Strange question, but what is your relationship with time like?  

Some people have a hard time with time – being late, rushed, waiting until a deadline, getting anxious, creating stress, and getting lost in time. And other people, are good friends with time. They manage time well, prioritize, get things done, are early, know how much time is left, and plan well.  

We all know that time doesn’t actually exist. Well, sure, the sun goes around the earth every 24 hours, but the concept of time is a man-made aspect. Your mind and body don’t know or understand time. If there was any sense of time, your mind and body would be ‘now’.  

Think about a baby for a moment. It needs to be trained to sleep through the night and to eat at certain times. Until that training occurs, it sleeps and eats whenever it wants and whenever it can. At some point in the first few years of life, we start to learn and understand the concept of time.  

In fact, once you learn time, did you know that your mind created a specific code so that it could tell the difference between the past, present, and future? Otherwise, it would all be jumbled up. Your mind actually has this coding for everything – every belief, concept, idea, memory, and everything.  

Have you ever seen someone say “I’ll get to that later” and use their hand to motion to the left or in front of them? Or “oh, that’s behind me” -meaning the past? This is a tiny insight into how a person codes their timeline. Just like history has a timeline, so do you – it is your mind’s coding to separate the past, present, and future so you know if something is already complete or if it is yet to come.  

In NLP we call these coding Submodalities – the building blocks or coding of our mind. Our Submodalities are the sub-components of our 5 senses. These micro details of our thoughts have memories coded in certain ways – some memories are in color while some are in black and white. Sometimes we see or feel an image in our mind that is big and others are small. When talking about the Submodalities of time, time is generally coded in location, direction, distance, and size.  

For example, a person may store or code their past about 2 feet to the left, they’re now directly in front of them and their future another 2 feet to their right. Another person may store their past behind them, there now inside of them, and their future in front of them.   

The mind is very metaphorical and can tell us a little about the relationship people have with time. If someone’s past is too close to them (distance), often they feel pressured by the past. Similarly, if someone’s future is too close, they may feel pressured by the future. If the size of a person’s now (energetically speaking) is small, there might be a sense of overwhelm, and too big the person may be bored. We’ve also found that if a person’s future is higher than eye level (location) they can relate to things like “my goals are just outside of my grasp”, “It’s like an uphill climb to get what I want”, “I feel like I take 2 steps forward and one step back”.  

Through various studies, NLP researchers have found that if a person stores their entire timeline outside of their body, they will naturally be good at time management, organizing time, being on time, and completing tasks. In fact, if your timeline is all outside of your body, you probably tend to take time personally. That is, if someone is late for a meeting or appointment with you – you take it personally about you.  

Conversely, this same NLP research has found that if any of your timelines passes inside of your body, then you may get lost in time, manage time ineffectively and be prone to being late, procrastination, and doing things at the last minute.  

When you learn NLP you will not only learn about your specific coding to how you store time, you’ll be able to alter and change it as you desire.  If the time used to be a pressure point and that isn’t useful, you can change it. If you want more time in the now – you can create it. If you want time to move quicker, you can change the size of how you now is stored. Amazingly and easily, when you learn NLP you will create a better, more fluid relationship with time.