When you decided, you are fed up and this way has to change. Or it is the first of the month and you decide you are going to start a new habit. Look around your environment; around your apartment or house; outside where you live; how you hold your fork. Then you have to decide what you are going to do. Remember, whatever is the reason for a change or a new habit, start small. Do little steps. 

The quickest way to establish your new habit (changing) is to use a technique from Neuro-Linguistic-Programing (NLP) training. NLP was developed in the 1970s at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Its primary founders are John Grinder, a linguist, and Richard Bandler, an information scientist and mathematician. They developed by modeling people who were highly effective in learning new things. They found that effective learners had an ability to rehearse something in their mind before actually doing it and these mental rehearsals allowed them to easily install new habits.

The founders found that modeling others, taking action, and using effective communication are the key elements of neuro-linguistic programming. The belief is that if an individual can understand how another person accomplishes a task, the process can be copied and communicated to others so they too can accomplish the task. 

Advocates of this school of thought believe the senses are vital for processing available information and that the body and mind influence each other. Therefore, if a person wants to understand an action, they must perform that same action to learn from the experience. (https://www.goodtherapy.org/learn-about-therapy/types/neuro-linguistic-programming)

This process may not work if you have a mental or emotional block or even a belief that resists this new habit or behavior you want to implement. You can use this strategy for making simple changes like waking up earlier, taking your supplements, drinking water, keeping your keys in the same place every day when you get home, or responding to someone effectively. When you can “stack” the new change to existing habits, it is easier to add your new change or habit.

Mandy Bass has a website devoted to using your mind to succeed. She says “One of the fundamental things about this mind power technique — what makes it work so well in learning how to change your habits — is that you step out of yourself and see yourself as you’d LIKE to be — from an observer position.” NLP describes several “positions” (perceptual positions) that you can do every day. It is the skill of accessing more points of view than your own in an experientially rich and organized way. There are generally three points of view: self, observer, and “other.” When you observe yourself, it is like some else is noticing what you are doing. (https://www.mindtosucceed.com/How-to-change-your-habits.html)

This NLP method is called the Swish Technique. Michael Beale has the website www.nlp-techniques.org. He explains in simple steps that you tell your brain “This, not That” and you replace something that you do not want with something you do want.

1. Choose what you want to replace and create in your imagination a big bright image of it. If you do not visualize well, feel it strongly or hear a forceful and deep voice. Put it aside for the moment. 

2. Decide what you want instead. Your new change or habit. Create an empowering image to represent it and feel free to add an appropriate soundtrack. Like the movie Rocky soundtrack (“Eye of the Tiger” by the American rock band Survivor). Put it aside for the moment. 

3. Take the first image (what you want to get rid of) and make it even bigger and brighter. Or feel it more or hear it stronger. Put it in front of you. You will be getting rid of it in its current form, shortly. Take the image of what you want instead and make it small and grey (or feel it weakly or hear it faintly). Put it far, far away in the distance. 

4. Now throw the bright image (or your feeling or hearing) of what you do not want far into the distance. Notice it getting really small and the color draining from it (or feeling is barely felt or you strain to hear it) until you are not sure if you can see it or not.  Draw the image of what you want towards you so it quickly becomes bright and colorful (or feels stronger or you hear it deeper). Let any pictures, sounds, or feelings you have chosen to add to the experience. Let the images rise in crescendo to add to the power of the now bright image, the dynamic sound, or the energetic feeling. 

5. Imagine doing this new change or habit in the future. Feel or think about how you will do it later today, tomorrow, the day after, even next week. 

6. Repeat 3-5 times, breaking your “state” (what you are thinking or feeling) between each repetition.

Michael gives the greatest thanks to Richard Bandler who created the original Swish technique. www.richardbandler.com. This technique is powerful but surprisingly simple. (https://www.nlp-techniques.org/what-is-nlp/swish/)

And (https://www.zaheennanji.com/rr/step-by-step-method-on-forming-new-behaviours-and-habits-that-last)

You can “anchor” or reinforce your new change or habit by repeating the Swish Technique several times in the first seven days. Then you want to repeat once or twice a day for seven days. Then you repeat it several times a week for three weeks.

Do it again and again and again. Over days (or weeks or months), it becomes second nature with your new change or habit. You are amazed that you did it. Then it is time to attempt another change or habit. Wash…rinse…dry…repeat. All of us do this process of changing and instilling a new habit over our old habit. You can do it too!

Leave us your comments! And remember…Smile!

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