2007-08-23 10:25 PM

Education not Therapy?

Today I was telling my new friend Greg over at Tape Records about NLP. After telling him about NLP’s roots and some of the techniques for healing he asked if I saw clients in a theraputic setting. And while I have helped a few close friends I shared that my calling is in education not therapy.

For whatever reason the idea of “education not therapy” was still rattling around in my head as I drove home. Then it slowly dawned on me that education versus therapy was a false dichotomy — there is no separating the two.

Effective therapy is about changing behaviors. Changing behaviors requires either some new knowledge or a shift in awareness — both of which fall directly into the domain of education!

True education is from the “drawing out” of what is in the pupil. To ignore the reactions, emotions, and language of students would be ridiculous. Is there anything else to draw out? And what is to be done when something is “blocking” the drawing out process? Clearing those self limiting beliefs and interrupting the destructive patterns is typically considered the domain of therapists.

I wonder how much better our “education system” would be if teachers had the knowledge, awareness, and behaviors to explicitly deal with these sorts of thing. Where could you apply a little “theraputic muscle” in your own life?

Posted by Wayne Buckhanan 2 Comments »

2 Comments on “Education not Therapy?”

  1. Dr Martin Russell Says:

    Nice post Wayne!

    It’s not just school, and parenting models either. The model of adult learning has always appealed to me as a way to do successful therapy.

    I think it’s because learning methods don’t have assumptions about self-sabotage, resistance, limitations, and/or moral judgements, the way many therapy models seem to do.

    Therapy is much cleaner without those!


    Martin Russell

  2. Wayne Buckhanan Says:

    Thank you Martin. While I internally contrast between classroom education and accelerated (or adult) learning I do not always make that distinction explicit.

    I like your list. I really like that applying a few NLP techniques can overcome or even bypass those self-limiting beliefs and unproductive patterns.

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