Richard Bandler and John Grinder named the Milton Model after studying the world-renowned hypnotherapist Milton Erickson, considered the founder of clinical hypnotherapy. They created the model in order to replicate Erickson’s amazing results.
Traditional hypnosis uses ritual inductions and direct suggestion. Ericksonian hypnosis on the other hand is conversational and natural, which is why it is sometimes known as Conversational Hypnosis?. Many of his techniques are not what we might think “hypnotic” but create trance states (where we find unconscious resources and choices). Trance being a common altered state we access naturally many times a day.
Erickson believed the unconscious mind was self-generating, positive, and key to successful change. A person usually goes to a hypnotherapist because their conscious resources aren’t working. The purpose of therapy is to get the conscious mind out of the way in order to access unconscious resources.
Overall, the concepts of rapport, utilization, confusion, pacing and leading came from modeling Erickson.
Milton Model Language Patterns
While Bandler and Grinder separated the patterns so we could understand the components, we usually combine them. In fact, it is difficult to give discrete examples of each.
Milton Model language patterns that are also part of the Meta Model (reversed)
The Meta Model makes vague language specific. The Milton Model uses vague language to access the unconscious.
- Simple deletions – Remember a time …
- Ly Adverbs – Fortunately you know how to relax
- Cause effects – Feeling your feet on the floor makes you comfortable
- Complex equivalences – Breathing in and out, becoming more relaxed
- Lost Performatives – Relaxation allows your creativity to flow
- Mind reading– I know you are curious to …
- Modal operators – You should begin to feel a tingling
- Nominalizations – You may feel a certain sensation.
- Linguistic Presuppositions – Do you realize you are already in trance?
- Comparative deletions – Which allows you to go deeper
- Unspecified Verbs – That relaxes you
- Universal quantifiers – Every breath takes you deeper into trance
- Unspecified Nouns (or lack of referential index) – Everyone feels curious when they see this
Additional Milton Model language patterns
- Negative Commands – Don’t go into trance just yet.
- Metaphors and Stories
- Milton Model Ambiguities
- Milton Model Causal Linkages
- Milton Model Conversational postulates
- Milton Model Embedded Commands
- Milton Model Negative Commands
- Milton Model Selectional restriction violation
- Milton Model Tag questions
- The Double Bind – a Conversational Hypnosis Technique
- The Milton Model Quotes Pattern