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Who Was Milton Erickson?

written byErickson Coaching Internationalon 29/08/2015

Neuro-Linguistic programming (NLP) and the Solution-Focused Counseling approach grew out of a study of a number of the most successful American therapists and leaders. Who was Milton Erickson amongst them? Legends in their own time, they included Milton Erickson, after whom the Erickson Coaching International was named. It is widely acknowledged that those outside of a culture often make the most valuable observations and discern distinctions that do not occur to insiders.

In many ways, the extremely brilliant and unusual Dr. Erickson was an outsider in his own culture, making a life of insightfully inquiring into the nature of disease, perception, and healing. Colorblind, tone deaf and with unusual muscle control abilities, he was acknowledged to have extraordinary powers of observation. 

His therapeutic successes made him a legend in his own time. In addition, he wrote many books. His description of how to catalyze nature healing in others, combined with the observations of his students and of those who researched him, constitute a gold mine of key insights into the human mind, psychotherapy, and healing, that will be explored for decades by therapists and researchers alike.  

His basic presuppositions that all behavior has a positive unconscious intent and must be respected caused a fundamental paradigm shift in modern psychotherapy and forms the basis of Solution-Focused counseling. Studies concerning which techniques work and how people change and heal inevitably led to a clear, higher-level understanding of how to catalyze healing.  This led to the development of neuro-linguistic programming, which a reviewer in Psychology Today considered to be "the most powerful vehicle for change in existence".    

To date, aspects of the Erickson legacy, Accelerated Learning Strategies and NLP have been integrated into some of the most advanced models in the human potential movement and psychotherapy arenas. This integration has inspired some of the richest insights available in the world today into the nature of the conscious and unconscious minds, hypnosis, psychotherapy, and healing.  

Does the idea of Solution-Focused Coaching and helping others to unlock their full potential excite you? Do you want to learn more? If so, download our 10 Applications of Solution-Focused Coaching guide and learn about how we use the Solution-Focused approach in The Art & Science of Coaching program!    

Download 10 Applications of Solution-Focused Coaching