Balbir Chagger, Relationship Strategist,
Harley Relationship Centre

Who this book is for

Initially my thought was that it is for everyone. On reflection, I conclude that it is more suited to Practitioners and above who work with therapy and coaching clients. Beginners who have not grasped the basic techniques may have a tougher time trying to get to grips with the Four Realities model and how Peter has applied NLP techniques to his Six Perceptual Positions model.

Style and Readability
The cover colour is energetic, exciting, and inviting. The layout is clear and text size is easy on the eyes. Each chapter is easy to follow with appropriate subheadings. The exercises are easy to find as they are printed on a shaded background. The contents match the title; the book is actually about understanding NLP principles and practice. It is very easy to follow and written in a very gentle, caring manner. This is demonstrated in the way Peter has taken the time to go into detail to explain concepts before moving on to the next point.

It can be tempting to dip into chapters that you are particularly interested in and this may be more worthwhile after you have read the book through at least once.

In this book, Peter has, to use his words, "combined two basic models: the Three Levels model of Body, Mind and Spirit, and the Four Realities model of styles of cognitive processing " Unitary, Sensory, Social and Mythic " to produce a composite Six Perceptual Positions model which offers an elegant and practical framework for change."

Peter uses examples from films, stage, stories, drama, and mythology to weave his magic through thirteen chapters covering Understanding NLP, Patterns of Change, How Change Happens, Definitions of NLP, The Philosophy and Presuppositions of NLP, Rapport, Rapport and the Four Realities, Setting Outcomes, Asking Questions, Working with Parts and Roles, Perceptual Positions, Exploring the Metamirror and Conclusion. There is Appendix A outlining Four-fold patterns and Appendix B on Doing NLP Exercises. The Bibliography and index are extensive. The exercises are relevant and useful.

An element missing in the other NLP books I have read and really value in this book is Peter's explanations about the origins of many of the NLP techniques, with references, so that I can go and read more if I wish. I like the way Peter has taken care to explore and explain the NLP Presuppositions rather than state them as a matter of fact.

By the end of the book Peter achieves his intention of demonstrating one way of transforming the jumble of pieces into a coherent and structured pattern which gives you a set of guidelines to help you make your own picture.

"Understanding NLP"also means that you will gain a sense of many alternative worldviews and beliefs about the nature of human existence"

For me, the indication of a good book is one where I feel stretched by reading it. I certainly feel stretched and taken to a different level in my thinking after having read this book. Furthermore, this is the sort of book that the more it is read, the greater the understanding becomes. I will certainly be reading it again and applying my new learnings to the work I do with clients.

This book is a welcome addition for NLP Practitioners in all areas who are constantly on the look out for ways to enhance their knowledge and excellence.

I look forward to Peter's take on the Linguistics side of NLP in his future book: Understanding NLP: Language and Change. Based on this book, I think the next one will also be a joy to read.
Guest | 08/03/2005 00:00
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