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Milton Erickson

Milton Hyland Erickson (Nevada, 5 December 1901 – Phoenix - Arizona, 25 March 1980)

Erickson was an American psychiatrist and psychotherapist who formed and introduced the modern hypnosis and its use in psychotherapy.

Milton Erickson Erickson suffered from dyslexia in his youth. His nickname then was Dictionary Dictionary which referred to the lack he had in using a dictionary. So he always read the dictionary from the beginning when he sought a term. He overcame his dyslexia by “hallucinating” difficult letters for himself.

Shortly after finishing his high school Erickson got polio in 1919. He went into a coma and initially thought that he would not survive. Three days later he regained consciousness, completely paralyzed. Unable to move, he later sat in a rocking chair. With the profound desire to look out a window he would slightly rock the chair. This experience motivated him to continue practicing. With further hallucinatory representations he succeeded step by step. His crippled muscles came back in "contact" with his nerves. A year later he was able to walk on crutches and he attended the University of Wisconsin.

Contrary to the advice of his doctor to rest, he began a legendary canoe trip of 1200 miles on the Mississippi and acquired again great progress in his physical strength. In the second year of college he came in contact with hypnosis. He was fascinated by the possibilities of influencing people and worked out different techniques. In contrast to the then prevailing dogmas, Erickson worked out individualized methods.

He undertook at that time, as far as his body let him, extensive writing activities and lecture tours. He then worked closely with Gregory Bateson. In 1957, Erickson founded the American Society for Clinical Hypnosis and took chairmanship.

Within NLP, Milton Erickson is best known for the Milton Model (language patterns).

Watch a video video or read more about Milton Erickson on the website of the Erickson Foundation.


Books of Milton Erickson.

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