Neurolinguistic programming (NLP) is the study of excellence, a collection of techniques that identify and define how the human mind works, focusing, in particular, on high performers. It is, more technically, a unique synthesis of cybernetics, neurology and linguistics. The particular basis for development is to work out what is the essential difference between people who are outstanding and those who are competent.
If we learn how the very best performers achieve outstanding results and the associated successful thinking and behaviour patterns, these can then be replicated and transferred in an integrated, appropriate and authentic fashion. The world each person perceives is not the ‘real’ world. Each person constructs a unique model of reality in her or his own mind at an unconscious level and then lives in the model as though it were real.
Each of us produces our own map from experience choosing unconsciously to attend to what we judge is relevant. The generalizations based on this map unwittingly modify and distort ‘reality’ in order that the whole makes sense. In NLP terms most human problems derive from the models in people’s heads rather than from the world as it really is. Neurolinguistic programming therefore offers a sound basis for personal and professional development and can be conceived of:
● as the art and science of human excellence;
● having a highly effective ‘technology’ for accelerating personal and professional development;
● as an instruction manual for the mind.
Understanding how people do what they do outstandingly well in order to transfer these skills to others is called competency modelling or modelling the structure of human excellence. When a person does something exceptionally well he/she will be conscious of only some, possibly the most obvious, of the thoughts and behaviours that accompany this performance.