HYPNOSIS: Questions and Answers
(Investigator 119, 2008
What is Hypnosis?
there are many
different theories which seek to explain what hypnosis actually is,
they all tend to agree on at least one point, that hypnosis is in some
way, an "altered state of consciousness".
is effectively a
process of "dissociation" where the individual by moving from a
conscious level to a subconscious level is able to dissociate
themselves from their awareness of things around them. In hypnosis your
attention becomes more concentrated, and you are more receptive to
this does not mean
that you are no longer in control of your mind! On the contrary, if you
disagree with anything the hypnotherapist might suggest, you can choose
to completely ignore what they say!
ability to gain access
to your subconscious is a very important skill. Because the
subconscious level of your mind operates independently, completely
separate from the conscious level, this is normally very difficult.
all of our habits,
good and bad, and our fears are also located in the subconscious. If
you smoke, drink excessively, have a phobia, or some obsessive
behaviour, the source of all of these behaviours are located in the
subconscious, out of reach of the conscious mind.
have ever tried to
stop smoking or to overcome a phobia by using the conscious level of
your mind, you would understand. Dealing with these problems by telling
yourself your behaviour is stupid, or bad for your health, does not
make any difference. Because the behaviours are located in the
subconscious mind, all your arguments
which are within
the conscious level of your mind, are an utter waste of time. The
subconscious, which works at a different level, simply ignores all of
your conscious reasoning.
way to break these
habits is to deal with them on a subconscious level. The ability to
access your subconscious mind, using hypnosis, makes it possible to
produce many positive changes in your life. You can stop smoking,
overcome your phobias, it can help you to create a more positive self
image; improve your ability to study as well as improve sports
Who Can Use Hypnosis?
can, to some
degree. However, because everyone is different, it is usual to try
several types of hypnosis in order to determine which is the best and
most effective method for you. The people who are best with hypnosis
are those who are strongly motivated to change, and who have identified
a specific need.
has nothing to do
with "power", provided the individual is prepared to cooperate they can
be hypnotized. However if they are determined to prove that "no one can
hypnotize me" then it is extremely difficult to produce hypnosis with
Are There Different
Forms of Hypnosis?
hypnosis exists in
many forms, most of which are not usually recognized as hypnosis. Some
of the most basic forms of hypnosis are things like meditation, yoga,
or relaxation. While you may never have used such techniques, you would
certainly be aware of having at some time or another, become so
engrossed in a book a movie, that you lost touch with the real world
around you, for a short period of time.
often have you driven
home and upon arrival realized that although you know you must have
travelled down a certain road or highway to reach your home, you have
no recollection of travelling along that route.
experiences are all
forms of hypnosis, and the fact that you had already had these
experiences suggests that you already possess the basic skills required
to be successfully hypnotized.
What is Self Hypnosis?
hypnosis, or as it is
sometimes called, Autohypnosis, is simply a means of entering a
hypnotic state without the assistance of another person. It is a simple
and easy technique to learn, and once you learn the process you can use
it any time and anywhere.
many areas of
treatment you will be taught simple self hypnotic techniques in order
for you to be able to work on your problem between treatment sessions.
However, should you wish to develop your own self hypnotic skills to a
higher level, the therapist will assist you by teaching and
demonstrating various more advanced self hypnotic techniques.
Some Uses of Hypnosis?
is a particularly
valuable form of therapy because of its ease of use, its safety, the
fact that it does not require any medication, and because of the
extensive range of problems which it can be used to treat.
instance it is widely
used in the following areas:
insights into personal problems, and assisting in speedily solving them;
with unwanted habits such as overeating, smoking, nail-biting, etc;
and increasing self confidence;
confidence in specific areas such as public speaking;
and relaxation training,
How Will I know I have
a very common
question. Most people, especially if they have never been hypnotized
before, do not go very deep into hypnosis the very first time, and,
they often think that they have not been hypnotized. This is partly due
to their unfamiliarity with hypnosis, and, especially during the first
session they often try to check on what is happening. This tends to
keep them at a very shallow level of hypnosis.
experience your confidence in hypnosis increases, and you are able to
go to a deep level and remain there. With experience you will find that
you can recognize the level of your hypnosis and you will be able to
move upwards or downwards, experiencing the various hypnotic levels at
What Forms of Therapy
are many different
forms of hypnosis, some of them use various forms of relaxation, or
else they may use other techniques to distract the conscious mind. The
therapist may even use several types of hypnosis or non hypnosis simply
to determine which method is best suited to your individual needs.
Mrs. Eddie are
trained in the use of a wide range of hypnotic and non-hypnotic
individual with your
own specific and unique requirements, they will select techniques best
suited to deal with your particular needs. Your therapy is designed to
be the most appropriate to deal with your individual needs.
How Many Sessions Will
ability to learn new
skills always depends upon a number of individual factors. The same
applies with hypnosis. Nearly everyone can attain a moderately deep
level of hypnosis after one or two sessions. From that point onwards
you will find that your rate of progress will depend upon how often you
practice the hypnosis.
is used in many
areas of therapy because it is extremely safe and, more importantly, it
is a quick way of producing effective results.
we can produce the
best results for you the patient it is important that you tell us what
you want to achieve. We then need a full background history from you
The therapist will need details of your background, this is done to
enable them to gain details of how and when the problem commenced.
Often the patient may not be aware of the origins of a problem, so the
therapist will look for vital information which will enable them to
start looking for a solution to your problems.
history is usually
taken during the first session, and it may involve some written
assessments in order to provide the therapist with specific information.
Some Popular Fallacies
though hypnosis has
been used in medicine for over two centuries, it still remains somewhat
of a mystery. During the 19th century when medicine was still emerging
from the mysticism of the past, hypnosis became a powerful medical
tool, it was widely used as a substitute for anesthetics, and to
control severe pain. It was demonstrated to be a safe and very
effective form of treatment. It was gradually replaced as chemical
anesthetics, developed in the mid-19th century, started to be more
many had noted its
strange powers and hypnosis remained a mystery and led to the rise of
many popular misconceptions, many of which have continued into the
image of hypnosis comes from what people have awn on the television and
in the cinema. We have seen stage hypnotists use it to ridicule people;
or else even worse, we have seen hypnosis being used in Hollywood
movies where the villains are able to control the minds of their
subjects using hypnotic powers.
hypnosis are completely false. They have absolutely no reality. No one
can use hypnosis to control someone else's mind! Unfortunately, these
are the images of hypnosis that people tend to remember.
Real hypnosis is much more ordinary and down to earth. Let us
briefly look at some of the most common misconceptions about hypnosis,
and examine the facts:
SOMEONE COULD USE
HYPNOSIS TO CONTROL MY MIND.
This is the most
common misconception about hypnosis, and the thing most people worry
about. It comes direct form our exposure to stage hypnotists and movie
hypnotist cannot just
take over your mind and control you. You are always in control; always
free to do and say whatever you want even when under hypnosis. If the
hypnotist suggests something to you, you are still able to think about
what you are doing and if you don't want to listen to them, you can
ignore what they say.
you might say, "What
about the crazy things that subjects do when they are on the stage,
apparently under the control of a stage hypnotist?"
truth is, these
subjects are willingly participating in the performance. The fact that
they are volunteered indicates they want to participate in the
performance. More importantly they are not random subjects; the
hypnotist carefully selects these subjects from the audience. They will
usually start the show by giving the audience a simple test to
"demonstrate hypnosis" – in fact he uses this to identify those people
who will make good subjects. These are the people he wants. When people
come forward he looks for those who performed well in the audience. He
again tests the volunteers and selects five or six of the best
subjects, and sends the remainder back into the audience.
see exactly the
same behavior on many television quiz shows, especially those that
encourage bizarre or outrageous behaviour The performance of
participants in these shows are often little different to the behaviour
you will see at a hypnosis show. Even worse is the type of "hypnosis"
in the movies where hypnosis is used as a form of mind control, where
unwilling subjects are forced to kill and steal. Such things are
HYPNOSIS JUST A FORM
is actually quite
the opposite. When you are asleep you are unaware of things happening
around you. In hypnosis you are in a condition of relaxed
ever sat listening
to a tune, closed your eyes and become part of the melody. You were
certainly relaxed, but you were not asleep, you heard every note, and
in that relaxed condition you were able to appreciate the music far
better than if you had your eyes open. The closed eyes shut out
external distractions and allow you to concentrate more fully on the
details of the music. That was actually a form of hypnosis.
IT DIFFICULT TO
BRING PEOPLE OUT OF HYPNOSIS?
is just as easy to
awaken a subject as it is to hypnotize them. This mistaken idea dates
from the 1950's when hypnosis was a popular parlour game. Many amateur
hypnotists were keen to show off their skills at parties.
Unfortunately, most were so keen to start hypnotizing people that they
did not bother to read the chapters that explained how they should
awaken their subjects. Despite this omission there were no problems.
After a short period of time the subjects would awaken normally. With
professional training, the techniques necessary to awaken subjects are
amongst the earliest instructions received by therapists.
THE HYPNOTIST HAD A
HEART ATTACK WHILE I WAS UNDER, WILL I STILL WAKE UP?
problem. Even if the
therapist had a heart attack and there was no one to waken you, after a
while you would either decide it was time to awaken, and you would
return to normal consciousness, or else you would fall into a light
steep, and awaken shortly afterwards.
I RECALL WHAT
HAPPENED UNDER HYPNOSIS?
normally you will be
able to recall everything that happened and was said. The idea that you
will experience amnesia after hypnosis is a common misconception.
Originating in the 19th century, it is completely false. Although a
therapist can produce amnesia, they would only do this with your
permission. Sometimes, while in therapy, you may recall some traumatic
life experience, and you may not yet be at a stage where you can handle
that memory on a conscious level. This is where the therapist would use
amnesia to "forget" that memory until you con deal with it.
 I AM
WILLED, SO COULD I BE HYPNOTIZED?
fact strong willed
people often make very good subjects. Because hypnosis is a form of
communication, between the therapist and the client, if the client is
strong willed they are better able to work with the therapist in making
changes occur. The success of hypnosis has nothing to do with being
strong or weak willed.
HYPNOSIS CANNOT BE USED
In fact children are
usually good subjects, often better than adults. There are several
reasons for this. Firstly their powers of imagination are much greater
than adults, secondly they are less likely to be analytical about the
material being presented, and finally they tend to readily follow
instructions given to them by therapists.
THERE ANY AGE
LIMITATIONS WTH HYPNOSIS?
The only limitations to
the use of hypnosis are related to a patient's ability to listen to the
instructions, and cooperate with the therapist.