NLP, Ericksonian Hypnosis and Applied Game Theory


NLP,  Ericksonian Hypnosis and Applied Game Theory


A great place to begin if you are interested in applying game theory to Life Strategies or in the structure of an  nlp course is the work of Milton Erickson.   Ericksonian Hypnosis is an artificially induced trance state characterized by  heightened  susceptibility  to suggestion. This technique  which  was developed by the  pioneering  psychiatrist Milton Erickson may,  strangely enough, takes place while an individual seems to be awake rather than apparently asleep which is generally associated with classical hypnosis techniques. This is  hypnosis for weight loss that gets to the core of a person’s psychological motivations.

Erickson was a pioneering  psychiatrist   who had  a  great  influence  on the work of those who created neuro-linguistic programming as well as the work of Anthony Robbins.  Erickson pioneered the idea that the “common experiences of wonderment, engrossment and confusion” are in reality just kinds of trance.

Sadly many nlp training course do not recognize Erickson as the source of what they are teaching


It might seem that Erisckson’s discoveries are revolutionary but they are
only in the secular sense. These ideas on influence and trance are central to many spiritual and religious disciplines, and are regularly employed by   evangelists,  cult leaders,  holy men,  gurus  and  military  strategists.

What then makes Erickson’s work so important? It was Erickson who first articulated these ideas fully as therapeutic tools in a secular framework. He taught that there is no one type of trance and there are many levels of trance. In fact there can be a blur between what is considered hypnotic or awake state.


Many people are familiar with the idea of a “deep” trance from watching hypnotists but when you are driving your automobile on the highway and automatically get off at the correct exit while listening to  your  favorite music this is a trance as well.




What make Erickson’s ideas so revolutionary is the fact that while this approach is being applied the individual is fully awake but in a covert way. You see Erickson  was  a  strong  proponent  of  the  idea  that  it  was  not  possible to consciously instruct the unconscious mind. He further asserted that if one attempted to impose an idea through authoritarian suggestions the response would be resistance.  The most effective way to influence the unconscious mind  is  through  what  Erickson called “artfully vague” metaphors, symbols and contradictions. Permissive hypnotic suggestion comes from an intuitive right brain source rather than a logical, strictly defined left brain source. The Life Strategies Course  – – integrates these ideas in the application of influence to create greater efficiency and effectiveness in groups.


About the author: Lewis Harrison is an nlp coach and is the Director of the Harrison Center for  Personal Development, he is the creator of  and is the creator Life Strategies Course  –


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