Thehiddenevil\’s Weblog


Messages-The Communication Skills Book, Matthew McKay, Ph.D., Martha Davis, PhD., Patrick Fanning

It s hard to defend against the anger & disapproval expressed in negative metamessages The attack is often so subtle that you aren t aware of exactly how you ve been hurt The basic function of metamessages is to say something covertly that you re afraid to say directly. Since metamessage attack is covert, there is little chance of overt retaliation.

These subtle whispering sneer attacks, & verbal barbs attacks may work best when done repeatedly, & after a person been loosened up with a more overt type of harassment such as noise campaigns, collisions, crowding, & sensitivity tactics. Within a conversation, certain weighted words can be emphasized. Volume, tone & tempo can be changed so that some words are slightly louder & spoken longer than the others. This can completely change the meaning of a message.

The following is a quotation regarding imbedded questions & suggestions as outlined in the book, Patterns Of The Hypnotic Techniques Of Milton H. Erickson, M.D., by NLP experts Richard Bandler & John Grinder. The example at the bottom titled Indirect Imbedded Command is exactly as it appears on page 173, where the weighted words (suggestions) that are to be emphasized when spoken are bolded. Note: When Erickson speaks of the dominant & nondominant hemisphere, he is referring to the conscious & unconscious mind respectively.

Patterns of Hypnotic Techniques of Milton H. Erickson, M.D. Richard Bandler & John Grinder

“They very often are a presupposition of some other command and serve to distract the dominant hemisphere by having it utilize the internal dialog These imbedded questions are most effective when they are stacked together to maximally distract the dominant hemisphere.

Imbedded commands serve the purpose of making suggestions to the client indirectly and, thereby, making it difficult to resist in any way…

These are most effective when they are also marked analogically by emphasizing the command and by looking intently at the listener, if their eyes are open.”

“Indirect Imbedded Command: “My friends tell me to feel comfortable and to loosen up when we are out on the town.””(4)

Below is an example of how groups use these suggestions to harass people. Bolded words indicate ones that are emphasized.


You ve been blitzed with noise campaigns, crowding & collisions on your way to the bus stop. You feel like you ve been through a minefield & have been hit multiple times (you have). Your heart is pumping. You sit down on the bus  begin to relax. A couple sits down across from you & begin a conversation. You overhear bits & pieces of it.

Person 1: His car isn t working.

You: You think, My car is in the shop.

Person 1: They think it s the battery.

You: What a coincidence, my car is getting a new battery, you say to yourself.

Now that they have your attention, the conversation unfolds like this

Person 1: I saw him last week, his car looks bad.

Person 2: That s HORRIBLE What s wrong with it?Person 1: It just keeps

breaking down.

Person 2: I don t want to be in that car in case it should just flip out!

Person 1: That s insane!

Person 2: I hate to see him like that.

Person 1: He s crazy for keeping it. He knows it just keeps breaking down.Person 2: I know

he is. It just broke down so many times

Person 1: Not to be paranoid, but he should just give up on it.Person 2: You re not

being paranoid, but I don’t trust that thing on the highway.

Person 1: Is that crazy or what, is that being insane?

Person 2: he s nuts for keeping it. I told him he s crazy.


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