Neuro-linguistic programming, or simply NLP, is an approach that has been successfully used to increase human performance in many different areas and circumstances. In this article, I will be covering its impact on the performance of business professionals, with particular focus on sustainability.
Let's assume for a moment that success is a natural result of a human mind working without any hindering factors. For the sake of simplicity, let's agree that those hindering factors are all based on fear in any of its multiple forms.
NLP has an arsenal of tools that can effectively remove most hindering factors in situations where a burst of top performance is required.
Public speaking is a good example of such situations. Many business professionals may experience a paralyzing level of anxiety when they have to speak in public. NLP techniques can be quite effective to help them remove that particular hindering factor.
Most NLP techniques are based on the fact that the human brain has a perception of reality which differs significantly from reality itself. In NLP, this perception of reality is often called "map" and reality itself is called "territory". Thus, we have one of the most common NLP mantras - a phrase coined by Alfred Korzybski.
The map is not the territory.
With NLP techniques, we can actually guide our mind into perceiving reality in a more productive path. The results may appear - and feel - like a miracle.
One detail that is usually not mentioned by coaches is that those "NLP miracles" are usually not sustainable on their own.
The term Neuro-linguistic programming is quite deceiving because of the word "programming".
When you program a computer, it will always attempt to execute that program the same way, over and over again. The computer cannot change its own programming. However, the human brain can. It is constantly changing, adapting and evolving. It knows our intentions and learns how to identify and progressively neutralize old NLP techniques.
Does that mean that NLP becomes useless at that point?
Absolutely not. We can improve, or should we say, "upgrade" our favorite NLP techniques in order to suit our needs and objectives.
What we learn from NLP books and workshops should be seen as the first steps in a journey.
A journey where we have to constantly listen more carefully to our feelings and guide more effectively our thoughts and intentions.
I am passionate about NLP. For over a decade, I have been helping business professionals acquire NLP skills and, most importantly, "upgrade" those skills for the reasons I mentioned in this article. If you feel like talking about this topic further, please let me know.