are you AT CAUSE?
more NLP fckry
There is plenty of buzz around NLP in coaching and the cultiverse (i.e., where cults exist). According to my Substack stats, last week's newsletter hit an all-time record for readership. Almost 5000 of you jumped in to read about NLP, and you are even sharing with your friends! Thank you, it gives me hope to help understand fckry and the momentum to carry on this week.
Ready for another five-minute rant?
Maybe The Vow gives you strange feelings about the relationship between Nancy Saltzman and NLP. Are you scratching your head while trying to determine why Nancy is in jail for what she claims is about improving people and the world? Are you baffled why Nancy's sweet-ass Martha Stewart exhibit isn't just her caught as a victim of circumstance? Are you disturbed why Nancy's unflattering ankle bracelet might be used for dangerous offenders?
I am not an expert in cults, coaching, or NLP(although I am trained at a Master’s Level), nor have I watched Season Two of The Vow. But I happen to be recovering from and have a deeper understanding of all three. Nancy Saltzman's playbook in Season One was enough for me to know she is a danger to her community and clients. This is not a critique of the documentary. Still, it is a conversation about NLP and some technical points I have been asked to expand on since this podcast interview a few weeks back 👉 Let's Talk about Sects.
So now I want to share what I know with you.
Questions from last week:
Question 1: "I need clarification on how you used NLP in the writing example you shared. Is that an example of mirroring?"
The example NLP in my writing here provided last week looked like this:
"It's pretty incredible to be here. I genuinely enjoy writing and offering words back. (NLP begins here >) These stories are about me… but ultimately, if you are here with me, they must be about you too."
1. NLP is famous for setting up a double bind
a)choosing to be here and b)must be about you too
2. In power-over situations, the participant is not given a "choice." Often conflicting information is offered, and the assumption is an agreement.
3. That becomes dangerous because it confuses who is making a choice.
4. When an agreement is established, the power-over person can tell the participant how to think/feel.
5. My intention in writing was to demonstrate a connection with the reader, which is a fair offer. The tricky part is IF anyone assumed they were the same(agreement) from that point on. A power-over person using NLP could've named other self-serving ways for the reader to be there for them/their cause/ their needs (sales, dogma, beliefs, ideals) - harm goes in right at that moment. It is so subtle that the participant might think it is the benefit of both (with agreement). Still, it is only for the power-over person and their agenda.
6. Naturally, most agreements feel good and safe and offer connection. Unless it is not.
7. This article is an excellent example of mirroring
Question 2: "You talk about AT CAUSE on the podcast. Is that the same
NLP term they use on The Vow? It doesn't make sense. Can you explain?"
NLP terminology defines 'being at cause' concerning 'being in effect.' 'Being in effect' is usually associated with 'feeling that you are the victim' or 'acting as a victim.' Suppose you, or someone, remain 'in effect.' In that case, you are somewhere seeing yourself as the receiver of something unjust, therefore, as someone with no power to change the situation. Suddenly, you move to 'being at cause.' (🚩insert RED FLAGS here!) unaware of what you are ACCEPTING, you now have full ownership in the situation you created. The even more hazardous part (🚩more red flags, please) is that NLP suggests the idea of 'being at cause' is not about blaming. It is about taking ownership of finding solutions and moving forward. The only apparent answer in these situations is to believe you are the problem.
The Vow (Nancy) repeatedly uses AT CAUSE language, leaving no room for anyone to challenge the cult leader/ guru/leader/coach/Nancy Saltzman or Keith Ranerie.
🚩If you are confused, that is part of the process.
Coercive control and manipulation consist of ongoing and increasing use of manipulative strategies that deny a target their autonomy and sense of self. An imbalance of power and psychological and emotional exploitation is used to systematically harm a person.
Note: Former members of NXIVM have accused Salzman of being Raniere's accomplice and protector. Nancy's primary role is helping Raniere control members and avoid accountability within the organizations with coercive tools like NLP. High levels of narcissism fuel Nancy's interactions.
In contrast, safe relationships offer deep conversations, adventurous, sometimes uncomfortable honest exploration, shared responsibility, curiosity and the opportunity to have different opinions. The time we take to commune with the people we surround ourselves with is critical.
It is hard to know what to do and navigate this in Wellness and Coaching. If you suspect something seems strange or off, talk about it. In that case, a Coach or teacher must be willing to sit in a full range of emotions with openness and curiosity. Healthy leadership and leaders help find leaders who desire to create other leaders safely.
Please stay close; I will continue these conversations and always ask questions.
As a Coach, I aim to operate at the intersection of education, supporting responsible entrepreneurship, and continuing to learn appropriate and equitable practices. Hit reply if you want to chat about Coaching, no presh.
Your unharmed humanness is what matters most.
Reminder: As much as it would be helpful to have experts on camera to educate the viewer about why Nancy is dangerous as fck - the production team and NETFLIX did not consider a psychoeducational component for public safety. The series is produced for entertainment and profit, which is sad considering how many people were harmed. If you need to figure out what is happening while watching The Vow, please remember these legal facts:
Keith Raniere, owner/operator of NXIVM, is an American criminal convicted for a pattern of racketeering activity, including human trafficking, sex offences, and fraud. Today, Keith Raniere, 62, is serving his 120-year prison at United States Penitentiary, Tuscon.
Nancy Salzman is an American felon and the co-founder of NXIVM, a multi-level marketing company and cult based near Albany, New York. Nancy Saltzman committed identity theft, extortion, forced labour, sex trafficking, money laundering, wire fraud and obstruction of justice.
A lawsuit charged the NXIVM organization with a pyramid scheme, exploitation of its recruits, demanding collateral, conducting illegal human experiments and making it "physically and psychologically" difficult and sometimes impossible to leave the coercive community.
Critical thinking requires the viewer to carefully and logically analyze the information given. Discerning truth from fiction. Not all facts presented to you may have the same level of truth.
The Lalich Center On Cults And Coercion is coming soon. If you'd like to get on the mailing list, you can go to lalichcenter.org to subscribe.