Early Learning Set

Introduction The Early Learning set is a process made most famous by Milton H. Erickson. However, like his My Friend John technique, and his handshake induction, it appears to be one of those things that is admired and lauded, yet not very often put into practice. That may be because it is based on some very loose principles and thus - like My Friend John - can put people off because it seems too simple and almost too good to be true. We will share a transcript of the induction here, that is very clearly inspired by Erickson’s own transcript shared in Hypnotic Realities. (A fuller tutorial and video demonstration will be uploaded soon.) Transcript Okay, well, why don’t you...

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Tutorial: Ambiguous Touch

Milton H. Erickson

My first hypnosis training was a year long and it was a complete waste of 365 days! Then I spent a day with Jonathan Chase and 2 weekends with Stephen Brooks (miles apart, right?) and it felt like my hypnotic skill improved 1000%. Anyway, I had heard about legendary things like the Ericksonian handshake. It always seemed like the epitome of hypnotic skill. To be able to hypnotise someone that easily, that quickly, so effortlessly. And then I saw Stephen Brooks achieve arm catalepsy in a maximum of 4 seconds, by merely taking someone's hand, looking at them and saying 2 or 3 words. At that point, I realised that inductions weren't really about the excellence of the technique. (more…)

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My Friend John

Introduction This induction and deepener is a version of Milton Erickson's "My Friend John" technique. As Stephen Brooks describes it, this is an induction disguised as an analogy about another patient. The hypnotist describes a hypnotic induction that has happened – or is happening – to someone else. As the therapist describes the induction, he directs embedded suggestions more and more towards the client. The version of the My Friend John Induction seen here includes elements of disassociation and mild confusion, as the client shifts focus from my previous hypnotee, to their friend, to themselves and also from past tense and present tense. I am so passionate about My Friend John that I have written an entire book devoted to...

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