I have studied NLP at what I guess you’d say is an intermediate level, first with Landmark Education and then with Christopher Howard. However in the courses I’ve done, there hasn’t been a lot of theory. There’s not actually a lot of acknowledgment among the new-thought, self-help gurus that their teachings are rooted in NLP principles and a school of psychology that seems to have come out of Santa Cruz. Formation of this body of knowledge involved, but did not begin with, Milton Erickson and his practice of auto-suggestive hypnosis as storytelling.
Storytellers understand the power of the word.
This book is a good survey of NLP techniques. It contains self-help exercises. However, you will quickly see why you will be more successful by working with a coach. Having read this, I think the coach doesn’t have to be a guru at all. You just need a competent practitioner who is somewhat objective (not a family member), who can hold you to the tasks and help you anchor the results. Nothing about it is all that mysterious or special. Quite the opposite — it’s practical and fundamental to human behavior.