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Dear Lifelines: Curious About NLP

Dear Lifelines,

What exactly is NLP? I’ve heard of it but don’t know exactly what it is.


Dear Curious,

NLP is an abbreviation for Neurolinguistic Programming. It can be a very effective methodology for reaching the change you desire in life in part through modelling-or copying-others who have reached the desired goal that you currently are striving for.

The methodology of NLP encompasses a lot of different areas:

‘Neuro’ refers to your neurological system or, in other words, the way you process information through your senses and body. Despite potentially having similar experiences and similar physiology, we all store our experiences differently in our bodies. Part of overcoming mental obstacles or pushing ourselves further in order to reach our goals requires us to examine exactly how we process, store and learn from our experiences and memories. In analyzing the process, NLP allows us to very deliberately replace our old beliefs, values and limitations with more useful and productive beliefs leaving us with a greater range of choices and capabilities. In essence, it’s similar to wiping clean our bodies’ old hard drives and reloading the memory with information that is current, useful and more in line with who we are and what our goals and beliefs are today.

‘Linguistic’ refers to how we use language and communication to process our experiences and, in turn, how we communicate our thoughts and ideas to ourselves and others.

‘Programming’ refers to how we internalize our learning and the different strategies and thinking patterns we personally use to make sense of our experiences and organize our thoughts.

NLP is a combination of theories collected through the analysis of cognitive behavioural therapy, gestalt therapy and psychoanalysis. In the 1970’s NLP was derived from the study of the best techniques and strategies used by the leading therapists of the day. Today many practitioners continue to build upon the body of knowledge encompassing NLP by developing newer strategies and methods to help people in various personal circumstances reach their goals. There is no limit to how NLP can help provide a process of change for people. People with eating disorders, phobias, personal limitations, learning disabilities, compulsions, anxiety and low self-esteem can all benefit from NLP intervention. NLP is intended to be quick and effective and is not meant to be a prolonged process. It is specific, focussed and directed.

If you feel you might benefit from utilizing the services of an NLP Master Practitioner, call Authentic Being Consulting at 403-983-2230 to book a free 30 minute session to see how NLP strategies can help promote your own personal growth at a pace you are comfortable with.



“The beliefs that we each have about ourselves, others and the way the world is have a major impact on the quality of our experience.” Joseph O’Connor and John Seymour from their book Introducing NLP


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