What does hypnosis feel like?
During hypnosis (also known as hypnotherapy), the body is released from conscious control. Breathing becomes slower and deeper, the pulse rate slows down, and the metabolic rate falls. The body may feel very heavy or unusually light, and the awareness of physical pain and unpleasant symptoms tends to alleviate. Some people report that hypnosis feels very similar to the first five minutes upon falling asleep.
How does hypnosis work?
During hypnosis, the conscious mind is on the back burner, and the subconscious is at the forefront. The subconscious governs our habits, perceptions, beliefs, and deeply rooted thought patterns. The hypnotist is thus able to suggest concepts and lifestyle adaptations, the seeds of which become firmly planted in the subconscious. The conscious mind allows us to analyze, problem-solve and get through the day, but it’s the subconscious that is ultimately in control. Most people go through each day entirely unaware of their inner programming, and come to believe they are out of control of making important changes in their lives. This is because the conscious and subconscious speak different languages. To make lasting change, the subconscious must be directly accessed, and hypnosis is one of the best known ways to achieve this. For example, have you ever tried to talk yourself out of a habit or an irrational fear, and this only makes it seem worse? You may really want to get over it, however you will continue to fail as long as your fear or behavior is held at the subconscious level, preventing you from succeeding. The more you think about it on a conscious level, the bigger it will seem in your mind. Progress is only possible through reprogramming the subconscious so that unhelpful thought patterns, beliefs, and habits are eliminated or altered, and new, beneficial ones are created.
What problems can be treated with hypnosis?
People typically seek hypnosis to reprogram subconscious patterns, which leads to overcoming irrational fears, phobias, addictions, anxiety, negative thoughts and suppressed emotions. Hypnosis can be applied to many psychological, emotional and physical disorders. It is also helpful in relieving pain and recovering from injury or surgery.
Can everybody be hypnotized?
Hypnosis is a natural state that you go in and out of through each day, so the answer to this question is yes. Common examples of a hypnotic state are daydreaming, and "highway hypnosis", which is when you are driving and find yourself suddenly at your exit without remembering getting there.
Can a hypnotist make you do silly things?
Absolutely not. During hypnosis, you are in complete control, awake and relaxed. Nobody, including a hypnotist, is able to make you do something you do not want to do. This may not seem true if you have ever been to a stage hypnosis show. The truth is that people do silly things for a stage hypnotist because they have volunteered to go on stage, and they expect the hypnotist to ask them to do these things. If they really do not want to do something the hypnotist suggests (hit another person, for example), they would reject the suggestion. During hypnosis used for therapeutic purposes, the client has the same choice and free will to reject suggestions they do not want.
How long does hypnosis last?
Most changes made as a result of hypnosis are permanent. There are times when the work needs to be reinforced at a later time, which is easily done.
How do you choose a hypnotist?
Some people are referred to hypnotists, but if not, then an internet search in your area will help you find your options. Hypnosis is very personal work, so it is important to choose a hypnotist with whom you feel comfortable. It is also important that whomever you choose has legitimate qualifications and professional training in hypnosis.
Learn more about hypnotherapy and hypnosis for anxiety.