I know many of my readers are coaches and NLP Practitioners so this week I wanted to share some information about the concept of parallel processes.
What is a parallel process?
A parallel process is a dynamic in relationships that is being replicated on more than one level in a system. Parallel processing is a form of transference. For example the parallel process may start with a client and end up in a supervisions session as follows.
Level 1: Client explains to coach about an issue where the client feels a member of their team is hostile when discussing solutions to a problem.
Level 2: The coach experiences the client as hostile while discussing this issue.
Level 3: The coach takes the issue to supervision and the supervisor experiences the coach as hostile.
You will notice that the levels talk about “experiencing” hostility as a reminder that much of this is perception and filters. When we become aware of parallel processes we can use the parallel to help the other person gain awareness and transformation.
This can be done in two ways, either by conscious reflection and discussion or by the coach/supervisor introducing a positive parallel that unconsciously aids with transformation.