It’s often very difficult for us to change unhelpful and limiting thoughts and behaviours; however, there are techniques available that provide the key: an opening into the unconscious mind, the part of the mind where change takes place. NLP, Time Line Therapy™ and hypnotherapy are each profound, effective techniques in their own right, or when used in combination. They provide a highly supportive and motivational approach to guide and influence your thinking (and therefore behaviour) at a deep level.
Of the 3 afore-mentioned techniques, the least well known amongst the general public is probably Time Line Therapy™ (TLT™). Also known as Creating Your Future®, TLT™ was borne out of NLP and hypnotherapy techniques and was developed by Tad James in the 1980s1. NLP has been shown to have a significant, positive effect on all clients, including those with a traumatic past2, 3,4 . TLT™ reaps the benefits of the specialist language sets furnished by NLP and hypnotherapy as well as providing a unique method to eliminate, not merely manage, unwanted emotions and beliefs. Furthermore, TLT™ can be used to drive the unconscious mind towards a set of desired goals, remove inexplicable pain and derive answers to deep-seated questions.
TLT™ is powerful, yet gentle and effective in being able to remove fully the negative emotions attached to events in the past. Clients are asked to visualise a ‘time line’, a line running from the past to present to future. Then, using the unconscious mind, the client is asked to go back to the root cause of a particular negative emotion. This in no way involves a known memory, the client is gently asked to use ‘active imagination’ to give a root cause before their first conscious memory. In going back to a time when an unconscious, specific, negative emotion was first felt, we can unhook links to all similar memories (those known and those forgotten), releasing that emotion. The full elimination of the emotions is facilitated by the client expressing what can be learnt from the event. This is carried out using NLP reframing and rephrasing of the learnings, such that empowering, positive, new resources can be taken into the future. A new set of compelling goals can be inserted into the time line, making the goal achievable unconsciously and consciously.
In terms of a therapeutic aid, TLT™ is achieved without having to explore the negative connotations of what the client has been through. This is an important difference between TLT™ and some other therapies: there is no need to connect with the sometimes painful memories of the past, ask the client to re-live the events or immerse themselves in re-visiting those memories. This provides a much more attractive solution to removing the stress, with minimal discomfort to the client. The client feels relaxed, safe and in control at all times.
Time Line Therapy™ removes all the negative emotions such as anger, sadness, hurt, fear and guilt from our past, not only those associated with the trauma. Additionally, feelings of being unworthy or of low self-esteem can be eliminated. In this vein, clients feel a weight is lifted, they are more energised, have a more balanced outlook on the future and are able to get on with their lives. We’re all burdened with the baggage we carry from our past experiences. Imagine being able to off load this burden and learn from past mistakes. Then plant a incontrovertible goal into our unconscious mind, giving your mind permission to make it happen! It sounds audacious, but this is what TLT™ can and does do!
- James, T. & Woodsmall, W. (1989) Time Line Therapy and the Basis of Personality. Published by Meta Publications, U.S.A.
- Koziey, P., and McLeod, G., “Visual kinesthetic Dissociation in Treatment of Victims of Rape” in Professional Psychology; Research and Practice, 18(3); 276-282,1987 The study is from the University of Alberta and showed the reduction of anxiety in teenage rape victims.
- Einspruch, E. “Neurolinguistic Programming in the Treatment of Phobias” in Psychotherapy in Private Practice, 6(1): 91-100, 1988 Findings suggest that the technique is successful for symptoms of anxiety and depression in clients with phobias. 31 phobic patients seen in the group/class treatment program completed a phobia questionnaire fear inventory and the Beck Depression Inventory before and after 8 wks of treatment. 17 patients seen in individual therapy completed part of the phobia questionnaire before and after treatment. Results indicate marked improvement by those who were treated.
- Genser-Medlitsch, M. & Schütz, P. (2004): /Czy neurolingwistyczna psychotherpia jest efektywna/? In: Nowiny Psychologiczne. Warszawa: Polskie Towarzystwo Psychologiczne. This study revealed that 98.2% of those treated felt better after NLP. In the control group, receiving not therapy, 36.1% felt better. Six months after NLP, 80% continued to feel better in those treated with NLP.