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18 Aug, 2008

NLP – How to Feel Amazing Instantly

Posted by: The Coaching Academy In: NLP Articles

Wish you could recreate feelings as and when you want to? Ever wished you could keep a positive feeling for longer? Just follow these simple steps using Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP).

Walking along the seafront with my partner Sara one recent Saturday morning was wonderful: the warmth of the sun on my face, the salty sea air smell, the smiles on other people’s faces, the shouts and laughter of excited children – my senses were almost overwhelmed.

Later, after my friends had teased me about my pink forehead, I told them I was really looking forward to summer and as I spoke, I felt the warmth of the sun on me, imagined the fun I was going to have on the beach, remembered the smell, the amazing feeling of joy that I got from being there. FACT: This Is A Natural Phenomenon That Anyone Can Replicate. It’s a natural phenomenon we can replicate with NLP techniques. NLP stands for Neuro-Linguistic Programming, which is just a methodology for helping to make changes. The time I had spent on the seafront earlier that day had acted as an anchor for the wonderful experience which immediately followed it. The next time I saw and heard the experience, albeit in my mind, my brain started to produce the intense physical responses that it ‘knew’ were coming next.

What Is An Anchor? Why Is It So Useful?

In the field of NLP, an anchor is any representation in the human nervous system that triggers any other representation. For instance, the word ‘sex’ will immediately trigger images and sounds associated with that word. The word ‘fire!’ will trigger different associations. (I am not too sure which of those will create the most intense feelings of panic though!) In these cases, the anchors are words but anchors aren’t confined to words. With NLP, we identify that anchors can operate in any representational system (sight, sound, feeling, smell, and taste).

Tonal: For example, the special way a certain person has of saying your name. My mother shouting my name when I was a child often signalled the fact she had discovered something I had done and that meant trouble for me!

Tactile: The sensation of a reassuring hug can rekindle wonderful feelings.

Visual: I recently had lunch with friends and several of them commented on the jacket I was wearing. Now, whenever they see it, it reminds them of those comments and makes them smile.

Olfactory: Smelling certain foods being cooked can suddenly make you remember the school cafeteria, for example.

Gustatory: The taste of your favourite food can make you remember how you felt when you had it before.

While the anchor I created for the sea front was unintentional, it is possible for you to use this NLP technique to anchor yourself intentionally.

Feel Good Whenever You Want To?

This simple but powerful NLP technique enables you to have access to the states and resources you want, when you want them. To make the most of anchoring with NLP, it is important to really engage in the experience – make it wonderfully vivid in your mind – and put effort into recalling it the first few times that you activate your NLP anchor. The use of your thumb and forefinger is an example of a tactile anchor, but you can use any representation to anchor something for yourself or someone else.

To get a ‘strong’ anchor for an experience, it is important to remember the following:

a) Ensure that you have a powerful example of the experience to work with.

b) Anchor in as many representational systems as possible: Use sounds, images, feelings, sensations as much as you possibly can.

c) Set the anchor just before the experience peaks.

d) When you activate the anchor, do it accurately. Be as precise as you can!

e) With tactile (using feelings and sensations) anchors, pulsing the anchor can help to maintain or enhance the experience.

Now set your own anchor

Step One: Think of an occasion when you had a highly pleasurable experience. See what you saw then (looking out through your own eyes), hear what you heard and feel what you felt. As you feel the sensations increase in intensity, squeeze the thumb and forefinger of your left hand gently together for a few moments then release them. Now ‘break your state’ (for example, remember what shoe you put on first today). Squeeze your thumb and forefinger together again, gently pulsing them. The state will return.

Step Two: Identify something that someone you know already does, and create a subtle anchor. Set the anchor while they are doing the activity. Later, use (or ‘fire’) your NLP anchor and see what happens. If they do the thing you anchored, then it worked!

Step Three: When you experience something you want to have more of, anchor it.

Use your NLP skills wisely – it’s a powerful technique. In the meantime, become aware of when it is being used on you: advertisers, politicians and stand-up comedians all know the power of NLP anchors and use them with great cunning (and to great effect). Awareness with NLP is the key – have fun.

By best-selling author Adam Eason

5 Responses to "NLP – How to Feel Amazing Instantly"

1 | ann kavanagh

August 23rd, 2008 at 1:45 pm


i wonder how many negative ‘anchors’ we set in a lifetime. how do these get undone or overlaid?

2 | Lee

November 17th, 2008 at 5:01 pm



You are very right and an example of a negative anchor is a phobia and indeed there is a technique that NLP practitioners use that collapses anchors. This results in the trigger is no longer conected to the negative reaction. Sounds simple?…it is and very powerful. Hope this helps.

3 | Richard Hood

February 25th, 2009 at 8:01 am


Yes good memories are a great way to feel good, that’s why its no good holding grudges or reliving bad ones, as all you do is hurt yourself.

I love memories of lovely smells. When i go back to England the place of my childhood until 12 i just love the smell i get when walking past the chocolate section of supermarkets. Funny you would think that Australian chocolate would smell the same but it doesn’t.

4 | Esther Abwa

December 16th, 2009 at 5:49 am


Thank you. I now understand what NLP stands for after
reading your explanations and examples. I would consider it as a choice, perhaps after further information,and acceptance of my application on the free
Personal Coaching Course.

5 | Graham Jordan

December 5th, 2010 at 6:31 pm


NLP starts with positive affirmations. I’ve had a lot of success with NLP by setting positive goals and affirmations – constant reminders of a highly positive nature. I use the nifty Affirmations Ticker on my computer to provide a consistent stream of positive affirmations. The results have been very beneficial.

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