we can change our behaviour when we change the subjective ways in which we experience and make sense of our environment, and when we alter the language that we use to discuss it. Various techniques are used to facilitate this process. Working with their therapist, a patient can figure out what aspects of their mental processes are causing them problems, and what their desired goals are. On this basis, they can design interventions, and start making pro-active changes in their lives. Tools used as part of this process can include visualising people or things that are experienced as problematic and using the power of the imagination to reduce them to a manageable size and acquire a positive outlook towards the concept of managing reactions to them.
It is important for patient and therapist to have a positive rapport, and the therapist works to facilitate this by engaging with the patient closely, including matching some of their non-verbal behaviour, such as gestures and body language. The therapist then works with the client, over a period of time, to adopt appropriate tools into their lives to help them to change the way they think about the world and their place in it, with a view to making actual behavioural changes in their lives and drawing closer to their goal.
Goals of NLP
The aim of the therapy is empowerment; we cannot always control the things that happen in our lives or in the world around us, but we can control how we think about them, talk about them, and react to them. An important aspect of the empowerment of the self is for the patient to understand what their goals really are, rather than what they think they are, and to learn how to express them in a positive way—for example, by stating what they want to do and achieve, rather than what they do not want to do, and what they want to stop doing.
Neuro-linguistic Programming is a therapeutic approach in its own right, and it has also influenced other therapeutic modalities, including brief therapy, which try to create behavioural change within a short period of time. In this respect, it has something in common with cognitive-behavioural therapy. It can be very effective, for example, for individuals who struggle to progress in their careers or personal lives because of ongoing negative thoughts that have developed as a result of their experiences and reactions in the past. By reframing their reactions, and the language they use to discuss their feelings and experiences, they can gradually develop a more positive outlook and start to make progress.
How can I get Neuro-Linguistic Programming in London?
If you would like to talk to someone about neuro-linguistic programming, please get in touch with us at the Private Therapy Clinic by telephone at: 020 3887 1738 or by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bandler Richard; Roberti, Alessio; Owen Fitzpatrick (2013). The Ultimate Introduction to NLP: How to build a successful life. HarperCollins.
Clabby J. O’Connor, R. (2004). Teaching learners to use mirroring: Rapport lessons from neurolinguistic programming. Family Medicine, 36(8), 541-543.