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NLP in a Week


I am unsure that anything can be mastered in a week, even if this book's subtitle is "Master neuro-linguistic programming in seven simple steps." Though, now that I look at it, the title doesn't actually say "master NLP in a week," it just says "master in seven steps" and "nlp in a week."

Anyway, NLP in a week, seven simple steps. The idea is one can change one's behaviour by changing one's thinking, and change one's emotional state by changing one's behaviour (ergo, change one's emotional state by changing one's thinking). Given that pretty much the only thing one truly has is her consciousness (thoughts, perceptions, all elements of the same thing), one can assume changing one's interpretation of reality can change the one's reactions to said reality.

More simply put, if one assumes the world is a bad place, the world is a bad place, and you see only the pain, misery, and hurt. You assume everyone is out to take advantage of you. If you see the world as a happy place, you might be suckered sometimes, but the journey will be a hell of a lot more fun.

My default is to assume the worst. It would probably be good if this was coupled with a habit of planning accordingly, but I don't. I usually just go along until, surprise, here is reality, and, oh, I was wrong, I do, indeed, have stunningly bad luck. You know, someone has to have the worst luck, might has well be someone who is mostly oblivious to it.

But, well, what if all of this really isn't that bad?

(Hint: it isn't.)

And what if the defense mechanisms I developed as a kid really aren't needed any longer?

Except that I'm trapped in them, and I don't really recognize they exist. I know I have a strong sense of fairness, one that has gotten me into trouble a number of times, you should see my trigger list. It's big. Those triggers have no room for the frailty of being human. I struggle with being gentle with myself. I am my own worst critic.

I am not special in any of this. Most people struggle with inner demons.

Yeah, so, NLP. Who knows if it'll help. I do know what I am doing isn't working, so time to try something else. This is the something else.

First chapter: Sunday.

The basic principles of NLP include:

  1. We have all the resources we need.
  2. The meaning of communication is the effect it has.
  3. There is no failure, only feedback.
  4. The map is not the territory: every person's map is unique.

One of the purposes of NLP is to affect the outcome of events (sure, yes, control! We all want control!). Creating well-formed outcomes is important so that, well, you know when you've actually achieved your goals or managed the outcome desired.

Characteristics of well-formed outcomes include:

  1. Positive
  2. Specific
  3. Evidence
  4. Ownership
  5. Fit
  6. Resources

Unsurprisingly, with this, the goals are similar to the "SMART" definition of goals: specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, timely. Mostly because with these, one can ask, "Who is involved?", "What do I want to accomplish?", "Where am I doing this?", "When will it be done by?", and "Why?" One expects something specific: reasons, purpose or benefits of accomplishing the goal. You can probably throw in a "which" there somewhere, if you want, with requirements and constraints.

I plan on going through the exercises in the book. I'm not likely to post the actual exercises here, though, for a couple reasons. The first is a big one: I love paper. I'd rather write in a journal than type things in an editor. Writing things down on paper has been shown to help make sense of confusing or painful events, though why isn't known. Could be the slower process of writing on paper, could be the mind / muscle connection that affects the process, we don't know. We do know the effectiveness of pen and paper, though.

Second reason is also a relatively recent research result: telling people about a goal, writing it down, shouting it to the world, has the same mental release as actually accomplishing said goal, WITHOUT ACTUALLY ACCOMPLISHING IT. Yeah, you're all full of "GO ME!" when you haven't even started. I'd like to avoid that.

Third, I expect this process will require me to be vulnerable in an incredibly uncomfortable way. I'm not really interested in sharing that process with future Kitt quite yet.


I wave to you, future Kitt. I hope this inner examination journey is worth the discomfort I expect it'll be.

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