A Complete Guide To Effective Goal Setting Using NLP Techniques

Goal Setting

Effective goal setting using NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming)

If you want to truly succeed in life, then you need to set goals. A lot of people generally wait for New Year’s Eve and then just make a list of what they want to achieve in the coming year. By February (infact sooner), they have all but given up on their goals.
Just writing a list of goals doesn’t work that well. You need to do more than just making list if you are serious about achieving your goals. By using NLP in your goal setting, will give you a much higher chance of success.


Most NLP practitioners will recommend the SMART goal-setting process. This acronym stands for:

  • Specific

  • Measurable

  • Attainable

  • Realistic

  • Time (a realistic time frame is associated)

You should use the SMART process as the starting point for your goals. You then need to add some NLP methodology into the mix which makes the whole thing more effective. Using the NLP model means that you don’t just write a list of goals, but you program your mind so that you are totally driven and committed to achieving that goal.

Use your sensory system

You may already know that your brain works best when it is subjected to things that appeal to your sensory systems such as feelings, images, and sounds. When you use the NLP goal setting model, you will be using your sensory system as your goals will all be sensory specific.
Words are important as well as these can drive our sensory systems. So the NLP goal setting method outlined here will ensure that the correct language so that our physiology and neurology are used to the fullest to push us towards goal achievement.
You will notice with the NLP goal-setting system that it will focus your attention on what you see internally as well as what you hear and feel. This will also result in you focusing on the internal and external resources that are necessary to accomplish your goals.

The NLP goal setting model

Use this goal-setting model to identify the state you desire to be in and even begin to begin moving towards that state immediately:

  • Use positive terms for your goals

Write a description of your current situation and then another of what your life will be like when you have achieved your goal. Remember to include exactly where you are right now and the life that you want after goal achievement. State what you truly want positively and where you are heading with this.

  • Use sensory terms to specify your goals

When you have achieved your goal, what will you see, feel, hear, and so on?
Define the necessary steps for goal achievement, and ensure that you engage your senses when writing this so that your brain is fully included. Create a plan which breaks down your goal into achievable chunks, and be sure that you will not be overwhelmed with any of this.

  • Make your goals compelling

You want your goals to pull on you so make them as compelling as you can. Write that you have already achieved your goals so that when you look at them, you will feel like you have already reached them.

  • Are you in total control?

You must be in control of your goals. Can you start working on your goals straight away without relying on something or somebody else? Don’t go for goals where you will have a dependency on someone else.

  • What is the context of your goal?

Test all of your goals to see if they stack up to the when, where, how and with whom check. If there is a problem with any of these checks, then you will need to make some adjustments so that they stand up to this scrutiny.

  • What resources do you need?

In order to achieve your goals, what resources are required?
What transitions will you have to make to achieve them?
Has someone else achieved the same goal?
Is this new territory for you or have you achieved similar goals in the past?
What is in your way to achieving this goal right now?

  • Evidence of achievement

How exactly will you be aware that you have achieved a goal?
How will you know when you are in the desired state?


We hope that now you can set your goals effectively and truly succeed in life.

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