NLP is the acronym for Neuro Linguistic Programming. The study of excellence in communication (with yourself and others) in order to create the results you want!

NLP started in California in the early 1970's at the University of Santa Cruz. The founders were Richard Bandler, a master's level student of information sciences and mathematics and Dr. John Grinder, a professor of linguistics. Their focus was to study people they considered excellent communicators and agents of change.

They identified four pillars of NLP.

The first pillar is Rapport. This is one of the most important gifts that NLP has given us. When you are building a relationship with others and with yourself you want to build rapport. NLP teaches us great techniques that we can use to quickly gain rapport with individuals who we deal with at work, in our day to day family life or strangers we come across who we want to build rapport with quickly and easily.

The second pillar is Sensory Awareness. The ability to perceive or experience through the lens of our own 5 senses. Do you notice when you walk into someone's home or a new store what you see - the colours and décor, or do you hear - music playing or people talking or do you smell - food cooking, or do you notice flowers blooming. Each of us notices different things and uses our sensors to experience life. NLP helps us understand how each of us views the world and assists us in better communicating as a result of understanding how we perceive the world vs how others may perceive it. Asking questions and observing reactions or by knowing how a person processes information helps us better understand them and hence results in better communication with them.

The third pillar is Outcome Thinking. This is about knowing what you want rather than what you don't want. NLP provides you with tools that help you take charge of your life, in order to focus on desired outcomes and hence achieve the results you want. It helps you remove negative thoughts and beliefs and focus on desired goals instead.

The fourth pillar is Behavioural Flexibility. If something isn't working for you, it’s about being flexible and changing your behaviour. Every minute of our day, we take in millions of pieces of information through the 5 senses. At the conscious level, we simply can't deal with that much information. So our mind filters the information we receive into chunks of 7 plus or minus 2 chunks containing about 130 bits of information a second. So what happens to the rest of the information, well we delete, distort or generalize it. Each of us will filter the information differently as we all view things differently based on our personal values, beliefs, attitudes, memories, past experiences and decisions.

NLP is described as both an art and a science of communication, the key to learning and it's about what makes you and others tick. It's also been described as the route to getting the results you want in all areas of your life.

NLP is about increasing the choices available to you. Building rapport with others, developing an acute sensory awareness, increasing your focus on outcomes and honing your behavioural flexibility will empower you to new heights and enable you to achieve your desired goals and outcomes. Anything and everything is possible if you set your mind to it.

Change is up to you!

Author's Bio: 

Linda Cattelan is an Executive and Career Acceleration Coach. Linda has helped thousands of career professionals alleviate stress, avoid burnout, get their priorities clear, regain control of their career, and heighten their performance, focus and readiness for the next level. If you are looking to get unstuck and make a huge difference in your career, Linda can help you. Sign up for her free eReport: 3 Surprising Reasons Your Career is Stuck in Neutral and What You Can Do About It: