Article As a practical framework for systematic thinking, content reframe is one of the most helpful techniques in NLP. 0 2013 Life coaching NLP coaching life coaching Lifecoachhub Pty Ltd LifeCoachHub
Coach David J. Wingfield

NLP Reframing: A Practical Guide to Content Reframe

TAGS: coaching, life coaching, business coaching, coach, life coach, self help, personal development content reframe, NLP, self-help, neuro linguistic programming, NLP coaching

Content reframe can help you to see positive aspects of any situation in life.Take every shove as a push. Take every block as a stepping stone”
Traditional saying


Content Reframe is the absurdly technical term of reference within Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) for what in effect is the mental discipline of putting a positive spin on negative events. When in the grip of unsavoury emotions and unfortunate circumstances, it is easy to feel disempowered; a slave to random events beyond your control.  This can in turn lead to a pervading sense of hopelessness, whose poison flower is depression.

Content Reframe is a consciously directed form of positive mental attitude that enables you to wring the best outcome from even the worst situation that life throws at us. It is an example of the way in which NLP takes traditional folk-wisdom and directs it in a scientific manner towards self-improvement. It allows you to “reframe” the “content” of the negative event into a more positive framework.

NLP practitioners sometimes apply Content Reframe to enable people to redefine traumatic events in their past, such as abuse, bullying or injury. However, it is also an effective method of dealing with times of crisis that come upon you unexpectedly.



Let’s look at an all-too common real life example that illustrates the practical application of content reframe:

If someone unexpectedly loses their job; the surface outlook can appear bleak. Vacant positions may not be easy to come by, especially when the economy is slow. While this is going on, the humdrum of life continues to take its toll; kids need feeding, bills need paying.

But there is also another way of looking at this situation.  Due to being out of work, there are now opportunities to apply for better positions you may not have had time for previously. 

You may be able to explore different work opportunities and skills that you hadn’t considered before. The experience itself will also be character building; will make you more self-reliant, daring and courageous. Then there is the issue of perspective; in years to come none of these petty concerns of today will matter. You will be able to look back and laugh at it.

What we have attempted here is to reframe a negative event so that you are free to find positive outcomes within it. It is surprising to realise the blind spots thrown up by negative emotions when you are in the throes of a crisis. Content reframe allows you to step back, take a deep breath and view the situation from a more objective – and constructive, vantage point.

The aim is to focus your attention on the opportunities inherent in any situation, and so to face the future with hope, rather than fear. Long term application of content reframe rewires the natural human tendency to approach change in a spirit of trepidation and fear.

Content reframe does not deny that many situations will have their difficulties; but you are more likely to face them successfully if they are treated as opportunities for growth, rather than defeats.

Photo Credit : Ed Yourdon






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