NLP-The map is not the territory

“The Map is not the Territory and the word is not the thing”
― Alfred Korzybski

Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) is an interpersonal communications model and an alternative approach to psychotherapy based on the subjective study of language, communication, and personal change. It was co-founded by Richard Bandler (Mathmetician) and John Grinder (Linguistics Professor) in the 1970s as a method of personal change and communications. The focus was pragmatic, modeling three successful psychotherapists, Virginia Satir, Milton Erickson, and Fritz Perls.

Core Principles

NLP encompasses the three most influential components involved in producing human experience: neurology, language, and programming. The neurological system regulates how our bodies function, language determines how we interface and communicate with other people and our programming determines the kinds of models of the world we create.

Neuro refers to the neurological system and the brain which connect the body organs, immune system, bones, etc.; and to how we use our minds, bodies, and 5 senses (see, hear, feel, smell, taste) to translate our experience into thought processes. Linguistic refers to the way we use language to make sense of our experience and communicate it to ourselves and others. Through our 5 senses, we take in information from the world, code and store it internally in our own unique way. These internal codes, or internal representations, shape our mental worlds. Programming refers to the way we code our experience. Our thinking styles are like ‘software’ of the brain. This includes our thoughts, feelings, emotions, behaviours, responses, skills, beliefs, and personality. Changing, or upgrading, this ‘mental software’ allows us to let go of behaviours and responses that no longer work for us, and achieve the goals we want now. Therefore, the results we achieve in our life are the consequence of our personal programs.

NLP is the study of human excellence and success. It provides amazingly simple and powerful methods for changing the way you think, feel, behave, and learn so that you consistently achieve the results you want in your personal and professional life. At another level, NLP is about self-discovery, exploring identity and mission. It provides a framework for understanding and relating to the ‘spiritual’ part of human experience that reaches beyond us as individuals to our family, community, and global systems. NLP is not only about competence and excellence; it is about wisdom and vision.

How Can It Help

Because NLP enables you to use the natural language of your mind to free yourself from old habits and discover new ways of being your best, many people consult us for help with:

  • Relationships and parenting.
  • Anxiety, panic attacks, and phobias.
  • Stress, insomnia, depression, and low self-esteem.
  • Weight loss, eating disorders, and addictions.
  • Learning difficulties.
  • Mind-body healing, including asthma and allergies.

Improve personal excellence and wellbeing :

  • Set up and achieve goals
  • Create high self-esteem and confidence
  • Communicate effectively
  • Peak performance and health
  • Learn deep relaxation
  • Create inner peace
  • Harmonize and build up energy in your body


NZ Association of Neurolinguistic Programming