Time Line Therapy was developed by Tad James and Wyatt Woodsmall and is a trademarked “brand” for a particular training. Unconscious decisions we made in the past can have a huge impact on our current and future experiences. For example, you may have decided at five to never be wealthy. The model shows how people relate to time and let us change how we remember our past experiences.
Dealing with time
You may be surprised that we all have a strategy for dealing with and representing time.
If you think about it, this is obvious. We need to know whether we did something yesterday or 3 months ago. How would we know whether we had done something in the past or were imagining we would do it in the future?
People generally code time spatially (in space). For many people different times are represented in some kind of sequence. We think about older memories as though they are further away. Memories that are more recent seem closer.
A timeline is a way of representing this sequence of memories. Then we can predict where a person would locate a particular time. This doesn’t mean it’s a real line, but it is a good metaphor that many can relate to.
Different types of time line affect a person’s experiences at a high level. You don’t necessarily have one way of sorting time in all areas of life. For instance, you may have different ways of sorting and relating to time depending on whether you are at work or on vacation.
Uses of Time Line Therapy
The most useful way of sorting and relating to time is for it to change when the context changes. Making out is more enjoyable when you are in the present moment. You can meet deadlines better when you are aware of how much time is passing.
Changing the way you sort time can be more powerful than any number of time management courses.
Other uses of time line therapy involve uncovering unconscious limitations and recoding painful experiences or emotions. Submodalities work with a timeline can alter our future possibilities for example by creating a brighter future.