Hypnosis is a natural, yet altered state of mind with a deep level of focus. Forms of hypnosis are experience by most people every day. Have you ever been driving down the highway and spaced out and missed your exit, even though you drive the same route five days a week? Or maybe you’ve realized fifteen minutes into your favorite T.V. show that you have no idea what you’ve been watching. With both experiences, although the state of mind was unbidden as it is in hypnotherapy, are forms of hypnosis.
By working directly with the subconscious mind, which is the seat or our emotional and creative mind, hypnosis by-passes the critical factor of the conscious mind. The conscious mind is of course ever present and alert, but it’s not actively engaged during the hypnotic session.
This is a common misconception about hypnosis that has been popularized by Hollywood and stage Hypnotist. The truth is that even with the most entertaining stage hypnosis, while it appears that the participants are being manipulated, they’ve agreed to play along. Perhaps the hypnotist tells everyone to act like parrots and they start flying around the stage. That was a suggestion that the participants accepted. Hypnotherapy works along the same lines as a collaboration between the hypnotherapist and the client with the difference being that the hypnotherapists and the client work together to create effective and beneficial suggestions. You can’t be made to do or say something that you wouldn’t normally do or say. The conscious part of your mind, which is aware during hypnosis, would step up and say “No way, I’m not doing that.”
Hypnosis works directly with the mind, so anything that the mind can effect, hypnosis can help with. Like with any modality, there are some things that have a quicker and more permanent response to with hypnosis. Some things may require more sessions than others. Many studies have concluded hypnosis to be an effective option for a variety of concerns, both behavioral and medical. American Health Magazine published the following compelling findings:
- Psychoanalysis: 38% recovery after 600 sessions
- Behavior Therapy: 72% recovery after 22 sessions
- Hypnotherapy: 93% recovery after 6 sessions