Reflections As of Sept 21

More and more, I’m finding less and less in the NLP community.

Not the practice of NLP, you understand, the living of it. But the version of NLP peddled by the majority of people who come across this stuff, and turn an experience potentially so rich, so life-affirming, so multifaceted and joyous, into something mundane, threadbare, and small.

Every time I get an email from a Tad James affiliate promising ever faster skills and certification, something dies in me. Whenever I see Paul McKenna, I see the steely eyes of a media whore. I see ads for NLP skills for Safety Managers and weep.

There’s an introduction to some or other NLP book by some or other Brit NLPer where John Grinder says words to the effect that he and Richard hacked out a path into a jungle, and it’s been turned into a manicured English rose garden. Only, the rose garden is now a plastic bonsai bought from a local garage, they should have a natural garden and take care of it with great tools, Learn More About It here.

It may be that I’m expressing something purely personal. So be it. But I know that when I look about, I rarely get enthused by people within the NLP community, and my life outside of it is full of passion. There are exceptions — Michael Breen and James Tsakalos are men who in my experience are following their truth, and you won’t be surprised to see me list Gabe, Eric, and Ron Perry too — but mostly I see a field of followers, not leaders. Copyists rather than modelers. People out primarily to network and pimp and profit.

I suspect this perspective has been brought on in part by the death of my father at the end of July. He was a larger than life man loved by many, who lived his life to the full and left his mark on all he encountered. He lived more in his last weeks than many I’ve met have lived in their entire lifetimes. His passing was marked by a service with a jazz quartet, with original poetry, and other readings, and his funeral was a joyous occasion.

His death has also renewed some of my own life passions. The desires I have to put creative projects into the world that will move people, maybe inspire them. And while NLP has been of massive benefit in taking me to a point where I can conceive of those concepts, and go out and implement them in the world with suitable partners, I’m not sure that my future will include much more in the way of NLP in the form of training. There’s no doubt I have plenty more to learn — considerable doubt that NLP is the vehicle for that learning. More than ever, my learning needs to consist of the way I am in the world, and what the feedback from that teaches me.

I offer these thoughts out of curiosity to see what response they generate. To find out where others are in their journeys. And to see if any of what I say has resonance for anyone, especially if it’s useful.

Reflections As of Sept 21

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