Motivation IV

Check out our previous motivation strategies: NLP Motivation I, NLP Motivation II, NLP Motivation III.

Start taking action by overcoming the criteria that get in the way.

Woman holding a trophy icon and using a laptop

Select a behavior that is desired, but not taken.

Identify a behavior the person says they want to do, but does not do for some reason. Place it in location #1. 

This can also be something they want to stop doing, such as smoking or biting nails or yelling at their kids.

Identify the criteria for taking the desired action.

Have the person clarify the values and meta-outcomes behind their desire to take the action. 

Ask why they want to take the action, and then, why that outcome itself is important to them. 

What you’re looking for here is the ‘toward’ motivation. 

In this step they actually begin the change-work. Place these in location #2.

Identify the criteria that stop the desired behavior.

Solicit the criteria for not doing the behavior. 

What stops them? 

Identify the values and meta-outcomes that support NOT taking the desired action. Put these in location #3. 

Try to identify values that are at a higher level than those found in 

Remember that the hierarchy is set by the person you’re working with, not by your own values hierarchy or logic. 

We assume that such values or criteria exist, because they are overcoming the values that the person has for taking the desired action.

Generate higher-level criteria that support taking the desired action.

Determine what higher-level criteria can override the criteria in location #3 in favor of taking the desired action. 

For example, if position #3 values like relaxation are getting in the way of smoking cessation, ask what values are more important than that. 

Come up with answers such as avoiding emphysema. 

Anchor the state.

Amplify the state associated with these overriding positive values and anchor it. 

You do not have to use a full anchoring procedure here; it is enough if you remind them of the state, ask them to enhance certain driver sub-modalities, and establish a kinesthetic anchor without explaining what an ‘anchor’ is. 

Imbue the lower levels with the positive state.

Hold the anchor and move into position #3 while in the state. 

Continue in this state, moving to positions #2 and #1. 

As the person walks through these positions have them come up with new, ideas for making sure that they take the desired action. 

For each good idea, have them imagine carrying it out, and then adjust their sub-modalities to match those of the highest criterion from 

Make every effort to ensure that the higher state is compelling as the person moves to these lower levels. 

It is important to make these lower levels very rich with this positive state.

Make an ecology check, adjusting as needed.

Check ecology as you Future Pace these creative ideas to see if you can make any additional adjustments.

In the coming days and weeks, see how well this technique has allowed the person to take the desired action.