Patterns for "Renewing the Mind"


NLP for the Christian Pastor / Counselor
by
Bobby G. Bodenhamer, D.Min. and L. Michael Hall, Ph.D.

Patterns For Renewing the Mind: Christian Counseling and Communicating with NLP. [New 2nd Edition in Paper Back - 244 Pages - Newly Edited - New Graphics - New Patterns -1996-2006]. Dr. Bobby Bodenhamer and L. Michael Hall. Does the Bible have all the answers? Absolutely, you just need to know where to look. In an NLP book written primarily for Christian pastors and counselors, the authors reveal a model of communication that facilitates effective counseling and preaching. After all, the Bible presents the "how to" manual of living. Well, this book presents the "how to" of applying Biblical truths to living. This work offers the first book to apply the basic NLP model to the field of Christian Counseling. The authors designed it especially for pastors and counselors and anyone who want to understand the model from the Judeo-Christian perspective. Currently available as a paperback (244 pages). ($30 & $5 S&H in the US). Published by Neuro-Semantics Publications, Grand Junction, CO.


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Preface

  "And be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and put on the new nature, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness." (Ephesians 4:23-24, RSV)

  We have authored this work about patterns of renewal because we strongly believe in the biblical principle stated by Paul about the mechanism of human transformation. Stated two millennia ago, it highlights the cognitive nature of human consciousness. It explains how people change. Namely, "be transformed by the renewing of your mind" (Romans 12:2).

But how does a person "renew" the mind? And, since we have to use our current unrenewed mind to renew your mind...! In our joint years of work with churches, individual and family counseling, teaching, and consulting, we (Bobby and Michael) have found that many of the cognitive-behavioral tools in the discipline known as NLP (Neuro-linguistic Programming) provide wonderful patterns whereby a person can quickly, effectively, and permanently renew the mind. In fact, about the same time in history on different sides of the American continent each of us found ourselves drawn toward this new technology of communication, language structuring, and therapy processes as a way to even more fully understand and practice our Christian faith.

Later, as we wrote and dialogued about the materials herein, we decided to focus our attention in this work on the importance of the process of renewing the mind itself. Namely, to focus on the skills, patterns, understandings, and techniques that help a person learn how to "run his or her own brain" i.e. to renew the mind. As you read you will find that we have focused on those processes much more than the content.

We have several reasons for doing this.

(1) We start from the assumption of the validity and supreme usefulness of the Christian faith and perspective. We presuppose the Christian faith as comprising the content of what to think. Believing in such, we take it as a given. We believe that God gives "a spirit of power, love and sound mind" (II Tim. 1:7).

(2) We have primarily addressed this work to others of the same persuasion. Therefore you will not find any "preachments" herein. We assume that you do not need information about the content of Christian ideas and beliefs that promote healing. We assume that you already know and believe in the power of forgiveness, love, grace, "being poor in spirit," cooperative, filled with the word, etc. So we haven't focused on that, but on how to do the renewing of the mind with such ideas so that we can move ourselves to think-and-feel more forgiving, loving, insightful, etc. We focus on understanding and learning the processes by which we can take the Christian truths and incorporate (or install) them deeply into our personality.

(3) We have discovered that many believers suffer not so much from lack of content, but from lack of knowing how. They want to forgive, they want to not let "a root of bitterness" spring up to defile them (Heb. 12:15), they want to have a more optimistic faith in the power of God, they want to appreciate more so that they can praise better, they want to think-and-feel more loving, kind, thoughtful, they want to have a spirit of "power, love, and sound mind" rather than the spirit of fear, they want to feel the assurance of their salvation, they want to not return evil for evil, or to become angry without a cause, or to not let the sun go down on their wrath, but they just don't know how and because they don't, they then go into very unresourceful states as they beat themselves up with guilt, condemnation, and fear about such.

In this we focus on know how, on the processes that enable a person to effectively renew the mind and experience the Christian transformation into the new life of Christ (Eph. 4:20-24).

Target Audience

For whom have we written? Primarily for any thinker, scholar, explorer, teacher, or learner who wants to know how to renew the mind, and most particularly for the Christian pastor and counselor.

Much of the materials contained herein involves a technical nature and quality. We have sought to present the processes and patterns with precision and clarity and to clarify the concepts through example and illustration.

Caveat Emptor

As we begin, we offer this "warning to the buyer." The techniques described herein work powerfully. The problem with that? Powerful technology can lend itself to misuse and misapplication! It can tempt the unscrupulous to enter the field to either claim or use the techniques for their unholy use. Just as David Koresh misused God's word and brought destruction upon himself and others, so some have discovered the tremendous power in the Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) model and have used it to manipulate people. Any powerful tool can end up in the hands of the unethical.

Why do we then want to bring to the Christian public such powerful tools? So that ethical people who do care about people, the world, and their own stewardship of things can take a hold of this powerful technology. We want to introduce the Christian community at large to the state-of-the-art communication models and healing tools in NLP. In so doing, we hope that it will empower Christians to catch and avoid the manipulations of those who would use the same for ill-gain. Obviously, we consider these technologies as simply tools by which we can get things done, and models for understanding--the quality of the use depends upon the one who uses the tool.

As we thus reveal and correlate Patterns for Renewing the Mind to the Bible, we have picked out those patterns that we feel compliment the biblical truths, not those which would contradict such. In our last chapter, we have identified some of those NLP patterns that we consider unChristian. By bathing the principles of NLP (basically a communication model) in scripture and by placing them in the hands of Christian ministers, we seek to maintain the integrity of both the Bible and NLP.

If you have studied "psychology" and know the field of "mental health," NLP may shock you. The concepts of NLP differ radically from most of the counseling techniques taught in graduate schools, and even those taught in Christian Colleges and Universities. As you will discover, NLP focuses on processes and structures of excellence and health, not those of brokenness and pathology. For many in the psychology field this will feel like a complete paradigm shift! If you've studied a Systemic Model or the Psychosocial (Strengths) Model--then you'll feel right at home.

Another note of caution. To gain a full understanding of the concepts and techniques of NLP, consider taking training under a qualified NLP trainer. We have written this work primarily as an introduction to these concepts as we relate them to the biblical context. Because of the many subtleties in learning this model as well as depths, we encourage the interested reader to seek training from a certified NLP trainer.

This work arose from a joint venture of two pastors from two differing Christian backgrounds, who both found a rich source of effective patterns in the NLP model. Bobby Bodenhamer (BB) wrote the original text for this work in 1991 while conducting NLP Trainings and NLP therapy in Gastonia, NC. Later, Michael Hall (MH) re-organized, edited, and added various touches to bring it into this format. Each of us have provided an Appendix in the back about our own work and emphasis.

We have taken all of the biblical quotes from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) and the Revised Standard Version (RSV) unless otherwise indicated. Terms in "parenthesis" indicate a qualitative use of the word according to its usage in General-semantics to indicate that as used the term indicates some ill-formedness that we need to take into consideration.


Chapter 1 - A Brief Introduction to NLP

"NLP is an attitude and a methodology
that leaves behind a trail of techniques."
(Richard Bandler)

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) represents a relatively new discipline dating only back to the mid-70s. Behind NLP stands a respectable body of knowledge. NLP originated from several different intellectual disciplines as organized by two co-founders--Richard Bandler and John Grinder.

It happened once upon a time when Dr. Grinder served as a professor of linguistics at the University of California in San Cruz. Bandler came there as a student to study mathematics and computers. Dr. Grinder, in fact, had already published several books in the field of linguistics known as Transformational Grammar.

Yet the genius fell to Bandler who discovered that he had a "natural" gift for modeling and hearing patterns. He discovered he could detect and replicate patterns in Gestalt Therapy from just a minimum exposure. Soon he became an editor for several of Fritz Perls' books in Gestalt Therapy. With this familiarity of Perls' work, Bandler began to study Perls' techniques. As he discovered that he could model Perls' therapeutic procedures, he began experimenting with clients using the techniques.

After enjoying immediate and powerful results from that modeling, Richard discovered that he could model others. With the encouragement of Grinder, Bandler got the opportunity to model the world's foremost family therapist, Virginia Satir. Richard quickly identified the "seven patterns" that Virginia used. As he and John began to apply those patterns, they discovered they could replicate her therapies and obtain similar results.

As a computer programmer, Richard knew that to program the simplest "mind" in the world (a computer with off-and-on switches) you break down the behavior into component pieces and provide clear and unambiguous signals to the system. To this basic metaphor, John added his extensive knowledge of transformational grammar--the deep and surface structure statements that transform meaning/knowledge in the human brain. From this they began to put together their model of how humans get "programmed," so to speak.

Thereafter, world-renown anthropologist and neighbor, Gregory Bateson introduced Bandler and Grinder to Milton Erickson, MD. Erickson developed the model of communication that we know as "Ericksonian hypnosis." Since 1958, the American Medical Association has recognized hypnosis as a viable tool of healing during surgery. (Because much misinformation surrounds hypnosis, as well as outright errors, we ask that you keep an open mind to this form of communication; we will offer a full discussion of the subject later (Ch. 9)).

As Bandler and Grinder modeled Erickson, they discovered they could obtain similar results. Today many of the NLP techniques result from modeling Ericksonian processes.

Now from these experiences and their research into the unifying factors and principles, they devised their first model. It essentially functioned as a model of communication that provided a theoretic understanding of how humans get "programmed" by their languages (sensory-based and linguistic-based) so that they develop regular and systematic behaviors, responses, psychosomatic effects, etc. This model went further. It also specified ways for using the components of subjectivity for creating psychological (mental-emotional) improvement and change.

From that point, NLP expanded. The model expanded by incorporating materials from other disciplines: cybernetics (communication within complex systems both mechanical and living), philosophy, cognitive psychology, studies of the "unconscious" mind, and neurology. Today, NLP has institutes worldwide and numerous authors have applied NLP to medicine and health, therapy and psychological well-being, business, education, athletics, law, Christian ministry, etc.

The Study of Excellence

NLP primarily focuses on studying excellence. In the 1983 book, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Volume I, the authors of that volume subtitled NLP, "The Study of the Structure of Subjectivity." The subjectivity that most NLP theorists, developers, and presenters have focused on involves those highest and most excellent facets of human experience--high level experiences of creativity, excellence, genius, etc. Co-developer, Robert Dilts has especially focused on this area, writing a series of books plus numerous journal articles on "The Strategies of Genius."

This emphasis on modeling--replicating excellence--has a solid basis in the Christian field. Ministers inevitably seek to model the best of ministers. Teachers model the best teachers. NLP offers a model for learning how to recognize excellence and to emulate it. NLP uniquely focuses on recognizing excellence and how to specifically chunk it down into the component elements and the syntax (or order) for installing it in others.

In this step by step fashion, the NLP model instructs us how to achieve excellence. Do you wish to improve your ability to communicate? NLP provides a model for communication excellence. Would you like to know how to build and maintain rapport? NLP chunks these skills into teachable formats. Does your child have difficulty spelling? NLP has identified the structure of excellent spellers and the process for training them to become champions spellers. Would you like to conduct successful negotiations in committee meetings? NLP offers a high quality performance model for negotiating with others around difficult issues.

Christian counselors usually experience a great thrill when they help to bring about positive change in people. NLP offers not only a state-of-the-art theoretical foundation for such, but also the techniques for bringing about personal change. We feel a burden, coming from decades of work as pastors and counselors, to introduce these wonderful skills into Christian ministry.

The Experiential Nature of NLP

As you read the following chapters, you will discover the experiential nature of NLP. What does that mean? It refers to the emphasis in NLP on modeling, experimenting, and testing in contradiction to theorizing and hypothesizing. When people ask in our trainings, "Does NLP 'work?'", we have them to put it to the test, right then and there to see if a particular pattern "works" for them.

This suggests that the best way to understand NLP involves experiencing it. Let us give you a sample. Shortly, we will lead you through a mental exercise (a "mind" experiment) to introduce you to NLP. As you read the instructions, take time to follow the directions. This will enable you to become more attuned to how God has uniquely created your mind-and-body and nervous system. We will work with the natural processes of your mind. By doing this, you will discover many of the mechanisms by which you can learn to take control of these processes. [In the following paragraphs, the three dots ... mean "pause, experience, notice, feel, think," etc.]

To the extent that these processes and mechanisms lie outside our awareness--to that extent they control us. As we develop familiarity with these unconscious processes, we will learn to manage them. In doing so, we will find that learning to control these processes worth learning. It will fulfill Paul's challenge to bring "...into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ" (II Corinthians 10:5b KJV). Paul identified the content: "bring every thought to the obedience of Christ," NLP provides the methods and technology for how to so manage our thoughts.

Experiment #1

Recall some pleasant experience from your past. Various things will pop into your mind, whatever pops up in your mind, allow yourself to go with that memory for now. If you don't seem to find such a memory, then allow yourself to simply imagine a pleasant experience. For some people, closing the eyes helps in this process. Once you have this pleasant experience, permit it to remain in your awareness.

Now that you have this pleasant thought in mind--just notice its visual aspects. As you recall the experience, what specifically do you see? Notice the picture of the memory. If you do not visualize well, then imagine what the pleasant experience feels like. Or, allow yourself to just listen to some pleasant sounds--words or music and enjoy that kind of an internal pleasant experience.

Now that you have the picture of the memory, make the picture larger. Let it double in size... and then let that picture double... Notice what happens. When you made the picture bigger, what happens to your feelings of that experience? Do they intensify?

Now shrink the picture. Make it smaller and smaller. Allow it to become so small you can hardly see it... Stay with that a moment... Do the intensity of the feelings decrease? Experiment now with making the picture bigger and then smaller. When you make it smaller, do your feelings decrease? And when you make it larger, do your feelings increase? If so, then running the pictures (sounds, feelings) in your awareness in this way functions as it does for most people. However, you may have a different experience. Did you? No big deal. We all code our experiences in our minds uniquely and individually--again, part of the wonderful way our Creator has made us (Psalm 139:13-15). Now, put your picture of that pleasant experience back in a format where you find it most comfortable and acceptable.

Maintaining the same picture now, move the picture closer to you. Just imagine that the picture begins to move closer and closer to you, and notice that it will. What happens to your feelings as it does? ... Move the picture farther away. What happens when you move the picture farther away? Do your feelings intensify when you move the picture closer? Do your feelings decrease when you move the picture farther away? Most people find this true for the way their consciousness/ neurology works. When you moved the picture farther away, the feeling probably decreased. Notice that as you change the mental representation in your mind of the experience, your feelings change. This, by the way, describes how we can "distance" ourselves from experiences, does it not?

Suppose you experiment with the brightness of the picture? As you look at your pictures, do you see them in color or black-and-white? If your pictures have color, make them black-and-white, and vice versa if you have them coded as black-and-white. ... When you changed the color, do your feelings change?

Consider the focus of your images: in focus or out of focus? Do you see an image of yourself in the picture or do you experience the scene as if looking out of your own eyes? What about the quality of your images: in three dimensional (3D) form or flat (2D)? Does it have a frame around it or do you experience it as panoramic? Experiment by changing how you represent the experience. Change the location of the picture. If you have it coded as on your right, then move it to your left.

Debriefing the experience

Did it ever occur to you that you could change your feelings by changing how you internally represent an experience? The strength of NLP lies in these very kinds of processes of the mind. NLP works primarily with mental processes rather than with content. Here you have changed how you feel about an experience by changing the quality and structure of your images, not their content. Thus, you made the changes at the mental process level while leaving the content the same.

Question. What would happen to a person if they made all their unpleasant pictures big, bright and up close? What would happen if they made all their pleasant experiences small, dim, and far away? ... The person would become an expert at feeling depressed, miserable and unresourceful, would he not?

On-the-other-hand, consider what would happen if a person coded their pleasant experiences as big, bright, and up close... will it not create a more positive outlook on life? And, what if they made their unpleasant experiences small, dim and far away? The negative would have less influence on their life.

NLP has taught us to appreciate with a new freshness the depth and meaning of the old proverb, "For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he..." (Proverbs 23:7). Consequently, much of what we do in NLP occurs as a result of these natural processes that describe how we humans process information in our minds. NLP directs us how to change the process by changing the mental codings. What you just experienced, we call submodality codings in NLP.

I (MH) first read of Dr. Bodenhamer's work in an article he published entitled, "How to Take A Bitter Root to Jesus" (1995). Using the text, "See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many" (Heb. 12:15), Bodenhamer developed a pattern for a person it identify his or her "bitter memory" and their internal representations of Jesus. Then, using those codings, he asks the person to literally "in their mind" bring the "bitter root" representations until they see it at the same place as they see their images of Jesus. He has them repeat the process using their hands and then supports this internal shift with the words, "Now, as you give this person to Jesus, notice how Jesus receives that person unto Himself." Bob then asked, "How can one hold bitterness and hatred when the person they have hated is now with Jesus?"

Think about it, your mind performs six primary representational functions (excluding maintaining internal physical functions such as breathing) in order to "make sense" of the world--it creates representations of pictures, sounds, words, generates feelings, smells and tastes. Through the five senses you gather information and store it in like manner. Your mind then retrieves this information in the same code or format that you store the experience. If you store information visually, you will retrieve it as a picture. If you hear and store a noise, you will retrieve the information as a sound.

We call this coding or storing of information--an internal representation (see Figure 1:1). In experimenting with a pleasant experience, you retrieved the visual part of the internal representation of a pleasant experience. Quite possibly your pleasant experience also had sounds. By changing the coding of an experience, you can change your feelings and your internal state. When the internal state changes, behavior changes.

Figure 1:1

External Information Internal Information Subjective Experience

Visual -- V -- Sights, Pictures

Auditory --A -- Sounds, Noise

Kinesthetic -- K -- Sensations, Feelings  

The brain uses this coding method to control the messages to our nervous system which then determines/creates our neurological experiences. This brain "software" enables us to make decisions and to respond quickly. Doing this consciously would overwhelm us. As we understand these coding procedures, a practitioner of NLP can then bring about change by simply changing the coding. Depression, trauma, grief, guilt, anxiety, phobias, beliefs, values, all emotions and human states operate according to their own individual structured codings.

As a Master Practitioner and Trainer of NLP, I (BB) use the techniques of NLP on a regular basis to bring about structural change in my clients. Any pastor or lay counselor can learn NLP and successfully produce the same results. I believe that we can use NLP as one of God's good gifts that can bless us in communicating the gospel of good-news.

Formal Definition of NLP

Having experienced NLP, let us now give you a formal definition of Neuro-Linguistic Programming.

Neuro refers to our nervous system/mind and how it processes information and codes it as memory inside our very body/neurology. By neuro- we refer to experience as inputted, processed, and ordered by our neurological mechanisms and processes.

Linguistic indicates that the neural processes of the mind come coded, ordered, and given meaning through language, communication systems, and various symbolic systems (grammar, mathematics, music, icons). In NLP we talk about two primary language systems. First, the "mind" processes information in terms of pictures, sounds, feelings, tastes and smells (sensory-based information) via the "representational systems." Second, "mind" processes information via the secondary-language system of symbols, words, metaphors, etc.

Programming refers to our ability to organize these parts (sights, sounds, sensations, smells tastes, and symbols or words) within our mind-body organism which then enable us to achieve our desired outcomes. These parts comprise the programs we run inside our brain. Taking control of one's own mind describes the heart of NLP.

NLP has become famous for the techniques it offers to bring about effective and lasting change. For example, NLP has a technique called the Fast Phobia Cure developed by Richard Bandler. Via this technique, we can now cure a phobia in ten to fifteen minutes. We have used the procedure to cure phobias of water, bees, elevators, heights, public speaking, small places, airplanes, etc. Best of all, we have done it in just minutes--with the effect lasting (in some cases) years! The Fast Phobia Cure represents just one of many techniques for such change.

We have used Time-lines Processes to remove traumatic pictures from the minds of traumatized people. Additionally, we have even learned to use the NLP patterns of Reframing, Swishing, Collapsing Anchors, etc. conversationally which means that we do not have to use these patterns in an overtly "therapeutic" way. We can speak in a way that facilitates a person to think in new ways thereby leaving them feeling more whole and empowered--with "renewed minds." Language (and languaging) works that powerfully!

However, NLP involves so much more than just a tool box of techniques. Richard Bandler says, "NLP is an attitude and a methodology that leaves behind a trail of techniques." The attitude of NLP involves one of intense and excited curiosity. It involves the desire to know what goes on behind the scenes. With this kind of attitude of curiosity, we want to know what makes the human mind work.

Second, NLP involves an attitude of experimentation. With such an experimentational attitude, we "try things," and then try something else, and then something else... always trying, getting results, using the feedback, and experimenting with something else. It reminds us of Jesus' statement about the life of fully trained disciples. "Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old." (Matt. 13:51-52 RSV). If something doesn't work, we try something else, and we keep doing so until we find something that does works. Bandler and Grinder possessed such an attitude of curiosity and experimentation in their original discoveries that brought about NLP.

The methodology of NLP involves modeling. As Bandler and Grinder modeled excellence in Perls, Satir, and Erickson, they produced the original format of NLP. Modeling thus describes the methodology that produced the trail of techniques.

Only God knows where the attitude and methodology of NLP will lead. We hope that the church will use these tools to bring Christ the glory by applying them to capturing thoughts for his dominion! I (BB) have found the NLP sensory acuity model in SGL (Small Group Leader) training manual. We have also noticed that James Dobson has utilized information about "learning styles" on his radio program and monthly newsletter that utilizes the basic NLP model. We hope also that as you read this book, you will begin to develop an attitude of joyful curiosity. We pray that you will begin the journey of experimentation in your service as a Christian minister. Whether you work as a lay person or as clergy, NLP has many patterns for renewing the mind that can enrich your ministry. Finally, we appreciate the fact that you have already begun to use your God-given curiosity to experiment with looking into this state-of-the-art communication and transformation model.


Chapter 2 - Excellence in Communicating

Modeling Exceptional Communicators

Life thrives on communication. Growing up in the rural mountains of North Carolina, I (BB) saw little value in becoming proficient in English. What good would conjugating verbs and diagramming sentences do me?! What did split infinitives have to do with real life--on a farm? Simple life didn't need that! Then I left the farm.

As I entered the larger world, my perceptions began to change. After I accepted the call of God at twenty-four to become a minister, I took a refresher course in English and literature prior to tackling college level work. What an act of wisdom--for a change! As I spent the next ten years in college and seminary, I served as a pastor the last eight years. Out of those experiences, I discovered just how much language and communication drives Christian ministry. To an incredible degree we minister by communicating.

To me, a Christian minister, like a salesperson, essentially "sells" the message of the gospel. At that time I read extensively in order to improve my communication skills. I studied Zig Ziglar's (1984) See You At The Top and (1984) Closing The Sale. I read everything I could put my hands on to aid me in improving my speaking and listening skills. Such became my passion. In witnessing and ministering to people, I desired to enhance my ability to communicate effectively. Though such books assisted me in improving my effectiveness as a communicator, not until I came across the NLP model of communication did I discover the best model of all about how language and non-language messages work. I then discovered the power and grace of the NLP model for equipping a person to become a truly professional communicator!

I (MH) also believe that communication lies at the heart of everything. God has built into our very bodies innate "communication systems" of immense complexity so that our central and autonomic nervous systems can interact with each other and the world "outside" our skin in a way that keeps us alive, healthy, and vigorous. Even our cells "communicate" with each other! But how a neuron racing down a neuro-pathway via bio-chemical-electrical processes and transfers and transforms "information" (messages, differences) in that cortical context--well, even the neuro-physiological scientists hardly have a clue.

My discovery of NLP occurred in the context of teaching basic communicational skills (skills for asserting, negotiating, listening, disclosing, conflicting respectfully, etc.) in the context of Christian churches. I found an article in Leadership Journal about NLP, thereafter I devoured the NLP literature and incorporated much of it into a book on communication skills, Speak Up, Speak Clear, Speak Kind (1987).

Almost immediately I came upon the NLP "Ten-minute Phobia Cure" (the "Visual-Kinesthetic Dissociation Pattern"). When I ran it with several clients and saw the immediate and dramatic response (in contrast to three to six months of de-sensitization of phobic responses using relaxation and cognitive-behavioral processes), I became truly excited--and curious. Ultimately, all I did with the person comprised "saying words." All this person did to experience this tremendous personal transformation involved "listening to those words," and "thinking about them inside their head." I communicated to him; he communicated to himself. What literally, actually, and exclusively transformed this person from a reactive phobic person who automatically accessed a state of intense fear to a calm and cool person involved communication!

How does this phenomenon that we call "communication" work? How can the "saying" and "listening to" words have that much creative and re-creative power? How do words (as mere symbols) work anyway? How do written and spoken symbols alter actual internal physio-psychological processes? Can we say that some words function in a "healing" way and other words actually generate "hurt," "trauma," "distress," etc.? What mechanisms govern this?

So, of course, ultimately I took my doctorate in cognitive-behavioral psychology with an emphasis in psycholinguistics and wrote my dissertation on Languaging: The Linguistics of Psychotherapy. How Language Works Psycho-Therapeutically. And though I didn't write it from a theological perspective--I did operate from a belief system that drove my research. Namely, when God made us "in his image and likeness" that involves our ability to use words as symbols. So, as with his creation, so with ours. "In the beginning was the word (logos: meaning)." We humans have this tremendous power (and a dangerous one at that) of speaking our "reality" (subjective, internal reality) into existence.

Now, given this crucial role of "communication," symbols, symbolism, language, words, higher level processing of information, etc. in human experience, the more we know about how "communication" (sending and receiving of messages) works, and the more skilled we can become in "communicating" effectively and with power--the more effective we will become in getting the Christian message of grace, love, and transformation over to our world. This brings us to the...

Three Qualities of Exceptional Communicators

As the founders of NLP observed professional communicators in many fields, they discovered that successful communicators possessed three qualities. Thus anyone can become an exquisite communicator by developing these three skills.

1. Identify explicit and achievable outcomes. Successful communicators know from the outset the direction and purpose of their communication.

2. Use sensory awareness to notice responses. These skills enable them to live in the now, in sensory-awareness, and provides them with necessary feedback about their progress toward their outcomes.

3. Flexibly alter behavior to achieve outcomes. Successful communicators develop the flexibility of behavior to continually change and adjust their communications to achieve their outcomes. An NLP presupposition states, "The person with the most flexibility of behavior controls the system." Successful communicators will change their communication and behavior to attain their outcomes.

In this chapter we address the first of these qualities. In the next chapter we will explicate more fully the second and third qualities for excellence.

Well-Formed Outcome Model:  Keys to an Achievable Outcome

Consider "goal setting." In recently decades, many have written about the process of effectively setting goals. Many years ago I (BB) memorized the acrostic for S.M.A.R.T. goals:

S - Specific

M - Measurable

A - Attainable/Assignable

R - Realistic/Rewarding

T - Timeable/Tangible  

Goal setting functions as a prerequisite to success in most areas of life. Yet sadly, still ninety-five percent of Americans do not set goals. Who do these ninety-five percent work for? The five percent who do!

What does the biblical text say about setting goals? Jesus lived his life around a specific and singular purpose. "'My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish His work'" (John 4:34). He worked to fulfill his father's will by "being raised up" on the Cross. Peter expressed the centrality of the cross in Jesus' life in his Pentecost sermon (Acts 2:22-36). The Apostle Paul also expressed a singular purpose of will and direction:

"Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 3:13-14).

Whether Paul traveled to Macedonia or to Corinth, he directed his ministry toward specific goals. The call of Christ involves the call of obedience to goals he provides. We see goal-directedness in Jesus' challenge to the disciples to take up his cross and follow him.

The NLP model enables us to go beyond mere "goal setting" into desired outcome development. Here we do not talk just about setting goals but about setting outcomes. How do they differ? Goals describe in general terms, outcomes in specifics. An outcome represents a goal developed with specificity that endows us with a very clear understanding of what to do.

Suppose you set a goal to "increase participation in Bible study" or to "enhance the fellowship of the membership." Both represent worthwhile objectives. Yet neither describes anything specific enough for a behavioral outcome. The phrases lack specificity. What plans do you plan to use to achieve them? In what areas do you expect to accomplish these desires? How will you know when you have reached them? A good outcome statement answers such questions. Once you have taken a goal through the well-formed outcome model, you greatly increase the probability of achieving your outcome.

The specificity of the well-formed outcome model facilitates concentration on what you internally see, hear, and feel. Your attention will direct itself toward external and internal resources necessary in achieving the outcome. Notice what happens internally when you think about the following:

sound... internal sound ... pleasant internal sound ... low-pitched internal sound

As you became aware of each of these words and phrases--your attention becomes more focused. As you become aware of how you represent them in your mind, you notice the increasing specificity in the language--and that specificity focuses consciousness. Your internal processes makes the necessary adjustments in order for you to experience the meaning of these word and phrases. Specifying an outcome immediately changes what you see, hear and feel.

None of us have the ability to experience "conscious awareness of everything." Roughly two million bits of information per second of information impinge on the human nervous system. Yet our consciousness can only entertain seven plus or minus two pieces of information at a time (Miller, 1951).

Few of us hold more than two or three items in our mind, consciously, at a time. Our minds must select. The well-formed outcome model enables us to direct our attention toward our desired outcomes. A well-formed outcome enables us to create specific pictures, sounds, feelings and words. Then that image activates our abilities and resources for achieving that outcome. This empowers us to take advantage of what we find presently available in our environment to attain our outcome.

This illustrates the significance of the "as a man thinks, so is he" statement (Proverbs 23:7). The well-formed outcome model aids us in specifying who we will become. The model will enable us in the development of an image that we find both achievable and appropriate. Often people ask, "Isn't this just positive thinking?" We explain, "Not exactly. For while positive thinking obviously helps, NLP goes beyond mere positive thinking to providing a way to think productively so that we can get ourselves to take the kind of effective actions that will move us to the fulfillment of our objectives."

Now given the value of this well-formed outcome process, a well-formed outcome should have the following characteristics:

1. Stated positively in terms of what we want.

2. Described in Sensory-Based Language.

3. Self initiated and self-controlled.

4. Appropriately Contextualized.

5. Maintain Appropriate Secondary Gain.

6. Build in the Needed Resources.

7. Ecological for the Whole System.

1. STATED POSITIVELY

A representation stated in the positive motivates the mind more than a negative representation. Actually, the human mind does not directly process a negative. Suppose someone says to you, "Don't think of poverty!" To process that statement, you will have to think by mentally representing "poverty." You may then try to negate it by crossing it out, letting it fade away, etc. but first you have to represent it. If you tell a child to not go into the street, your child first, in the mind, sees "going into the street!" And children, unfortunately, often forget to negate the representation after creating it! ("Don't get into those delicious cookies!") This realization about mental processing informs us about how and why we often end up doing exactly the opposite of what we ask of others or ourselves. We need to ask ourselves, "What kind of image does my question or statement create in the person's mind?" (Later we will present applications of this using Romans 7:7.)

By definition, an outcome describes what we positively want to accomplish. It describes something you want, not what you don't want. We feel far more motivated to accomplish a positive outcome than a negative outcome. So we should not state outcomes using negations: "I am going to stop smoking." That describes what we aim to not do (a negation). Every time you think of your outcome of stopping smoking, you internally imagine doing that very thing you want to stop doing! That outcome requires you to think of what you wish to stop doing...smoking. And, as we think internally, so we will become.

We should phrase it as a positive outcome, "I will take care of my health." To think of this outcome, we internally imagine looking and feeling healthy. And if we think (represent) health, you will more likely experience health since we continue to send positive messages not only to our "mind," but also to our neurology.

To begin designing some well-formed outcomes, use the following questions to formulate your outcome (or a client's outcome). These questions assist in establishing a well-formed outcomes:

What specifically do you want?

What will having that do for you?

Have you stated your outcome positively?

2. DESCRIBED IN SENSORY-BASED LANGUAGE

Having stated our outcome in positive language, we can now ask, "What will I see, hear and feel when I have my outcome?" This step will let us know when we have our outcome--our evidence procedure. In NLP, we base outcomes on sensory experience (seeing, hearing, feeling). Why? Because the mind processes information in these terms. Our individual skills arise from how we develop and sequence our representational systems. In other words, we will reach our outcome through the mental processes of creating an internal map of our outcome in terms of sights, sounds, and sensations--what we will see, hear, and feel. These processes, in turn, determine our internal state. And our internal state coupled with our physiology ultimately drive our behavior. And by means of our behavior, we ultimately create our outcome.

Further, code the desired outcome in a dissociated image so that you see, hear, and feel it as "out there." This will set up a neurological direction so that you will have a feeling of wanting to move toward it.

How will you know when you achieve your outcome?

What will you see when you have your outcome?

What will you hear when you have your outcome?

What will you feel when you have your outcome?

3. SELF INITIATED AND CONTROLLED

While we can control our own thinking-and-emoting responses to life, we cannot control other people--especially their thoughts-and-emotions. Often we hear one spouse ask, "How can I change my spouse's behavior?" Easy. "Change your behavior and responses in some way that leaves your spouse without the need for their old program. Now what do you need to do that?" Changing others directly lies outside our control--changing them indirectly by changing ourselves--we can do that! The well-formed outcome works with changes that we can initiate, maintain, and manage. To put our outcome at the disposal of others only disempowers us and invites failure.

Do you and you alone control your outcome?

Does your outcome involve anyone else?

Can I both initiate & maintain the responses needed to reach my outcome?

4. APPROPRIATELY CONTEXTUALIZED

We need to design our well-formed outcomes to fit into all the appropriate contexts of our lives. When we fail to do such, we build over-generalized outcomes that can cause problems in other areas. So we ask, "Where and when do you want this particular outcome? Under what conditions? What other constraints of time, energy, context, etc. do you need to consider as you build the outcome representations?"

In what situations would having my outcome become inappropriate or unuseful?

Where, when, how & with whom do I want this outcome?

Do I want my outcome all the time, in all places and without any limitations?

5. MAINTAIN APPROPRIATE SECONDARY GAIN

All of our present behavior provides us with positive values and outcomes. If it didn't, we would not perpetuate and maintain them. In psychology, clinicians refer to this feedback as "secondary gain." We talk about this in NLP as the ecology of the entire system (a personal, human system of thoughts-emotions, relationships, etc.). So a person who smokes gains something from smoking. If they did not, they would not smoke. An individual who eats too much gains something from over-eating. If they did not, they would not over-eat. Therefore in changing behavior, if we do not preserve these secondary gains, and provide alternative ways of attaining them, the desired behavior changes will probably not last. This undoubtedly explains why so much change doesn't last. Use the following questions to discover the secondary gains you may have hidden inside your current behaviors.

What would you lose if you accomplished your outcome?

When, where & with whom would not having your outcome feel OK?

Would you have to give up anything that you deem important to have this outcome?

6. BUILD IN THE NEEDED RESOURCES

To reach our desired outcomes--we need resources! A well-formed outcome will therefore have the needed resources included within it so that we imagine and represent such as part of the outcome achievement. Many people set goals which they simultaneously "can't imagine" themselves really experiencing! This indicates that they have not built in the needed resources.

What do you have now, and what do you need to get your outcome?

Have you ever done this before?

Do you know anyone who has done this before?

7. ECOLOGICAL FOR THE WHOLE SYSTEM

A major strength of NLP involves its concern for ecology. Ecology, as the science of the relationship between an organism and its environment, in NLP speaks about our concern that changes made at one point in a human system must fit together with, and adapt to, the other parts of the system in a healthy way. In defining a well-formed outcome, we therefore give consideration both to the individual and to other people in the system. Human systems include family, work relationships, school, friends and community. If we gain from one area at the expense of another area, this benefit will not last. NLP says that "We need to evaluate behavior and change in terms of context and ecology."

8. CHECK OUT WITH THESE QUESTIONS FROM CARTESIAN LOGIC

What will happen if you get it?

What won't happen if you get it?

What will happen if you don't get it?

What won't happen if you don't get it?

The last four questions, derived from Cartesian logic, offer some useful and powerful linguistic patterns. The theory of Cartesian logic asserts that if an outcome (or any theory) will hold true in all four questions, then you can view your outcome as attainable. You may want to memorize these questions and see just how helpful they become in your communications and change work.

In addition to the above questions, these additional questions can also assist in formulating a well-formed desired outcome.

Can I test the outcome (testable)?

Can I chunk down the outcome into achievable pieces?

We should give special care to avoid making our outcomes too global. In a well-formed outcome, we need to break the outcome down into a step by step procedure. Such will then allow us to achieve the outcome via a systematic and patterned (and teachable) way.

Do I know the first step to take?

Do I feel I can achieve the first step?

If I reached the outcome would it fit with my values?

Can I find more than one way to achieve the outcome?

What appropriate personal anchors exist in the context in which I desire the outcome?

Do I have sufficient information about the internal state necessary for reach the outcome?

Do I have the image of the outcome firmly in my mind?

Do I have the sounds, pictures, words and feelings of the desired outcome in mind?

Does my internal state drive my behavior in the direction of obtaining the outcome?

Developing a Well-Formed Outcome When Outsted From Office

Jesus told a story about a steward, one that he didn't think as very ethical, but who, at least, had the foresight, intelligence, and fortitude to form a good plan and then take effective action during the time that he could--that describes his "wisdom."

"'There was a rich man who had a steward, and charges were brought to him that this man was wasting his goods. And he called him and said to him, 'What is this that I hear about you? Turn in the account of your stewardship, for you can no longer be steward.' And the steward said to himself, 'What shall I do, since my master is taking the stewardship away from me? I am not strong enough to dig, and I am ashamed to beg. I have decided what to do, so that people may receive me into their houses when I am put out of my stewardship.' So, summoning his master's debtors one by one, he said to the first, 'How much do you owe my master?' He said, 'A hundred measures of oil,' And he said to him, 'Take your bill, and sit down quickly and write fifty.' Then he said to another, 'And how much do you owe?' He said, 'A hundred measures of wheat.' He said to him, 'Take your bill and write eighty.'

The master commended the dishonest steward for his shrewdness; for the sons of light. And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by means of unrighteous mammon, so that when it fails they may receive you into the eternal habitations." (Luke 16:1-9)

In this strange, and not easily understood, story we see most of the principles of well-formed outcomes illustrated.

1) Positively stated. The unjust steward stated his own outcome in positive terms, "I know what I will do..." (16:4). He caught a picture of the effective action to take and then took it (16:5-7). He didn't sit around and moped about his bad fortune. He picked a direction--developed crystal clear clarity about what to do and then took action.

2) Appropriate chunk size. He began with an overall vision--"to make friends." He then moved to a smaller chunk level, "to graciously provide something for people who will then feel indebted to me for my kindness." He then chunked it down into even more specific details. He had one debtor rewrite the bill from 100 to 50, another from 100 to 80.

3) Desired context. If "for every season, there is a time for every matter" (action), then all behavior has appropriate contexts (Eccl. 3:1-9). Similarly, most all behavior becomes inappropriate in some context. This should enable us to direct our attention to selecting the proper context (time, place, circumstances) for our outcomes. The steward did this in recognizing his situation and taking action to do "damage control" to his master kicking him out of office! "When I am put out of my stewardship..."

4) Evidence for outcome. "What evidence will let me know I've succeeded in reaching my outcome? How will I know that I have attained it? The unjust steward specified his evidence: people would receive him into their homes! By so specifying his evidence, he wouldn't miss it when it came.

5) Self-initiated and maintained. The unjust steward, upon getting his notice of dismissal, decided what he could do about it--what actions he could initiate. He didn't waste time trying to change his boss' mind. By quickly accepting the reality of his disliked situation, he got busy taking care of business--doing what he could. He took a response-able position. He assumed responsibility for himself to do what he could.

6) Resource ladened. What resources did the steward have? His position as steward. So he used that resource when he had access to it. He wisely focused in a reality oriented way on the resources that he had, not on those he did not.

7) Worthwhile outcomes. Some goals seem really good until we get them, then we feel disappointed. Evaluating the worthwhileness of our goals enables us to "run an ecology check" on them to determine if we find them truly worthwhile or not. The steward knew his own mind and values. He knew what he didn't like and what he didn't want (16:3)--he had some "move away from" motivation (aversion). He also knew what he wanted (16:4) and so went for it.

8) Ecological. The steward identified his ecological concerns (16:3). He would not settle for an outcome that involved physical exertion or public humility. These did not represent ecological choices for his value system. So overall, when "the master" (Jesus) commended him, he commended him (not for his ethics--after all he called him "the dishonest steward"), but for his shrewdness, wisdom, insight (16:8). He shrewdly made full use of his resources to do what he could when he could. By contrast, Jesus said that the "sons of light" (the children of Israel, and in context, the Pharisees) did not show as much wisdom.

Overview of the NLP Communication Model

If we break down the term "communication," we discover that it involves a "communing" ("co"-with; "union" coming together) of meanings. This noun-like word (communication) then actually refers to a process, namely, the ongoing feedback process of clarifying messages sent and messages received between two or more persons attempting to relate and understand each other. In this process, it takes two persons who keep relating (sending) back and forth their meanings by means of their words and gestures until they begin to share meanings with each other (whether they agree with them or not). Ultimately, they co-create a phenomenon that we call "a state of understanding." The communication process thus involves a relational and interactive phenomenon.

"Talking" thus radically differs from "communicating." While it only takes one to "talk"(!), it takes at least two persons to "communicate." Most people can easily "talk." All they need do involves opening their mouth and letting a flow of words gush forth! After we have "said words" to, or at, another person, we can know what we said and even how we said it by simply having some recording device to pick up the signals we sent out. That holds true for "talking." It does not hold true for "communication." In "communication" we never know what we have communicated! Why? Because we never know what the other person heard!

This indefiniteness of knowing what messages get sent and heard in "communication," leads to the frequent (usual?) experience of the mismatching of meanings between people. Meaning-sent and meaning-received fail to match. Accordingly, to become more professional and elegant in our "communicating, we must address this mis-matching of messages. This identifies one of the central problems in the interactive process of "communicating."

Facets of Communication
Complexities That Effect Communicating

Basic communication theory operates from the information processing functions that we label: (1) processing--thinking, evaluating, reasoning, interpreting, etc., (2) outputting--in language (verbal) and behavior (non-verbal), and (3) inputting--receiving data, listening, hearing, etc. This operates representationally. This means that words do not mean, people mean. Words function merely and solely as vehicles of meaning, symbols of referents other than themselves. We use words as symbols of our ideas, thoughts, beliefs, understandings, etc. We use them to transfer our ideas into the head of another human being. Language occurs in various modalities of awareness: visual, auditory, kinesthetic (sensations), smells, tastes, and words.

What problem do you see with this model? Primarily it portrays the communication process as if it operated in a linear way. What problem does this pose? It makes "communication" reductionistic and too simplistic to describe the complexity that typically occurs when we seek to "communicate." For one thing, when someone talks my mind doesn't wait before I start processing! I process and output (primarily non-verbally) as the speaker continues--and if the speaker has his or her eyes and ears open, he or she simultaneous to talking also processes my response, communicates to themselves internally about that, etc.

#1. Complexity #1 then that enters into this process involves how "communication" functions as a cycle of interactive events involving the speaker-listener. This means that when we co-mmunicate we inevitably generate a co-created phenomenon (or experience) of speaker-auditor in interaction, exchanging, testing, misunderstanding, giving feedback, receiving feedback, etc.  

Figure 2:2

Idea/Meaning                        Outputting                     Inputting-Process-Outputting
Processing                                                                         (Thr.Filters)

                                           Inputting
                                (Thr.Filters-Processing)
                              (At Meta-Level to Content)

#2. Nor does the complexity end there. Complexity #2 adds one of the most basic NLP presuppositions: The Meaning of Your Communication Lies in the Response you Get! Or to restate it, The response you get indicates the meaning of your "communication" to the other person regardless of your intent!

In NLP, we use this our major communication guideline for developing our skills in becoming more professional and elegant as communicators. This guideline reveals that we never know what we communicate--not until we get a response. Then that response assists us in figuring out what we must have communicated to the other person! "Say what did you 'hear' me say? Oh, no, I didn't mean that, let me back up and see if I can provide a different set of signals and words so that I can more accurately communicate my meanings."

Obviously, this approach empowers us to realize that there exists no "failure" in communication, only results, responses and feedback! I don't need to blame or accuse others of "not getting it," "not listening," "distorting my messages," etc. That almost always evokes others to respond defensively. Not good. By accepting this non-blaming frame-of-reference, I start with the realization that others live in their own worlds (and boy, some people really live in their own worlds!). And as I adjust myself to that "reality" (even though I may not like it at all), I don't need to go around moralizing about it!

#3. This brings us to adding complexity #3 of the model: Expect yourself and others to always, inevitably, and inescapably to contaminate the "communication" process! Part of what you and the other "hear" in the communication interchange involves what each brings to the communication encounter in addition to what each inputs from the other.

NLP adds to the communication this piece--we all operate with and from internal filters. Our brains and nervous systems do not see, hear, or record the information that comes to us in a "pure" form as does an audio or video recorder. We do not photographically hear "meaning" or "see" events. We see and hear from out of our internal world--a world of meaning, values, beliefs, understandings, experiences. In NLP we refer to this as our internal "references." Metaphorically, we all have our own "library of references." To therefore "make sense" of things, we go within and use our own personal and subjective references. Linguistics refer to this internal trip as a "trans-derivational search to our referential index." Did you do your own trans-derivational search to your referential index when you read those words?

In the late 50s and early 60s, Noam Chomsky and associates created the field of transformational grammar. This domain of knowledge sought to specify how language works in the human nervous system in terms of translating, transferring, and transforming surface sentences into the deep structures inside our neurology. Using some of the formulations of general-semantics about levels of knowledge (abstraction), the transformational grammarians created a model of deep, before-words "knowledge" inside our nervous systems and how that "knowledge" gets transformed into language and then into the surface statements that we utter as we attempt to communicate what we "sense" deep inside. Bandler and Grinder built NLP using some facets of the transformational grammar model.

What does this have to do with an average communication event like a sermon, a conversation, therapy, telling jokes, reading a book, etc.? Everything! Because it means that neither you nor I receive any information (signals, messages) in its pure form. We contaminate everything with "our stuff." I hear you through my belief filters, my value filters, my mental processing filters, my cognitive distortions, deletions, and generalizations.

And because I do--you never know how I filtered your words, gestures, non-verbal movements, etc. No wonder we have to work so hard to "communicate" effectively! Somehow we have to take into account the "meaning systems" that others use in processing our information. Somehow we have to sometimes stop talking about our subject and talk about our process of communicating. Sometimes we have to meta-communicate with each other-- talk about our talk.

Complexity #4. We haven't finished identifying the layers of complexity yet because all "communications" occur from out of some "state" of consciousness. By "state" we refer to some mind-body or neuro-linguistic state of being. More commonly we speak about "state" as one's "attitude, mood, feeling, place, space," etc.

As we learn to take our state, and the other person's state, into consideration as we "communicate" we essentially become aware that neither we nor the other exist as dead machines, but as energized beings. I suppose we could talk about the "state" of an audio recorder, the "state" of a video recorder. But the "status" of such would only comprise its mechanical condition.

Not so with humans. What comprises a state of consciousness in a human being? Because it refers to our mood, attitude, emotion, physiology, mind-set, etc., it refers to all of the things going on "mentally" in our heads and all of the things going on "physically" in our bodies. And we all "never leave home without" our heads-and-bodies! We drag them everywhere we go--and so they generate our ongoing and ever-changing states.

The importance of this? Our states create "state-dependent" or "state-determined" communication, perception, learning, memory, behavior, emotion. State-dependency means that how (and sometimes what) you communicate, perceive, learn, remember, emote and behave depends on your current mind-body state of consciousness. When we feel depressed we can remember, think, perceive, communicate and behave out of depressing awarenesses so easily! When we feel angry, we can see and remember other angry events with such ease. When we laugh and joke and feel pleasant, we see the world through eyes of humor and playfulness. Our states seem to open up those "library of references" inside us so that we have special access. And, when we get into one state--that often precludes us from having access to the resources of another state. When fearful or angry, we find it much more difficult to get to the resource of calmness.

Figure 2:3

Idea/Meaning                         Outputting                       Inputting-Process-Outputting
     Processing                                                                        (Thr.Filters)

                                           Inputting
                                 (Thr.Filters-Processing)  
                              (At Meta-Level to Content)

Conclusion

In NLP we use the communication guideline that "We never know what we have communicated." The meaning of our communication lies in the response we get. When we do not get the response we want, we need to develop the ability to change our behavior and to continue eliciting responses until we get the one we want! NLP offers the skills necessary for flexibility of behavior in communication.

In the next two chapters we will focus on building rapport as foundational to flexibility of behavior in communication. We will explore the second characteristic of successful communicators--sensory acuity. After that, we will explore rapport.


Table of Contents

Acknowledgments - 2

Foreword - 4

Preface - 6

1. Introducing NLP: A Communication Model for Excellence  - 9

2. Communicating with Precision: Modeling Exceptional Communicators - 17

3. Communication Challenges - 26

4. Communicating to Connect - 31

5. The Building Blocks of Communication: The Creative World inside our Heads  - 39

6. Unlocking the Communication Lock: Using the Key to Open up the Possibilities - 45

7. NLP and the Judeo-Christian Perspective — Part I: Finding NLP in the Bible - 54

8. NLP and the Judeo-Christian Perspective — Part II - 65

9. Communicating by Anchoring: Speaking the Silent Language - 75

10. Communicating via Framing and Reframing: Reframing to Transform Meaning - 89

11. Communicating via Language: Probing the Magical Structure of Language - 104

12. Timely Communications: Where God Put Time - 115

13. Communicating Inwardly and Quietly: Unmasking the true nature of Hypnosis - 130

14. The Language of Mediation: The Surprising Language of Preachers and Trance - 147

15. Presuppositions for Communication Excellence, Part I:Assumptions about God’s Good Creation - 157

16. Presuppositions for Communication Excellence, Part II - 170

17. NLP— a Tool for Gospel Communication: A New Wineskin For The 21st Century - 183

18. Communicating at the Higher Levels: The Meta-States of Reflexivity - 188

19. Meta-States as a New Biblical Hermeneutic - 199

Appendices

A. Taking A Root of Bitterness to Jesus - 218

B. A Strategy for Filtering Out Unsavory Influences - 222

C. Representational System Characteristics - 225

D. The Drop-Down Through Pattern - 227

Bibliography 234

Glossary 237

Authors 243


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