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NLP addiction pattern


Is there an NLP addiction pattern? And what pattern should you use for addiction.

The tricky thing is that each addiction has a different presenting problem. So this is what you need to do:

1. Build rapport (I always like to do the Values Elicitation that I teach while building rapport.)

2. Meta model the presenting problem.

3. You could do strategies based work (TOTE) to see how the addiction works.

4. Design a series of NLP patterns.

Addiction is a symptom of something else

Addiction is usually only a symptom of something else whether it is the addicts past, positive intent, lack of coping strategies, search for freedom etc. More and more evidence is pointing towards that  it relates to trauma. And that’s where you need to start digging with the meta model to design from there.

NLP training

And now we land onto a place where 95% of the NLP training companies don’t actually teach he relevant tools (or even the base) to be able to do patterns for addiction. What I mean with that is not that they teach bad NLP, they just don’t teach the bigger tools required to apply to bigger more intricate presenting problems. This is because large training companies can’t really teach these tools due to the size of their seminars, which is where the NLP trainers go, and then copy their trainers program. And addiction not only needs multiple NLP patterns it also needs big patterns. It just can’t be taken lightly, it isn’t about doing a quick little NLP Practitioner pattern and we can check-out of rehab.

Useful NLP techniques

Some of the NLP patterns moderately useful to beat addiction that are taught almost everywhere are:

1. SWISH pattern

2. Submodalities

3. New Behavior Generator

4. Circle of Excellence / Anchoring based exercises.

5. Parts Integration (eyes closed version of it.)

Though helpful in the process, particularly around simple addictions, you really need to be designing your own custom pattern based on the presenting problem specifically to the client. Also with serious addictions one should consult a medical professional.

NLP addiction pattern

The NLP Patterns I actually recommend using for addiction are:

1. The ability to pull any NLP pattern on a timeline.

2. Timeline based work (people need 2 days or more to learn this after they teach the NLP Practitioner course, not all companies do that.)

3. Map Across (taught in some NLP Practitioner trainings.) An Map Across on its own is not enough though, it needs to be pulled into a larger design.

4. Core Transformation (taught by very few companies.)

5. I find a lot of addiction issues being housed in fears, PTSD, grief, shame etc. For all of these there are specific patterns that only few companies teach again.

6. Values based work (values elicitation and moving it onwards from there.) Most specifically being able to do a values elicitation, which again most companies don’t teach. While it is really the gem of NLP.

7. The ability to design an advanced NLP pattern(especially on a timeline.) Meaning custom work for the presenting problem.


Conclusion: NLP addiction pattern

Naturally it isn’t in the scope of this article to teach an NLP Practitioner how to work with addiction, or an NLP Master Practitioner who hasn’t learned the right level tools for it. But design NLP Patterns is within the framework of a video:

Now keep in mind there is no such thing a developing a generic addiction NLP pattern, we have the Core Transformation already for that. You need to start meta modeling a person with an addiction first, and then develop THEIR NLP addiction pattern.



In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction – Gabor Mate, MD


How to design your own NLP pattern

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