The Wizard of the Desert
Until the years up to his death in 1980, virtually no one had heard of Milton Erickson M.D. However, he was the first person to discover the secret power of life coaching. And the world has never been the same ever since.
You see, prior to Erickson, psychologists always thought of the possibility of human change in medical terms. If you wanted change in your life, the first thing a psychologist would do is give you a diagnosis. This made you a “patient” in “treatment” and a long process of “recovery.” If you were a healthy, sane person simply seeking to improve an area of life, there was no way to get professional assistance without first becoming a “patient.”
Erickson discovered that most people can be helped in another way. By tapping their inner resources, people could be guided to discover practical solutions that would radically improve their life, right here, right now. They did not need a complex psychological diagnosis – they needed practical help creatively discovering the life solutions that were right for them. One could say it this way: everything you need is within you now.
Erickson built on this simple, yet profound discovery by developing an original set of strategies that made him the most skillful clinical practitioner of the 20th century, and perhaps of all time. He became famous for being able to help nearly any kind of patient or client.
For over a decade people simply wondered at Erickson’s abilities before a man named Jay Haley “cracked the code” and wrote the first book analyzing Erickson’s method. Then scholars and students flocked to Erickson’s side from all over the world, including two men named Richard Bandler and John Grinder. Bandler and Grinder believed they could simplify Ericsson’s method. They called their approach Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP).