Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) is based on the idea that your senses you are only able to perceive a small part of the world and that your view of the world is filtered by your experience, beliefs, values, assumptions, and biological sensory systems. You act and feel according to your perception of the world instead of the real world. NLP teaches that language and behaviours may be functional or dysfunctional which are highly structured, and that this structure can be ‘modeled’ or copied into a reproducible form. Using NLP you can ‘model’ the more successful parts of your own behaviour in order to reproduce it in places that you are less successful. You can also ‘model’ someone else to effect belief and behaviour changes to improve your own functioning. If a person excels in some activity, you can learnhow specifically they did it by observing certain important details of their behaviour patterns. NLP embodies several techniques, including hypnotic language techniques, which can effect changes in the way people think, learn and communicate. NLP is a ‘toolbox’ that has been modeled from other fields in collating its presuppositions and techniques.
NLP considers each individual’s perception of the world as ‘map’. NLP teaches that your mind-body and what you say all interact together to form your perceptions of the world, or maps. Each person’s map of the world determines feelings and behaviour. Therefore, unrealistic maps can restrict choices and could result in problems. As an strategy to self improvement or therapy it requires understanding that people create their own internal ‘map’ or world, recognising unhelpful or destructive patterns of thinking based on their maps of the world, then modifying or replacing these patterns with more useful and resourceful ones. There is also an emphasis on methods to change internal representations or maps of the world in order to increase behavioural flexibility.
“Modeling” in NLP is the process of adopting the behaviours, language, strategies and beliefs of another person or exemplar to be able to create a model of what they do. You know that your modeling has been successful when you are able systematically get the same behavioural outcome as the person you have modeled. The ‘model’ is then reduced to a pattern that can be taught to others.The patterns discovered were developed over time and adapted for general communication and effecting change. NLP modeling methods are designed to unconsciously assimilate the tacit knowledge to learn what a leader is doing of which the leader is not aware. An approach to learning can involve modeling exceptional people. While modeling another person you look at his or her own beliefs and adopttheir physiology, language, strategies, and beliefs of the person being modeled. The modeler is then able to reproduce the patterns of behaviour, communication, and behavioural outcomes of the one being modeled, a process occurs in which the modeler modifies and readopts his or her own belief system while also integrating the beliefs of the one who was modeled. Modeling also implies understanding the patterns of your behaviours so that you can ‘model’ the more successful parts of yourself.