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7 NLP Experts Share Their Knowledge

Our Question For The Experts:

What Is Your Favorite Technique That People Can Learn At The NLP Practitioner Level?



Answered By Robert Dilts

Imagineering Strategy.

My favorite technique that people can learn at the NLP Practitioner level is the  “Imagineering Strategy” that I modeled from Walt Disney.

Imagineering is a term coined by Walt Disney (by combining the words “imagination” and “engineering”) to describe the process he used to form dreams and turning them into realities. The process involves the coordination of three fundamental perspectives: dreamer, realist and critic.  The dreamer is necessary to form new ideas and goals. The realist is required in order to transform ideas into concrete expressions.  The critic is crucial as a filter and as a stimulus for refining the result into something of quality.

Robert Dilts has been a developer, author, trainer and consultant in the field of NLP since its creation in 1975.

Robert Dilts – robertdilts.com

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Answered By Steve Andreas

Identify And Respond To Troublesome Presuppositions.

Often someone will say some variation of, “Why can’t you ever change?” presupposing that the other person can’t change, that this inability will last to the end of time, and that they should find additional reasons why they can’t change. You can simply point this out, or you can first interrupt and get their attention by reaching out your hand as you say, “Let me see your fortune-telling license,” or “Congratulations, you’ve just guaranteed that you won’t get what you want,” before explaining.

Steve Andreas – realpeoplepress.com/blog/  with his wife and partner Connirae, has been learning, teaching, and developing patterns in Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) since 1977.

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Answered By Richard Gray


As an old behaviorist, I have a great deal of respect for the very basic tool of anchoring. Anchors form the basis in fact and the conceptual foundation for many of the core techniques in NLP. My preference is for a straightforward Pavlovian approach. I think that we need to clearly define when a contextually bound anchor is appropriate (Physical responses for desired movement strategies, contextually appropriate emotional anchors for similar emotional situations) and when a relatively pure state anchor—stripped of all content and context–is needed.

Rick Gray is a certified Master Practitioner of NLP. He is Research Director for the Research and Recognition Project. You can review his work at rickgraynlp.com

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Answered By Roger Ellerton

Foreground-Background Technique

When asked for an NLP technique that is easily accessible by practitioner level students, I immediately thought of Foreground-Background.

As you think about a current problem/issue, what are you focusing on? If the issue involves another person, in your mind you may have a big, bright, close-up (in your face) picture of him/her. And if you were to replay his/her voice in your mind, you may hear it loud and clear with a specific tone that results in feeling angry, dismissed or violated. All of this is in the foreground of your thoughts/mental images. Other things, including valuable resources, are present in the background that you choose not to see, hear or feel as clearly or at all. What do you think would happen if you put less focus on what is in the foreground and more focus on what is in the background? Perhaps the problem would not seem so big or the person so overbearing and as a result you would be more resourceful.

Foreground-Background is a simple process that uses submodalities to put less attention on what is in the foreground of our thoughts and to be more aware of valuable resources in the background that will allow us to be more resourceful or be conscious of other choices.

This approach can also be used in any real-time social interaction. For example, what do you immediately focus on that supports existing limiting beliefs at the exclusion of other information that can give you a more positive outcome?

Roger Ellerton, PhD (renewal.ca) is a certified NLP trainer, author and certified management consultant.

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Answered By Nannette DiMascio


My NeuroCalm process starts with the NLP technique, following feelings. It then asks an experiential question rooted in the NLP technique of talking to the part. Certain problems amenable to resolution by NLP and other advanced methods are rooted in what I have termed “Mind Pirates,” metaphorical parasites that enervate the client by imprisoning them in their long-held experiential and traumatic emotions. Remove the Mind Pirates and the client is freed to live their life. I have used this simple 4-step technique on a regular basis to stop psychologically-caused insomnia, panic attacks and anxiety:

  1. Take a deep breath and relax.     
  2. Notice where the feeling is in your body. Even though it may be uncomfortable, be present with the feeling and stop your inner dialogue. Just feel it.
  3. Now ask the feeling a question. Yes, this may seem a little odd—but it works: “What do I need to know to let you (the feeling) go?” Note the first thing that pops into your head.
  4. Determine whether the feeling is still present. If so, be present with it, and ask the question again. Repeat until the feeling is gone.

Nannette DiMascio is a Certified Master NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) Practitioner – ABNLP  |  Certified NLP Trainer – ABNLP | Certified Master Coach – ABNLP


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Answered By Tim Goodenough

What’s This About?

For many the favourite question we used growing up and still use to this day to understand something is the ‘Why’ question. ‘Why did I make this mistake?’ ‘Why am I feeling this way?’ Unfortunately, ‘Why’ questions don’t work well when the root cause behind something is unintentional or unconscious, for example mistakes and emotions. A better question to ask is, ‘What’s this about?’, you need to focus on the emotion or the relevant phrase, thought or detail and then wait up to a minute or more to start to reveal what is actually at cause.

Tim Goodenough is an Executive Coach and Best-Selling Author who specialises in High Performance.  He is a Certified Meta-Coach and holds a trainers qualification in both NLP and Neuro-Semantics. – timgoodenough.com

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Answered By James Hayes

What’s The Positive Intent And Are You Getting It?

I quite like the applications of the presupposition that behind every behaviour is a positive intent. It enables us to ask a powerful question about every unresourceful behaviour or thinking. Namely “what’s the positive intent (purpose) of this behaviour/thinking? And is the behaviour/thinking achieving it?”. If in the eyes of the client their behaviour/thinking is unresourceful then the answer is inevitably “no”. This is a very simple move that allows the client to see that the very design and motive of the behaviour/thinking isn’t being achieved, thereby diminishing its authority and value and paving the way for something new. This is where we get to ask “If it’s not achieving it’s positive intent, what new behaviour/thinking would?”. Now the client gets to be creative and invent new ways of thinking and behaving that congruently align with what is most important to them. It’s a very simple and easy to understand reframe that can be applied to almost anything at the NLP Practitioner level.

James Hayes is an Executive Coach, NLP Trainer, and Director at The Coaching Room. He is a certified Master Practitioner, Meta-Coach, and NLP Trainer.


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