A question that clinical hypnotists and hypnotherapists hear some version of fairly frequently is, “How do I know you can hypnotise me?”
That’s actually the wrong question. I might be the most powerful, charismatic, smart hypnotist the world has ever seen, but when you stroll into my office, whatever else I may do, I am not going to hypnotise you.
The reason I’m not? Simple. You are going to hypnotise yourself. All hypnosis is self-hypnosis.
Going into a trance is something you do. I am here to facilitate things, to guide you and show you some different ways you can go into a trance; and I will make suggestions, hopefully useful ones, about productive ways you can benefit from being in a trance.
But you are the boss. You are in charge from the minute you walk in the door. You may decide, for instance, just how you are going to start. Most of the time, your hypnotherapist will have you sit in a comfortable chair. But some people do better lying back on a couch. Some will actually go into a trance more easily standing, or even walking about.
So you are the decider. You decide, first off, if you will go into a trance at all. Then you will decide just when you are going into a trance. You will decide how you are going into a trance. You will be in charge of how long you will stay in there, and what you will do while you are in that trance. Your hypnotherapist will have suggestions, but you will always be in charge of whether you act on them. Finally, you will decide just when you come back out of the trance.
Now, it’s true that you may not feel like you are in charge once you are in the trance state, especially if you are in a fairly deep trance. You may not be consciously aware of making any decisions at all, but you will be, even if you don’t remember afterwards.
So, you ask, why should I spend time and money going to a hypnotist? Maybe I’ll just buy a book or a CD, and teach myself. You could, in fact. The internet is loaded with self-help books and gadgets. What they are not loaded with is professionals who have the training and experience in assisting people with problems.
A competent, trained hypnotist or hypnotherapist works every day with people who are dealing with issues like yours. That professional not only knows how to help you go into a trance, but how to help you use it in a way that works for you.
The ability to enter a hypnotic state is a talent we all are born with. Think of the hypnotist as a coach who will help you hone that talent.