• James Pesch

Neuro-linguistic Programming is Bull Shit

I am an iBNLP Master Practitioner. I have taught workshops, seminars, and spoken to hundreds if not thousands of people on the subject and efficacy of NLP, here is my story.

If you have no idea what NLP is, start with this short informative podcast:


my Mid-Life Crisis consisted of Covid, Flat-Earthers, Trump, you get it. . .


Several years ago, I realized, like so many of my readers, that I too was an idiot. That's right, I decided to go back to the drawing board in a few areas of my life to get a grip. The main area I decided to question was one area I feel we should have some space to discuss and that is in the reliability of our own reasoning; I know this just got "meta," but at least try to hear me out.


We have all felt or at least are familiar with the dread of some impending doom, or "anxiety" of some degree and in 2016, the popularity of the flat earth movement and the presidency of Donald Trump blew my mind and made me question everything.


I don't care how you vote, because you don't know how I vote and it is not your business. However, I grew up respecting people who would have NEVER considered voting for someone like this guy, (trump), 20 years ago and now, 2016, they are ready to and actively losing lifelong friends over whether or not the government is manipulating Newtonian Physics and Einstein's equations to make us think we went to the moon and and and. . . WHAT??


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In short, I was baffled at how wishy-washy we can all be, myself included in the 'ALL.' I wondered to myself quietly, as opposed to out loud which is annoying to others; anyway, I says to myself, "Self, what if you, I mean "I" was as susceptible to cognitive dissonance, echo chambers, my own biases, nationalism, appeal to emotion, logical fallacies, hypnosis, ignorance, placebo, gullibility, social programming, pavlovian conditioning, and the list goes on and on as every other idiot I am seeing online is and you know what, I found out, YES, we ALL are to some degree unless we are aware that we are, but that is another article for another time.


I decided that in an attempt to be an honest and critical thinker, I had to start with myself as the potential problem when it comes to reasoning because something crazy was happening in my country and on my social media feed and against good sense and judgement, I decided to test the boundaries of my morals, ethics, principles, beliefs (secular/special-pleading/magical) etc., and knowledge or what I thought I knew by trying to adopt belief systems of others and "try them on" in small ways, and this small investigation into my own ability to adapt to the cultures and ideals of others made me stumble onto NLP.


Warning + Serious Concerns


As an important side note, I do not suggest anyone do any questioning of one's own sanity without a strong and I mean SOLID support system. I did not have one at all, and the result of this miscalculation has been immeasurable.


I had the opportunity, means, and luxury to discover I am more sane than most, have a relatively high i.q. and need not be concerned about mental instability, but at a significant cost; it was worth it to me, but I wish I had known of another method to question "truth."


This segment is necessarily cryptic but those who understand the problem of hard solipsism and our current mental health care system will have no problem understanding that sentiment. In short, don't trust just anyone with your thoughts, ensure they can handle them.


Shifts in Perspective


During my discovery of "epistemology," which is a fancy term for "HOW TO KNOW STUFF," I did begin to see myself and others from a particular frame of reference which seemed to enable me to "reframe" perspectives. NLP likes to take credit for Reframing but I think you can see from the video here that we all do it all the time and it is a laughably simple concept.


For an example of "reframing" with my son when he was 8 years old, click HERE. or watch the video below:



N.L.P. (not Natural Language Programming) has a few really useful exercises that can legitimately help someone improve rapidly in some very specific areas, primarily, if the person trying to follow the "models of NLP" is doing so to develop better listening skills both internally and externally.


That doesn't even do it justice. Let me break it down without fully shitting all over something I use to hold in very high esteem. There are 3 exercises, sub-modalities, and one "tool" I have found works best for teaching hypnosis/NLP more so than anything else, but I am not perfect at that either.


The ONLY 3 Benefits of NLP <---- The Click Bait


These 3 may fall into a few categories but for me, they are as follows:


First,

the Presuppositions: the concept of the presuppositions is best thought of (by me) as the "backbone," the philosophical substrate, or maybe the "meta-physics" behind why any of the techniques springing from Bandler and Grinder's original work help anyone overcome their own internal reservations to adopting healthier ways of thinking about themselves and their relationships.


*This principle of "presuppositions" may take some major explaining, but can be reduced down in this instance to: withholding judgment about the beliefs and behaviors of others in order to move yourself and others out of "fixed" or unmovable and often broken models of beliefs and behaviors into a realm of possible outcomes. For more information, email me directly.


Second:

The listening exercises: The listening exercises are the bread and butter behind listening skills and every single company, family, society, and tribe should be forced to take courses on "SENSORY ACUITY."


If you are going to have any luck at all at being a master of human persuasion, this is how you are going to develop the ability to read micro-expressions, body language, linguistic meta-models, eye accessing cues (this is controversial in some circles), learning styles (Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic), and my favorite listening skill: Behavioral Flexibility, but it won't come by way of trying to get good at those things, and you still won't know how to develop well-formed outcomes, pacing and leading, rapport and bonding anchoring, etc.


Finally,

The bag of skills that people often giddy about are a bi-product of listening and profiling. STOP. I need you to get that. The skills that NLP offers come from listening to others EXTREMELY intently, this CAN BE (but is not limited to being) developed through hours of exercises Bandler and Grinder uncovered while studying sessions with 3 main family therapists and Milton Erickson the grandfather of Hypnotherapy and there is more than enough information out there about that.


NLP is kind of Bull Shit


So, the reason I don't practice or call what I do NLP much anymore is because there is no real benefit to me in taking on the label and baggage that comes from the weird and pseudoscientific practices that have come out of NLP, not to mention the shady ass sales programs that are everywhere.


Most Sales programs or sales training totally misses the point of NLP and tries to just use pacing and leading, mirroring and matching, and anchoring, quite often rather poorly, which is gross, selfish, and doesn't typically work, but I will release an article about sales programs another time.


In fact, if you just want to learn Pacing and Leading, click HERE or watch the video below.

If you need what I do, please email or call me.



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