Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) was begun in the mid-seventies by linguist John Grinder and mathematician Richard Bandler, who had strong interests in
(a) successful people, (b) psychology, (c) language and (d) computer programming.
It is difficult to define NLP because NLP means different things to different people. While it is difficult to find a consistent description of NLP among those experts, one metaphor keeps recurring. NLP claims to help people change by teaching them to program their brains. We were given brains, we are told, but no instruction manual. NLP offers you a user-manual for the brain. The brain-manual seems to be a metaphor for NLP training, which is sometimes referred to as "software for the brain." Furthermore, NLP emphasises (1) the notion of the unconscious mind as constantly influencing conscious thought and action; (2) metaphorical behaviour and speech, especially building upon the methods used in Freud's Interpretation of Dreams; and (3) hypnotherapy as developed by Milton Erickson. NLP is also heavily influenced by the work of Gregory Bateson and Noam Chomsky. One common thread in NLP is the emphasis on teaching a variety of communication and persuasion skills, and using self-hypnosis to motivate and change oneself.
Bandler took as his first models Virginia Satir ( See family System therapy), Milton Erickson (See Ericksonian & Hypnotherapy) and Fritz Perls an early advocate of Gestalt Therapy because they "had amazing results with their clients." The linguistic and behavioural patterns of such people were studied and used as models for therapeutic communication. These were therapists who liked such expressions as 'self-esteem', 'validate', 'transformation', 'harmony', 'growth', 'ecology', 'self-realisation', 'unconscious mind', 'non-verbal communication', 'achieving one's highest potential'--expressions which serve as markers of "transformational" psychology.
NLP practitioners tend to work in a variety of ways and modalities often similar in method to coaching. NLP Therapy is generally a short-term, goal-oriented and practical therapeutic approach to solving problems, achieving goals and personal evolution. This can include growth and change in one's mental, behavioural, emotional and/or spiritual being. It is a synthesis of many models: the solutions-oriented approach of basic NLP combined with cognitive, behavioural, Ericksonian, psychodynamic and existential therapy, built upon the belief in each individual's potential and ability to grow, learn, develop and evolve positively.
NLP Therapy emphasises development of and communication between, the conscious and unconscious minds. We provide clients with the guidance and tools to access and develop their inherent resources in order to reach higher levels of consciousness and identify choices, thereby creating more flexibility. NLP therapy encourages and supports independence and self-sufficiency.
A recent sub modality called meta state therapy is claimed to have significant success in treating a range of client concerns.
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