Search
Close this search box.

What are the Best NLP Books?

Best NLP Books

Table of Contents

What are the best NLP books? What is the single best NLP book? How do you get a good library together and save as much money as possible on the right resources?

These are all very fair questions and ones I get asked all the time. Sometimes people ask these questions before they invest, and sometimes not. It isn’t until the 5th book they purchase that people realize they keep buying different descriptions of the same techniques and patterns. In essence, they are getting different versions of the foundation or Practitioner level NLP. And often not very good or even correct ones.

Buying the Best NLP Books

I want to help you buy the right resources and save as much money as possible in the process.

After buying 10k USD in materials I discovered a good 97% of all resources out there cover the same Practitioner or foundational level techniques. This may seem like a ludicrous amount of money, but this did include entire trainings released on audio and video before it was possible to purchase anything downloadable.

I bought source materials from nearly all first-generation trainers, and the best among the second dating back to the 70s:

– Video (DVDs, CD-Rom, VHS video tapes, downloads)
– Audios (MP3s, CDs.)
– NLP books
– Manuals of the best schools (can not be purchased on Amazon.)

What are the best NLP books you should buy?

What are the best NLP books for you specifically, depends on 5 things:

1 – Did you take an NLP Practitioner training of 7 or more days?

An excellent trainer can cover all foundational materials in 7 days. A good trainer will have the ability to teach both the conscious as well as the unconscious mind using Neuro-Linguistic programming itself. Technically, a good manual isn’t really needed as long as the trainer is world-class.

One major problem in the industry is that most trainers aren’t world-class, and in some cases, they refrain from teaching materials that they do not master.

2 – Do you have a pre-taped online version of your training?

The most ideal way to cover all materials again is by using an online pre-taped version of your training and being able to turn to someone to ask questions after your class is over.

With a good manual, you are really golden.

3 – Did you get a good manual?

Sadly, most manuals out there assume that a lot of Neuro-linguistic programming is used to teach the unconscious mind. This means that the manual is secondary. In fact, some of the best trainers, have the worst manuals.

4 – Are you looking to buy 1 book, a few, or a serious library of resources?

By reading this article it will become clear what the best choice for you will be.

5 – You want to prepare for a training.

Some people really wish to have an advantage and want to prepare. Others believe they aren’t good learners. Which is often something their teachers told them, but I don’t necessarily agree with them.

What are the best NLP books?

Please note, by using the links inside this post I will earn a small affiliate commission. I fully and completely stand behind my choices and would recommend them not just to my students but also to my friends and family.

I did not take a training – nor will I soon

What I actually advise you to buy is not a Practitioner level manual that teaches Neuro-Linguistic programming. I recommend that you buy resources that allow you to experience the tools for yourself. In the end, you will learn more, as you will be forced to learn by doing and apply the tools to yourself through exercises and step-by-step processes you can follow.

The best NLP books for this purpose are:

NLP: New Technology of Achievement – Steve Andreas

If you are looking for materials that cover specific topics or presenting problems, I can recommend Paul McKenna’s books:

Freedom from Anxiety
I Can Make You Sleep
I Can Make You Thin®:
I Can Make You Confident
Positivity: Optimism, Resilience, Confidence and Motivation

When people tell me before a class that they already know Neuro-Linguistic Programming because of other courses they took or books they read, to be honest, I virtually see no real evidence of any active learning at all. This is because reading is very much different from learning. This is why I am not recommending resources that claim to teach you through reading.

If you want to buy a good introduction anyway, the best NLP book will be:

NLP: The Essential Guide to Neuro-Linguistic Programming – Tom Dotz

I did take a class – all you need to own

The below recommendations also apply to people who wish to buy a second version of a manual.

If you have the below 3 books, your library at a Practitioner level and in many ways even the Master Practitioner level is already complete.

The best Practitioner level book out there:

NLP: The Essential Guide to Neuro-Linguistic Programming – Tom Dotz

As previously mentioned, 97% of the materials out there covers the same information. With this resource you will have bought them all.

If you want to buy a book that contains a lot of resources, yet very few a repeat of what is taught inside an NLP Practitioner:

The Big Book of NLP, Expanded: 350+ Techniques, Patterns & Strategies of Neuro Linguistic Programming – Shlomo Vaknin

If you want to re-experience the techniques as a client:

NLP: New Technology of Achievement – Steve Andreas

Master Practitioner – I did take a class and want more techniques & tools

The below books I would only recommend buying if you are an NLP Master Practitioner. Otherwise, you are better off buying or doing the below:

– Live Master Practitioner training.
– Online Master Practitioner training.
– Online Practitioner training to re-do the class you took – shoot for mastering what you already learned. Rather than adding more.

Contact us if you are interested in receiving our brochure or syllabus for any of these. The syllabus contains detailed information about what is taught.

Here is my list for Master Practitioners

The Big Book of NLP, Expanded: 350+ Techniques, Patterns & Strategies of Neuro Linguistic Programming – Shlomo Vaknin

With 828 pages this is a huge resource, and the best NLP book if you want to have many techniques and patterns inside one single source. Most of which are not covered in a standard class. It is a bit of an investment, but well worth it if you are serious about going deeper.

Adventures With Time Lines – Bob Bodenhamer

This is the only resource worth buying when it comes to NLP timelines. The rest of the books out there on the subject are really disappointing, and not worth your investment. This book is an invaluable resource and really one of my top recommendations overall.

Words That Change Minds: The 14 Patterns for Mastering the Language of Influence – Shelle Charvet

Really the only book worth buying about the meta-programs (which is not the same as the meta-model.) This is a wonderful resource and has a lot of great examples.

Core Transformation: Reaching the Wellspring Within – Connirea Andreas & Tamara Andreas

This technique is by far one of the most powerful tools out there if executed well. It should be mandatory to be taught inside a Master Practitioner training where class sizes are smaller. It will be too deep and personal for large classes.

Monsters and Magical Sticks: There’s No Such Thing As Hypnosis? – Steven Heller

This is the one and only true recommended resource I have for learning hypnosis combined with NLP as a companion to a good manual. I can not say enough good things about this work on hypnosis.

What is the best NLP book by Tony Robbins?

Many people discover Neuro-Linguistic Programming through Tony Robbins. He is like me, part of the second generation of NLP experts (the first generation is now well into their late 70s and 80s.) Tony Robbins became famous using the tools and techniques typically taught in a Practitioner class.

Here are my top recommendations:

Awaken the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical, and Financial Destiny!

My second recommendation would be Unlimited Power. If you plan to buy both, I can recommend buying his set:

Tony Robbins Collection

This contains:
– Awaken The Giant Within
– Unlimited Power
– Money Master the Game

What is the best NLP book for coaches?

To be honest, all resources out there that claim to be specific to coaches I didn’t find a great investment, boring, and again a repeat of a basic manual. I think you are much better off purchasing the books I referenced for those who never intend to take a training, plus the ones written by Tony Robbins if you wish to have a good idea of how to apply the language patterns and techniques on real clients.

If I must give you a recommendation there is only one:

Coaching with NLP: How to be a Master Coach – Joseph O’Connor

A great investment to see how coaching in NLP is done by purchasing the Paul McKenna books mentioned in the section for people who never took an NLP training or even the best NLP books by Tony Robbins. These are all written from the perspective of a coach talking to a client.


I want to prepare for NLP training & received an online version of the class I will take

Some companies care about the post-course success of their students and offer an online version of the live training they are about to take free of charge. I do as well.

Be sure to ask your training company for this before you sign-up for a class. While you are at it, ask about the specific details of their post-course support. You should have access to a trainer for questions after the training, not just access to other students. What does it cost to retake your class? These are all important questions.

If you do have an online version of the training, I would:
– Do not use this prior to the class, but rather after.
– Ask the trainer what highlights are more content driven, rather than about learning techniques. Only focus on the more content-driven information.

I want to prepare for an NLP training & will not get an online version of the class I will take

If you intend to take training in the future, the best NLP book to buy is, none at all. It is extremely difficult to gain active knowledge of the tools through books, and the risk of misunderstanding is incredibly high. Though well intended, for this reason, I would also not recommend preparing for training.

What if you weren’t a good student in your formal academic education? Do not worry, you will not have any advantages or disadvantages when you take a live training.

The best NLP books with historical significance & a must-have for a serious library

To be honest, once you have purchased all resources mentioned already, there is nothing else I can seriously recommend. You are better off studying the free resources on this website, our youtube channel, items for sale in the Global NLP shop, or going through the metals you bought again.

Books of historical significance you may want to look into owning, yet are not the easiest of reads:

Frogs into Princes: Neuro Linguistic Programming – Richard Bandler & John GrinderA seminar transcript, my copy is about to fall apart as I dissected every word inside of it.

The Structure of Magic, Vol. 1: A Book About Language and Therapy – Richard Bandler & John Grinder
This is a original resource where the meta-model is explained, only buy this if you are a die hard who must own all source materials. Don’t buy volume 2, until you have mastered volume 1. This book is not for the faint hearted.

Patterns of the Hypnotic Techniques of Milton H. Erickson, M.D., Volume 2 – Richard Bandler & John Grinder
The milton model and not for the faint hearted.

Let us know what you think the best NLP books are.