Considering using hypnosis to help you quit an addiction? Have more confidence? Make better decisions? Reach a goal?
Most of my clients are understandably a little nervous or confused about hypnotherapy – after all we’ve all seen people be hypnotized and then do embarrassing tricks on TV!
While most people are familiar with stage hypnosis, that’s a completely different animal than hypnotherapy. Unfortunately this distant cousin has overshadowed the really powerful and meaningful transformations that take place in a clinical setting every day.
Before I studied to be a Master Hypnotist, I too fell prey to quite a few of the myths and misconceptions surrounding hypnotherapy.
After watching my husband stop smoking through hypnosis, using it myself to overcome loss of my father, my financial issues, past heartbreaks and betrayals, AND seeing my clients’ lives transform, I’ve now know the power of hypnosis. I want you to understand it too!
The Myths vs Facts of Hypnosis
Myth #1: Hypnotists can control my mind.
WRONG : No one can control your mind, unless you let them. Your hypnotherapist will give you suggestions that you want and agree to be given, based on the pre-trance talk. You will not lose control of your mind at any point in the trance. In fact, should you hear a suggestion that you don’t agree with, or don’t understand, your subconscious mind will automatically reject it.
Myth #2: I can be tricked into perform embarrassing acts, such as barking like a dog, or walking like a duck.
WRONG! This assumption is based on stage hypnotism and Hollywood fiction. The truth is that stage hypnosis depends heavily on volunteers to act on stage. They have agreed to participate and know beforehand that they will be given silly suggestions. Hypnotherapy is a serious process of self-improvement, not entertainment.
Myth #3: Hypnosis comes from the occult.
WRONG! Hypnosis is a natural state that has been studied scientifically. Hypnotherapists are not Psychics or Palm Readers with “special powers.” Hypnotherapy is based on many years of clinical research by famous Psychologists such as Dr. Sigmund Freud and Dr. Carl Jung, and more recently, by Dr. Milton Erikson and Dr. John Kappas.
The truth is that hypnotists do not have any “special powers,” not even the stage hypnotists you may have seen. We have professional skills, a deep knowledge of psychology and the human psyche, experience of working with people, but no special powers. Of course, the real skill is in the way we can use the hypnotic state to help people.
Myth #4: I have never been in a hypnotic state before.
WRONG! All of us experience hypnosis at least twice a day every day of our lives. Just before we fall asleep at night and just upon awakening in the morning, when we are groggy and still in bed. Most people enter what is know as ‘Environmental Hypnosis’ when they are driving on a highway, watching a movie or TV commercials, or while reading a good book. It’s such a light state that we don’t realize that it’s a hypnotic trance.
Myth #5: Hypnosis is a “Miracle Cure.”
WRONG! While Hypnosis is a relatively quick method of making permanent improvements – you see results in a matter of weeks instead of months or years, there is no such thing as a one-time “Hypno-Miracle”! Every individual makes progress at his or her own rate. Be wary of those who make wild claims of overnight success. Most issues require at least a few sessions over a few weeks to work it out of your system.
Myth #6: I will be made confess or share all my secrets.
WRONG! Hypnosis cannot force anyone to “tell the truth” or to share information they do not want to. You can also be reassured that hypnotherapy sessions are confidential and hence required to be kept private and cannot be used for court testimony. And it is certainly not an alternative to lie detector tests.
Myth #7: When hypnotized, I will lose all sense of my surroundings, and will have no memory of the session.
WRONG! Hypnosis is not an unconscious state and you do not go to sleep. In fact, most people report having a heightened sense of awareness, concentration and focus, and can even hear more acutely during a session. Some often feel that they were not in the trace at all.
Myth #8: I can’t be hypnotized because my mind is too strong and focused. Only weak minds get hypnotized!
WRONG! This is an old belief that has, in recent times, been proven untrue. In fact, people who can concentrate and have a creative imagination and focus respond the best to hypnosis. We are all susceptible to suggestion, but it is just a matter to what degree. If you are offered help or useful information then will you accept it and work with it? (It’s kind of silly to work against help!) It is therefore totally incorrect to say that people who become hypnotized are gullible or weak minded.
Myth #9 – In hypnosis, you’ll be able to recall everything that’s ever happened to you in your life.
WRONG! Some hypnotherapists use certain methodologies (such as hypno-analysis) that may help a person recall things from their past, if that is going to be useful for them. Normally there is no real need to go back into a personal memory or personal history. All you have to do to have results is to sit or lay down, relax and enjoy the session!
If you are considering using hypnosis in your life and want to work with a trained hypnotherapist, I would be happy to offer you a 30-minute free phone or Skype consultation to see if hypnosis is right for you.