If you’ve been anywhere near an individual or group of people who focuses on self-help or self-improvement topics, you’ve probably heard three little initials bantered around like their meaning was common knowledge. NLP is one of the buzz words of the better-yourself mega industries of today, and its techniques have been applied to everything from dieting and smoking cessation to finding a job and climbing the corporate ladder to financial success. But what do these three little letters actually stand for? What mystery do they reveal that will lead you from your dull and boring life to success and the exciting life of your dreams? This article will give a brief definition of the terms behind this now-famous acronym, as well as a brief description of the basic concept behind its wide-spread practices.

Neuro-linguistic programming, also known as NLP, was developed at the basic level by Richard Bandler and John Grinder around the year 1973. Richard Bandler was a student and John Grinder was a professor of linguistics. The two men worked in association with Gregory Bateson, a social scientist. Early on, the focus of NLP was on the framework of patterns which were believed to lay underneath the speech and language, as well as the techniques, of successful hypnotherapy, gestalt therapy and family therapy therapists of the day. These studies were based on the belief that once the patterns of successful therapists were identified, they could be adopted by other therapists and the original successes which resulted from these patterns could then be replicated. These patterns could be taught and anyone could have the same results as a therapist guru.

Since its initial development NLP and the associated techniques found their way into the forum of motivational seminars, adult learning, management and sales training. The NLP beliefs which stated that the mind, body and language interact to create our individual perceptions of the world around us has been widely adopted among self-help practitioners. The practice of NLP techniques focuses on a technique called modeling, which involves the careful imitation of the behaviors, the beliefs and the habits of individuals who have achieved “success” in their fields. As with the early beliefs behind the development of NLP, the focus remained on replicating the successes of the successful.

Literally, modern NLP practice believes if you can walk the walk and talk the talk of your particular industry’s big boys, then you too can be one of them and match their successes.

Author's Bio: 

Robert Greenshields is a marketing success coach who helps business owners and professionals who are frustrated that they're working too many hours for too little reward. Sign up for his free tips on earning more and working less at MindPower Marketing