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Questions About NLP And Coaching?

New Code NLP?
Is NLP Manipulative?
Breakthrough Coaching Questions
The NLP epiphany
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J.E. had the following question in reference to the powerful communications and influencing skills offered by NLP.  
“NLP isn't that just a way of manipulating people?”
Good question, J.E. Here's something to consider.
The bottom line is, all communication is manipulation.  It's about getting others to accept our suggestions, follow our instructions, respond to our requests or consider our ideas.
And NLP offers some very powerful tools.  Just like other tools, a screw driver or hammer for instance, they can be used to build and create and to take things apart. It all depends on your intention as you use the tool.
If your intention is helping people become the best they can be, and communicating in a way that achieves mutually desirable and beneficial outcomes, others will know it and appreciate your skill.
Speaking of John Grinder, I'm often asked about New Code NLP.
What is it, and how is it different?
First a quote from John: New Code NLP is designed to provide a framework that explicates the involvement of ecology and the unconscious mind in change work.
If that doesn't help much, here's a personal interpretation.  NLP went through a period when some trainers focused more on sensory acuity and pattern recognition (observable and measurable) with less appreciation for the power the unconscious plays in running emotions and behaviour.  I experienced this in the first Practitioner program I attended. The focus did change over time, with trainers developing their own flavors of NLP and focusing more on unconscious processing.  John Grinder called his new model of NLP, New Code.  (Any miss-interpretations, errors and omissions are mine.)
Innergize and most INHNLP™ institutes teach NLP using a model that works to engage unconscious processes because they are the key making change happen quickly and comfortably, and govern ecology and congruence. Processes that align with the teachings of Milton Erickson and his belief in the power of the unconscious. (His belief has now been validated by neuro-science.) 
By the end of a practitioner training participants also need to be able to use their skills consciously.  That means having a process for applying their skills in the real world—in everyday life—as well as having benefited from and integrated new skills at the unconscious level.  Innergize programs are structured to achieve this outcome.

A. L. had this to say six weeks after a Breakthrough Coaching Session and it's worth considering on a number of levels:
I'm still waiting for an NLP epiphany.
You're in good company. Many people expect there will be an NLP epiphany — a direct or immediate divine revelation, transformation, or a mystical experience that will make them a different person. Well there isn't. Unless you've been been facing high levels of stress or life challenging events. If this is the case, then you can expect to notice immediate, positive benefits after a Breakthrough Session. Effects like relief from overwhelming negative emotions, more relaxed and in control.

In the absence of tipping the scales on stress and challenge, do expect to feel more energy and focus. You'll also feel more control.  But the stuff (technical term) you don't enjoy doing but know you need to do to achieve your goals will still be there.  Still has to be done.
You will however, find you're getting a lot more done in less time and without the fuss. You may even begin enjoying it!  Getting a sense of satisfaction from each step, because it's moving you towards the future you want. Building it can be fun!
And there'll probably be some behaviours, beliefs and habits you'll leave in the dust, the past, the way you used to be.  Although you may not notice until others point out how much you have changed. Because change can be so comfortable and easy it flies below the radar of your conscious mind.

Six months later here's what A. L. had to say:
Things have been moving forward very positively. Had a great finish to the year. Upfront, I have to say I never really perceived any identifiable differences in me and my actions, but the results ended up being there.
B.T. had the following questions about
Breakthrough Coaching:
“I already have too many demands on my time.  Why should I add another commitment to a coach?”
Working with a coach is like taking the time to plan a project before you start. Five minutes of planning up front can often save you hours at the end.

High performance athletes have been working with mental coaches for a long time. Because they know the difference between a winning performance and second place, is often the psychological edge – the mental toughness – of the athlete.

Now successful professionals from all walks of life are beginning to recognize the significant contributions coaching has to offer.
“How does Breakthrough Coaching compare to standard business coaching?”
Like standard business coaching, the objective of Breakthrough Coaching is to assist the client to achieve specific goals and outcomes at an accelerated pace.
“What is different about Breakthrough Coaching?”
Let me explain it like this. I have a friend who likes to say if we did even 10% more of what we know we should do, we’d achieve 100% more in results.
So the issue holding most people back isn’t so much about knowing what to do. Most of us know what we need to do. So the question becomes how do we get ourselves to do it, to take action?

Breakthrough Coaching
works to identify and clear the barriers that stop us from acting. Whether they are conflicting values or outdated beliefs about our abilities or the after effects of past experiences hanging around like excess baggage to weight us down.

I like to compare the process to sitting in a jet at the end of the runway while the pilot runs up the engines. You can feel the pent up power. And when the pilot releases the brakes, you merge with the vibrating surge of energy propelling the jet forward.

You have the potential, the knowledge and experience to achieve your goals. All you need to do is release the brakes. And that’s what Breakthrough Coaching is all about. Letting go of the brakes. As a result of the process people feel energized and able to focus on what really matters!

Breakthrough Coaching can give you a lot of forward momentum for a small concentrated investment of time, an average of five hours completed over two days.

Standard coaching requires a series of sessions over the course of several months. Many people benefit from starting with a Breakthrough session and then continuing to work with a standard coach.
“Where does the Breakthrough process come from?”
Breakthrough Coaching uses processes from the field of Humanistic Neuro-Linguistic Psychology™ a branch of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and a powerful and practical model for personal growth and performance enhancement.
A Practitioner's questions about NLP and ecology

B. G. had the following question. 
“Today I had the chance to practice TBT/Alignment Therapy with my mom over the phone, and it went pretty well (she'd had a terrible time with her boss). I also helped my brother-in-law with Visual Squash.”

“Wanting to learn about it some more, I Googled for Visual Squash, and quickly ended up finding the following resource” (the source was a link to a coaching web site offering one person's view of the ecology of specific NLP techniques.)  “I must say it troubled me a fair bit, as it claims (in a rather convincing manner) that many of the techniques we do are misleading and dangerous. Now, I know that every theory and discipline have their detractors, and there are clearly some points in the article that I disagree with. Still, it got me worried enough about performing some techniques... I wonder whether you'd like to read this article and comment on it, in particular about Visual Squash and 6-Step Reframe.
Great request! Thanks for giving me a opportunity to address the information and similar articles you may find if you surf the web long enough.

First let me agree with you that every theory and discipline have their detractors, and add that those who speak loudest often have the most to gain.

After reading the article I did a little research on the source. The information you found was  on the site of a trainer/coach who in his own words withdrew from NLP in 1994. He also went on to develop and promote his own model of coaching and training, as the web site shows.

Now let's deal with the content (a piece by a third party, translated into English by yet another person.) I found the article's description of both the Visual Squash and Six Step Reframe so convoluted that without the labels, I wouldn't have recognize what the author was attempting to describe.  It bares little resemblance to the techniques we teach, and you learned to use.

Here's a quote by John Grinder, co-creator of NLP on ecology: Ecology in NLP is about respecting the integrity of the system as a whole when assessing a change to the system, in this case a person's model of the world.

Most trainers will tell you ecology is about consequence and congruency.  Will the desired outcome have a negative consequence for the individual or negatively affect the system they are part of—their family, community or in the case of career, the organization etc.  Congruence could be called compatibility and alignment with other values and goals.  In other words, the absence of conflict.
The change techniques as taught by Innergize and most other INHNLP™ training institutes, integrate ecology checks and test for conscious and unconscious congruence as key steps in any change process. And all begin with a well formed
outcome - itself an ecology check.

Even in the hands of a less than highly skilled Practitioner (and like every worthwhile skill, there is a learning curve) where an incongruency is missed—perhaps a secondary gain to be handled—the unconscious mind will simply refuse to complete a process. 
As for ecology, the protocols you were taught included instructing the unconscious to develop strategies at least as effective and more ecological than the existing behaviour.

And the unconscious is fully capable of rejecting any change that is not in someone's best interest.  This is built into the process as we teach it.

Specifically in the Visual Squash, the hands will only come together if the change is congruent and ecological, often serving a higher purpose. With the Six-Step-Reframe, the unconscious is instructed (see above) as to the quality of new strategies and the final question is there anything else we need to do for this work to be complete? is also a test for ecology.
I can tell you from 16 years experience using and teaching these techniques, that they work.  They are safe because they place control and choice in the hands of the subject and their (own) unconscious mind.  Who knows them better?
The fact that you have been successful using these techniques for yourself and with others – getting good results – is the best demonstration of the efficacy. And when the results are less than totally perfect ... it simply means you're not finished yet. 

Removing the blocks to achieving a desired outcome can be like peeling away layers of an onion. After you peel away one layer you find another waiting to be dealt with. Does that mean the technique you used didn't work? No. All it really means is you are one step closer to the outcome you're seeking. Keep going.

As well it's probably useful to acknowledge that there are people in the world who want someone else to take responsibility for their actions.  People who will look for groups and relationships that are designed to create a dependence — on the group, a leader, or even a coach.

For me, this miss-matches the true value of NLP. What draws many people to NLP is the offer of simple, do-it-yourself tools you can use to create your own results. Manage your emotions, your behaviour and respond more effectively to events in your life. And especially, enjoy more choice and control. 

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