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Let Them Find Pirate Treasure


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The second conditional is a very useful grammatical structure.

(The second what?)

Conditional is like a verbal "if then" statement.

In English we have two.

The first conditional is when you talk about things that are likely or expected. To construct them you use the present tense on one side, and "will" on the other side.

If it rains, I will get wet.

If I see my ex girlfriend at the party, I'll be nice to her.

The second conditional are for things that are hypothetical.

Things that AREN'T expected or likely to happen.

With these we use the past tense and "would" or "could."

If I saw a UFO tonight, I would take a picture.

If I saw bigfoot at the party, I would film him, and I would become famous.

We also use the second conditional to be polite.

For example, if you were sitting in an office with somebody, and you wanted to open the window, there are many things you could say to facilitate the opening of the window.

You "could" just say, "I'm going to open the window."

But that would be kind of rude.

Most people instinctively say, "Would you mind if I opened the window?" 

This is in the second conditional, and therefore in "hypothetical land."

It uses the past tense, and would.

"If I opened (past tense) the window, would you mind?"

It's like you're saying, "I'm not going to open the window without checking with you, that would be rude. But hypothetically speaking, if I DID open the window, would you mind?"

Putting it in hypothetical land helps everybody save face in case there is any disagreement.

Another way we use the second conditional is when giving advice.

"If I were you, I would try to go to bed a little earlier."

Sometimes people take this advice, sometimes people don't.

But it's pretty obvious that it's advice. Most people aren't even aware of the deep linguistic mumbo-jumbo in everyday language.

But it's there.

So why not take things WAY deeper?

Instead of just using a second conditional, like every other "advice giver," consider putting your advice so deep into hypothetical land they have no idea who is really giving advice to whom.

It will be so deep they'll actually think they are "discovering" the advice on their own.

How do you do that?

Put the "advice" or suggestion or whatever it is you'd like them to do, and wrap it in a lot of small stories.

That way, you can spin their mind in all kinds of wonderful directions.

Not only will they "discover" your advice, but they'll enjoy doing so.

They'll feel like a kid discovering hidden pirate treasure.

Learn How:

Hypnotic Storytelling

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