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The Power of Mind
Q: What is hypnosis? What is trance? What does it feel like?
A: Hypnosis is a state of focused attention, where the critical part of your mind goes on vacation for a bit, allowing for acceptance of ideas (suggestions) into your subconscious mind. Simply stated, it is a state of hyper awareness and increased suggestibility. It occurs to you naturally, every day of your life! You go into and out of hypnotic trance many times a day–right before sleep and right before you awaken are two examples.
Here are some more naturally occurring examples: When you’re totally engrossed in reading a great book, that’s hypnosis! When you are driving down the road, and suddenly find yourself pulling into your driveway, with no memory of how you got there or whether or not you obeyed the traffic signals (you did), that’s hypnosis. When you go to the movies and lose yourself in the drama and characters onscreen, that’s hypnosis. When you’re on the computer, researching, reading, or chatting, and totally lose track of time, so engrossed that you don’t hear someone over your shoulder trying to get your attention, that’s hypnosis.
Science has identified various brainwave patterns, Beta, Alpha, Theta, and Delta. Your normal, conscious, waking and aware state is Beta. Alpha waves are a slower pattern, which are found when people relax, listen to music or meditate. Hypnosis is typified by the Theta wave pattern. This occurs naturally just before and after you awaken from deep sleep. Delta waves are deep sleep.
Trance is a word used to describe the hypnotic state, this focused attention. Trance has many levels, or depths. Hypnosis, however, is an either-or thing. Either you are hypnotized. Or you’re not. Either your critical filter is bypassed, or it’s not.
What does it feel like? Close your eyes, then open them. Back open? That’s what it feels like. Light levels of trance may feel precisely like your waking state. You still are hypnotized. Deeper levels, you may feel extremely relaxed, peaceful, euphoric even. You may feel light, floaty feelings. Or you may feel like your body has become very heavy, like lead weights. Either way, it feels GOOD!! You’re not unconscious. You’re not “asleep.” You’re hyper aware. You’ll notice that some of your abilities may be enhanced during hypnosis, your ability to imagine, your ability to create, your ability to remember. You’ll also be much more responsive to suggestions.
Hypnosis is a pleasurable state. People I know want to re-visit that state as often as possible, not only for the pleasurable feelings, but because they know it can be used in a very successful way to effect all manner of positive changes. They call themselves: “trance-puppies.” You might find yourself becoming one, too.
Myths and Misconceptions of Hypnosis – or what “Hollyweird” likes to tell us!
- Hypnosis is sleep. – False!
- Hypnosis is a truth serum. – False!
- The hypnotized person is out of control. – False!
- Weak-minded people are easier to hypnotize. – False!
- Hypnosis is dangerous. – False!
- You can get stuck in trance forever. – False!
- Hypnosis creates amnesia. – False!
- Hypnosis is a strange power. – False!
- Only some people can be hypnotized. – False!
Q: Can I be hypnotized? Can everyone?
A: Yes! As pointed out above, you already have been. And are, every day of your life. Hypnosis is natural. When the state is formally “induced” by a hypnotist or hypnotherapist, it’s simply a tool that will allow you to tap into the natural power of your mind. As long as you’re willing, you can enter hypnosis. As long as you have a minimum IQ level or reasonable intelligence, you can enter hypnosis. The idea of the weak-minded being more hypnotizable, that’s false. Quite the opposite is true, in fact. The more intelligent you are, the greater your ability to focus and follow instructions, and the easier you can learn to enter trance. If you’re reading this now, you’re a great hypnotic subject!
Q: What if the hypnotist drops dead while working with me? Can I get “stuck” in hypnosis?
A: No, you can’t. No, you would come out of the hypnotic state, or “emerge” on your own, generally in a few minutes. This idea of being trapped in a “zombielike-state,” is pure Hollywood invention. Can’t happen. Never has. Never will.
Q: Will I “spill the beans” and tell all my secrets during hypnosis?
A: No, not unless you would anyway while in your normal waking state. Hypnosis is not a truth serum.
Q: Is hypnosis mind control? Can a person be hypnotized against their will? Can the hypnotist make me do things I don’t want to do?
A: No, no, and no. You are always in control. It’s not something done TO you. I can’t make you dance naked on the tables or run to the bank and withdraw all your money or walk with arms outstretched: “Yessssss, Master!” That’s Hollywood’s imagination again. Nope, it isn’t going to happen, unless you’re the type of person who would choose to do those things naturally. No one is ever hypnotized against their will. All hypnosis is self-hypnosis. That means, you are in control–always.
We, as therapists, merely guide you into the state. You always have the power to resist entering hypnosis or emerge yourself at will, or to choose not to respond to suggestions you don’t like. Just like you can choose to get up and walk out during a movie. During hypnosis, your sense of ethics and morals remains intact! No one can make you do anything you don’t want to do.
Q: What is the difference between hypnotherapy and meditation?
A: Meditation IS a kind of hypnosis, where the goal seems to be to achieve the state of quiet mind and roll around in it–hoping some good things spontaneously generate. And they probably will! What’s different about hypnosis? Hypnotherapy and self hypnosis use this state of mind targeted for strategic change: GOALS. With hypnotherapy, we’re requesting your mind to DO something, to create a specific outcome for your life, whether it be healthier habits or a new body shape, or accelerated healing, or becoming multi-lingual quickly, etc. etc. etc. Here the etcs are endless.
Hypnosis takes it to the next level, with an added oomph for success. Hypnosis is “meditation on steroids.” Yay, for the brain, and it’s very agreeable nature!
Q: What is the difference between the conscious and the subconscious minds?
A: I’m glad you asked that! Picture a large, very dark room. You have a flashlight in your hand which you turn on, and it creates a narrow beam and a small circle of light on the far wall. Everything else remains dark. That light is your conscious mind. It’s what you can see now, and focus on. Everything else in the room is your subconscious mind.
Your conscious mind is the critical part of your mind, your thinking mind. It’s analytical, logical, sequential, and has a very limited focus (as in the example above). It’s deliberate. It directs outcomes. It’s your waking state. It can only handle 7 +/-2 bits of information at a time before it gets overwhelmed. It houses about 10% of your brain power.
Your subconscious mind is unlimited, expansive. It’s active while sleeping and dreaming. It involves feeling, and intuition, and imagination. It’s responsible for involuntary movements, like your heart beating, your breathing, your blood circulating. It knows the solutions to dilemmas we cannot solve consciously. It can do many, many things simultaneously. It houses about 90% of your brain power.
The conscious mind is:
The subconscious mind is:
Active while sleeping and dreaming
Responsible for involuntary movements
Knows solutions to dilemmas we cannot solve consciously
Q: What is hypnotherapy?
A: Hypnotherapy is the deliberate application of the hypnotic state to effect positive change in a person’s life, changes for self-improvement and to release problems. We bypass or push aside the conscious critical mind, and allow the subconscious mind to find and harness those resources within you to effect the desired changes.
Q: What happens during my hypnotherapy session?
A: Hypnotherapy is a very quick and powerful healing modality. Whereas psychology or psychiatry may take years of repetitive visits to see results, if any, hypnosis is fast. Most desired changes can be achieved in 2-4 sessions. For some issues, a single session is all it will take to relieve what may have been a lifelong problem. Amazing, but true.
The cornerstone of my hypnotherapy practice is the idea that each client is unique, and what has led him to his current circumstances is also unique. We tailor each and every hypnotherapeutic session based on the client and his individual situation and needs. It’s not cookie cutter, by any stretch of the imagination. Problem X, solution, Y. No. I’ll use anything and everything in my hypnotic and NLP tool box to acheive the results you want, based on you and your life and your one-of-a-kind situation.
When you come in, there will be a discussion about hypnosis–what it is and isn’t–and then a fact-finding discussion as to your needs and desires, the behaviors and outcome you want, and consideration given to all aspects of your life and how this desired outcome will “fit.” Sometimes the presenting problem is not the underlying problem. We find that out, and deal with all of it.
Once a course of action is decided upon together, you’ll be guided to enter a wonderful relaxing trance state, where we access your subconscious and it’s powerhouse of resources and harness those resources for your positive change. It’s a collaboration, in all senses of the word.
Q: What is NLP and what can it do for me?
A: NLP stands for Neuro-Linguistic Programming. A short answer: it is a type of unconscious communication (hypnosis) but it is not traditional hypnotherapy–it’s a fascinating open-eyed interactive type thing involving custom designing new feelings, responses, and beliefs and installing them. It’s been called “hypnosis on steroids.”
Developed from a study of human excellence, it has to do with the power of words and pictures to change one’s neurology or feeling state of mind. This methodology is very complementary with the more well-known healing tool: hypnotherapy. NLP has also been called “The Art & Science of Excellence.” You decide how you want to feel, how you want to behave, and what would be useful truths in your life, and NLP will get you there–faster than anything else in the world.
As a Licensed Trainer of Neuro-Linguistic Programming®, licensed through the Society of Neuro-Linguistic Programming™, I have these tools in my tool kit, as well as my clinical hypnotherapy tools. I blend NLP with hypnotic change work to help people make powerful and lasting improvements in their lives. That’s my goal. That’s my desire for you.
Here’s a blog entry I wrote explaining more about it:
Q: What Can Hypnosis Help With?
Can hypnosis help with…? Almost anything you insert into that question, the short answer is: YES! If it involves the mind and how we respond to life, hypnosis helps!
Prepare to delve into a world of power—your own.
Hypnosis unlocks positive change, and unleashes potential, changes habits, changes minds, changes bodies, changes your experience of life itself! Hypnosis creates a world more in line with your goals and desires.
Here’s my definition of hypnosis: “Hypnosis is a state of accelerated learning.” It’s super powerful and super positive.
When I’m teaching self hypnosis for Bellevue College Continuing Education, I’m often asked by students: What is hypnosis good for? What can it be used for? Can hypnosis help with this, that, and the other thing? Yes!
A problem is only a perspective, and perspectives are subject to change. So hypnosis can be used to develop a more resourceful perspective on ANY problem. When you think differently about something, you feel differently, and your responses and choices in the world are different. Here is a list of problems that hypnosis helps with, though it is by no means an exhaustive list:
• anxiety – anxiety state
• confidence boosting
• emotional pain – guilt
• exam nerves
• fear of flying
• insomnia – sleep improvement
• interview nerves
• memory and learning
• nail and finger biting
• nervous problems
• panic state, panic attacks
• pain control
• performance anxiety
• phobias (all kinds) – irrational fears
• public speaking
• relationship problems
• social anxiety
• sports performance
• stage fright
• stress and related problems
• weight loss & weight management
Q: What is your approach to this work?
I know that hypnotism is an incredibly powerful tool. It’s a state of heightened, focused attention that we can all shift into very naturally. My purpose is to help you solve problems, seize opportunities and take action to feel better about yourself. My purpose is to help you get the good feelings and outcomes you want, using various techniques of hypnosis and NLP and timeline work, and other healing tools I‘ve learned.
Hypnosis allows direct access to your subconscious mind, where your belief systems reside. You move in the direction of your desired changes when your conscious and subconscious work together. Associations lodged in the subconscious can be altered. This allows for changes in behavior and thinking – often immediate. In addition, hypnotherapy is an excellent tool for relieving fear and phobias, stress, anxiety – all factors affecting health. It can improve motivation in school or career, performance enhancement in sports and exam taking, and even pain management.
While not licensed by the state of Washington, hypnotherapists often work through referrals by medical health professionals, coordinating treatment for clients.
The actual therapeutic session is a wonderfully relaxing and positive experience as you drift gently into the state of hypnotic relaxation. People often mistakenly believe that they will be unconscious or out of control. Ever driven home and have no memory of how you got there? Ever been so involved in a movie that you don’t hear knocking on the door? Then you’ve been hypnotized. In fact, the hypnotic state is one of hyper awareness and you will never do something that you would not willingly do in a conscious state. The best way to think of it is the same state as the transitional moments before falling asleep at night.
Q: How is hypnosis and NLP different from other therapies?
Counseling (conscious mind analysis) and medications are the opposite approach to the work we do. With hypnotherapy and NLP we use the NATURAL power and predilection of the mind to choose good feelings–on an UNconscious level. We train the mind to do so in the specified contexts. And when the mind makes those changes, there’s no homework or maintenance of the changes. They just are, and the person is more happy and resourceful in the world. That’s our goal for every client.
Q: Will I need to listen to recordings of our session on CD afterwards?
The answer is an emphatic NO. Why not? Because it’s absolutely not necessary and would be a waste of your time. When this work is done well, change is automated. And it sticks and even grows more powerful on its own. Today, and tomorrow. Here’s more information on this topic in this article I’ve written: Skill Beyond CDs.
Q: What about phone or internet sessions?
We can do that! We offer phone, skype and other platforms.
Q: What is a hypnosis office like?
We made a video to answer that question. We’d love for you to check out our clinical hypnosis office in Bellevue, WA. We do offer free in person consultations (again, it’s that face-to-face for most effective communications idea). We’re proud of our office, in a beautiful park-like setting. It’s close to downtown Bellevue and the freeways, yet it has a serene and secluded “a world away” feel to it.
When you’re ready for some positive changes, whether you live in the Seattle area or beyond, call us at (425) 564-8608. Hypnosis works!
IF YOU HAVE ANY MORE GENERAL HYPNOSIS QUESTIONS, PLEASE LET ME KNOW AND I’LL DO MY BEST TO ANSWER THEM HERE ON MY FAQ.
Did you know that in 1955 the British Medical Association endorsed the practice of hypnosis in medical school education, and in 1958 it was recognized by the American Medical Association as a healing modality. Since then hypnotism has become a valuable addition to conventional medical treatment.
Become the Limitless You!
The Power of Mind
Albert Einstein was one smart cookie! He also said:
Albert must have been a HYPNOTIST! 🙂 What’s hypnosis all about? New thinking! Resourcefulness! Using imagination to find more choices!
Hypnotherapy is simply a methodology for changing your thinking, and seeing things in a new way, and thus changing everything. When you change how you think, you change how you feel, and what you are able to do in the world.
Hypnosis is a naturally occurring state of mind, and what I call “infinitely resourceful.” Within hypnosis, you are able to tap into new thinking inside your own mind.
Hypnotherapy is the targeted application of this state for desired behavioral changes.
When you are “stuck” in a problem or way of thinking, you don’t see the solutions which are available. With hypnosis, you see those things, and you are able to grab them, and implement them in your life. You become UNstuck.You feel more successful, and you become able to create positive changes in tangible ways.
Changes such as reshaping your body, reshaping your habits, reshaping how you see yourself and your power in the world.The mind does control everything. That’s my belief and I know it to be true.
How do I find the best hypnotherapist in the Seattle area?
What is useful and important criteria?
Click BEST SEATTLE HYPNOTHERAPIST
for an article I’ve written on the topic.
–POSITIVE WORD OF MOUTH, ask your friends or medical professional.
–REGISTERED with WA State as a Professional Hypnotherapist.
–CREDENTIALED through legitimate and licensed schools.
–Active member of recognized PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS.
–Proof of ETHICAL BUSINESS PRACTICES, such as achieving accreditation with the Better Business Bureau.
–PROVEN SUCCESS in the form of client testimonials.
–A positive web presence with substance and CONTENT.
–Call them and ASK QUESTIONS. Meet them face to face and trust your vibe. You’re looking for passion vs. “puffing.”
Here’s a video describing hypnosis and it’s power.