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Do you know what mental triggers are and how they are used?

Well, imagine that you have a problem and two alternatives to solve it, and apparently, you are in doubt about which decision to take.

Do something simple: flip a coin.

Not the coin will decide for you, but in the moments that it is in the air, you will already know what you will choose.

And do you know why it happens?

​Because all of our decisions are taken, first, in the unconscious, and only then they come to consciousness, usually accompanied by a rational justification.

​A study conducted by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) showed that the act of choosing could be divided into three parts:

  • Your brain decides what you are going to do;
  • This decision appears in your consciousness, which conveys the feeling that you are making the decision rationally;
  • You act in agreement with the decision made

It may seem strange, but in reality, there are a huge number of decisions that our brain takes and executes without informing our conscience.

​When we decide to walk, for example, the decision is conscious, but then the brain takes control and coordinates the action of dozens of muscles on the legs and arms, ensuring that we take one step, then another one and so on.

​Some decisions of our day to day are simple and require a little energy of our brain. However, others, like buying a property, are more complex and require more mental effort.

21 Powerful Mental Triggers to boost your Sales!

In this FREE Ebook you will learn how to use the best 21 Mental Triggers to boost your sales without manipulating your prospects.

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​But imagine if, for any complex decision, your brain had to scrutinize every aspect of the situation. Mental fatigue would be a constant in our lives.

​However, our nervous system has a filtering mechanism which validates our choices. And that's where the mental triggers start.

​They are guidelines that our brain adapts, so it does not have to do a lot of thoughtful work at every decision-making.

​It means that if you apply the mental triggers correctly, you can engage people by motivating them.

Continue reading this article, and you’ll learn 3 of the 17 (Episode I) mental triggers here on ‘’Blog is my life’’ and also discover how to use each one of them in your business and even in your personal life. 

Below is the list of all the mental triggers i will going to write about in the next coming posts:


  • Mental Trigger # 1 - Scarcity
  • Mental Trigger # 2 - Urgency
  • Mental Trigger # 3 - Authority


  • Mental Trigger # 4 - Reciprocity
  • Mental Trigger # 5 - Social Proof
  • Mental Trigger # 6 - Why


  • Mental Trigger # 7 - Anticipation
  • Mental Trigger # 8 - News
  • Mental Trigger # 9 - Pain x Pleasure


  • Mental Trigger # 10 - Negligence
  • Mental Trigger # 11 - Commitment and Consistency
  • Mental Trigger # 12 - Paradox of choice

EPISODE 5 (To be Released in 2nd June)

  • Mental Trigger # 13 - History
  • Mental Trigger # 14 - Simplicity
  • Mental Trigger # 15 - Reference

EPISODE 6 (To be released in 9th June)

  • Mental Trigger # 16 - Curiosity
  • Mental Trigger # 17 - Common Enemy


mental trigger

Answer quickly:

1. How many animals of each species did Moses put in the ark?

What about this puzzle?

2. If a baseball bat + a ball cost USD $1.10 and the bat cost USD $1.00 more than the ball ... What is the price of the ball?

Did you answer two on the first question and $ 0.10 on the second?

​This is your brain looking for quick responses, it is called quick thinking, or fast thinking.

It looks for shortcuts to find a solution as soon as possible for what it needs.

Now ... would you give me a quick answer to this question?

3. How much is 19 x 26?

​Hmm, of course, I know the answer, it is ... (Wait, let me just get a calculator ...)

Exactly! You would be able of getting this multiplication right quickly if you really wanted to, but your brain entered on the slow thinking mode.

This is your brain recognizing a greater difficulty when making decisions, so it needs more time to process a response.

Instead of quick shortcuts, it looks for more logic to come out to a conclusion.

Fascinating, isn’t it?

​When you know the difference between the two ways of thinking, you can learn lots of mental triggers and use them to activate the fast thinking of another person.

​After all, if you want to persuade, influence or to sell a product or idea, you need to activate this fast thinking zone.

Oh, the answers to the 3 questions I asked above:

1. It was not Moses, but Noah who put the animals in the ark.

2. USD $0.05. If the bat costs USD 1.00 more and than the price of the two together is USD 1.10, the bat costs $ 1.05 and a ball $ 0.05. If it were USD 0.10, the bat would cost USD 1,10, adding USD $ 1.20.

3. 494. But I did not calculate using my head eheh.

The reference for these studies are in the book Thinking, Fast and Slow and in the video below "Brain Tricks - This is How Your Brain Works ".

​Continue reading this article to know more about the mental triggers.


It is common to hear someone say that "you had to lose something to learn its value," especially talking about affective relationships.

Believe me, a similar logic works for business. People usually pay more attention to what is scarce.

It happens because collective unconscious usually associates that, the harder it is to achieve a certain object of desire, the rarer and more valuable it is.

Also, studies conducted by Daniel Kahneman (the same as the one cited above) and Amos Tversky, have shown that the feeling of loss is stronger than the sense of gaining something, 1.5x - 2.5x greater.

And it's easy to understand why ...

Do you prefer to earn a discount of 5 dollars or to avoid an additional payment of 5 dollars?

If you're like most people, you'd rather avoid an additional payment of 5 dollars ...

But getting a $ 5 discount wouldn’t bring the same result?


Although in both situations you save 5 dollars, in the first you have a positive feeling (gaining a discount), while in the second a negative on (avoiding additional payment).

Words are powerful. And when they are used to reinforce a mental trigger, they become extremely persuasive.

21 Powerful Mental Triggers to boost your Sales!

In this FREE Ebook you will learn how to use the best 21 Mental Triggers to boost your sales without manipulating your prospects.

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mental trigger

"Only 1 left in stock - order soon."

The consumer's mind automatically enters in the "I can’t miss it" state.

The trigger of scarcity is used by sales sites such as the giant Amazon.

Rather than treating the low stock of products as something negative, companies realized that putting the remaining small amounts of a product increased sales.

This is a very powerful trigger when it’s used with integrity.


The trigger of scarcity is one of the most powerful ones. When the customer is not totally sure about buying your product, the possibility of not being able to buy it will make him take action.

From the moment you send an email announcing that it is the last offer, or when you run a "limited enrollments" course, your audience tends to make a decision quickly and automatically.

It happens because they will be moved by the unconscious fear of losing that opportunity which may never happen again.

You should use this strategy not only in titles but also offering unique content to a restricted number of people.

Example: Offer a bonus to the first 20 individuals who bought your product.

But do not forget to establish a real scarcity. If the audience realizes that you always use this artifice just to get attention, the effect may be the opposite.

Do not try to control people everyday, just make the decision clearer to them.


mental trigger

The mental trigger of Urgency is very similar to the one of Scarcity, but it is linked to the time factor, since the product or service has a deadline to be acquired.

It is a very effective trigger because one of the worst sensations for the human being is the impossibility of choosing. Once the deadline is over, the person's only choice will be to go without that product or service.

Since we hate feeling powerless, we act as quickly as possible. After all, acquiring a product and regretting about it is better than living with doubts about the difference that product would have made in your life.


mental trigger
mental trigger

The groupon group offers opportunities to visitors with a set of time.

The clock is running and the customer can only take advantage of the offer until a certain time.

Watching the numbers change on time, especially in the last minutes, makes the feeling of missing an opportunity imminent, causing anxiety to the visitor.

By relying on the trigger of urgency, collective bidding sites and auctions have gained a great force on the internet.

Notice in the image above how they use another mental trigger just below the counter: "490+ bought". Do you know which one is it?

We'll talk about it later in this article.


Customers postpone a purchase decision and end up giving up on it. But by using this trigger, you’ll activate an impulsive behavior in your client.

When something demands urgency, we do not think much, We only act in the unconscious act of guarding ourselves against an imminent danger. (In this case, the fact of never buying a particular product)

To activate this trigger, you can use words and phrases that require an instant behavioral response, such as: "Just for today", "Your last chance", "Today is the last day", "Immediate" and "Now’".

Just like in Scarcity, you must use it only when what you have to offer is urgent and finite. Most importantly: you must always explain the reason for a limited time frame.

The more incontestable your reason is, the more this mental trigger will be effective. Preferably, use it associated with other triggers, such as reciprocity.


This is a very peculiar trigger, but at the same time it is very effective and can also be used to do bad things.

There was a great experiment conducted by Stanley Milgrim in the 1960s (Wikipedia link) in which people were willing to punish other participants on the orders of an authority (a teacher).

Whenever one of the participants (an actor) made a mistake, another member of the study (ordinary person) would give him a shock. The shocks were a lie, but the actor pretended to be feeling more and more pain, crying and screaming.

Even though they were uncomfortable with the situation, the invited participants did what they were told because the human being tends to obey whom he judges to be superior, because of our concept of respect.

So if you want people to trust you and not your job, you need to position yourself as an authority in the niche you serve.

21 Powerful Mental Triggers to boost your Sales!

In this FREE Ebook you will learn how to use the best 21 Mental Triggers to boost your sales without manipulating your prospects.

close x


"Whoever uses Tiger is an authority on the subject." (Brazilian slogan of a plumbing company)

This tagline aims to show people that the brand in question is the best choice when it comes to tubes and connections.

The people who know about it are respected and taken seriously. On the contrary, the ones who don’t understand about pipes and connections and believe that they are all the same, aren’t.

And so it happens in any business or even in common events.

If you go to a hospital to visit a family member and a man in jeans using a T-shirt speaks with you, your reaction would be different if this person were with a Doctor’s coat.

The mere fact that a person is dressed in a medical accessory means that heshe is an authority and may speak as such.

Finally, convey an idea that you are an authority in your niche. And more important than that: be an authority! 


If you want to use this trigger in your business, you need to show people that you understand well what you set out to write or explain and then sell.

Therefore, before offering any paid product to your audience, provide useful and free materials.

Show people that you are experienced in the subject, gain their trust, and the authority will be a consequence, along with reciprocity (trigger that we will study in the Part II of the series).

If you have already attended an event, consider using an image of yourself giving this talk.

It is amazing the power that a photo of a person holding a microphone has.

Also, ask the niche experts in your field to record testimonials about you and your skills.

At the same time that you must see yourself as an authority, you must always have humility and respect for other people’s work.

Quote the references that you use in your work, indicate someone skilled when you do not master a certain subject. By doing it, you'll build a sincere network of qualified contacts.

In other words, winning authority is no easy task, but through consistent and well-done work, being seen as an expert is something natural.


If you have already gained your authority, do not throw it in the trash by promoting professionals or products that you do not fully trust.

It is your credibility that is at stake. Stay aware of this especially if you want to work on the internet. The trust of your audience is your most precious asset.

Confidence takes a long time to be acquired, but it can end up with negative experiences. Getting someone's trust for the second time is much harder than getting it for the first time.


In the first episode i have written about some of the most important mental triggers:

  • Scarcity
  • Urgency
  • Authority​

They are crucial to accomplish an outstanding persuasion strategy to increase your sales without manipulating the audience.

I am quite interested to know if this episode was interesting to you?

If you enjoyed reading ​this episode, then share in the comments below what was the mental trigger that you liked most and why?

See ya next week in episode 2 of the series.

About the Author Paulo Ribeiro

Paulo Ribeiro teaches workshops and webinars for entrepreneurs and bloggers who want to grow an audience, start an online business and change the life of many. 10 years have passed since he began working online. During that time he crafted a solid experience in the Internet Market industry.

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