Milton Erickson's Hypnotic Language Patterns - this was the man who produced amazing results just by talking to people! And now this method is named after him - Ericksonian Hypnosis. These language combinations can be used to dramatic effect in any everyday situation - see Derren Brown videos on YouTube
Milton Erickson's Hypnotic Language Patterns
When the founders of NLP, Bandler and Grinder, first started they studied one of the best hypnotherapists there had ever been. He was Milton Erikson. They were particularly interested in his use of language and began by analysing the things that he said. This led to the formulation of what was called the Milton model of language. What they discovered was really surprising because they found that Milton's way of speaking was very vague and so they categorised and identified and named the various language constructions that he used. Once that had happened the rest of us had a unique way of learning the hypnotic language patterns of Milton Eriksson, because, instead of learning scripts, as people did previously, we were able to learn the types of language structures that Milton used.
Although at it takes a lot of skill and training to become a therapist, it is important to have an understanding of the sort of language hypnotists use because it is really useful in many other situations.
So in this blog I thought you might find it useful to start understanding some of the language structures of Milton Eriksson and how they can be used. Of course this will enable you to build your own particular style of therapeutic language.
– are process words that have been turned into nouns and, in doing so, have become intangible. To test for tangibility ask yourself this question “Can you put it in a wheelbarrow?” If you can't, then it is a Nominalisations. Words that typically fit this definition are happiness, communication, transportation, decision, education, government etc. To explore the deleted information turn the word back into the process
Transportation = What is your transport process?
Decision = What is your decision making process? Or How do you make decisions?
In hypnotic language Nominalisations are used on purpose because they can be translated by the listener to uniquely fit their own experience. For example “The learnings that you make........” does not specify what will be learnt or how it will be learnt, this enables the listener draw their own conclusions. Consider the following paragraph -
“So you have come to see me about a particular difficulty that you want bring to a satisfactory resolution and I don't know yet what personal resources you will find most useful for solving problems, but as we progress, I know that your unconscious mind is able to search though your experience and discover exactly which resource is needed to end that difficulty ....Now.......”
What are the Nominalisations here?
“So you have come to see me about a particular difficulty that you want bring to a satisfactory resolution and I don't know, yet, what personal resources you will find most useful for solving problems, but as we progress, I know that your unconscious mind is able to search though your experience and discover exactly which resource is needed to end that difficulty ....Now.......”
So now you can see that virtually nothing has been specified – and yet to the listener it can seem as if the speaker knows exactly what the trouble is! This provides a useful way to suggest things without saying anything that would not fit with the listener”s internal experience.
– All verbs are unspecified in some way or another. This fact can be used by the Hypnotist to cause the listener to supply the most appropriate meaning for themselves in order to make sense of the sentence.
In some cases the distinction between an unspecified verb and a Nominalisations is very fine. Consider the word “learning”, when is it a Nominalisations and when is it an unspecified verb?
“We are all learning many new things” = Unspecified verb
“We can all make significant learnings from our experiences” = Nominalisations!
Another form of distinction lies in the use of sensory specific and non-specific language, for example “Do you see what that means?” is more specific than “Do you know what that means?”. In the first case the listener is being directed to the visual representation system and in the second case they can choose however they internally represent “know”.
Unspecified Referential Index
is where information is lacking about the noun in a sentence. Words like this, people, things, feelings, sensations, experience, can be used in this context
Examples = “People can be happy”
“Animals can learn naturally”
“This is easy”
“You can notice the sensations occurring.......”.
Again, the affect here is to enable the listener to translate meaning into their own experience.
is when a major noun is completely missing.
Example = “I know that you are learning.”
“And so you are discovering.”
The listener will fill in the blanks – learning what, discovering what?
So now you can begin to see how this could be used to supplement your everyday life
For example, if you use EFT (free ebook here http://www.tryitoneverything.com/cmd.php?af=863855) and you are going through the tapping routines and the client is stating the required affirmations you could be saying to them
“I know this was a big problem that you came to me with and I don't know how you can sort it out and you may be wondering, as we tap at the EFT points, how you can begin ... to feel different sensations start to occur in your body and different emotions can begin to happen. And as these things start their various processes you can notice that changes are happening at an unconscious level and even though I don't know how you're going to change the things that you want change I do know that you can do it. Because as we learn new things we begin to realise that other things start to happen and even though EFT may seem strange it just seems to work in some mysterious way… ”
This also uses another hypnotic technique called “Sensory overload”. As the client is focussing their attention on their affirmation, while they are experiencing the physical sensations of the tapping procedure and hearing you saying positive hypnotic phrases, their senses get overloaded (remember 7+ or- 2) which gives their unconscious the opportunity to get to work on the changes!!
There are many other patterns and In later articles I shall let you know how to use some more of them to further enhance your everyday business
Have a good time