From NLP to the 3Ps

by | Apr 8, 2015 | Inside Out 3Ps, Video Posts | 0 comments

From NLP to the 3Ps

It can be both nerve-wracking and exciting as you make the transition from NLP to the 3Ps. As you develop your understanding of the Three Principles (what are the 3Ps?) you will find the old techniques and tools no longer seem relevant.

Jamie Smart and Michael Neill are two well known NLPers who have made the transition from NLP to the 3Ps. They now solely share the understanding of the 3Ps to clients (rather than their NLP techniques). This has been quite a shift in the way they practise their trade. In the early days it can cause a bit of confusion for both clients and practitioner.

NLP, like all well known psychological theories, has an array of tools and techniques. NLP looks at what is ‘wrong’ with the client and tries to ‘fix’ it. In NLP there are various techniques that are used to do this – have you heard of Swish, or the neurological levels. NLP has many well known success stories, particularly around phobia cures. Coaching Skills training often borrows ideas from NLP and NLP has borrowed heavily from ‘talking cures’ and hypnosis.

As with all psychological theories and practises there are hundreds and thousands of success stories. Clients come away from NLP glowing with its praise. One of the big questions for those who use NLP (and have yet to understand the 3Ps) is if NLP works then why work another way?

Accessing Wisdom

Both NLP and the 3P coaches and trainers believe in the wisdom of the person. The key difference is how an NLP practitioner and a 3P practitioner will help a client access it.

In NLP a client will need to ‘do’ something in order to move from their present state to a desired state. It might be that they ‘anchor’ a new state – or they undergo some kind of change process through a technique. The bottom line in NLP is that the client is active in ‘fixing’ something. In NLP the purpose is to help people change the way they feel.

With the 3Ps the practitioner is pointing the client towards the source of their experience as a human. As the client starts to gain insights and understanding there is a natural shift within them. The client begins to understand that wisdom isn’t something that has be unlocked with the right combination (tool or technique) – wisdom is always present. When someone lets their thinking settle then wisdom (which has always been present) will appear. Rather than ‘changing’ how someone feels the 3P coach will help clients see that they are only feeling their thinking in the moment.

The shift from NLP to the 3Ps

A UK NLP trainer and practitioner, who has made the transition from NLP to the 3Ps is Jane Stubberfield. She has had a successful career as an NLP trainer and coach. In recent years she has developed an understanding of the Three Principles and has been finding the areas of similarity and difference between her old way of doing things and new. In the interview below you can hear Jane talk about her own personal journey. Some of the key quotes are:

“It is a process of meeting people where they are and helping them understand how they’ve created their reality, and the understanding of that changes things.


“It gives us huge respect and love for humanity and humans.”


“When we get quiet the answers come to us anyway, we don’t need techniques to do that.”

Enjoy this Coaching Connect Interview with Jane Stubberfield and Liz Scott:

About Liz Scott

Liz Scott is a Coaching Skills trainer and 3P practitioner. She helps develop coaching cultures within schools and organisations. Liz uses her understanding of the 3Ps within her training and is experiencing great success and results in the organisations she is working in. Download an introduction to the Three Principles here. Find out more about Liz at Liz Scott Coaching and Training

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About Coaching Connect

The Coaching Connect website is the ‘virtual’ meeting place for coaches on the internet. Leadership coaches, Liz Scott and Stuart Newberry, originally developed Coaching Connect for the UK coaching community, but it has grown over the years to include coaches from all over the world.

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