NLP Anchoring – A Few Final Considerations

NLP Anchoring – A Few Final Considerations

By Intellteacher



With regard to the NLP Anchor what has been posted and somewhat discussed thus far applies to creating, setting, activating, and using Anchors established in the Self. The next series of article will address the issue of Anchoring in others and this gives rise to some caveats. First, despite all the “Dark Side” hype surrounding the (mis)use of NLP compelling others to “do thy will” is neither possible nor desirable. There are some allegedly NLP based programs advertised on the Internet that make outlandish and completely bogus claims of teaching a person how to be in “control” of another person. Suffice it to say that even the most skilled of NLP practitioners is not a Svengali.   


Secondly, successfully employing Anchors in other people is based exclusively on the process of creating rapport which necessarily requires some semblance of a mutually cooperative environment.  Finally, Anchoring in others is a process of shaping another person’s perspective so that they “see” a matter from your point of view and in this way the process is one of working toward agreement and not something coercive in nature.


Returning to NLP Anchors installed in the Self the recent articles provided the reader with some specific steps to take and more importantly revealed the wide range of potential processes.  The articles work from a single hypothetical situation and if a reader will take the time to carefully consider what has been presented a whole host of cross-stimulus and cross-memory arrangements will emerge.  So long as the general process in terms of steps to be taken in sequence is followed the possible arrangements for creating useful Anchors is limited only by the reader’s imagination.


The author returns once again to a dominant and vitally important factor regarding NLP and that is PRACTICE-PRACTICE-PRACTICE. It is suggested that any practice be “chunked down” and done in small time increments, e.g., 10 – 20 minutes per day. Short duration, high quality NLP work will produce superior outcomes – results – improvement to “marathon” NLP practice sessions. The idea is to keep the practice fresh, interesting, and enjoyable rather than the practice session become perceived as a burden to be endured.


All readers are invited to post up any questions, problems or concerns they may have with regard to the above. It would be good to read of the successes encountered as well.


The next series of articles deals with the subject of NLP Anchoring in others and will include some necessary prior considerations before delving into the subject proper.


@intellteacher 2009

NLP Anchoring_The Basics Part 3

NLP Anchoring_The Basics Part 3

By IntellTeacher


If you have been following along by way of actual practice sufficient time has passed since the presentation of Part 2 for you to move forward in achieving mastery of Anchoring. If you have been simply reading the Anchoring articles and not practicing then it is suggested that you engage in some practice of the method before continuing to read further. It cannot be stressed too often that NLP is an activity, a way of creating an expanded and ultimately more useful and productive World view. In order to get anywhere with NLP the key is to “do” NLP on a daily basis and the doing need not be some herculean effort; a few minutes each day will suffice.


Thus far, Anchoring has been presented in the form of a hypothetical … by way of a context specific example, namely, a pending deadline for presenting at a conference – meeting. Now, staying with the example, the sequence of considerations and creating the context form employing the Anchor is re-visited and the process back engineered in some measure.


As previously stated, the author finds fault with the method of learning NLP in a setting divorced from the environment of intended use. Using a sports analogy the main defect noted in most NLP instructional settings is the difference between practice and playing in the big game. The author asserts that unless a person routinely works with NLP in real time and in real World they will experience a significant amount of failure when attempting to go from formally learned skills to skill set in application. The attending sensory field in real World is much greater, more complex, and intrusive than that typically found in an artificial learning environment. Therefore, sensory overload ensues, the “noise to signal” ration becomes overwhelming and the NLP technique fails.


By “chunking down” the time spent in NLP up tempo mode a series of small successes can be obtained. The successes experienced gives rise to a corresponding increase in confidence pertaining to the NLP skill a person is working with at the time. In the beginning, it is advised to proceed slowly and switch out of NLP mode a few minutes before you think you should. It is far better to end the session early, when the success level is still high, than it is to push on and run the risk of ending a session in failure. The Human Mind (and Body) tends to remember the most recent experience and in the instant case that translates to what was last experienced. By way of example, if you have set the arbitrary time mark for operating in NLP mode at 15 minutes for a session and are getting good outcomes – results at the 10 minute mark, then cease that session and enjoy your success.


In order to become highly skilled in an activity it is suggested that a person frequently work with the fundamentals up through the mid stage of their development. Master the basics and the more complex will be easier to learn. The author often times asks a prospective student a question and the answer to which determines their suitability as a student. The question is this: “How many ways do you know how to use a hammer?” If they answer “To drive in nails and pull out nails.” they are dismissed and encouraged to think about it for awhile and then return if they still want to be considered for acceptance as a student. Much like NLP, a hammer is a tool, and the total range of potential uses far exceeds that revealed in response to superficial consideration. As NLP is on one level a highly refined skill set focused on perception, the superficial will not suffice and those who insist on remaining in low level observational fashion are ill suited for NLP.


With Anchoring, the author advocates for creating and becoming skilled in using no more than a handful of Anchors. The author’s rationale will be presented at the very end of this article. Hint: How many ways do you know how to use a hammer? Moving forward with context being the primary concern the locus of emphasis shifts and context becomes everything. In the instructional example a meeting was the context; the arena of choice so to speak. Rather than continue to focus on a “meeting” the concern now switches to identifying – extracting the salient features of an event we term and recognize as a meeting. You are going to “chunk” it down. Some specific considerations to prompt readers in this process are as follows and require careful consideration of the setting in the example. Your considerations take place in real time as created by your Mind, e.g., you are now “there” in the meeting:


Note – Please write down your first response to each question below leaving 3 – 5 lines blank under each response you provide.


1.         How does the general environment appear to you?

2.         Who is present in the meeting?

3.         What is the significance of the meeting in terms of your career?

4.         How do you envision the information presented by you in the meeting will be used – evaluated by those present?

5.         What is the total amount of time you have to make your presentation?

6.         Do you think – feel – believe that time allotted is sufficient for you to make a thorough and well received presentation?


Set aside your written responses to the questions for a time and go about your day. Later that same day revisit your responses and immediately before doing so take a few minutes to calm – quiet your Mind setting aside all concerns for the moment. Now, read each of the questions and your response in turn. You will make notes of how you “feel” about the question proper and your response … focus on “feelings” and not thoughts, e.g., nervous, worried, apprehensive, etc. Please notice that the example responses are restricted to negative feelings and there is a reason for this being the case. At this stage of NLP development readers are advised to work with things that present as problems or entail an element of difficulty. Make your focus overcoming hurdles in the early going as improving in areas that are is some way deficient or lacking will give you the most dramatic and positive outcomes. Later, you can change the focus to refining and improving those things that you all ready do well. For the time being, work to resolve the difficulties. Write down the feelings that naturally come into being in response to each question and your response.


At the conclusion of the drill above you have successfully identified and extracted the “heavy” elements of the experience and are prepared to fully address same through the use of your previously created NLP Anchor. You want to immediately proceed to shaping your internal perceptions toward a more positive posture. This is accomplished by going through your list once more only this time close your eyes after reviewing the final entry for each question, the list of feelings, and “fire off” your Anchor, pause for a few moments and then open your eyes. You will do this exercise for each question in turn.


Once finished set the list aside and return to your normal routine. You want to repeat this drill once a day for the next 2 days giving you a total of 3 sessions. At the end of the 3rd session you will have generalized the usefulness of your single Anchor to real World settings in which similar circumstances present, e.g., experiences characterized by stress, pressure, anxiety, etc. This means you now know how to use a hammer in far more ways than simply driving and pulling nails.


@intellteacher 2009

NLP Anchoring_The Basics Part 2

NLP Anchoring – The Basics


By IntellTeacher

Part 2


In Part 1 a hypothetical situation was considered as a way of examining and learning about the NLP Anchor. The Anchor was created by linking a specific olfactory experience with a more generalized state of being. It is important to keep in mind is that although the memory of the desired state experience was highly specific in terms of detail the more generalized “feeling” is what was being utilized in order to create the Anchor.


As previously mentioned, the author contends that NLP is in “doing” rather than a predominantly academic exercise. The article moves forward with the understanding that readers are in fact “doing” NLP as set forth in Part 1 in order to properly follow along and more importantly, develop skill.


The author has encountered many instances of NLP practitioners presenting NLP Anchoring in an instructional setting and that is as far as they go … literally. The technique is taught, perhaps a variety of possible sensory input modalities for creating Anchors are provided by way of example, and that concludes the whole presentation. At a minimum, there two additional considerations which are the subject of this article, namely, setting and testing (verifying, validating) the Anchor.


In context, “setting” an Anchor means to repeatedly activate the Anchor sequence in order to access the desired state and this is not something to be done without structure in the early stages of developing authentic NLP skill. As Dr. Win Wenger of Accelerated Learning and Creative Problem Solving fame is fond of noting “You get more of what you reinforce.” Therefore, in order to facilitate acquiring real skill in creating and using Anchors it is important to frequently experience success in working with same. The author terms this approach “Setting up people for success.”


If you carefully read the paragraph above you will have noticed that I wrote “… repeatedly activate the Anchor sequence …” rather than “… repeatedly activate the Anchor.” Another point of divergence in the instant approach and that typically encountered in NLP is the concept of “gradual shaping” toward a desire goal. Gradual shaping is a step wise process in which a person moves toward a goal in small increments … a series of “min-successes” if you prefer. In the instant case this plays as repeating the Anchor sequence in series of 3s with a new memory being called upon that contains the same or similar feelings being brought into conscious awareness at specific intervals. This is one way of causing the Anchor to generalize with a corresponding level of usefulness to you. The reason for the author emphasizing generalization is yet another point of departure from most NLP learning instruction.


The vast majority of NLP instruction is delivered in a vacuum as the actual learning environment is contextually different from that found in real World. What tends to happen, and the main reason why so many fail to experience success with NLP techniques, is that a disconnect is created. The learning environment and real World do not mesh or do not mesh well enough to facilitate success. Let’s take our present hypothetical meeting as an example. You attend a NLP work shop and learn the Anchoring technique. While in the work shop you experience some measure of success in creating and activating Anchors. You then go back to real World with your new assortment of techniques and despite following a protocol exactly as taught and learned, it fails to deliver the full value you hoped to derive from the technique. What happened? Most NLP adepts will tell you that you simply are not yet skilled enough to “hit the mark” the majority of times and that more practice will increase the incidence of success. Although this is “true” enough, it is also an indirect way to resolve the issue.


For those who have attended a seminar or two the question is asked: How do you generally find the environment? Think about this carefully for a moment. Typically, the environment is low level to non-existent threat based, people are warm and welcoming, and the seminar presenter exerts a great deal of control over the elements of the environment, e.g., lighting, seating configuration, breaks in presentation, pace of material presentation, etc. Juxtapose this with real World and the many disconnects become glaringly obvious. Generalizing the Anchor is a way of bridging from a learning environment to the World at large. By varying the memory being used to summon up the desired state a person avoids the trap of becoming literally anchored to a highly specific context (one memory).


The author suggests taking 3 memories and going through the Anchor sequence 3 times with each memory in succession. The “Rule of 3s” might be a topic for a future article, but for now, simply follow the prescribed routine. After having done the 3 bouts of 3 you are now ready to proceed to the validation – verification part of Anchoring and we will stay with our hypothetical presentation example. For the sake of discussion let us say that the Anchor was created the night before the scheduled presentation and the presentation is to take place at 10:00 a.m. that following morning. On your way to your office you will most likely encounter several people and perhaps exchange the greeting of the day or some other social pleasantries. Before beginning your trip to the office take your satchel out of the baggie and rub one of your fingers against the satchel. You want to get some of the scent on a finger. While speaking with another person, and at random, fire off the Anchor by casually raising the hand with the satchel scent bearing finger and passing your hand under your nose. Think of how a person looks rubbing their chin for a moment as they contemplate … a snap shot of “The Thinker” so to speak. Then, briefly turn inward to focus on the physical sensations you experience. The feelings that you wanted do in fact manifest … do this 2 – 3 times if the situations arise and time permits although once is enough. You have now provided your mind with a form of proof that the Anchor works which will exert a quieting and calming influence on the negative inner-talk we all tend to experience when under stress … and this is really just a form of confidence.


@intellteacher 2009