Rapport is one of the most used and well known parts of NLP. Most of the time it is wrongly explained as connecting well with other people. The term in fact comes from Milton Erickson. He discovered that if you hypnotize someone it is hard for other people to influence the hypnotized person. This is what it means to have rapport.

The Hermit Speaks. — The art of associating with men rests essentially on one’s skillfulness (which presupposes long exercise) in accepting a repast, in taking a repast, in the cuisine of which one has no confidence. Provided one comes to the table with the hunger of a wolf everything is easy (“the worst society gives thee experience” — as Mephistopheles says) ; but one has not always this wolf’s hunger when one needs it! Alas I how difficult are our fellow-men to digest! First principle: to stake one’s courage as in a misfortune, to seize boldly, to admire oneself at the same time, to take one’s repugnance between one’s teeth, to cram down one’s disgust. Second principle: to “improve” one’s fellow-man, by praise for example, so that he may begin to sweat out his self-complacency ; or to seize a tuft of his good or “interesting” qualities, and pull at it till one gets his whole virtue out, and can put him under the folds of it. Third principle: self-hypnotism. To fix one’s eye on the object of one’s intercourse as on a glass knob, until, ceasing to feel pleasure or pain thereat, one falls asleep unobserved, becomes rigid, and acquires a fixed pose: a household recipe used in married life and in friendship, well tested and prized as indispensable, but not yet scientifically formulated. Its proper name is — patience —

Gay Science paragraph 364

To think that one always needs to make rapport is a mistake. NLP offers different techniques like mirroring as a way to establish if rapport is needed. In many cases there is no need for rapport. In many other cases people have rapport automatically and trying to establish rapport breaks the rapport that was already there.

Trust and intimacy. – He who deliberately seeks to establish an intimacy with another person is usually in doubt as to whether he possesses his trust. He who is sure he is trusted sets little value on intimacy.

Human, All Too Human, part 1, paragraph 303



NLP holds that reality is unknown to us. Only how we subjectively experience reality is known to us.

In prison. – My eyes, however strong or weak they may be, can see only a certain distance, and it is within the space encompassed by this distance that I live and move, the line of this horizon constitutes my immediate fate, in great things and small, from which I cannot escape. Around every being there is described a similar concentric circle, which has a mid-point and is peculiar to him. Our ears enclose us within a comparable circle, and so does our sense of touch. Now, it is by these horizons, within which each of us encloses his senses as if behind prison walls, that we measure the world, we say that this is near and that far, this is big and that small, this is hard and that soft: this measuring we call sensation – and it is all of it an error! According to the average quantity of experiences and excitations possible to us at any particular point of time one measures one’s life as being short or long, poor or rich, full or empty: and according to the average human life one measures that of all other creatures – all of it an error! If our eyes were a hundredfold sharper, man would appear to us tremendously tall; it is possible, indeed, to imagine organs by virtue of which he would be felt as immeasurable. On the other hand, organs could be so constituted that whole solar systems were viewed contracted and packed together like a single cell: and to beings of an opposite constitution a cell of the human body could present itself, in motion, construction and harmony, as a solar system. The habits of our senses have woven us into lies and deception of sensation: these again are the basis of all our judgments and ‘knowledge’ – there is absolutely no escape, no backway or bypath into the real world! We sit within our net, we spiders, and whatever we may catch in it, we can catch nothing at all except that which allows itself to be caught in precisely our net.

Daybreak paragraph 117


Reframing means either changing the content of what is at stake or changing the context of what is at stake in such a way that people’s subjective experience of the situation is more positive. Because reframing is too much associated with the as-if frame modern NLP stopped using reframing. Instead it used Complex Equivalence which is a much more powerful tool than reframing and achieve the same if not better results.

On the alleviation of life. – A principal means of alleviating one’s life is to idealize everything that occurs in it; but first, however, one has to make clear to oneself from the art of painting what idealizing means. The painter desires that the viewer shall not observe too precisely, too sharply, he compels him to retreat a certain distance and view the painting from there; he is obliged to presuppose that the viewer will be some quite definite distance from the picture; he must, indeed, even assume an equally definite degree of sharpness of eyesight in his viewer! He must be in no way irresolute in such matters. Everyone who wants to idealize his life must therefore not desire to see it too precisely, he must always banish his view of it back to a certain distance away. This artifice was understood by, for example, Goethe.

Human, All Too Human, book 1, paragraph 279


One of the four requirements for well-formed goals is that you must know what you will hear, feel, see, taste and smell when you reach your goal. In other words, we want the results of NLP to be sensible. That means both smart and perceptible.

The proof of a prescription. – In general, the validity or invalidity of a prescription – a prescription for baking bread, for example – is demonstrated by whether or not the result it promises is achieved, always presupposing it is carried out correctly. It is otherwise now with moral prescriptions: for here the results are either invisible or indistinct. These prescriptions rest on hypotheses of the smallest possible scientific value which can be neither demonstrated nor refuted from their results: – but formerly, when the sciences were at their rude beginnings and very little was required for a thing to be regarded as demonstrated – formerly, the validity or invalidity of a prescription of morality was determined in the same way as we now determine that of any other prescription: by indicating whether or not it has succeeded in doing what it promised. If the natives of Russian America have the prescription: you shall not throw an animal bone into the fire or give it to the dogs – its validity is demonstrated with: ‘ if you do so you will have no luck in hunting’. But one has almost always in some sense ‘no luck in hunting’; it is not easy to refute the validity of the prescription in this direction, especially when a community and not an individual is regarded as suffering the punishment; some circumstance will always appear which seems to confirm the prescription.

Daybreak paragraph 24

Richard Bandler

Richard Bandler is the genius who created NLP. If you would compare him to most other NLP trainers it is enough to replace “scholar” in the Nietzsche quote below with “average NLP trainer”. Some people take offence to calling Richard Bandler the creator of NLP. They claim he is the “co-creator” together with John Grinder. But fact is that when they split up Richard Bandler and John Grinder decided among the two of them to call themselves “co-creators”. This was a way out of the problems that had with each other. Those people who take offence this way are trying to unbend the taut NLP bow and remove Richard Bandler from the history of NLP.

It is impressive how the NLP community at large has been hypnotized by this claim. Whereas in fact as long as nobody can point to the parts of NLP that are supposedly developed by John Grinder he hasn’t created anything of value in modern NLP. For there would be no NLP whatsoever without Richard Bandler. Whereas there would have been NLP without John Grinder. NLP would only have grown less fast without John Grinder. So with the exception of the only true genius that NLP has known, Richard Bandler, all other big names of NLP are NLP scholars in the sense as described below:

Compared to a genius, which is to say: compared to a being that either begets or gives birth (taking both words in their widest scope –), the scholar, the average man of science, is somewhat like an old maid. Like her, he has no expertise in the two most valuable acts performed by humanity. And, as a sort of compensation, both the scholar and the old maid are admitted to be respectable – respectability is always emphasized – although in both cases we are annoyed by the obligatory nature of this admission. Let us look more closely: what is the scientific man? In the first place, he is an ignoble type of person with the virtues that an ignoble type will have: this type is not dominant, authoritative, or self-sufficient. He is industrious, he is patiently lined up in an orderly array, he is regular and moderate in his abilities and needs, he has an instinct for his own kind and for the needs of his kind. These needs include: that piece of independence and green pasture without which there is no quiet for him to work in, that claim to honor and acknowledgment (whose first and foremost presupposition is recognition and being recognizable –), that sunshine of a good name, that constant seal on his value and his utility which is needed, time and again, in order to overcome the inner mistrust that lies at the bottom of the heart of all dependent men and herd animals. It is only fair that the scholar has the diseases and bad habits of an ignoble type as well. He is full of petty jealousies and has eyes like a hawk for the base aspects of natures whose heights he cannot attain. He is friendly, but only like someone who lets himself go without letting himself really flow out; and just when he is standing in front of people who really do flow out, he will act all the more cold and reserved, – at times like this, his eye is like a smooth and unwilling lake that will no longer allow a single ripple of joy or sympathy. The worst and most dangerous thing that a scholar is capable of doing comes from his type’s instinct for mediocrity: from that Jesuitism of mediocrity that instinctively works towards the annihilation of the exceptional man and tries to break every taut bow or – even better! – to unbend it. Unbending it with consideration, and, of course, a gentle hand –, unbending it with friendly pity: that is the true art of Jesuitism, which has always known how to introduce itself as a religion of pity. –

Beyond Good & Evil paragraph 206


Many processes within NLP are ridiculous. This is done on purpose. For the more laughter there is in the world, the better it is.

Pleasure in nonsense. – How can man take pleasure in nonsense? For wherever in the world there is laughter this is the case; one can say, indeed, that almost everywhere there is happiness there is pleasure in nonsense. The overturning of experience into its opposite, of the purposive into the purposeless, of the necessary into the arbitrary, but in such a way that this event causes no harm and is imagined as occasioned by high spirits, delights us, for it momentarily liberates us from the constraint of the necessary, the purposive and that which corresponds to our experience, which we usually see as our inexorable masters; we play and laugh when the expected (which usually makes us fearful and tense) discharges itself harmlessly. It is the pleasure of the slave at the Saturnalia.

Human, All Too Human, book 1, paragraph 213