The Art of Presupposition – A Special Overview Packed With Examples

Presupposition Examples – Implying is very powerful. You pass a lot of bickering because you presuppose things already. How can you use this? In this article, you will learn how to do this. We will mainly use the ‘presuppositions’ technique for this. Read more!Lots Of Presupposition Examples

What are presuppositions? The best technique to imply

There are many different presuppositions in Dutch. It comes down to assuming something through certain words in your message, while the focus is on another part of the message. This way you can bring things the way you want it, while it looks like it was fixed a long time ago or as if it was just a truth. They are the linguistic versions of classical implications and assumptions.

You basically drop a trap for your thoughts, for example towards the encouragement of a coaching session. In fact, in this way, everything of the Milton model is a presupposition. Before we go into the linguistic versions of presuppositions, we look at ordinary implications. The NLP Practitioner listens to the presuppositions in the language of the other: the assumptions in the sentences give a lot of information about how the person structures his map of the world. Also, use the NLP Practitioner presuppositions to suggest a change. The listener accepts the assumptions by the power of presuppositions.

With presuppositions you influence someone’s internal representations in a direct way.

An example of implying via presuppositions

Actually, there are implications in every sentence you say. Let’s take the following sentence:

If the cat meows again, I will have to put it outside.

From the above sentence you can achieve the following implications:

  • There is a cat: ‘the cat’
  • The cat is inside: ‘must put outside’
  • The cat has mowed earlier: ‘again’
  • It is a male: ‘he’
  • The cat can meow: ‘meows’

Dale Carnegie taught us the power of implication by asking questions

 implication by asking questions

With questions, you prevent an authoritarian attitude. You can easily use this effective coaching and leadership technique. “Do you feel this as something that you understand?” “Do you want to tell me what’s going on?” “What do you think of the cleanliness of your desk?” The implication is clear that someone has to clean up his desk while he himself comes with the idea/conclusion. See also the following anecdote by Dale Carnegie:

Instead of pushing his people to accelerate their work and rush the

order through, he called everybody together, explained the situation

to them, and told them how much it would mean to the company

and to them, if they could make it possible to produce the order on

time. Then he started asking questions:

“Is there anything we can do to handle this order?”

“Can not think of different ways to process it through the shop

that will make it possible to take the order? “

“Is there any way to adjust our hours or personnel assignments that

would help? “

The employees came up with many ideas and insisted that he took it

the order. They approached it with a “We can do it” attitude, and the

order was accepted, produced and delivered on time.

An effective leader will use …

Principle 4 – Ask questions instead of giving direct orders. [1]

Carnegie also taught us to subtly set a good example

For the first few days of the work, when Mrs. Jacob returned from

her job, she noticed that the yard was strewn with the cut ends of

lumber. She did not want to antagonise the builders, because they did

excellent work. So after the workers had gone home, she and her

children picked up and navy piled all the lumber debris in a corner.

The following morning she called foreman,

“I’m really pleased with the way the front lawn was left last night; it

is nice and clean and does not offend the neighbors. “From that day

forward the workers picked up and piled the debris to one side, and

the foreman came in each day seeking approval of the condition

lawn was left in after a day’s work. [2]

Other classic implications:

  • “Is that door still open?” The implication is that you want someone to close the door.
  • Neat clothing implies that you are a good coach that has important business people as a client.
  • If you just meet someone, you can say “Hehe, I can finally get out of the phone” to imply that you are an important person whose time is precious.

Discussion about an irrelevant part or detail

The point of discussing or resisting is, thanks to these presuppositions, diverted to something unimportant.

  • “The man is running fast”. The piece of resistance to offer now is about running fast instead of running or not because that is taken as a given.
  • “How many pieces of each species did Moses take in the ark?” In this sense, attention is drawn to the question of how many animals were taken on the ark. Thus it is no longer noticed that it was actually the ark of Noah, and not Moses.
  • When you order something at a restaurant they ask: “What would you like to drink?” The eyes of most people immediately go to the menu to order something. Compare that with “Do you want something to drink?” Or even worse: “No drink?”
  • “Do you want me to read a story for you when you put on your pajamas?” The only choice for the child is whether or not it wants a story. Putting on the pajamas is fixed.
  • In therapy with a child who is afraid of monsters under his bed: “What color do the monsters have?”
    Instead of: “Are there samples? Can you see them? Are you sad? What’s the problem? Etc.”
  • Are you curious about your developing trance state?
  • Are you DEEP in a trance?
  • Shall I tell you something cool about your dreaming arm?
  • I do not need to know the details about how you {desired outcome}.
  • “Before we start this new and exciting journey, we have to pay attention …”
    Implicates that the (new and exciting) journey takes place at all and that it is new and exciting.
  • A mother who is bragging in the kitchen and wants her child to eat: “Grab the plate with two hands.” In this sense, you place a lot of detail and emphasis on the last part of the sentence. As a result, the other person is very consciously busy processing the order to take the board with two hands. Moreover, if this person rejects the instruction to use two hands, he has to make another effort to also reject that he has to take the board at all. If the sentence consisted only of “Grab the board”, all conscious attention was focused on that which could be rejected. Also, precise instructions have the effect that they expel the mind of the other person. There is no need to think about it yourself thanks to the extensive guidance.

Ask yourself: what is the question I can ask that, by nature of the presupposition in demand, will cause the client to experience the greatest amount of change by having to accept the presupposition inherent in the question? For example: ‘What is the emotion you feel that makes you more yourself now?’

Involving existence

  • “The chair is in the room.”
    The chair and the room exist.
  • “I have an appointment with my friend at 19:00.”
    I have a friend. He exists. It is a boy.
  • “I do not know if I can practice all this at home.”
    I have a house.
  • “You just have to write down your best examples.”
    You have a lot of examples!
  • “I know you want to tell so much but you only have 1 to tell.”

Tell things as a fact

  • “In a moment I will touch your hand, and then your hand will slowly move up to your face.”

More: ‘improve’ an already positive starting point

This implies that something is already there.

  • As you discover that you are becoming even more enthusiastic (presupposing that you are already learning) about what I am saying, it is not necessary to discover/notice/find that you are growing even more in your strong desire to learn more.
  • You can feel more and more peaceful.

In the above example, a loop has also been created: the more you discover the value of what I say, and the more you discover how enthusiastic you become, the more enthusiastic you can become that you know, and that will continue as you gather, or looks, or reads.

  • “Burger King unique? You could even say that it is delightful! “The premise here is that Burger King is unique.
  • You can do this even better.
  • Tomorrow you will be able to learn even more.

Presuppose by taking action

  • Just do one part of an activity so that the other half remains for the other person. Instead of telling it. For example, if you want the other person to close the left window, you close the right window.


  • Let’s put together …
    Here is ‘we’ implying that it is not you against them.

follow me

This implies that you are the leader / the one with the power, between you two.

  • Follow me.
  • Join the group.
  • Join me.

Using privilege

  • You may.
  • If you are lucky.
  • If you are lucky, you may become a volunteer.
  • Carlo, I would like to offer you a question.
  • Do not be angry with me if you are not chosen …
  • Happy.
  • To discover.
  • To learn.
  • Secret.
  • Tell a story.
  • Opportunity.
  • Trip.
  • Breakthrough.
  • Discovery.
  • I’m going to share something with you.
  • I share a discovery.

So use the above words instead of:
Sell, buy.

I thank you

I thank you

  • I thank you (good reputation they are going to adhere to) that you allow me to discover this for you.
  • Thank you for giving me the bottle, how sweet!
  • Thank you for staying another half an hour!


  • Why are you {positive outcome}?
  • Why are you so assertive?
  • Why are you so good at leading your business?
  • What is your reason to participate?

I think it’s … that you’re going to do {desired result}

  • I like you to do a dance with me!
  • I think it is very noble of you that you give the found wallet back to the owner.
  • How nice that you also go outside with us!
  • It is great that you can change!

Do you think it … that {desired outcome}

  • Do you mind that you have learned so much in your life?
  • Do you think it’s cool that you’re so good in time?
  •  “Do you enjoy it?” In response to: “Are, you flirting with me?”

Ordinary presuppositions (Time)

Several things are going to happen and it mainly involves the order of what is going to happen:
Before, after, while, before, when, first, before, once, start, end, still, no more, around, stop, start, already

  • After we…
  • Before we…
  • Before you share that bottle with me, it is very important that you shake it a bit. That tastes better.
  • A very powerful one is: ‘already’: You are already doing it. Your self-confidence is already growing. It has already been set in motion. Note that things are already changing.
  • “The first thing we are going to do is”
  • “At the end of the performance, you can put your mobile phones on again.” This implies that the mobile phones have to be switched off for the performance.
  • “I will never go to Burger King again!” The assumption is that I have been to Burger King before.
  • “You are still listening to me.”
  • “The first thing I tell you before we’re done  and you’re going to use those learned things in your daily life is that …” (implies that we’re going to finish it and that she’s going to use her skills).
  • You are not a member yet.
  • Before you carefully focus on …
  • Let’s discuss something before you finish your project.
  • Have you already noticed that your subconscious has already started learning?
  • Have you noticed the wonderful effect this painting has in your living room?
  • A lawyer could say in court. “Have you already stopped hitting your wife?”
  • Stop with …
  • Not anymore…
  • You can continue to relax.
  • Are you still interested in NLP?
  • Before we go …
  • Before you realize how powerful that is …
  • Before you quickly discover how much you enjoy learning with me …
  • After we have done your xyz …
  • After you have signed the contract in the way that is best for you …
  • After you have decided to hire me, we can talk about the football match.
  • “Have you already started coaching?” “Do you want me to stop?”
  • You are already growing.
  • “Are you going to flirt with me?” “Have already started.”
  • They lived in a large house by the sea. What happiness they have now.
  • When the cat starts to slash again, I have to bring it out.
  • Since you became so good in this sport, everyone looked up to you.

Blending time together

  • It was a terrible problem, was not it?
  • You want to change and you’ve already done that, do not you?
  • What would it be like if you made these choices now?
  • Go inside and try in vain to have the same problem.

Adjectives and Adverbs

  • “Do you fancy a cup of tasty coffee?” Herein ‘is’ the presupposition.
  • Fortunately, quickly, soon, only. “Fortunately, the seats are in the back of the room today.” All the words here are presuppositions. ‘Fortunately’ also implies privilege.


‘How’ implies that something is going to happen. The only question is how this will happen, and no longer whether it will happen.

  • How / how is it different now?
  • How happy are you to see me?
  • And how are you going to learn all these NLP skills?
  • How do you know {the suggestion you want to sneak into}?
  • How will you use your new skills soon?
  • How else would you go into a trance?
  • How surprised will you be when you find yourself using these tips tomorrow?
  • What have I always been curious about: how heavy is such a bottle that you are going to share with me right away?
  • Ask a question where you presuppose that the goal has been reached: how much better is {situation}? (You will find more of these types of questions in the article on future pacing and coach questions.

Suggestions with open end

  • We all have potential that we are unaware of, and we normally do not know how that will be expressed.
  • It is not good that I tell him what to learn. Let him learn what he wants, and in the way he wants it.

It’s good that you …

  • It’s good that you’re so open and learning a lot of new skills, and that’s how you keep going.


  • What is going to change? (This implies that something will change.)
  • What do you want to drink?


  • What beautiful thoughts do you all have? (Instead of: what do you think now?)
  • In therapy with a child who is afraid of monsters under his bed: “What color do the monsters have?”
    Instead of: “Are there samples? Can you see them? Are you sad? What’s the problem? Etc.”

Implication of consciousness (through unspecified verbs)

‘Note’ is one of the unspecified verbs that also presuppose something. It implies that the experience will happen in any case and that it only needs to be noticed. You bring the focus to something.

  • Note that …
  • Notice what happens while that image comes more to the fore.
  • Notice how welcome that is.
  • Notice how the situation is already transforming. Notice how things are different now.
  • Notice the changes in your internal experience …
  • Have you noticed the difference with yesterday?
  • Realize how much you want it.
  • Do you realize that too?
  • Have you already realized that?
  • Chris, do you realize that you are working against me?
  • In a moment you are going to realize / You realize that you always did this naturally, and now it’s only about finding out how.
  • I’m not sure if you are aware of the temperature in your feet now …
  • Enjoy the fact that …
  • Feel …
  • Hear …
  • See … Can you see that … Do you see that?
  • Smell…
  • Test …
  • Other unspecified verbs: I know that I understand that, notice that.
  • You can be aware that you can relax … Now …

Involving repetition

This implies that it once happened once.

  • Repeat
  • We are going to rediscover how you develop focus.

Exclusive / inclusive

  • Or…
  • And…

Conversation hypnosis (Conversational postulate)

This does not pose a literal question or request, but it is implied. The advantage of this is that you do not come across as authoritarian. These yes / no questions are ambiguous because it is not clear at what time and space the question relates (and the listener feels the energy coming up to do it now).

  • “Could you imagine that …” In order to answer this question, you have to go inside, so you end up in a trance.
  • “Have you completely considered what I just said?” No. “Could you do that?”
  • Can you close the door?
  • Can you see yourself doing this?
  • Can you see what I’m saying?
  • Can you reach that level now?
  • Would it be okay to feel so good?
  • Do you know you already know?
  • Can you remember that you take good care of yourself?
  • Does this sound like this can work for you?
  • Are you prepared to sign the contract now?
  • Do you think you can make the changes you want to make?
  • Would you like to … Sit there … And relax now?
  • Would it be possible for you to close your eyes?
  • Are you going to succeed in closing your eyes?
  • Would you be able to tell me what’s going on?
  • Can you feel comfortable?
  • I wonder if you can close the window?
  • Would you feel more comfortable if your eyes were closed?
  • Would you mind to think of some extra conversational postulates?

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