Perception and Filters
We all have our own systems through which we perceive information entering our sphere of influence. In NLP jargon, the limits on these perceptions are called filters. All information is accepted from the outside world and filtered according to its relevance to yourself. Our filters are a result of upbringing and previous experiences. They can be changed if there is a wish to alter them. NLP has a range of techniques for doing this quickly and effectively.
The presuppositions to keep in mind are “The map is not the territory.” This means that the details someone expresses are not the full picture due to our inability to relate events exactly. And “Respect the other person’s map of the world.” Each of us has our own unique experience of the world.
The following is a series of exercises designed to help you understand some of the basic elements of NLP.
At the centre of all Neuro Linguistic Programming is rapport.
You will be aware of body language and how it expresses the nature and well-being of the individual. For this week’s lesson I would like you to begin to watch the body positions of the people around you, colleagues, family, customers, clients etc. Notice the differences between people in formal and informal situations. Recognise the body positions of people in conversations who get on well together. Compare this with people who are in conflict in some way. Take care to note what positions are taken in different situations.
After careful observation you will have discovered a key element of good Rapport. This element is Mirroring.
In some of your more relaxed exchanges with people today become conscious of your body position. Begin to respectfully mirror your opposite number. Do not mimic. Do practice following changes in stance, hands, expression, seating position etc. slowly and casually.
When you have done this for a couple of days begin to use the technique in less favourable situations. Begin to understand how this alters your relationships.
You will soon understand how this can increase the potency of all your exchanges with other people.
As you continue to use this all the time, allied with the next technique, you will find that your Rapport will improve.
Remember: “The mind and body are part of the same system - each part will influence the other.”
Note you may wish to practice this and the other skills with a partner. This will give you someone to practice with and help to reinforce your skills through sharing.