VLog #62 – What is NLP and How Does it Work?

Video – VLog #62

What is Neuro-Linguistic Programming and how does it work?

How does NLP work natural language processing?

Does NLP techniques really work?

Script – VLog #62

David Logan: Hello and welcome to The Techno Dinosaur Meets the I.T. Geek. We’re here, Willie Nicol and myself, David Logan, the I.T Geek. I take the jargon out of technology for you the home-based office worker, make it easy, make it simple, keep it short. Based here in Annan, south of west of Scotland, Annan. With me today as I said previously is Willie Nicol, my co-star. So, Willie, how are you and where are you today?

Willie Nicol: I’d like to say I’m very well David. Unfortunately I’ve just recently came back from the dentist so one side of my face is all numb. So, in case you think I’ve been in the boozer having several pints of beer and my speech is slightly slurred, that’s my excuse. However, you asked .…

David Logan: Now .… that’s a good excuse, not being in the pub!

Willie Nicol: No, the dentist unfortunately. I thought it would have thawed out by now but unfortunately not. Anyway, I’m Willie Nicol, the Techno Dinosaur, so called because I’m technically challenged. However, I’m also a personal development life coach based in Troon, South Ayrshire, Scotland, U.K.

David Logan: Brilliant Willie and I can hear you fine.

Willie Nicol: Good.

David Logan: The good thing is we add subtitles to the videos so if someone doesn’t understand it, they can read it. Hopefully, they can read, most people can.

David Logan: This week Willie, you’re a life coach, I hear about those life coaches, I hear about the letters NLP being mentioned quite a lot, quite often it crops up. So, can you explain to me what NLP …. what the letters stand for and what the subject is all about?

David Logan: Just give us a brief …. don’t want to go into scientific know-how, just generic for the layman, for the I.T. Geek.

Willie Nicol: Fine, David, yes, I can do that. And yes, it will be fairly superficial because it’s quite a wide area of expertise.

Willie Nicol: So, NLP is an acronym for Neuro Linguistic Programming which sounds a wee bit scary like something out of a Dr Who program but it’s actually not. “Neuro” refers to the way our brain behaves, the way we think, so that’s the neuro part. “Linguistic” refers to verbal and non-verbal communication which impacts on our brain and the way we think. And the “Programming” part is that we “re-code” our thinking by the use of appropriate language. So, you can almost say that your thinking, the neuro part, is your body’s or your brain’s operating system, right. And periodically we have to re-code it, update or reprogramme it, like we do with our phone and with our PC and with our laptop – to keep up with the latest updates.

Willie Nicol: Another way of looking at it is – we use language patterns to affect the way we think in a positive manner. So, we can use linguistics to reprogramme our thinking for better outcomes. Does that make sense?

David Logan: Yes

Willie Nicol: I’ll just go on a wee bit further. One of the aspects of NLP is using language in such a way that we alter the way we think. Now we’ve touched on this before, very briefly. If we say things like, “I must do ….”; “I have to do….”’ “I should do ….”; “I ought to do ….”, right.Now it could be going to the gym or losing weight or getting more exercise or eating more healthily or whatever.

Willie Nicol: I’m going to ask you a question here. Do you like being told what to do?

David Logan: No.

Willie Nicol: Exactly. So, when we use these words like “must”, “should”, “have to”, we’re kind of telling ourselves to do something. And humans are kind of conditioned to rebel and say, “No, I’m not doing that”. So, even when somebody tells you what to do and you say, “No I’m not doing that”, it’s very often the case when you tell yourself to do something, you kind of unconsciously rebel against it. “No, I’m not going to the gym”, “I don’t want to”, “Can’t be bothered”, right. When you know actually that you should, you should be going to the gym because you’ve paid your membership and so on and so forth.

Willie Nicol: Now, if you use a certain different type of language, you “reframe” the phrase and say, “I want to”, “I’m going to”, “I will do”, “I’m looking forward to it”. Going to the gym, losing weight or whatever it happens to be. You have subtly changed the way you think from a kind of negative rebellious thing to a more positive outlook which means you’re much more likely to follow through on that activity. And then you can take that further, when you have followed through, you know you’re going to feel better. You’ll feel better having gone to the gym and got some exercise or having gone for a walk or having cut down your calories or whatever.

Willie Nicol: So, just by that simple technique, if you like, of rephrasing or reframing the wording, it can have a very beneficial effect.

Willie Nicol: So, another way we can look at it is “visualisation” which is a form of communication that’s inside our head. So, if I say to you, as I was talking about before we started recording, being at the dentist is not very pleasant. So what I do is, I close my eyes and think of a situation I was in where it was very pleasant. And one of my “go to” pleasant memories …. many years ago I was in Bermuda and I was on the beach. It was a pink coral sandy beach, it was a beautiful blue day, sun was shining, not a cloud in the sky. The sea was that kind of deep, deep blue colour, not unlike my background. There were palm trees blowing in the wind and I was gently jogging by the waterside, absolutely fantastic. How do you think I felt then?

David Logan: You felt good, and I bet you felt thirsty as well.

Willie Nicol: Yeah, I felt great, it was a marvellous experience and at that particular point I thought, this is just perfect.

Willie Nicol: So, when you’re in a less than pleasant situation, such as having a tooth drilled, it’s a very good technique to close your eyes and take yourself back to that very pleasant experience and you can regenerate the feeling, not to the same extent obviously, but you can regenerate that good feeling.

Willie Nicol: So, you’ve kind of changed your thought patterns, your “neuro”, by doing something different, by visualising a pleasant experience.

Willie Nicol: NLP also allows us to change the way we act, our behaviours. It’s actually quite effective in curing the fear of flying or many phobias because we can visualise what the fear is, and we can visualise not having the fear. There’s a lot more to it than that but I won’t go into it this time.

Willie Nicol: So, NLP which has been around for probably 50 odd years, having developed by various psychologists, professors who were looking for a way of changing our patterns of behaviour, changing the way we think using language alone and other means of communication. And it can be done, so just think, change the way you think by changing the way you talk to yourself.

David Logan: Great. Thank you for that Willie and as you say we have done various vlogs on that, but I didn’t realise that came into it, NLP. So, fantastic. Thank you. So, very quickly how does Joe Bloggs learn about NLP? Is there books we can look at or is it something you can list on or is it getting deep in deeper?

Willie Nicol: You can go online and find any number of books about NLP. I would recommend the original written by a guy called Richard Bandler back in the late 70’s. He was the kind of god-father, him and various others but he’s probably the best known and I think he’s still kicking about. So you can find books written by him, you can find learning material, you can also go on courses to learn more about it.

Willie Nicol: Because I understand it sounds a bit weird and it sounds a wee bit “out there”. But having learned about it, having trained in it, and having used it on clients, it’s a very effective tool to change your behaviour for the better.

David Logan: Great Willie, thank you. So, if you want to know more or pick Willie’s brains, drop a comment below or send us a private message above or alternatively contact us direct. So, we’ll wrap up this week Willie, thank you for your time.

David Logan: To you the viewer, keep an eye on our videos. If you’re not connected, search for “The Techno Dinosaur Meets the I.T. Geek” in whatever search engine you have, and you’ll find all the videos. Thank you everybody, have a great week.

Willie Nicol: Yes David. By all means contact me, drop me a message or whatever, if you’d like to learn more about this or any other aspect of coaching. So, all that remains for me to say …. stay safe, stay well and have some fun in this good weather. Goodbye for now.

David Logan: Bye.

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