NLP Technique – How to stop negative thinking about the past

Posted on by in nlp, Psychology



In this post, we’re going to take a look at memory management. You’re going to discover why it’s so important for you to master, what it is and how it operates in your life. Then we’re going to take a look at how you can start making it work in your favor, instead of against you, so you can get the things you want in your life.

How to stop negative thinking with memory management?

You’ve probably heard the wise phrase that says,

“The mind is a great servant but an awful master.”

While it’s true, this isn’t true to most of us because we have undisciplined minds. What happens when we have an undisciplined mind is that it just starts creating the different things in has been unconsciously condition to create, and that means we’re just getting the same results, over-and-over.

This often happens when we have negative memories as we start replaying them to ourselves and it becomes quite a struggle for us to move forward in our life. It feels like we’re always stuck in reverse because we are constantly in a disempowered state. It’s important to learn to master your memories if you want to take your life in the direction you want it to go.

How to stop negative thinking with NLP

There is a school of thought in NLP that says every behaviour is governed by the state you’re in, in the moment.

Screen Shot 2013 07 21 at 11.17.45 AM 300x212 NLP Technique   How to stop negative thinking about the past  This state (mood) is governed by two variables, which are the internal representations you make in your mind – that is how you are making images and sounds in your mind. The second variable is your physiology.

They both contribute to your state, and therefore if you’re making negative internal representations in your mind, and your posture is disempowered, then obviously this is going to contribute to a negative state. There these factors are going to contribute to you not wanting to take the actions you need to take to take your life in the direction you want it to go.

To our childlike mind, feelings like rejection and embarrassment lead to a threat to our survival because we think we’re going to get cut off from our caregivers who look after us. Therefore if a child feels embarrassed or rejected then they may unconsciously believe they wont get the shelter and the food they need to survive.

Therefore, the mind wants to keep these in awareness and keep replaying them so we can avoid similar experiences in the future. However, many times this isn’t required because we realize that this we are not truly threatened and it is only our ego’s overreaction.

Internal Representations

When we have an experience, say ten minutes ago, we then represent it to ourselves in our memory by creating it in our mind with pictures and sounds.

Depending on how we make these internal representations in our mind affects our emotional state. What NLP would say is that anything that you represent to yourself that is big and bright and up close and noisy and you are associated with (you are seeing it from the first person point of view) then it’s going to have a much higher intensity.

If you outside of it (disassociated from it) and you take all of the color out of it, and you make all the sounds quiet, then that’s going to have a much less emotional intensity to it.


This is the key for us moving forward to improve our memory management, and that is having the ability to step in and out of memories and representing them to our self in a way that makes us feel how we want to feel.

For a negative memory, what we’d want to do is we’d want to push it far away. We’d want to step outside of it so that we disassociated from it. We’d want to make it small, we’d want to drain all of the color out of it, and if there’s any sounds associated with it, we’d want to turn them right down.

The converse it is true as well. If we wanted to re-experience a really positive memory, we’d want to make sure that we are associated with it, we would make it big and bright and we’d want to turn the sounds right up. That means that you’re then going to be put in a resourceful state. Your body is going to react to the images that it’s seeing. You’re going to breathe deeply; you’re going to have good posture, which is going to create a very resourceful state. From this state  you’re going to be able to act in the direction you want to act if you want to achieve the things you want in your life.

What if you’ve had extreme trauma?

By no means would I suggest using this technique. Make sure you go get yourself checked out and see a health professional.

But I don’t make these internal representations…… Again, everybody makes them. It’s how we react to our thoughts. It’s just that they’re unconscious, and if you fall into that category, then don’t worry, I’ve created a master meditation video course that’s free and you can get that by clicking here.

Action steps to master memory management.

1)    Become aware of how you’re feeling in the moment.

2)    Become aware of the internal representation you are making in your mind.

3)    Start changing these pictures and sounds as I outlined above.

I suggest doing that in the morning when you wake up or at night time just before you go to bed. You can bring up memories from your past and start playing with them.

You can take the emotional intensity out of them, or you can take a pleasurable memory and turn it up the intensity, and then swap them around, the negative for the positive.

Then once you get good at practicing that, you can bring this practice into everyday life, which is going to keep you in a resourceful state throughout the day.


Tags: , , , , , ,