There are several schools or traditions in hypnotherapy. The teachings of Milton Erickson (1901-1980) is currently generating a great deal of interest. He has developed a therapeutic style that differs from classical hypnosis in the therapist's attitude and his regard for the human "unconscious".

The therapist does not want to impose ideas, solutions or suggestions on the patient. Through his confidence in the unconscious potentials of the patient, the therapist can offer a space of encounter with these potentials to the patient, so he/she can learn to explore the self and find the appropriate solutions.

Milton Erickson was convinced that everyone already had the resources needed for therapeutic change. Unconscious but meaningful processes are constantly happening within each person, with the goal of preservation and improvement of life.

For hypnotherapy, the unconscious is not a mysterious area in the human brain that is not accessible to conscious control. The unconscious is understood instead as a collection of mental processes, which in principle could be conscious. They are only unconscious because peoples attention is elsewhere.

The person always "unconsciously" selects the alternatives that are consistent with the given situation. However, in a conscious state of attention, a person may find these decisions clumsy or inappropriate.

The hypnotic state of the organism according to Milton Erikson is a very natural manifestation of the organism. He "knows" already how to create trance. The patterns of thought and behaviour seem to be suspended and allow us to explore and use other patterns of experience and action in trance that are not accessible to us in our normal waking state.

For trance induction, the therapist observes the spontaneous and natural signs of trance in the patient. The therapist systematically strengthens these and stimulates the further development and deepening of the trance state.

In the process of orientation and exploration, the person selects possible solutions and determines the type of realization according to their personality structure. Since these processes take place outside of conscious control, the person cannot always remember what happened in the trance. Initially, he/she attributes the successes not to himself/herself, but to the therapist.

With increasing self-awareness, a conscious approach to holistic experience and the sources of one's own creativity can be found.