NLP Techniques, Decision Making with Time Line

Rintu BasuTherapy2 Comments

So you’ve got some new ideas, goals and plans for the weeks, months and years ahead. I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, ‘failing to plan is planning to fail’, so in this short article we are going to discover some Master-Keys to achieving effective outcomes.

“How to Make Good Decisions that you will Follow Through to Completion the Easy Way”


Colin G Smith – All Rights reserved
FREE NLP Techniques at The NLP ToolBox

Begin With the End in Mind

Choose one of the new outcomes you want and ask yourself the following question:

When you have what you want, what will you see, hear and feel?

Elicit Values

Now ask yourself, “And what’s important about that?”

Repeat this question several times on each answer to discover the deeper motivating values.

Amplify Your Desire to Achieve the Outcome!

Looking at your outcome picture as if it has been achieved begin to increase the size of the picture, make the colours brighter, enhance the colours, bring it in even closer.

That’s right! And imagine being able to perceive more depth in the image. You know make it more Three Dimensional; add more parallax.

Now with this motivating image in mind allow yourself to hear a congruent, motivating voice at the back of your head saying something encouraging.

Note: Tweaking these sensory components such as ‘size of image’ are known as sub-modalities in NLP and you can find out much more in “The NLP ToolBox.

Elicit Your Timeline

Have you ever wondered how your mind knows if a memory is from the recent past or the distant past?

Your mind has to somehow codify memories so it can differentiate between different dates and times.

Although man has been using concepts of time and timelines for centuries, it wasn’t until quite recently that we discovered that people actually map out time in their minds eye.

We all carry around a Timeline from which we access memories and resources and put new ones onto it.

To elicit your Timeline begin by remembering a time you brushed your teeth say 5 years ago.

Notice where that image is located in space. Actually point to it.

Good, now imagine brushing your teeth in the present and notice where you would place that image in space.

Finally imagine brushing your teeth 5 years from now. Allow yourself to become aware of where that image is located in space.

When you look at all three images at once you can imagine connecting a line between them.

So looking at your Timeline now, where is your birth located? And where is 25 years from now?

Great, you’ve just elicited your Timeline!

Discovering the Steps for the Desired Outcome

Here’s a cool thing. Bring to mind your Timeline again and now imagine placing it down and spreading it out across the floor.

So if you’re like me you will have your past going off to the left and your future will go off to the right like this:

Past                          Present                         Future

Meta Position

Now step off the Timeline into Meta Position. From this position, looking at the future, move the picture along the Timeline until it’s in a position that feels the most

Now walk into that future position and associate fully into that ‘Desired Outcome’ picture.

See what you would see, hear what you would hear and allow that feeling of accomplishment to increase.

Amplify those good feelings even more by spinning the feeling up and down your body. Around and around, up and down faster and faster!!!

Keeping the feelings spinning turn around and look back towards the present. Notice what steps are required to achieve this outcome. Plan backwards from the future to the
Present Position.

Great! Now walk back into the Meta Position and notice any other steps or tweaks that are needed.

Back to the Present

Walk into the Present Position on your Timeline and notice all the steps that lead up to the Desired Outcome.

How’s that feel?

If needed you can of course cycle through the positions again to create a better plan.

Remember, earlier in this article, in the section titled, “Elicit Your Timeline,” you became aware of you actual Timeline that you ‘carry around in your head.’

So go ahead now and imagine the Timeline on the ground, with all the steps, rising up and fitting into your actual Timeline.

This will help to program the planning into your mind and if it’s possible get into action right away on the first step.

To boost your motivation from time to time you can step into the ‘Desired Outcome’ on your Timeline, remember your values for doing so, and feel those good feelings as you look back at the required steps.

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Including two sections on Timeline Secrets!

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2 Comments on “NLP Techniques, Decision Making with Time Line”

  1. alan clayton

    how come your timeline has ‘past tot the left, future to the right’, and then the diagram is the opposite ? very unconsciously uncomfortable ?

    1. Rintu Basu

      Hi Alan,
      For most people that organise their time lines in front of them their past will be on their left and the future on their right. And for most people that have not thought about it they will be happy enough to organise their time lines that way, at least for a short while, if you give them the right preframes. Therefore when presenting information to an audience where I am overtly or covertly playing with time lines I will present the past to the audiences left and future to their right. This obviously will look wrong to me and from my perspective but it is the audience I am presenting to. In Colin’s article he is doing exactly the same thing.

      What you have spotted is really important and something persuaders have to get used to, particularly when you start using spacial anchors. For example you want to take existing problems and move them into the past not stick them into the future.

      Well spotted.



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