top of page
  • Writer's pictureTom Robinson

NLP lessons 6 & 7 a recap of 'Anchoring' as we head towards the end of the course!

Updated: Jan 28, 2022

I have been recapping my NLP course on the blog over the last few weeks as I study to become a practitioner, but unfortunately, I have stalled somewhat since writing the fifth post in this series because I’ve been suffering from shingles and have had to prioritse my health!

I am still suffering with residual itchiness and my sleep has been compromised as a result, so today I am adding a brief recap of lessons 6 & 7 for my own understanding, and to give anyone else interested in NLP some more information on a few of the techniques.


We are now well into the various techniques used to help change unwanted behaviours, and have spent most of the last two lessons practicing how to perform them.

After learning how to change the submodalities to alter the internal representation systems (Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic, Olfactory, Gustatory), in the last lesson through practices such as ‘Swish Pattern’ and ‘Dissociative techniques’, we then moved on to three processes under the bracket of ‘Anchoring’.

Anchoring is what psychologists would call ‘conditioning’. Most people have heard of this technique through the story of Pavlov’s dogs who he conditioned to salivate by pairing a bell and food until they salivated on hearing the bell alone (for animal lovers not a huge revelation, but the principle is important)!

The aim of anchoring is to get the client into a more resourceful state.

The three techniques are:

  • Resource Anchors (used for someone who wants to feel more confident).

  • Collapsed Anchors (used to neutralise a minor negative state).

  • Chaining Anchors (used when the current state is far away from where you want it to be and ‘stepping stones’ or intermediary steps are necessary to get there.

To explain slightly differently, Anchoring is essentially a form of operant conditioning whereby any time a person is in an associated, intense state, if at the peak of that experience, a specific stimulus is applied then the two will be linked neurologically.

The process of Anchoring can be remembered through the mnemonic R A C E

R – recall

A – anchor

C – change

E – evoke state

Resource Anchor

The resource anchor is an anchor that the client can ‘bank’ on one knuckle as a ‘go to’ at any given time.

An example would be a ‘confidence’ anchor which could be used just before delivering an important presentation when the client wishes to feel their most confident.

The anchor is paired with the knuckle by firstly asking the client to shut their eyes and vividly relive a time in their lives when they were especially confident.

They must feel, see, and hear the experience as intensely as possible and when they are at a peak intensity the anchor is applied to the knuckle with a paired, firm, pressing on the knuckle.

‘Stacking’ can also be used to increase the effect by using another example of a time when they felt particularly confident and then repeating the process.

Collapse Anchors

Collapsing Anchors is used to get rid of negative or non-resourceful states and replace them with a positive resourceful state.

Collapsing anchors allows you to encounter a situation that used to cause a negative reaction and then avoid it, as well as subsequently responding very positively towards it.

The same basic principle for Anchoring applies.

Several resourceful states are anchored on one knuckle. The unwanted negative state is anchored once on a separate knuckle.

Fire all anchors at the same time until they peak (client will be confused between states which is the aim).

Release the negative anchor.

Hold positive anchor for a further 5 seconds.


‘How do you feel about that old state?’


‘Can you imagine a time in the future when you might be in a similar situation? What happens?’

Chaining Anchors

Chaining is a technique that is employed when the desired/resource state is significantly different from the present (stuck) state.

By establishing a few anchors, you are able to fire them off one after another, thus changing the state as each emotion is at its peak.

An example of when to use this technique would be when trying to move the client from procrastination to motivation. The jump is too big to do in one step so intermediary steps are necessary.

These could be ‘determination’ and ‘positivity’.

Anchor each state and break state in between each one.

Test each state.

Chain each state together releasing each previous anchor after applying the next one.

Test: fire present state anchor. Client should end up in final state.


‘Can you think of a time in the future when this situation might happen. In the past you would have procrastinated. What happens now?’

We also discussed a few other examples of using Anchoring including The Ring of Power.

In this technique you anchor a number of powerful states to an imaginary ring on the floor by running the client through the anchoring steps as they step into and out of the ring.

The ring can then be shrunk down and picked up from the floor and worn as either an imaginary ring or bracelet.

As usual with NLP a very wacky concept but if it helps people then who cares!

Today we are looking at how to put a session together then it will be the end of the course!

I have my first two victims lined up for ‘mates rates’ sessions, then I should be ready to start properly helping people!

Thanks for reading,

Speak to you soon,


108 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page