Some NLP treatment paradigms

(See Steve Lankton’s Practical Magic for full details of the first 3)

Collapsing anchors (for connecting fresh resources)

  1. Retrieve the unwanted experience / memory, with full visual, auditory, kinaesthetic and language associations (VAKL). Anchor it to a physical stimulus, e.g. a touch on one hand.
  2. Retrieve necessary resources from another context, with equally vivid VAKL. Anchor them to a different stimulus.
  3. Return to ‘problem state’. ‘Fire’ both anchors, and hold them. Invite patient to allow problem state to unfold “to a new and good conclusion”. Watch for signs of activity followed by rest, e.g. breathing patterns, rapid eye movements, ideomotor cues.
  4. ‘Future pace’ – imagine in detail how the future will be now that the problem has been overcome.

Dissociation paradigm (for disturbing experiences)

  1. Retrieve experience of security in the here and now, with full VAKL, and anchor it.
  2. Keep the security constant, and “see and hear” only that disturbing experience “over there”.
  3. Tell the patient “Let a part of yourself float over there, and just watch and learn”.
  4. Re-run the experience you wish to dissociate, while activating the ‘security’ anchor. Allow time.
  5. Re-integrate first the ‘security’ part, then the ‘ over there observer’.
  6. ‘Future pace’ (mental rehearsal of the problem-free future), while holding ‘security’ anchor.

Phobia paradigm

  1. Retrieve the fearful experience, and anchor it.
  2. Hold the anchor, and search chronologically back through memories of the problem, from current to earliest.
  3. Interrupt.
  4. Retrieve memories / images of resources needed for change, inventing them if necessary. Anchor the resources.
  5. Return chronologically back through the history, from earliest to most recent, keeping the ‘resources’ anchor constant. Allow time.
  6. Future pace, and test.

Bereavement paradigm

  1. Visualise a black-and-white image of the lost person.
  2. Turn up an imaginary ‘colour control’, until the image is in full colour. Indicate when complete.
  3. Transform the ‘still’ photograph into a moving video or film, in which the lost person is in full colour and active. Allow time, and indicate when complete.
  4. When patient is comfortable with the moving coloured imagery, retrieve peace and calm. Anchor it.
  5. Future pace, inviting patient to activate the ‘peace’ anchor to introduce comfort if necessary.
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