The Map Is Not The Territory – Interview With Andy Smith: Practical NLP Podcast Episode 83

This week’s episode is something a bit different. Instead of me interviewing a prominent member of the NLP community, it’s someone interviewing me – about the principles or ‘presuppositions’ of NLP and how you can use them to be more effective in your life and work, even if you’re not NLP trained.

My interviewer is Deb Johnstone, an NLP coach based in Cairns City, Australia. Deb specialises in helping women business owners to achieve more with less stress, and to this end she put together the ‘Better Balance Greater Business’ summit, a series of video interviews with 23 experts, one of which was me.

You may have seen my messages and blog posts about this last month – it was a wonderful opportunity for people who signed up to get a lot of knowledge for free.

Now that the summit has finished, my interview has become available for release. I think it’s the best interview I’ve done so far.

This is the first half of the audio from the interview – if you want to see the video (it’s pretty much two ‘talking heads’), I have now put that up on my YouTube channel.

It was supposed to be a half-hour interview, but we ended up talking for over an hour. That’s a bit long for a podcast (or longer than my listeners are used to anyway) so this episode is part one, with part two coming next week.

This episode is all about the most important (in my view) presupposition of NLP, the idea that ‘the map is not the territory’.

In other words, what you are experiencing right now, your reality, is not actually the real world around you, but a filtered and partial representation of it, that bears the same relation to objective reality as a map does to the territory that it represents.

Most people confuse the map with the territory. In the interview, we talk about the various problems that can cause, and how to avoid those problems.

To explore this topic further, you may be interested in the earlier article about this presupposition, the story of ‘The Ultimate Map’, and of course my free audiobook ‘Practical NLP: how to use NLP principles to improve your life and work, even if you’re not NLP trained’ that covers this and the other ‘presuppositions’ of NLP in depth.

Duration: 31m 16s

Listen and/or subscribe to this podcast via Apple Podcasts here

If you want to subscribe using something other than Apple Podcasts (e.g. if you have an Android phone), here’s the feed:

Only the most recent 10 episodes of the podcast are available free on Apple Podcasts. You can download back episodes (with transcripts!) from the online store.

Finally, it would really help me out if you review the podcast on Apple Podcasts to raise its profile so more people can benefit from it! Thanks.

© 2017 – 2019, Andy Smith. All rights reserved.


  1. Satya prakash

    Hi Smith you are doing very good with the help of prodcost, you put your point i really like your way to explain your point. Hi i want to know what is nlp and how i make a good nlp practitioner. if you have some idea then i am very curious abut to know.

    1. Andy Smith

      Well this is a strange post, Satya Prakash of ‘Transhuman Consulting’. You ask me what NLP is, when your website (link removed) is offering an ‘NLP Practitioner’ course. Top tip for anyone interested in training: if you want to do an NLP Practitioner course, make sure your trainer knows what NLP is first 😀

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