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What is NLP?

What is NLP? That was no doubt the question you asked when hearing or reading the word NLP for the first time.

Perhaps because it was attached to an “almost too good to be true” story of someone making a miraculous change in their life. Or, perhaps they were telling you of an NLP Training they took?

For me, it was an experience I will never forget as it was a strange combination of ordinary mixed with bizarre.

Regardless of how you have heard of NLP, I’ll explain it in a number of different ways for you below.

But please be aware that it is more the personal experience with NLP that determines what it really is. And the experience in many cases is hard to describe as it is an internal and subjective thing.

Make sure you check out these pages as well:

NLP is short for Neuro Linguistic Programming

NLP is short for Neuro Linguistic Programming and has been described in many ways:

  • The study of Human Excellence (how people do what they do well)
  • Neuro – the study of the mind or brain and nervous system
  • Linguistic – how our language creates our internal processes and
  • Programming – how we create (program) our reality by these processes
  • The study of people and how they perceive reality
  • The study of people and how they process information about the world around them
  • The “how-to” manual or psychology for how we work as human beings


What Is NLP Known For?

A few samples of what NLP is known for:

  • Develop extraordinary sensory awareness and read people with precision
  • Learn what successful negotiators do and troubleshoot difficult situations
  • Change unwanted automatic reactions that stop you from achieving peak performance
  • Learn and develop proven success strategies
  • Eliminate unwanted emotions and limiting decisions


What is NLP – First Our Short Answer

In short, NLP Techniques & NLP Patterns help you achieve Excellence in  Your Life.

What is NLP?

According to the American Board of NLP, it’s:

A model of communication that focuses on identifying and using patterns of thought that influence a person’s behavior as a means of improving the quality and effectiveness of their lives. It offers a paradigm of how the brain works (neuro), about how language interacts with the brain (linguistic), and how we use this interaction to get the results we want for ourselves and others (programming). It is an effective, proven vehicle for accelerated human change, radically altering the “old way” of lengthy psychotherapy.

Where NLP Came From

Neuro Linguistic Programming – NLP, was initially created by a linguist, Dr. John Grinder, and a computer scientist and Gestalt therapist, Richard Bandler. Together they produced a linguistic model that identified the language patterns of a few gifted individuals such as hypnotherapist Milton Erickson, M.D., Fritz Perls of Gestalt therapy, anthropologist Gregory Bateson and Virginia Satir of family systems therapy. The synthesis of their findings, a blend of cognitive and behavioral science, resulted in the technology known as Neuro-Linguistic Programming.

Where NLP Has Gone

In the last 45 plus years, NLP has expanded to incorporate information from many additional disciplines including; neurology, cybernetics, philosophy, and quantum physics. NLP is used in all fields including law, sports, politics, business, education and especially sales.

Neuro Linguistic Programming Training seminars and workshops are available throughout the world.

The benefits of NLP – Neuro Linguistic Programming is to help you, your group or organization to excel in such areas as decision-making, creativity, learning, motivation, health and more using your own natural processes.

What is NLP – Simplest And Absolute Answer

NLP is the common process all human beings use for encoding, transferring, and modifying their behavior.

Minimalistic Answer

NLP Neuro Linguistic Programming – is a practical set of tools that you can learn to Maximize Your Life Potential.

Answer Dictionary Type

Also defined as:
“Neuro” (derived from the Greek “neuron” for nerve) stands for the fundamental tenet that all behavior is the result of neurological processes. “Linguistic” (derived from the Latin “lingua” for language) indicates that neural processes are represented, ordered and sequenced into models and strategies through language and communication systems. “Programming” refers to the process of organizing the components of a system (sensory representations) to achieve specific outcomes. From Robert Dilts, John Grinder, Richard Bandler, et al, Neuro-Linguistic Programming: Volume I (California: Meta Publications, 1980)

Answers From Psychology

It’s the study that understands the inner psychology of how people process information to then create a compelling future, thereby assisting them in:

  • changing unwanted automatic reactions or behaviors and beliefs
  • releasing stored trauma from the body
  • relieving panic and anxiety
  • eliminating unwanted emotions and limiting decisions
  • relieving pain and allergies


These studies also understand:

  • the appropriate roles of the conscious and unconscious minds
  • the role of the higher conscious mind within psychology
  • extraordinary visual and auditory sensory awareness which assists in “reading” others to determine what they’re really saying at a deeper level
  • learning eye movement to detect if the information a person is obtaining is visual, auditory or kinesthetic
  • exceptional levels of rapport and communication skills and ability to key into others use of visual, auditory or kinesthetic words to know the channel in which to best present information to them so that they process quickly
  • a cutting-edge approach to people and problem solving through applying the principles of HNLP and the process of setting goals that really happen!

Answers From Popular Magazines

Well, according to Time Magazine and other opinion leaders:

“NLP may be the most powerful vehicle for change in existence…” – Modern Psychology

“NLP has untapped potential for treating individual problems….It has metamorphosed into an all-purpose self-improvement program and technology.” – Time Magazine

“NLP could be the most important synthesis of knowledge about human communication to emerge since the sixties.” – Science Digest

“NLP cannot be dismissed as just another hustle. Its theoretical underpinnings represent an ambitious attempt to codify and synthesize the insights of linguistics, body language and the study of communication systems.” – Psychology Today

“(NLP) does offer the potential for making changes without the usual agony that accompanies these phenomena…Thus it affords the opportunity to gain flexibility, creativity and greater freedom of action than most of us now know…” – Training and Development Journal

“. . . real estate brokers and salespeople use Neuro-Linguistics to enhance their communication skills and provide them with more choices when working in a difficult situation. . . it shows how we make sense of the world around us and communicate.” – Real Estate Today