May 4

The Milton Model: 27 Powerful Language Patterns


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Milton Erickson is widely considered to be one of the greatest Hypnotherapists that had ever lived. 

It's no wonder that the co-Founders of NLP, Richard Bander and John Grinder, decided to model him and figure out exactly what made him so good.

During the time that they spent learning from Milton, they started noticing a pattern in the way that he talked with his clients.

It wasn't before long that they were able to formalize it, and this became known as the Milton Model.

In a nutshell, the NLP Milton Model is a set of NLP Language Patterns that allows you to be "artfully vague" so that your subject can create a meaning that is appropriate for them. You can use the Milton model as a form of conversational hypnosis where you're hypnotizing people without them even realizing it.

You could argue that the Meta Model is the inverse form of the Milton Model due to the fact that the Meta Model puts an emphasis on specificity.

In any case, that's a story for another time.

So, without further ado, let's jump right into these language patterns!

NLP Techniques - Milton Model

Milton Model Mind Reading

Much like the name implies, this language patterns claims to have the ability to know what someone else is thinking or feeling.

Milton Model Examples:

I know that you're going to get a lot of value out of this blog post.

There are a lot of people just like you who feel that NLP is the world's greatest communication model.

You have seen.....(visual)

You have heard that....(auditory)

You feel that......(kinesthetic)

Lost Performative

A statement of judgment, beliefs, or standards which are expressed in such a way that the individual who has made the statement is not identified.

Milton Model Examples

It is going to be a lot of fun.

It has been proven that learning NLP will lead to a richer and much more fulfilling life.

Many people think that....

It's been proven that....

All the best companies....

Cause And Effect

a statement that presupposes a one thing causing another thing to happen. 

Milton Model Examples:

Because you're reading this blog post on the Milton Model, you're putting yourself head and shoulders above the competition.

Reading this blog post to the very end allows you to feel exceptionally good about yourself.

Your being here means you're really serious about learning.

Mastering embedded suggestions will make you a much more influential communicator.

Complex Equivalence - Milton Model

Statements that presupposes one thing is or means the same as another thing. 

Milton Model Examples:

NLP is the greatest communication model in the world.

Learning the complex equivalence language pattern is a good thing.

Reading this blog post is one of the best ways to learn the Milton Model.

Learning NLP is a good way to invest your time and energy.

Roger Ellerton is an excellent writer.

Note: If you want to learn even more language patterns, then you should check out sleight of mouth.

Universal Quantifiers

Words that imply or state absolute conditions as being true.

Milton Model Examples

Always put yourself in a state of excellence before giving a presentation.

Everyone can begin to feel totally relaxed now

Every time you begin to feel this way you can remember all the ways you change your feelings, now.

Never underestimate the power of pacing and leading.

Modal Operators

Words that suggest something is necessary or possible within a person's model of the world.

(must, can, may, try, intend to, have to, should, able to, pretend to, ought to)

Milton Model Examples

You should give hypnotic suggestions that benefit your client.

NLP could be the greatest communication model in the world.

We must develop the ability to be excellent communicators.

If you want to learn more about the Milton Model, then this blog post is a great place to start.

Nominalization - The Milton Model

Words that change a process or verb into a static event or noun. You can usually tell a word has been nominalized if it has -tion as a suffix.

Milton Model Examples

A college education doesn't have the same value as it did a generation ago. (educate)

The revolution will be televised. (revolt)

There is a solution to almost every problem. (solve)

Attending an NLP Certification will accelerate your ability to learn NLP. (certification)

Unspecified Verbs

Verbs that do not have phrases that specify how or on what an action is performed.


At this retreat, you can begin to make many changes, starting now.

NLP can create changes in your life.

For all those reasons, you should hire our consulting firm.

Tag Questions - Milton Model

Questions that are used to turn the uncertainty of a question into the certainty of a statement.

(can you not?, hasn't it?, wasn't it?, aren't you?, aren't they?, can't you?, couldn't you?, don't you agree?, didn't it?)


Many people say that the Milton Model has some of the best language patterns, don't they?

That was a great movie, wasn't it?

You can see yourself using these patterns in your everyday life, can't you?

Lack of Referential Index

The use of a noun or pronoun to refer to a non specific group or category. The person doing or receiving the action is deleted.


It has been said that NLP is the greatest communication model in the world.

One can only imagine the infinite possibilities when it comes to using the Milton Model.

It is a good thing for all employees to be able to master communication skills.

Comparative Deletions

Statements that do not specifically state what or how a comparison is being made.


This blog post explains the Milton Model better than any other blog post written on the subject.

The best communicators in the world use NLP technology whether they know it or not

And this is more or less the right thing to do.

Pacing Current Experience

Statements that describe ongoing experience.


As you sit there in front of your computer or smartphone reading this blog post on the Milton Model, you're beginning to realize that it's possible for you to learn these hypnotic language patterns and become a master communicator.

Double Binds

Statements that offer two or more choices that are in fact the same choice.


Are you ready to get started now or in a day or two?

You may begin to feel terrific immediately or it may take several minutes before you begin to feel great.

Would you like to go ahead and set up an appointment or should we just jot down a time when we can meet?

Conversational Postulate

A statement in the form of a question which when asked and taken literally would require a yes or no answer. This statement is normally taken as a command to perform the requested action. This works best when using the voice intonation of a command.


This is the contract; do you have a pen to sign it?

Can you run a quick errand for me?

Do you have Visa or Master card to pay for our change program?

Extend Quotes

A statement that contains one or more quotes that are intertwined with each other and with the story so that it becomes ambiguous as to what is quote and what is story


One of my clients in a firm that I worked with said that he told two people in another organization, and he told them directly Jim, you should hire my firm and that each of them said that they had been telling others to consider it seriously and he knew I could only work with a few companies right now.

I was talking to a communications expert who said one of the most respected communicators told her that NLP is the greatest communication model in the world today and that she used it always.

Selection Restriction Violation

Statements that are violations of well-formed meaning as understood by native speakers of English.


When money talks you should hire my firm to make more of it for you.

This blog post has Milton Model written all over it. 

A chair can have feelings...

Embedded Commands

Statements that include indirect commands embedded within the statement itself.


When people like yourself, Jim, attend my seminar they get excited about how they can make many changes in their lives.

When clients hire my firm, Jim, all the work we do is to get results right now.

All the experts who study NLP in-depth agree with me that it's the world's greatest communication model

Embedded Questions

Questions that are embedded within a larger sentence.


I’m curious to know what you think about this blog post.

I wonder how driven you are to effectively use the Milton Model.

Covering All Ranges of Possibilities

Statements which cover all ranges of what is possible.


When you decide to write a contract with me, I can work with my associates, work with some of your internal resource people or I can come in and do the work by myself.

When you decide to buy my product, you can write a check, use your credit card or pay cash which ever is more convenient for you. I prefer to write a check, which do you prefer?

Note: If you want to learn even more language patterns, then you should check out sleight of mouth.


Statements that use everything as though you control it, as though you planned it and thought of it

Example 1

Person A: I'm not sold on this product

Person B: Of course you're not sold on this seminar because I haven't told you about all of our success stories as well as the one piece of information that you need to know about before you are completely sold.

Example 2

Person A: My company is not like all those others you have worked with.

Person B: Yes, you're right, every company is different and that's exactly the reason you need to hire my firm, we tailor our services to fit your company exactly.

Example 3

Person A: There are many other great communication models.

Person B: You're right, there are many other great communication models; that is actually how NLP was able to take the best of the best to make an even better model

Building Excitement and Expectations

Statements used to create excitement and expectation.


In a few minutes, I'm going to tell you how you can double your income with no extra work by joining my business opportunity.

In the next hour you're going to learn how to use the techniques of the greatest communication model in the world to triple your income

In a few minutes we will explain what almost everyone says is one of the best opportunities around.

Truisms About Sensations and Time

Universal statements about sensations and time.


Most people have experienced a feeling of being totally relaxed and that's what you'll experience in one part of this comprehensive change seminar

Most people know that it takes a long time to develop expertise on communication all by yourself; that's why they hire a firm like mine.

Sooner or later people discover that NLP is the greatest communication model in the world

Open-ended Suggestions

Statements that do not place boundaries on what is possible or not possible in the future.


We all are capable of making money than we do right now. My business opportunity is one way to do this.

All people have the ability to master the Milton Model, and it is much more easily achieved by reading this blog post.

We all have potentials that we are not aware of, and we usually don't know how they will be expressed

Single Binds

Statements that link one cause to one effect as the only possibility.


The greater the need to improve communication, the less time you should waste before you learn the Milton Model.

The more you practice these language patterns the more you'll will be able to use them at an unconscious level.

As you continue to learn to use these tools you'll find that the more you use them they become easier and easier to use and the more you use them; the more you understand them at a deeper level.

I'm not going to Tell You...

A statement used to covertly or indirectly make an assertion.


I'm not going to tell you that the Milton Model contains powerful language patterns, I'm going to let you find that out for yourself.

I'm not going to tell you that you should hire my firm, I would be silly to tell you to hire my firm when we haven't even discussed the services you need yet.

Compound Suggestions

A statement that makes a suggestion that one would like to be accepted and covertly covers this up by making a second statement of fact.

Syntax: (1st suggestion) <then> (2nd suggest of a fact)


It is to your company's advantage to hire me. How we communicate is important, isn't it?

After you join my business opportunity, you'll be delighted at how simple it is to make money online. Everyone wants to make more money, don't you think?

Phonological Ambiguity

Words that sound the same but have different meanings. They're generally used to cause ambiguity when spoken.


you ewe, there their, our hour, sea see, four for, bee be, know no, knows nose, I eye, by buy bye, -pray prey

Check out his post from NLP World on the Milton Model!


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2 years ago


Jacob Laguerre
Reply to  Hema
2 years ago

thank you!

3 years ago

Discovering a new dimension to change the life completely

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