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The Ongoing Debate About Neuro Linguistic Programming

May 15, 2008
Neuro linguistic programming (NLP) has been a controversial issue ever since it first came to light in the 1970's. The co-founders of NLP were Richard Bandler (mathematician) and John Grinder (linguist).

The pair came together in an effort to find the basic answer of what makes certain people more successful than others. Throughout history great people have achieved some of the most amazing feats that man kind could ever have imagined.

The question is why is it that Bobby Baker is the head CEO of a business firm and his brother Billy is still in the mail room? Both the brothers grew up in the same household, went to the same schools, achieved the same grades, lived in the same apartment, but for some odd reason Bobby is more successful than Billy.

Bandler and Grinder spent years of their lives searching for the answer to that question. They felt if they could take a group of successful people and document their every move, they could come up with some type of structured model that could be used to teach others to behave the same way.

To be able to prove a theory like that would probably be one of the greatest finds of our time. The only problem that everyone seems to be having is providing the evidence to support this brilliant theory.

This has been the ongoing debate for over 30 years regarding this alternative form of psycho therapy. Great idea, but where's your proof?

Based on the infamous "model" created by Grinder and Bandler, the way that a client moves or speaks is really providing a hidden glimpse into their subconscious minds.

This is believable to a certain extent; but what about environmental variables? For example, a man is sitting and speaking to his NLP coach and suddenly shifts his eye to the left after a question has been asked of him. Does this automatically mean that he is avoiding the question? Is he lying?

No, not necessarily. It could be possible that an insect flew past his peripheral vision and caused him to react in such a way. How could we ever even try to begin to decide which of these statements is correct? Most importantly, what type of negative effect might this have on the client in the long run?

That client knows for a fact that an insect flew past him, but his NLP coach is insisting that something in his deep psyche caused him to react that way following the question. The negative effects that this could have on a person who is desperate for guidance could be catastrophic.

It has been scientifically proven that there have been patients that have cured their own minor medical problems with mind power alone.

Imagine if that process was reversed! An average confident client seeks the help of an NLP coach for a few months to help him/her through a rough spot in their career. The next thing you know, that same person walks away from the experience afraid to look another person in the eyes for fear of relaying the wrong message through body or eye contact.

In fairness, not all NLP coaches behave this way. There are many ways to interpret the teachings of Grinder and Bandler, but finding a person that has experience in the correct way to utilize them can be difficult.

The advancement of this psycho therapy must be entered into cautiously and with a full understanding of the theory that is behind this controversial form of mind modification.

Research carefully and make sure you are prepared to entrust your mental well being with your selected coach before traveling down this particular road of therapy.
About the Author
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