What is Hypnosis?
The truth about hypnosis

A relaxed, focused state of concentration. That is the definition. But the actual state of hypnosis is a little harder to define. Until recently it was assumed that it was similar to sleep, or that the mind was somehow unconscious. In reality, there is a specific state that the brain enters into when it is receptive to suggestion. This has been discovered on scans during hypnosis. It is not an unusual state of mind, and may feel like you are not in a trance, or in hypnosis. For most people they simply feel relaxed. There is a change in the brain wave activity, similar to that time just before sleep when the alpha state is entered. Your brain's waking state is a beta brain wave, just as you are going to sleep it changes to alpha and then to delta and theta in deep sleep. The alpha state is a very dreamy, pleasant state. During this time the mind is very open to visualizations and creating a rich sensory experience. The more real the experience becomes in the subconscious mind during this state, the more effect it will have on your waking behavior.

Is hypnosis dangerous?

Hypnosis is a normal state of mind, one which most people go in and out of every day. When you are watching a movie that you are engrossed in, driving down a long monotonous road, listening to music that captures a mood or engrosses you, you are in hypnosis. We experience hypnosis every day and don't even know it. When you are in a guided hypnotic trance session, or driving down the road in trance, you have an observer self, which is an actual part of you that is always aware and watching out for you. This observer self has been documented as a credible aspect of our mind, that keeps us safe, even when asleep.  During hypnosis you can trust that your observer self will watch over you. This is not a guide or spiritual being, is a scientific discovery of a function of our brain. During a hypnosis session you would instantly get up and leave the room if it caught on fire, even if had previously felt like your arms and leg were too heavy to move.

In fact, since hypnosis can help make us sharper and more aware mentally, it actually may help keep us safer, by making us more aware of our surroundings during the day. If your perception of what is happening around you is better, you will notice things that are happening with greater clarity and perhaps make better decisions. 

Can hypnosis make me tell secrets?

Not at all. You will not divulge any information that you would not ordinarily divulge.  You always have a choice, and your brain did not stop functioning or reasoning. However, you may find that you discover some inner truths about yourself, or your situation, or some self sabotage, that you did not know about consciously.  What this means is that your subconscious mind may have some inner programming going on that you do not know about that causes you to keep making the same mistakes, get sick, get angry, have rotten luck, or ignore important clues about your success or failure. The really good news is that when you uncover these inner truths that have been kept secret from your subconscious mind, your mind can no longer play that game. When the unconscious strategy is revealed, the gig is up. Your inner mind must now do it differently. The program only worked when it was in stealth mode. Here is an example. I had a pain in my back, between my shoulder blades. ??.

Can Hypnosis make me do something against my will?

Absolutely not. This is probably the biggest myth of all. Stage hypnotists seem to make people do strange things while hypnotized, but the truth is that these people are doing these things because they have a desire to be outrageous. If the stage hypnotists chooses their subjects carefully they will have willing participants. You will never do anything, or accept any suggestion that violates your morals or values. If that was possible, all the hypnotists in the world  could make you go rob the banks and bring back the money. We would be rich, and rule the world. Obviously, this is not the case.

What if I don't wake up?
No one has ever got stuck in a terminal state of hypnosis. It simply cannot happen.  If the hypnotist left the room, or if you were listening to a tape and the power went out, you would either fall asleep and wake up naturally, or your subconscious mind would detect that there is no voice guiding you and bring you to conscious awareness.

Will I forget everything during the session?

It occasionally happens that there is amnesia for the session. Sometimes the hypnotist will suggest that you forget what transpired, and occasionally this may have that effect. Most hypnotists want you to be aware of the session. You will be aware of everything around you, and remember most, if not all, that happened in the session. Usually, you will remember it better than a conversation we had, because your mind is in such a focused state.

Can anyone be hypnotized?
Yes, in fact hypnotizability is often a learned trait. You can teach your body and mind to go into trance, and get better and better at it as you practice your self hypnosis. Most people don't think they are hypnotized after a session. What they do notice is that some things have changed ? maybe that day, maybe the next week. Sometimes the effects are subtle and sometimes profound.  One woman told me about a profound healing experience after three days of listening to my healing program. Her tumor disappeared. Another man who had a stroke told me that the feeling and movement returned to his arm 1 months after our sessions. Another told me that they lost 7 pounds in one week after the first session. That is amazing, of course, but sometimes when the mind is really ready to make a change, it can happen quickly. Sometimes when the brain and body needs to do some healing work it can happen over time.  One of my clients was sure that he was not hypnotized in any of our sessions, but after only 5 sessions, his lifetime of relentless migraines were gone. And when I saw him 8 months later, he says that he still has not had one migraine.

The truth about hypnosis is this.

It can be the one most important tool to change the way your mind experiences your world. If there ever was a magic wand, that could help you change anything about your life, your health or your behavior, this might be it. Good Hypnotherapists know how to gently release blocks and fears, and create a new inner belief that will set the wheels in motion to make changes in the way you think, feel and behave.

We are constantly hypnotizing ourselves. I think that sometimes we are our own worst enemy, when we call ourselves names, or put ourselves down and reinforce fears and limitations. It can get to be a habit and if you do it long enough you will develop a belief that will get the results you ask for.

For instance, if you think you have a bad memory, or believe that your memory has to get worse as you get older? maybe it is at least partly due to your constant reinforcement that goes something like this:

Boy my memory is getting bad

I am so bad at names

I will never remember that, you better write it down

My mind is really going downhill

These are suggestions. It is just like suggestions that I would give you during a session in my office, in that they will create the effect you are asking for. If you come into my office and pay me to hypnotize you for a better memory, I am going to make suggestions that:

Your memory is getting sharper every day

You are very good at remember names, it is easy for you to instantly recall someone's name

You will easily remember those things that are important

You mind is getting sharper and your memory better every day.

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