In NLP we have so called metaprograms. A metaprogram is a brain filter. Our senses produce way too much data. For instance a single eye produces about one million signals per second. Within psychology there is a dubious experiment that tries to show that our consciousness is only capable of processing two hundred signals per second. Even if we take this figure with a pinch of salt, the way our brain works by more and more abstracting data a lot of data is lost. NLP describes this loss as metaprograms. Although there aren’t specific metaprograms in the brain we as human interpreters of the lost data can name certain parts  of this lost data to single that part out to use within specific NLP techniques and NLP strategies. For that reason it is important to note that metaprograms are made up rather than found. And that, although you can make up hundreds of metaprograms, there are only a handful that are helpful.

Our perceptions, as we understand them: i.e., the sum of all those perceptions the becoming conscious of which has been useful and essential to us and to the whole organic process before us; not, then, all perceptions in general (e.g., not the electrical ones). That is: we have senses only for a certain range of perceptions – those we have to be concerned with in order to preserve ourselves. Consciousness exists to the extent that consciousness is useful. There is no doubt that all sensory perceptions are entirely suffused with value judgments (useful or harmful- consequently pleasant or unpleasant). A particular color simultaneously expresses a value for us (although we seldom admit this to ourselves, or only after a single color has operated on us for a long time, e.g., for prison inmates or lunatics). This is why insects react differently to different colors: some they love, e.g., ants.

Notebook 2, autumn 1885 – autumn 1886 paragraph 95