Change Unwanted Habits to Positive Wanted Behaviours Using NLP Strategy

Picture of a path to creating good habits instead of bad onesHabits! Argh! They can be both helpful and unhelpful. We all have habits that we’d like to change, but how can we go about doing that? NLP can be an effective way to help us change unwanted automatic behaviours or habits and replace them with actions, feelings or behaviours that serve us better. In this blog post, we’ll discuss how to use an NLP strategy to transform unwanted habits and create lasting change. We’ll cover topics such as identifying triggers, creating a plan for change, and using NLP techniques to make the process easier. So, if you’re ready to break old habits and build new ones, let’s get started! Call today to book your appointment.

Creating a Plan for NLP to Change Unwanted Behaviours

Picture of planning for changeTo build any sort of plan we need to be planning for something. We really need to find a beginning trigger and pathway we do want to walk to a changed end goal we also want. So, we first need to choose something that we want to change using an NLP strategy.

Many people come to therapy because they have certain habits or behaviours that they want to change. These could range from anything like procrastination, smoking, or emotional eating. To begin building a therapy plan, we first need to choose what to change using an NLP strategy. NLP, or Neuro-Linguistic Programming, is a form of therapy that focuses on the connection between language, behaviour, and the mind. By using NLP strategies, we can help transform unwanted behaviours into positive habits. But first, we need to understand the unwanted habit and its triggers, so that we can identify a desired behaviour as our goal. Once we have a clear goal in mind, we can start creating a positive pathway to the end goal.

Understanding the Unwanted Habit and Its Triggers

Picture of men in talking therapyWith NLP therapy we talk about your unwanted habit or behaviour in detail and find what triggers it. This process is essential to building a successful therapy plan. By understanding what triggers the unwanted behaviour, we can start to make sense of why it’s happening. Is it stress-related, a response to a certain situation, or perhaps even a learned behaviour from childhood? Once we know what the trigger is, we can choose what to change and focus on replacing the negative habit with a more positive one. This process allows us to start building a clear pathway towards the desired goal, which is key to making lasting changes. By being aware of our triggers and understanding the behaviour we want to change, we can create a solid foundation for transformation.

Identifying a Desired Behaviour as Our Goal

Now we know what unwanted automatic behaviour (bad habit) we want to change we need to change it for the better. So you need to decide what you think the best automatic behaviour would actually be. Once we have decided on the desired behaviour, we can begin to work towards creating a positive pathway of events to achieve it.

Creating a Positive Pathway to the End Goal

Now, with the NLP strategy we can focus on the desired outcome, rather than simply trying to eliminate the unwanted habit. This approach empowers us to take control of our behaviours and work towards a more positive and fulfilling life. It’s important to remember that changing behaviours takes time, effort and patience, so we need to stay committed to the process and remain focused on our goals. By identifying the desired behaviour and creating a clear plan to achieve it, we can start to transform our unwanted habits into positive and beneficial behaviours that will enhance our well-being and happiness.

Practising and Reinforcing the New Behaviour

Practice makes perfect. So, in therapy, we will practice walking the positive pathway until it becomes a new wanted automatic behaviour after your trigger event.  This is where the therapy plan really starts to take shape. The key to success is to choose what to change and then reinforce the new behaviour until it becomes a natural, good habit. This requires patience and consistent effort on your part. You need to be mindful of your progress and stay focused on the end goal.

Reward yourself for each and every positive accomplishment along the way no matter how small. This will help you stay motivated and committed to the process. With each successful reinforcement of the new behaviour, you will be building new neural pathways that make the old habit less and less likely to occur.

The more you practice, the stronger these new pathways become. Eventually, the new behaviour will become your default response to the trigger event, and the old unwanted behaviour will be replaced. It’s important to remember that changing unwanted habits is not a one-time event, but a process of continuous improvement. So stay committed to your therapy plan and celebrate your progress along the way.

Maintaining the Positive Change and Building On it

Now we have the new behaviour we need to maintain it. So as an add-on a few exercises will be given to you to do at home. One way to maintain positive change is to practice the new behaviour consistently. This can be achieved by setting a reminder on your phone or placing visual cues around your environment. For instance, if your goal is to stop biting your nails, you can put a note on your desk or wear a bracelet to remind you not to bite your nails.

Another important aspect of maintaining positive change is to reinforce the new behaviour. Whenever you catch yourself doing the desired behaviour, give yourself positive feedback or reward yourself. This will help to strengthen the new neural pathway and make the behaviour more automatic. Always remember to celebrate your achievements along the way. You should pat yourself on the back, you deserve it. You calling us today is the firststep that can change unwanted behaviours into more positive wanted ones.


Centre of Excellence (2020) Master NLP Course Material

Miller, P (2008) The Really Good Fun Cartoon Book of NLP Crown House Publishing. Kindle Edition.

Yorkshire Hypnotherapy Training (2015) Working with habits & smoking cessation

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