There is an old joke that goes:
Q: “How many Ericksonian Hypnotists does it take to change a light bulb?”
A: “Seventeen… One to do the actual change work, and sixteen to argue as to how Milton would have done it.”
Which is to say there is rarely any one “right way”?
In fact, there are many paths to the mastery of any skills. Take swimming, for example. One could learn to swim, without knowing the first thing about it, by diving head first into the deep end of a pool or a lake or off an ocean liner.
Not my recommendation.
Another way would be to go to an aquarium and try to model fish or dolphins. They are obviously highly skilled practitioners of the art, and if anybody knows how to do it, they certainly do. They make it look so easy!
Or you could take lessons from other people who have mastered the skill and have learned something about how to teach it. Perhaps they’d have you start out watching others demonstrate swimming while you stood on dry land. Then you could enter the shallow end of the pool, learn the basic strokes, get comfortable in the water, and develop skills one by one. Moving gradually into deeper and deeper water with confidence and ability.
It’s not the only way. It’s not necessarily the best way; it’s just one way.
So this suggested syntax for reading is just that – a suggestion. Ericksonian Hypnotherapy can certainly be learned very well without reading these books in this order. After all, Milton Erickson did it.
This list begins with some basic NLP books that I find very useful in learning how to think about Ericksonian Hypnotherapy. Then, starting with Trance-formations, we trance-ition into the Ericksonian approach. Although Monsters and Magical Sticks is neither NLP nor Ericksonian Hypnotherapy per se, I find it an incredibly valuable transition book. I highly recommend it.
Then, of course, the Erickson/Rossi oeuvre. I suggest you read at least a few of them before O’Hanlon’s Taproots. This book was for me one of those “A-Ha!” books.
So… The Suggested Reading List Baker’s Dozen!
book title link to
- Unlimited Power : The New Science Of Personal Achievement Anthony Robbins
- Using Your Brain–For a Change: Neuro-Linguistic Programming
- Frogs into Princes: Neuro Linguistic Programming, Richard Bandler & John Grinder
- Reframing, Bandler & Grinder
- Solutions: Practical and Effective…, Leslie Cameron-Bandler
- Trance-Formations: Neuro-Linguistic…, B & G
- Patterns of hypnotic technique of Milton H. Erickson, M.D.: Vol. 1., B & G
- Monsters and Magical Sticks or There’s..., A great book by Steven Heller
- Healing in Hypnosis: The Seminars…, Erickson
- Hypnotic Realities: The Induction…, Erickson/Rossi
- Hypnotherapy, an Exploratory Casebook, Erickson/Rossi
- Experiencing Hypnosis, Erickson/Rossi
- Taproots, O’Hanlon
Second Level (No particular order)
- Mind-Body Communication in Hypnosis, Rossi & Ryan
- My Voice Will Go With You, Sydney Rosen
- Therapeutic Metaphors, David Gordon
- Phoenix: Therapeutic Patterns of Milton H. Erickson, David Gordon
- Therapeutic Trances, Stephen Gilligan
- Uncommon Therapies, Jay Harley
- **The Wisdom of Milton H. Erickson: The Complete Volume [Hardcover]
Ronald A. Havens
- The Collected Papers of Milton H. Erickson (four volumes)
- Experiencing Erickson, Zeig
- Patterns II, Brandler & Grinder
- The Practical Application of Medical and Dental Hypnosis, Erickson, et al
- The Answer Within, C. & S. Lankton
- Trances People Live, Steven Wolinsky
- The Dark Side of the Inner Child, Stephen Wolinsky
- Hypnotherapy Scripts, Ronald Havens & Catherine Walters
- Solution-Oriented Hypnosis, William O’Hanlon & Michael Martin
- An Uncommon Casebook ,O’Hanlon & Hexum
- The Couple Who Became Each Other, David L. Calof
There are many other books, some better than others, all worth reading. This is a good place to start.