The language of deep trance The NLP Milton model

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This is a model that uses artfully vague language patterns. The language employed allows the listener to insert her own meaning as it relates to the situation she is in, in order to give the communication concrete meaning. Often, in order to supply meaning to such language, a person will do a trans-derivational search (TDS). TDS is a specialised trance state that the mind enters in order to search through its memories for a certain experience or set of experiences or to resolve an unusual situation. The ease with which TDS is initiated and deepened in order to affect a person's internal representations makes the Milton model a very sophisticated model for changework, influence or persuasion.

21. Fixation of attention

James Braid discovered (1843} that fixation of attention on a single thought or idea would tend to cause trance. This is still at the heart of the hypnotic inductions you will learn (You need to absorb attention fully even in confusion inductions!)

Milton E ricks on would often say that, in the hypnotic trance, the patient pays attention to what is of immediate importance to him. In order to induce trance you must engage and absorb your subject's attention. Then you can present ideas to him in an ordered sequence to obtain the effect you wish.

22. Principle of delivery (rhythm, tone, pivot grammar)

Your voice and words are your primary instruments. There will be times to use a quick barrage of suggestions, and others where you need to slow ... right... down. At times you must challenge a subject consciously (so his conscious "failure" becomes a convincer), while at others you need to be more persuasive with your suggestions.

Now consider socially accepted trance inducers: music and poetry. Both of them frequently include atypical uses of grammar and fluid rhythms. These have a strong consciousness-altering effect. As a hypnotist, you must make use of these phenomena: learn to pace ... your speech ... to ... certain ... rhythms (nursery rhymes often follow powerful rhythmic structures). Also entrancing talking, no need to make full sense, just feeling, enjoying, understanding differently. Now, mind can see, see meanings, OK to talk this way. This is how you can use atypical grammar hypnotically. Experiment!

23. Hypnotic voice: anchoring unconscious voice tones

Milton Erickson would habitually anchor in different voice tonalities to communicate with his subjects on different levels. In order to master hypnosis, you should develop at least two distinct tonalities or "voices" for your interactions.

The first "voice" is your normal, everyday speaking voice. This is your anchor for keeping people wide awake - so use this voice only while your subject is fully awake. The moment you begin to induce trance or see trance analogues occurring, begin to change your voice (most people opt for a deeper, slower, more soothing kind of voice) as you induce, ratify or deepen the trance. This is your hypnotic voice.

By consistently using only your waking voice while the subject is awake, and your hypnotic voice when she is are in trance, the two voices will naturally be anchored to those states. So you could have a normal conversation with someone and casually shift your voice, then watch as your subject slips into trance without realising it!

The following model can be used equally for "waking" (uptime) and "sleeping" (downtime) hypnotic trances:


"Because ...", "makes ...", "if ... then ...", "as ... then ..."

The implication or direct statement that one thing caused another: "Because you are listening carefully, you can enjoy ever deepening comfort and relaxation."


Two things, or their meaning, are equated as being synonymous: "You're relaxing now - that means that you are going deeper and deeper into trance."

MIND READING "I know that you're ..."

Claiming to know what a person is thinking, feeling or experiencing without any external evidence: "I know that you're learning things now."

LOST PERFORMATIVE "It's a good thing ..."

Value judgments that delete the person whose judgement is being given: "And it's a good thing you're learning things now."


"Can ...", "will ...", "may ...", "must ...", "have to ...", "should ..."

Words that imply what is necessary/possible: "And you can allow that to happen."


"All...", "always ...", "never ...", "every ...", "none ..."

An absolute generalisation: "You have all the knowledge you need."


"Combinations", "learnings ...", "understandings ..."

A process (i.e. a verb) that has been turned into an event or a thing (i.e. i noun). This covers any noun that does not name a physical object: "All th< learnings arid understandings you have about your ability to comfortably gc deeper ..."


A process that has been incompletely described: "You can learn ..."


A phrase that has generalised the subject of a sentence: "One can learn ..."

COMPARATIVE DELETIONS "More "less ...", "better ..."

A phrase offering a comparison but omitting the object being comparec "Learn even more."


" ... can't you?", " ... haven't you?", " ... isn't it?"

A question added to the end of a phrase: "And you've learned many thinj in the past, haven't you?"


The process feeding back to the listener truisms about his ongoing sensoi experience: "As you sit there, listening to the sound of my voice ..."


A question that grammatically demands a "yes/no" response but is requei nng an action; "Could you look up for a minute?"


A statement or question offering an illusion of choice: "Do you want to ; into a deep trance now, or would you prefer to go into the right level of tran in your own time?"

"He doesn't know what he is learning, but he is learning. And it isn't right for me to tell him, 'You learn this or you learn that!' Let him learn whatever he wishes, in what ever order he wishes."


"Soon you will find yourself really understanding this. Perhaps that will happen quickly, or perhaps it will take longer and perhaps you will not think you're understanding anything at all. Let that be your sign that you're learning at the deepest unconscious level!"


"How do you know when you are truly motivated?" Facilitating internal change:

"And what will be the effective means of improving now? Will it be because you simply remember to do all those little things you need to first because they make the big tasks really easy?"


"The sun is shining, it's warm, it is such a beautiful day, let's go swimming." Associations:

"With each breath you take you can become more aware of the natural rhythms of your body and feelings of comfort that develop."

Opposite s :

"As the door closes feel yourself going even deeper into trance now."

NEGATIVE - TAG QUESTIONS "And you can, can you not?"

"Why not let that happen?"


Chaining a sequence of "contexts" tends to overload the conscious mind so the statement can reach the unconscious. Also distances the speaker form the quote: "My sister's friend told her that her brother had been to see a show in which the presenter mentioned that Richard Branson had told him ..."


Phonological: Homonyms create mild confusion and hence trance: "here/hear now, what's going on?"

Punctuational: A run-on sentence: "Use your head ... right into trance now."

Syntactic: The syntax is not immediately clear: "Hypnotising hypnotists can be tricky."

Scope: The scope of the context is unclear: "Speaking to you as someone fascinated by hypnosis ..."

Additional language patterns


"Most people experience one hand to be warmer than the other."

"Most people enjoy the warmth of a summer's day."

"Many people feel good, as they recognise certain facts about themselves."


"Sooner or later, your eyes will close."

"As soon as you're ready you can go into trance now " NOT KNOWING, NOT DOING

"And there's no need to talk or move or make any effort." "You don't even have to think about that now."


"We all have potential we are unaware of, and we usually don't know how it will be expressed."


"You don't have to sign the contract until you are ready." "You won't do it until you've seen how easy it is."


"Your sex life ... [pause] just what you need to know and understand about it... [pause]. Secretly what you want... [pause] is more important to you."


"If you sit down then you will learn this more easily."

"If... then" statements.

BINDS AND DOUBLE BINDS Approach - avoidance:

"Would you like to sign the contract now or later?" Conscious - unconscious:

"Your unconscious is the storehouse of all your memories, skills and resources, so your unconscious mind knows more than your conscious mind does; and, if your unconscious mind knows more than your conscious mind does, then you really know more than you think you do."


As the unconscious mind responds strongly to symbolism, very often an anecdote or seemingly unrelated story can be used to get the point across. Metaphors can be used directly and indirectly and are a specialised form of language pattern all of their own. In brief, however, an easy metaphor can be constructed using an isomorphic structure: that is, elements in the metaphor represent and mirror events being experienced by the person in the real world. An example of a metaphor for getting the best out of people can be taken from Milton Erickson's work:

One day an unknown horse strayed into the yard of the farm where I lived as a child. No one knew where the horse came from, as it had no markings by which it could be identified. There was no question of keeping the horse - it must belong to someone.

My father decided to lead it home. He mounted the horse and led it to the road and simply trusted the instinct of the horse to lead itself towards its home. He only intervened when the horse left the road to eat grass or to walk into a field. On these occasions my father would firmly guide it back to the road.

In this way the horse was soon returned to its owner. The owner was very surprised to see his horse once more and asked my father, "How did you know the horse came from here and beionged to us?"

My father replied, "I didn't know, the horse knew! All I did was to keep him on the road."

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A Practial Guide To Self Hypnosis

A Practial Guide To Self Hypnosis

Hypnosis has been defined as a state of heightened suggestibility in which the subject is able to uncritically accept ideas for self-improvement and act on them appropriately. When a hypnotist hypnotizes his subject, it is known as hetero-hypnosis. When an individual puts himself into a state of hypnosis, it is known as self-hypnosis.

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