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How do you reference time?

Are you contemplating things that happened in the past? Are you focusing on what is happening in the moment? Or are you planning your future?

Time Orientation: Past, Present or Future

Past-oriented: You are able to access previous experiences with ease. You tend to be focused on the past and find it challenging to plan and deal well with change. You maybe critical of new ideas and proposals, reflecting on other times similar ideas didn’t work.

Present-oriented: You are very oriented in the present moment. You may tend to get completely immersed in what you are doing at any given time. The extreme scenario is you may not consider the past or future at all, limiting your perspective.

Future-oriented: You are really good at planning. If you are on the extreme end of this continuum, you focus primarily on the future, often leading to shortsightedness from not referencing past learning.

For rapport building and communication that will create a deeper understanding, use the same time references as your client.


  1. Reading this post I can tell very easily that I´m a past oriented person, the good part is that I do have great memory and I remember events very accurately even when from many years ago, the bad thing is I do get stuck in the past a lot and I do put lots of the past experience to say exactly what will go wrong now and later, so I pass many opportunities.

  2. This and most meta programs explain a lot of how people function, in fact by reading you can tell people you know that are past oriented, present or future oriented, and can tell what they need to know about the meta programs they less to help them become more functional.

  3. The good news is that you can change your internal orientation to time – a good Master Practitioner of NLP can help you with that and build a bigger present and more enticing future.

  4. I would love to learn how to cope with my husband a little better in this meta program cause I´m past oriented and he is future oriented, it is kind of hard sometimes even though we get along very well.

  5. I like to think I’m mostly focused on the future but sometimes it can be difficult not to think about what has happened in the past.

  6. I am definitely more present minded than anything else. I am always concerned with doing things now and not later, even when later becomes now. I always feel behind no matter what I am doing or how much time I have to do it.

  7. find it interesting the recommendation that is made in this post about using the same time the client, since everyone has different preferences, hence there are people who are trapped in the past, some present and some more in future . Although everyone is located in a metaprogram, from my point of view, it is better to live in the present, past and future pace and not if vendra.El past can generate guilt and anguish future. But it is my view, and I realize this, the test midsonar helps me locate the preferences of my clients and work from there with them.

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