What on earth is NLP and how can it help me?

Good question!

To be honest when I saw a Facebook ad for NLP training, I didn’t ask, I just knew that I was meant to do it.

I scraped up enough money for the first instalment and signed up.  I couldn’t afford to do it, and it was a lot of money, but at the same time knew I couldn’t afford not to and I haven’t looked back.

Then the manual arrived.

Hundreds of pages of a completely different way of thinking.  Being Counselling and Social Work trained I had expected that some of it would be familiar, but it wasn’t and honestly, I was just a little bit terrified. As it turned out it was one of the best decisions I have ever made.  Thank goodness I listened to my intuition the day I signed up because I wouldn’t be where I am without it.

NLP is Neuro Linguistic Programming.

Let me break that down for you:

The neurological system and how we process our experiences through information gained from our five senses.

The language that we use (conscious and unconscious, internal and external) and this can be verbal, through pictures, sounds, feeling, tastes, smells and body language – all of the ways we understand and give meaning to what we are experiencing.

The programs we run, the behaviours we use and repeat and our personality.

So, what is it all about?

Basically, it boils down to how we communicate and why we do what we do.  Why we behave in certain ways, why particular situations or people trigger us to react, and what to do to heal the reasons we react emotionally.

It’s an understanding of the lens we view the world through and how that impacts on our personality and the patterns we run.

  • Are you optimistic most of the time or more pessimistic?
  • Are you an extrovert and like to be around people to recharge your batteries, or are you more introverted and like to be alone when you are worn out?
  • Do you need loved ones to spend time with you to feel loved, do you need to hear them say it, or maybe you are a hugs person?
  • Are there some situations where you feel confident and empowered, and others where you are a trembling mess?
It’s also about how we communicate using our senses and how we make sense of what is happening in our world.
Then this is impacted by how we filter that information, how we perceive the world and the language we use to describe it.

That all sounds really complicated but for a human behaviour nerd like me it just explains so much.

If we can figure out why something bothers us, what old memory is being triggered, we can heal it.

  • Why does one person feel terribly anxious or have panic attacks in crowds and another is exhilarated by it?
  • Why does someone suffer crippling depression when they tell you they have the seemingly perfect life, great job, partner, family, nice home, debt free and great social life?

Can you guess I’m a why person – lol?

Often these things are connected to beliefs we hold, sometimes unconsciously, that continue to impact.  So, if we decided as a kid that we weren’t loveable and then stored that belief in our unconscious, it’s there until we recognise it, challenge and heal it.

These beliefs are also sometimes misrepresentations of what happened when we decided this.  An example is that someone who had parents who worked long hours when they were little, might have decided that they were unimportant and unloved because of the absent parents, when in actuality this couldn’t be further from the truth.  Maybe the parents worked hard to provide a better life for those kids that they loved beyond measure.   Could this be linked to how the children felt loved and that their love language wasn’t being addressed?

Also, our Unconscious like to prove us right, so if it believes something it will “help” us to see all of the instances when this is true, and conveniently delete or filter out the times it is glaringly obvious that it isn’t.

Bless it’s cotton socks, the unconscious likes to be right, all of the time!

So, someone that consciously or unconsciously believes that they aren’t loveable will be aware of all of the times this seems true and not recognise or take into account all of the times they are shown just how loved they really are.

These are all things that can be uncovered, explored and viewed with adult hindsight which is a hugely powerful way to heal.

These are all things I learned to do with NLP and I use it every single day for myself, those close to me and my clients.  It has become a way of life for me that gives me tools to navigate the bumpy ride that life can be.

When we can’t control what is happening outside of us, we can control what is happening inside, with a little understanding and the right tools.

You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on years of training like I did.  I teach this stuff to all of my clients because in all honesty I really want them to not need me anymore.  I want them to have the skills to live a happier life without lengthy ongoing therapy although, they are welcome to keep in touch and come back any time they want to.

Until next time,