People and their behaviors - Master Coach Barbara Hofmeister

Another presupposition of NLP is that people are not their behavior.

And I think it is one of the best things to pre-suppose because it means that the person and their behavior are 2 separate things. Whatever the behavior of a person might be, it is not who they are. They are much, much more than that.  Therefore we can accept the person even tough we might not like their behavior.

So the next time you think “he is a jerk”, think again as that is a label for his behavior, not for the person he really is. Behavior can be changed and NLP will help you change it.

Another presupposition of NLP is: The meaning of all behavior is dependant upon the context it exists in.

If we change the context of the behavior everything changes. We also call that re-framing. Imagine a mother screaming at her small child in a super-market. Most would not find that appropriate and think little of the mother but if that child would try to run across a busy intersection, the mother calling it back at the top of her voice would get a totally different meaning, wouldn’t it?

Another presupposition around behavior is: All behavior has a positive intention

This is one of those presuppositions that is often discussed as being controversial because some people’s behavior can only be called obnoxious.  It does not mean that the behaviour of someone is the best possible from your point of view. Nor does it mean that the behaviour will have positive benefits for anyone else but when I believe that all behavior has a good intention, it does make me feel better.

A classic example would be bullying. Usually that starts with the insecurity of the person who bullys someone. Their intention is to strengthen their own belief in themselves. They gain re-assurance from hitting on other, thinking if they make someone else feel small they seem big.  The solution to this kind of inappropriate behaviour is to find another way to give the person re-assurance so he does no longer need to bully anyone to get it.

I hope you are starting to see why the philosophy of NLP is very inspiring and empowering.

Be well