NLP Anchoring - what are anchors and how can they be used?
- Chris Harrison
- 10th January 2009
In NLP, anchoring is the process of associating a state of mind with a specific trigger. This is something that happens all the time in every day life, the only difference is that in NLP anchoring is more methodical.
For instance, we all have specific songs that remind of us particular memories. For some reason one particular heavy metal performer always reminds me of the computer game Killer Gorilla - simply because as a child I got the computer, computer game, and album for christmas one year and spent weeks sat at my parents dining table, playing the game and listening to the album.
Now this kind of anchor is quite harmless (if you leave my taste in music out of the equation), and has no real effect even though it is wonderfully reminiscent.
When an NLP practitioner sets an anchor they are doing it for a specific reason of which there can be many. For instance:
- Anchor a positive state so that when the client sees something that usually scares them, the anchor can be fired to create a more positive event.
- Anchor a negative state and fire it when talking about a competitors product - naughty!
- Anchor a trance state so that a client can be 'fast tracked' into trance.
- Anchor a positive state to yourself so that a client/interviewer/future 'friend' is in a good mood around you and likes to have you around.
NLP Anchors are set in many different ways.
The most important issues are that the state is distinct and powerful enough, and that the anchor is set very specifically.
NLP Anchors can be set in many ways, such as by touch, a particular word, smell (very powerful), sound, movement, or even tone of voice (as an adult, does your mothers voice still have a very powerful effect on you when she's angry?)
If you really want to learn to be good with NLP anchoring, its worth spending some time watching other NLP practitioners working with them. Ross Jeffries can be very blatant with them. Richard Bandler on the other hand, can be so subtle that he seems to have finished his intervention before he appeared to start.
The article Create Powerful Anchors using NLP explains the process, and teaches exactly how to use anchors.