NLP Mega-Glossary

Accessing Cues

Keith Fail: Micro movements, often of the eyes and facial muscles that are reliably paired with a particular pattern of thinking. These small movements help us tune our neurology so to access that specific thinking pattern. For instance, people often look up as they visualize an image in their mind's eye, or flare their nostrils as they remember a smell.

NLP Home Page Glossary: Subtle behaviours that indicate which representational system a person is using. Typical types of accessing cues include eye movements, voice tone and tempo, body posture, gestures, and breathing patterns.

Lewis &Pucelik;: movements of the eyes which are symptomatic of cerbral processes of retrieving thoughts and other experiences stored in the brain.

Tony Robbins: Behaviors that affect our neural processing in such a way that we can access on representational system more strongly than others. For instance, slowing your breathing rate and the tempo of your voice can direct you to access in a kinesthetic mode, tilting your head as though you're holding a telephone can direct you in an auditory mode and so on.

O'Connor & Seymour: The ways we tune our bodies by breathing, posture, gesture and eye movements to think in certain ways.

Andreas: Bandler and Grinder have observed that people move their eyes in systematic directions, depending upon the kind of thinking they are doing. These movements are called eye accessing cues.

Leslie Cameron-Bandler: I believe that some of the most relevant information concerning nonverbal communication is provided by accessing cues. My colleagues and I found--in the course of our studies of human behavior--that eye scanning patterns were definitely related to the internal processing necessary to bring into consciousness information regarding past remembered or future constructed experiences.

Bandler & Grinder: ...each of us has developed particular body movements which indicate to the astute observer which representational system we are using. Especially rich in significance are the eye scannning patterns which we have developed. Thus, for the student of hypnosis, predicates in the verbal system and eye scanning patterns in the nonverbal system offer quick and powerful ways of determining which of the potential meaning making resources--the representational systems--the client is using at a moment in time, and therefore how to respond creatively to the client.

Sid Jacobson: We have noticed that the eye movements people make as they are thinking and processing information provide a remarkably accurate index for sensory specific neurological activity.

Rex Steven Sikes: Eye movements, head tilts, postures, breathing shifts, arm and hand gestures, skin color, word choice, rate and rhythm, etc. all constitude non-verbal behavior that we can observe in other people. It is the unique combination of how we sequence movements in the face and body that allow us to access different parts of our brain for processing information.

Accessing is a looping process, ie. how we access is reflected in our behavior, and when we shift our behavior, we access different parts of our brain. An individual can learn greater flexibility of thinking and mental processing by adopting different facial expressions (eye & head, movements & positions) and body behaviors.

People also use accessing cues to "read" another person's behaviors. We can use this information to develop rapport by matching the person's behavior.


NLP Home Page Glossary: Anchor: Any stimulus that is associated with a specific response. Anchors happen naturally, and they can also be set up intentionally, for example, ringing a bell to get people's attention, or more subtle, standing in a particular place when answering questions. Anchoring: The process of associating an internal response with some external trigger (similar to classical conditioning) so that the response may be quickly, and sometimes covertly, re-accessed. Anchoring can be visual (as with specific hand gestures), auditory (by using specific words and voice tone), and kinaesthetic (as when touching an arm or laying a hand on someone's shoulder.) Criteria for anchoring: a) intensity or purity of experience; b) timing; at peak of experience; c)accuracy of replication of anchor.Source: NLP Web pages at

Tony Robbins: Anchoring--The process by which any representation (internal or external) gets connected to and triggers a subsequent string of representations and responses. Anchors can be naturally occurring or set up deliberately. An example of an anchor for a particular set of responses is what happens when you think of the way a special, much-loved person says your name.

Dilts: Anchor: Stimuli that will consistently produce the same internal data in an individual. Anchors occur naturally. Bandler and Grinder discovered old modeling that you can deliberately set-up a stimulus with a gesture or a touch or a sound to hold a state stable. Where an external stimulus is paired with an internal state.

Michael Brooks: An anchor is a representation--either internal as with a picture or feeling, or external as with a touch or sound--that triggers (elicits) another such representation. It's a sensory stimulus paired with either a response or a specific set of responses or states.

Leslie Cameron-Bandler: In the same way that certain external stimuli become associated with past experiences (thus recalling the past experience) you can deliberately associate a stimulus to a specific experience. Once this association has taken place, you can then trigger the experience at will. It works in the same way that language does.

Bandler & Grinder: Anchoring refers to the tendency for any one element of an experience to bring back the entire experience.

Sid Jacobson: [is] an NLP way of talking about classical (Pavlov's) conditioning, but it made a lot more sense.

Andreas: The way we naturally link things that happen at the same time. This knowledge gives us a way to take resources from one area of our lives and apply them in broader ways for our well-being.

Associated State

NLP Home Page Glossary: As in a memory, looking through your own eyes, hearing what you heard,and feeling the feelings as if you were actually there. This is called the associated state.

Stever Robbins: I would use the term "associated into an experience," rather than "associated state." A person is associated into an experience when their awareness is of the sensory input directly associated with that experience. In a dissociated state, awareness in some sensory channel is on an other (internal) representation. Under this definition, "daydreaming" represents dissociation from the here-and-now, and possible association into the daydream.

For example, hearing the sound of your bicycle spokes in the breeze while riding a bicycle is an associated experience. Self-evaluative talk, "Am I doing this correctly?" is dissociated (unless there's a tape in the background of your voice asking that question). Example: Trancing out in a dentist's chair and feeling the feelings of being on a warm beach under the sun is dissociated from the dentist's office, and associated into the beach feelings.

Dilts: .States where you are experiencing an event "in time" as though it is happening now, in your own body, looking through your own eyes. Full involvement in a moment or fully reliving a past experience.

Leslie Cameron-Bandler: The process of association, then, is the inverse of the visual-kinesthetic dissociation process. Clients visualize themselves in a scene and adjust the picture until it is just right for them. They then step into themselves in the picture in order to feel the feelings which are congruent with the projected experience.

Bandler: Associated means going back and reliving the experience, seeing it from your own eyes. You see exactly what you saw when you were actually there. You may see your hands in front of you, but you can't see your face unless you're looking in a mirror.

O'Connor & Seymour: Associated: Inside an experience, seeing through your own eyes, fully in your senses.


Joseph O'Connor and John Seymour: The generalizations we make about ourselves, others and the world and our operating principles in it. Beliefs act as self-fulfilling prophecies that influence all our behaviors. One of the neurological levels.

Richard Bandler and John Grinder: Behavior is organized around beliefs. As long as you can fit a behavior into someon's belief system, you can get him to do anything, or stop him from doing anything. A belief tends to be much more universal and categorical than an understanding. When you already have a belief there's no room for a new one unless you weaken the old belief first.

Tony Robbins: We usually think of beliefs in terms of creeds or doctrines and that's what many beliefs are. But in the most basic sense, a belief is any guiding principle, dictum, faith or passion that can provide meaning and direction in life. Beliefs are the prearranged, organized filter to our perceptions of the world. Beliefs are the compass and maps that guide us toward our goals and give us the surety to know we'll get there. Even at the level of physiology, beliefs (congruent internal representations) control reality. Belief is nothing but a state, an internal, represntation that governs behavior. Beliefs are preformed, programmed approaches to perception that filter our communication to ourselves in a consistent manner. Most people treat a belief as if it's a thing, when really all it is is a feeling of certainty about something.

Connirae Andreas: Our limiting beliefs are found embedded within our Intended Outcomes.

Robert Dilts: Beliefs are not necessarily based upon a logical framework of ideas. They are, instead, notoriously unresponsive to logic. They are not intended to coincide with reality. Since you don't really know what is real, you have to form a belief--a matter of faith.


Joseph O'Connor and John Seymour: Accurately recognizing another person's or a group's state by reading non-verbal signals. For example, calibrating to high quality attention so that you can recognise it when you have it from a group.

Tony Robbins: The ability to notice and measure changes with respect to a standard. Calibrating depends on refined sensory acuity. You probably have a good idea of when a loved one is feeling a little unsure or very happy. This is because you have calibrated what their philosophy means.

Robert Dilts, Tim Hallbom, Suzi Smith: Using sensory acuity (see, hear, feel) to notice specific shifts in a person's external state, i.e., voice tone, posture, gestures, skin color, muscle tension, etc. to know when changes are occurring in their internal state:

Byron Lewis and Rank Pucelik: Calibrated communication, sometimes called calibrated loop, are unconscious patterns of communcation in which a look, gesture or expression unintentionally triggers a response from another person. Often based on subliminal cues--minimal gestures that operate outside the awareness of the individuals involved--these calibrated communication loops can be the source of pain-producing miscommunication between couples, family members and co-workers.


Joseph O'Connor and John Seymour: (or stepping) Changing your perception by going up and down a logical level. Stepping up is going up to a level that includes what you are studying. For example, looking at the intention behind a question chunks ups from that question. Stepping down is going to a level below for a more specific example of what you are studying. This can be done on the basis of member and class or part and whole. For example, the first step in formulating an outcome is to phrase it in the positive.

NLP Comprehensive: Chunk size is the level of specificity. People who are detail-oriented are "small chunkers." People who think in general terms are "large chunkers"--they see the big picture.

Congruence, Congruity

Joseph O'Connor and John Seymour: State of being unified, and completely sincere, with all aspects of a person working together toward an outcome. It is not something you have, it is something you do.

Tony Robbins: A situation in which the message a person communicates is the same or similar in all output channels--tht is, the words of the message convey the same meaning as the previous two. All output channels are being aligned. Incongruency exhibits conflicting messages between output channels.

Robert Dilts, Tim Hallbom, Suzi Smith: Congruency occurs when you make a full conscious and unconscious commitment to some outcome or behavior.

NLP Comprehensive: When goals thoughts and behaviors are in agreement.

Carmine Baffa: Congruence is a state, that is context dependent, where the individual has aligned all of his/her pictures, words and feelings in a way that allows that individual to be fully focused, without doubt, inside of the behaviors that will lead to the desired outcome when in that context. Yet when outside of that context, where congruence was the alignment of all modalities, there needs to exist the ability to produce doubt through misalignment,an incongruent state, for the purpose of updating. Thus providing in the future, a feed forward loop, that improves ones ability to perform congruently in that context, with a greater degree of competency. Back ToHome

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Created 10/01/95/Updated )