Practical NLP Podcast 36: The Meta Model part 2 – Generalisations

Meta Model generalisations - universal quantifiers, modal operatorsIn this podcast we continue to explore the set of ‘marker’ language patterns and associated magic questions for uncovering missing information or helping us to realign our ‘mental maps’ with reality that in NLP is known as the ‘Meta Model’.

This week we’re focusing on the patterns that can be broadly classed as ‘generalisations’. These include ‘universal quantifiers’ – what we would normally think of as ‘generalisations’ in everyday English- plus ‘modal operators’, the ‘rules’ about what we or others must, should or ought to do (generalisations about necessity) and about what we can or can’t do (generalisations about possibility).


  • The tip-off words for spotting a generalisation
  • Why sweeping generalisations feel true to the person making them
  • A subtle way to ‘challenge’ shoulds, oughts and musts without losing rapport

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Duration: 7m04s

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Practical NLP Podcast - languageNote: Only the most recent 10 episodes of the Practical NLP Podcast are available free on iTunes. You can still listen to this episode as part of the Practical NLP Podcast Collection Volume 5, which you can get here.