Hypnosis, Self Hypnosis and Trance are all one and the same thing. They are basically just tools. Tools that allow you to quickly and easily reshape how you think, feel and view your world, your peers and yourself. However, a great many people are losing out on the benefits this fantastic tool offers simply because they have a lack of understanding or misunderstanding of the entire subject. Below you will find some key points about Hypnosis that will, hopefully, arm you with the knowledge you need to decide for yourself what hypnosis is and what it can do for you.
Hypnosis is older than you can imagine. It has been employed for various reasons over thousands of years. Hypnosis, or more accurately trance, is a completely natural state of mind which you move in and out of everyday. It is, in effect, an altered state of consciousness. You are neither asleep nor are you completely conscious or wide awake. A common illustration of this can be seen in the simple act of watching a movie. If you are enjoying the movie then, albeit only temporarily, your conscious mind stops processing your immediate surroundings as you emerse yourself in the world that is being presented to you on the screen. If you did not enter into a light state of trance while watching such programmes they would not give the pleasure they do. You must “lose yourself” in the characters believing them to be real people in order for the film and plot to be entertaining. We all know how bad a film is when we just can’t make a connection with the characters, so we just don’t find them convincing – the movie loses its hypnotic power and no longer becomes entertaining! Hypnotic trance is really just a state of deep relaxation which creates, what are called alpha and sometimes theta waves in the brain. Sometimes a subject can be in a fairly deep state of trance without even knowing it, they merely think they are very relaxed. In very rare cases the subject thinks they just fell asleep!
Everyone can be hypnotized. However, all forms of Hypnosis are really self hypnosis. For in order to be hypnotized you must first be willing to hand over control to the hypnotist. Without consensual participation from a subject a hypnotist is virtually powerless. Having said that, it is extremely difficult to hypnotise a person who is very drunk, or has taken drugs (these people are already in a self-induced state of trance and directing them into a different altered state becomes almost impossible). In addition it is impossible to hypnotize someone who is adamant they don’t want to undergo hypnosis!
Hypnotherapy is a very specific form of hypnosis mostly used by health care professionals. As hypnosis is an extremely powerful tool for gaining access to the subconscious mind many emotionally created illnesses can be treated with hypnotherapy. In fact, as the medical profession becomes more aware of the role the mind plays in illness and healing, they have that some physical ailments, such as warts and skin disorders like eczema, can be successfully treated with hypnosis. Simply stated Hypnotherapy is an alternative therapy that uses hypnosis as a catalyst for creating inner change in a patient that may take months or even years of traditional therapy techniques.
Hypnosis is completely safe! It is just an efficient quick method for entering a deep relaxed, natural state of mind and body. There are no drugs involved, no unpleasant nor unwanted side-effects and it is in no way addictive. All you need is a soothing trained voice, a comfortable couch or chair, a willingness to participate and some free time.
You are always in control of yourself before, during and after a hypnosis session. If you are a particularly “good subject” you may forget the experience afterwards but during the hypnosis session you are always aware of what is happening! You cannot be made to do nor say anything that is against your moral or ethical codes not matter what Hollywood may tell you in “The Manchurian Candidate”! You will be able to hear everything that is being said to and everything that is happening around you. There are many people who actually become very sensitive to their environment. Their 5 senses become heightened and they are even more aware of the smallest of details while in trance. Of course you go back to normal upon “wakening”.
The vast majority of people remember everything that was said to them by the therapist when the hypnosis session is over. In fact it’s a pretty good bet to say that everyone who reads this article will be in that group.
It is the job of a hypnotherapist to make you feel comfortable before, during and after a session so if, at anytime, you feel uncomfortable with what the therapist is doing or saying tell them to stop! In order to get the most from any hypnosis session you must be able to relate to the hypnotist or hypnotherapist and trust them. For this reason all reputable hypnosis professionals give a free consultation before you ever enter a trance state. Seek out a hypnotist you feel comfortable with and who makes you feel that they can get the results that you are looking for – after all you are in charge!
Hypnosis is merely a tool. It is a highly effective method for producing inner change that is permanent. I can understand that some religions forbid their followers to take part in anything that may cause them to lose control of their mental, emotional and conscious functions but believing that hypnosis or a hypnotist can do any of these things is just a misunderstanding of the process. Hypnosis in no way interferes with your free will. You will not do anything that is against your ethics. You will not do anything that is unacceptable to you. Neither will you do anything that is against your moral code or which feels wrong to do. If strutting around like a chicken would cause you serious embarrassment then you just won’t do it!
There is no danger of becoming trapped in a trance state. This is another Hollywood myth designed for entertainment purposes and has absolutely no basis in fact. The real fact is, you can terminate the hypnotic session at any time you wish just by opening your eyes and stretching! If, for any reason, you found yourself left in a hypnotized trance state, whether by a therapist or while listening to a self hypnosis recording, you would either fall into a light natural sleep (waking after a short nap) or you would return to full consciousness immediately!
The cost of hypnosis and hypnotherapy vary depending on your location, the popularity of the therapist, and the length and nature of the sessions you wish to purchase. Don’t go for the cheap option! Take advantage of the free consultations by visiting several hypnotherapists before making your choice, that’s why they have these consultations. A good start is to experience hypnosis through a carefully chosen tape, CD or MP3. By using a pre-made recording you can experience, in the comfort of your own home or office, the relaxing meditative state of trance and see whether it is for you or not!
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