Neurology is the "N" in NLP
The first element in Neuro-Linguistic Programming is Neurology. Neurology is a study of the human nervous system, the mind, psychology and the invisible structure or patterns that govern how it all works. Think of the brain for now as very flexible hardware which can be programmed through the senses by experience. But neurology is just a substrate for our experience, like paper is a substrate for ink that writes upon it. Once paper is written on, it is transformed. Neuro-Linguistics and Neuro-Semantics are the experiences, values, beliefs, and meanings and identities of life that are written within the body-mind.
Perhaps the most important reason for understanding Neuro-Linguistics and Neuro-Semantics is know how to shape our experience to our will. In some ways, our brain is quite "plastic", meaning that it naturally rewires itself in response to changes in experience, whether we want it to or not. This is how we learn. In other ways, the brain is quite rigid, reinforcing existing neural pathways that have been born out of habits we have formed. These stubborn habits often have built into them subtle and multi-layered mechanisms to ensure they do not change. In order to change these pathways, we cannot surgically rewire the brain.
In NLP, we use language to shake things up neurologically in order to dissolve old undesirable thought patterns and install new desirable thought patterns otherwise known as strategies. Instead of using a screwdriver or a scalpel, in NLP we use language as a tool to create an experience that indirectly affects the underlying neurology, and thereby changes it.
The following pages will shed light on what allows NLP to be so effective in shaping neurology.