The Essential Guide
Welcome To Your Resource Site For “NLP: The Essential Guide!”

NLP: The Essential Guide

Welcome To Your Resource Site For “NLP: The Essential Guide!”

You may have already read quite a bit of the book or you may be looking through it for the first time. In either case, this is where you’ll find demonstrations, additional materials and bonus activities and examples of the processes described in the book and some additional ones.

These resources will help you discover the many different ways in which you can use these vital tools. As you do so you’ll begin to notice the simple and easy ways in which you are already enjoying more of what you want and less of what you don’t want in your life.

You might find it fun to start by making a list of a few simple things that you want to accomplish as a result of using what you’re learning in this book. Starting with a few simple things will give you that sense of accomplishment a great way to build your confidence in your ability to use these fascinating new materials to best suit you.

Throughout this site we’ll be using a lot of excerpts from our two major NLP distance learning programs, the NLP Comprehensive Portable Practitioner and Portable Master Practitioner programs. They are complete resources of NLP created by masters of teaching and using NLP. We will also include other resources from our extensive library organized here to make your exploration and inclusion of NLP in your life as accessible and satisfying as possible. So please let us know in the comments how this is working for you, and how we can make this journey even more easily satisfying for you.

This site and the book were designed together to work together. The first part of the book and the site is designed to give you the tools and  understandings to increase your self-awareness and personal change skills. Most of the models and processes are based on NLP, a functional modeling system for human behavior. If NLP is new and mysterious, here’s an introduction by our Senior Trainer Tom Best.

The first part of the site features a lot of video and extra materials and examples to make it easier to get these essential models and change processes “in your muscle” as we say in NLP, meaning to make them automatically available for you. The second part of the book focuses on increasing your awareness and ease in understanding and working with other people. Using the same processes you learned in Section One, Section Two frames and applies these processes, and a few new ones, to understanding and influencing others.

This site is a work in progress, and I look forward to your input, feedback, questions and suggestions. Tracy Hoobyar, Tom’s daughter and an accomplished NLP’er in her own right, and I will be watching daily and responding to you.
So go ahead, explore, and if somehow you’ve gotten this far without a copy of the book, you can get one here, now. Most important, have fun and
Tom Dotz

Learn to Live the Life You Want

Hack Your Brain with NLP

Our very special NLP online complete Practitioner program featuring NLP Comprehensive's Senior Trainers and Founders!

NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) has helped millions of people overcome fears, increase confidence, enrich relationships, and achieve greater success in life. Create rapid, positive behavioral changes using neurolinguistic programming.

Click the button and find out all about this unique course:

What's here for you:

Section One: It’s All About You

Chapter 1 Understanding How You Think

— 1-1 Anchoring: Video Kinesthetic Anchoring

— 1-4 Chapter Summary, Bonus Activities, Review of Anchoring; Circle of Excellence; more

Chapter Two Managing Your Mind

— 2-1 Well-Formed Outcome

— 2-4 Congruence, Modalities and Sub-Modalities

— 2-7 Swish Examples: Size Brightness, Distance

— 2-10 Chapter Summary, Bonus Activities, Curiosity Shunt

Chapter Three Living In The Zone

— 3-4 Eye Movement Integration

— 3-10 Chapter Summary, Motivation Strategies, Bonus Activities

Chapter Four Upgrading Your Self Concept

— 4-1 Meta Model: Finding Beliefs That Limit You

— 4-4 Metaprograms

— 4-5 How Words Reveal: Predicates and Sensory System Preferences

— 4-7 Self Concept

— 4-10 Chapter Summary & Bonus Activities

Section Two It’s All About Relationship

Chapter Five Making Comfortable Connections

— 5-1 Rapport Skills Videos & Bonus Activities

Chapter Six More Than “Mind Reading”

— 6-1 Chapter Summary: Meta Model, Beliefs, Congruence, Bonus Activities

Chapter Seven Making Your Point Easily

— 7-1 Modalities Revealed in Language – Predicates

— 7-4 Chapter Summary Reframing, Metaphor, Bonus Activities

Chapter Eight Creatively Collaborating

— 8-1 Disney Creativity Process

— 8-13 Chapter Summary & Bonus Activities

Six Step Reframe Negotiation, Walking Belief Change

— 8.4 Parts Model, Identifying Conflict

Bonus Material: The 21 Day Guide

Comments (53)


Is the book available in German? I really enjoyed reading the book and would like to send it as a gift to someone dear to me but they speak only German.
I searched online for German edition but couldn’t find anything.


Hi Mo,

Not that I know of. I’ll contact Harper Collins (publisher) and check with them.

Best regards,
Tom Dotz

Hi Tom,

NLP has helped me a LOT over the years. I have read most Masters over a period of 8 years. As a result, I did get what I wanted. However, it was only partly.

Because of NLP exercises, I came across an opportunity.

I made use of that opportunity and took actions.

Thank you for a great book – it explains very clearly!

Dr. Dawn MacLaughlin

I’m looking for the 21 day guide from the appendix, but I get a page not found error…

Hi Dawn,
It should be working now. Thanks for letting me know.

Me too

In reply to Gemma.
On reviewing, even original footage, that is all there is! The students didn’t have any questions, so they went on to the next piece.
For more, all I can suggest is the book recommended there, or our complete online NLP program, “Hack Your Brain With NLP”, based on our full 20 day NLP Practitioner training.
Naturally, we are in the middle of a major website upgrade, so the best info I can offer is here:


I have just started with the audio book, and am going to get the book itself to read. But in the audiobook it mentions to do the exercises. But I cannot see them anywhere on this site.



HI Mayur,
The exercises are in the book. The site provides supplemental demonstrations of the procedures described in the book. A good sequence is read (or listen) to a section, go to the video and watch the demonstration(s), then listen to the exercise, letting it “walk you through” the process.

Have you found the exercises

Hi, at one time I was very interested in learning NLP. When I found out how long it took to get trained and how expensive the training was, I decided this study should be left to those who are in medicine or mental health fields. There seemed no practical use for NLP unless you had years of schooling and a career in an associated field. Along comes this giant of a guy from California who is using NLP strategies to help people, loads of people. You know him as Tony Robbins. If it was for Tony’s version of NLP principles and strategies, I would have slammed the door on NLP 30 years ago.

My questions are about your book.
What was your intention when you wrote this book?
Can I learn NLP by reading and doing exercises with this book?
Is this book a teaser to only take you so far and then require you spend a fortune to travel and learn the mysterious NLP?

Just a quick opinion of how I saw NLP. NLP was a secret, mysterious form of study that only doctors could afford to learn and use. Every source of information regarding NLP took you just so far and left you with a handful of tools but no real knowledge of how to apply or use them. A few professionals referred to NLP as a form of snake-oil. After reading many books and listening to many NLP Comprehensive audios, I know less about NLP now than I did when I studied Robbins’ book and his Neuro-Associative Conditioning.

Why all the mystery?

Seriously, thank you for understanding my frustrations with NLP and for allowing me to post them here. If you need to remove them from your website, I understand. If that is the case, you you please respond via email?

“What was your intention when you wrote this book?” To make available benefits of NLP that could be explained and experienced with only the printed word to communicate them. We added some video and other tools on a special purpose website – this one. You can get a free sample on Amazon. You can get a free audiobook version by signing up for Audible. We are going to offer more online courses in the very near future.

“Can I learn NLP by reading and doing exercises with this book?” You can learn a lot, and there is much more to NLP than can be put between the covers of any one book. Thus we have and are adding more online resources. The newest will be based on and include all the material in our entire 20 day Practitioner Training. How much you can learn will depend as much or more on your commitment as what is in the book or any program you take.

“Is this book a teaser to only take you so far and then require you spend a fortune to travel and learn the mysterious NLP?”
As above, you can get access to this book and judge for yourself for little or nothing.
Two quotes from the book:

“What Is an NLP ‘Power User’?
There are many reasons people study NLP . Some people are just curious about how human nature operates . Others want to discover how they themselves think. Power Users want to use NLP in the real world , where this skill set makes a tremendous difference for them…
There is a world of difference between ‘knowing how’ and ‘being able.’ My goal is to make you able.”

What I’m curious about Greg is your repeated reference to “the mysterious NLP” and “Why all the mystery?”
There are hundreds of books in print explaining it from many perspectives. I’ve lost track of the numbers of videos on youtube. The field is profligate with promoters, and yes, as with much of life, quality varies extremely.
So it’s only a mystery if you want it to be one.


The chapter 4 summary when clicked goes to the chapter 1 summary

Hi Tracy,
Fixed, and thanks!

Hello all,

I suspect that I may be living with ADHD, one of my friends brought this to my attention and after educating myself a bit I suspect this may be the case, as I identify with most of the associated behaviours – if not all of them, eg, I have poor memory, my emotions are significantly powerful and most of the time I feel “uneasy”, I am awaiting seeing the doctor once this terrible virus is over.

My question therefore is, does NLP work the same for me, if so what are the significant benefits of NLP in relation to ADHD and is there anything in particular that I should focus on?


Hi Alex,
While there are surely ways nlp could be useful, this is out of my area, so I have forwarded your question.

Much appreciated,

Thank you


Hello Tom!

I am currently learning NLP from your book – NLP the essential guide. I’m in a bit of a quandary, and I thought you’d be the best person to help me out with a couple of queries I have.

1: I don’t have a degree in psychology, but I want to serve humanity through healing. I love the concepts in NLP (which is what prompted me to pick up the book). There are a lot of local courses in my city, but I really want to be learning from the best.
Would you suggest that it is worth investing in a course, given that I’m from India, and am not financially affluent enough to afford a course in the US?

2: I’d be ever so grateful if you could guide me wrt potential career options once I get certified in NLP. I would greatly appreciate this advice.

I look forward to hearing back from you. I’m not sure if these queries fall under the realm of the kind of stuff you reply to, but I’m just betting on my luck, and taking a shot here 🙂

Love and light to you!

Hi Ramya,
Due to email issues I have just received your kind note. Please see my reply to Ayush’s similar question further below, and this earlier reply:
That is a simple question that does not have a simple answer. There is no “nlp career” as such. There are therapists and life coaches whose practice is NLP based to some extent, and NLP trainers, and business consultants and so on. Many people are professionals who use NLP methodologies and understandings to enhance their life and practice. So the answer depends largely on what an NLP career would be to you. You would do well to use the “Well Formed Outcome” process to answer that for yourself.

Best regards,

Hello Tom!

I was starting out on my journey of becoming an NLP practitioner and trainer. I started with your book. I find it really helpful.
I was wondering if I need to be certified before becoming an NLP coach. What do you think?
Do you have any advice for the beginners who are just starting out?

Thanks in advance,

Hi Ayush,
It depends on where you are, for one thing. In the US you don’t need a certificate of any kind as far as i know to call yourself a coach.
Yes, get all the quality training you can. We are launching a new online training program in a few weeks and naturally I recommend that as a place to start. Then where you are geographically and the resources you have will determine your next course of action. Unfortunately you have to be very careful and rely solely on yourself to evaluate a training. There are many training companies including those with “big names” that are just certificate factories where your certificate is really just a receipt for the money you paid. Everyone who pays gets a certificate. You can find more about evaluating trainings here:

Can you provide more information about your online training? Where can I learn more?

I have a question regarding Aphantasia and NLP. I have aphantasia and cannot “imagine” or “visualize” as many of the exercises in the book require. I can conceptualize things that do not exist (such as the drawing of the letter a in the sand) and recall memories but I “see” nothing when I do this. I cannot “see” anything but blackness. Is NLP possible without being able to “see” these visualizations? Are you aware of any research in regards to self-reprogramming that does not include mental imagery or visualizations?

Thank you!

Hi Cheryl,

You’re in good company, this comes up from time to time. Yes, it is completely possible to use NLP without “seeing” visualizations. Two approaches: first, the short workaround is to just ‘pretend’ you see them anyway. For instance in a process instruction like ‘notice where the image is’ just note the first location that occurs to you and use that as your reference point.
When I first started doing this stuff my internal images were not at all clear. They became more so with use, and this is a pretty common experience. It seems to be a facility everyone has to some degree that improves with use.

A parallel is lack of awareness of internal dialogue, and the question there is also whether there really was an absence or just a lack of awareness. Ironically one of the main purposes of meditation is to quiet the internal dialogue that most people have a difficult time escaping.

Second, there are many uses of NLP that have no requirement for visualizing which and those will also help build your fluidity. You may wish to start with those.


Hello Tom,

First, I want to thank you for all your hard work and for this fantastic book. I have read it a couple of times in order for me to understand it better, but I’m still not sure, therefore I would like to ask you afew questions:
– What is the real difference between a Circle of Excellence and an Anchor?
– Which one should I use if I want to learn a new language faster (ie: American English accent), or to be more creative at work, or to exercise more?
– How do you apply any of them? Let’s say that I did a COE to be self-confident and assertive in meetings, how do I make it work when I’m facing the situation?
– Can you use metaphors in order to change/learn something and still use it with a COE/Anchor?

Thank you very much and have a wonderful day.

Hello Alejandro,
Thanks for the comments and questions! Regarding your questions about the circle of excellence, the circle of excellence is a type of anchor, specifically it is a spatial kinesthetic anchor.
In terms of learning I would simply use the circle of excellence to access and anchor a good learning state. I would do this by remembering examples of when I was in a good learning state, when I was learning something very fast and easily. I one of the most lovely things about the circle of excellence is that it is something you can do completely by yourself at any time or place.
In terms of anchoring an experience so that you would automatically access that state in a particular situation, simply imagine that for instance when you step into a the room or you step into a meeting that your circle of excellence is there in that context, whether it’s specific place or specific people or any other contextual marker that would automatically trigger your Circle of Excellence anchor.
So it might be that the minute you saw Joe your anchor your circle of excellence for self confidence and assertiveness surrounded you, you were immersed in it. Practice and rehearse that until it’s automatic, and gradually practice having it occur in more and more challenging situations and environments as well
Lastly, yes for sure, embodying a metaphor in a circle of excellence is a very nice way to enhance it, it’s an elegant application.

Much obliged for your quick reply and excellent explanations Tom!
One last question though, should I substitute the memory of a good learning situation for the metaphor, or should I use both?
Again, thank you so much and keep up with the good work!!
Wishing you the very best.
Alejandro Ampudia

Sure you could use both.

I love the book but have found that some of the QR and links do not work. In particular the link: I was searching for your list of favorite books. Can you please help with this? Thanks!

Hi Renee,
Thanks for letting me know. We moved the site to a new url “” I’ve created a new “favorites” page at that link /21-4 and also at
Working on the rest, and
Appreciate your patience,

Yes, thanks for the heads up, I updated the link. Just posting again to make sure you know. 😉

I read the sample on Kindle YEARS ago, and just never pulled the trigger… Finally, I grabbed the audiobook and am on my way to mastery! Looking forward to this growth journey with you. Thank you!

Purchased the audio book what a great piece of work it’s starting to change my life already

Thank you

Brian Ballinger

i have been reading the NLP book of yours and its awesome information.

I wasn’t sure how else to leave a message, I hope this is OK. I’m reading the book and when talking about anchors the book says, “The next question might be ‘Well, what do I do with it?’ Or ‘I can’t find an experience like that?’ You covered the first question, but not the second. That is where I have trouble. Remembering an experience where I was optimistic, confident and happy with myself. Any suggestions?

If thinking of an experience doesn’t work, think of a time when you did. It doesn’t have to be a 12 on a scale of one to 10; a brief time, a mild eperience will do to start. You can build on it by enhancing your anchor, and by rehearsal – repetition. you can also think of someone, perhaps a character in fiction, a play or movie, who was demonstrating those desired characteristics. Imagine yourself being that character feeling those feelings, and anchor that experience, usingit as a reference experience.

Hi! I just started reading the book and was thrilled to find this site that will help me understand and apply what I am learning even better. I am interested in whatever else you have to offer (newsletter etc) Thank you

Good afternoon

Fantastic work on this book…. I have downloaded it through audible and am finding it most helpful.

Is there a link where I can download all of the material please?

I appreciate there some links for the chapters on the main page, but I wish to print them all off so I have them to hand when I am working though and making notes.

Many thanks


The best way to get the entire book is to pick up a Kindle version on Amazon here:
You’ll find it highly useful as a companion because I organized it with hotlinks to the videos and exercises. Plus you can make notes in the Kindle version. 🙂

Thank you

Hi there, I purchased your audio book to further enhance my NLP skills. I’ve heard it mentioned several times while listening, that as a result of this purchase I have access to resources on your website that normally appear in the printed version. Can you tell me where to find these? Thanks so much. Leanne

Excellent book!

I’m loving this book already. I can’t wait to learn hiw to improve myself in every aspect in my life. Thank you so much for creating this book and website.

Thank you very much for this awesome follow up resource. It truly is a great value and an example of over delivering.

Hi Tom,
I am enjoying your book thoroughly, it is so engaging. Absolute brilliant work.

Hi Tom, Tracy,
I purchased this book here in Australia to see what NLP is
all about. I am retired, so I’ve seen a lot of stuff. I am greatly
impressed by your material and looking forward to improving
my communication skills in an organized manner, which you
are presenting. Some of these skills have been around and
some are new relying on current scientific study of how the
brain works. I am currently trying out some of your things
on people I know and they have definitely helped my
relationships. I am now looking forward each day to trying
these techniques out on people who I come in contact with.

Best wishes, and I wish Tom were still here to thank him.

Thanks for the nice compliments, Edward!
Your sentiment is also much appreciated.
Tom Dotz

In the book on page 362 it says there are downloadable versions of the 21 day guide worksheets, but the page does not exist. Can you please give me the correct link.
I enjoyed the book & want to do the 21 day practices.

thank you

Hi Dianne,

Thanks for pointing this out. Somehow the page became locked. I’ve fixed it and you can access it now.

Tom Dotz

I’m looking for the workbook referenced on pg 362. I get the “page not found” error. Is there another URL to access the workbook?


HI Erin,
Please accept my apology for the delay in replying. Somehow your message wasn’t forwarded to me!
The page you want is here:
Best regards,
Tom Dotz

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