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MindBridge NLP Coach Certification Training

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  1. 1 - Introduction to NLP and Professional Life Coaching
    8 Topics
  2. 2 - Fundamentals of Influential Communication
    5 Topics
  3. 3 - Characteristics of Excellence in Communication
    2 Topics
  4. 4 - a. Identifying Thinking Styles
    1 Topic
    1 Quiz
  5. 4 - b. Rapport
  6. 5 - a. Values Clarification
  7. 5 - b. Submodalities
  8. 6 - a. Anchoring Techniques
    2 Topics
  9. Managers as Coaches
  10. 7 - Clarifying Communication
    5 Topics
  11. 7 - a. Power of Questions
  12. 7 - b. Intake- Initial Pre-Coach Session
  13. 8 - Criteria
    3 Topics
  14. 8 - a. Perceptual Flexibility - Perceptual Position Quiz
    3 Topics
  15. 8 - b Well Formed Outcomes
    3 Topics
  16. 9 - 3 NLP Techniques Demonstrations
  17. 10 - Identifying Mind Maps
  18. 10- a. Meta Program Psychometric Quizzes
  19. 10 - b. Key Meta Program Patterns Explained
    7 Topics
  20. 10 - c. NLP Coach Session Demonstration
  21. 10 - d. Evaluation Forms -Outcome Coach Session
  22. 10 - e. Evaluation Video of NLP Coaching Demonstration
  23. 11 - NLP Coaching Sessions
    2 Topics
  24. 11 - a. Evaluation of Demo - Categories of Experience
  25. 11 - b. Directionalizing the Session
  26. 12 - Insights and Just for the fun of it!
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The map is not the territory is the idea that the way we see the world isn’t reality itself. We don’t respond to reality. We respond to our internalized map of reality. How we represent things are our interpretations. Interpretations may or may not be accurate.

Increasing Choices


All maps are inaccurate to some extent. A map of a street would need to be as large and detailed as the street it represents to be accurate. A map is a summary of what we deem to be the important features.

If we have inadequate maps we don’t see all our choices. Re-mapping is an important problem solving strategy. Our language reveals the maps and models we use to guide our behavior. Communication is how we explain the world to others and ourselves.

As human beings, we input, output and process information about the territory around us. Our five sensory systems code this information. Our five senses (visual, auditory, kinesthetic, olfactory and gustatory) are the language of our brain.

The NLP term for these five sensory systems is ‘representation systems’. When people communicate, they translate their experience into words and non-verbal communication. Language is a representation of our sensory representations, a map of another map. Words have no built in meaning. Words only have meaning in that they trigger sensory representations in a speaker or listener.

What Influences Perception?

I was co-facilitating a coach training workshop for leaders last year. Sun was streaming in through the windows and I was thinking about how to illustrate the concept of psychological filters and distortions. At that very second, I looked up and saw this perfect image. Pointing to the window blind, I asked participants to imagine what the window frame is like behind it, based purely on what they could see. ‘Curved, bent, twisted, grey?’

In my experience as a psychological coach, this can be a most important and valuable insight. We continuously filter experiences so that what we perceive and what meaning we attribute to it is influenced as much by what is happening within us as anything that is taking place externally to us in the room. I’ll introduce four types of filter or influence in these notes below, along with a brief explanation for each: projection, transference, culture and emotion.

You may have heard the expression, ‘We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.’ This idea of projection is a simple and complex one. Watts illustrates it like this: imagine a projector on your shoulder, projecting an image of you onto a person standing in front of you. What you see is a combination of what they actually look like with an overlay of aspects of the projected image. This distorts what we perceive so that we partly relate to the person as they are, and partly as we are.

The principle here is that we subconsciously project aspects of ourselves onto those we encounter. At a functional level, it helps us to identify and empathize with people. It’s as if we recognize something of ourselves in them. However, we also project aspects of ourselves onto others that we don’t acknowledge or recognize in ourselves. Perhaps I’m not aware of how compassionate I am but see it in others around me. Perhaps what I find annoying in others is a denied aspect of me too.

Our perceptions are also influenced by our past. It’s as if we filter all new experiences through what we have experienced previously and what conscious (rational) or subconscious (intuitive) conclusions we have drawn from it. Human-Givens therapists talk about this as pattern matching. If we encounter someone or something that reminds us of a previous person or event, it may re-trigger that previous experience so that we experience the new event along with the past.

I see this happen a lot in coaching conversations. Clients may react to experiences in the present as if they are unknowingly re-living similar experiences from the past and transferring something of those experiences onto how they are interpreting the present. This kind of resonance can create an amplifying effect, causing the person to overreact to a person or issue in the here and now. Surfacing the pattern, the transference, can be releasing and create a new sense of perspective.

What and how we perceive someone or something in a situation is also influenced by our cultural beliefs and values. It’s as if there is a permeable boundary between ourselves and others so that what we experience is us – but not only us. Cognitive behavioral research shows how what we feel in any given situation is influenced profoundly by what we believe about that situation. In this sense, our culture acts as a filter, influencing what we notice, or not, and what sense we make of it.

Finally, our perceptions are influenced by our physical and emotional state in the moment. If a person is feeling highly stressed, for instance, they may shift into fight/flight/freeze mode which significantly affects their cognitive abilities. He or she may experience a whole range of cognitive distortions that nevertheless appear to them, in that moment, as reality.

Perhaps the most significant point here is that for most of us most of the time, we are unaware of the filters we hold. We continually create and recreate our perceived realities. When we look at the window blind, we may assume we are looking at the window. We believe that what we perceive is what is. As far as we know, the window frame is curved, bent, twisted and grey – that is, assuming we know or believe there is a separate reality, a window frame, beyond the blind.

As leaders, coaches and facilitators, we can grow in awareness of our own filters and their potentially distorting effects. We can learn to notice when we are projecting or transferring onto people and experiences. We can grow in awareness of our cultural beliefs (which include political, religious) and how they shape what we perceive and what we value. We can grow in awareness of our emotional states – what triggers them and how to handle them in the moment.

We can enable others to grow in awareness too, thereby broadening the range of possibilities, of options, available to them – and to us.

Excerpt from Nick Wright, Leadership Coach UK
I would be interested to hear whether anything I’ve described here resonates with your own experiences. Notice what the photo, my language, my way of presenting ideas evokes in you. How do you feel as you read this? What does it remind you of? What are you noticing and not noticing, including within and about yourself?

Also, please take the time to reflect on the lesson and post comments or questions below. What was your reaction to the videos? What insights did you gain? What questions arose for you?

Also, consider responding to the comments of others to start a dialogue.

After you have posted your comment hit the Mark Complete Button and move on to the next lesson.


  1. Creating Mental Maps – very interesting and positioned for reflection: What are my MAPS and How are my MAPS impacting my communications, relationships and future. The example of the window which was distorted in appearance is a great example of how we can misunderstand and be misunderstood based on generalizations, distortions and deletions in our communication language. Awareness of our filters of projection / transference onto others our experiences; how emotional states can be triggered; Awareness of Cultural Values and Beliefs are just a few of the situations where our filters can aide in our communications by recognizing that our MAPS can limit our view of the world instead with awareness we can open up our communications and experiences to a fuller expansion of possibilities.