Chapter Two – The Trance State
The simple truth about hypnosis
The funny thing that most people fail to realize is that it is misleading to believe that we would be able to hypnotize another individual. The fact is that you will not really be able to hypnotize someone else. Now I know that is somewhat contradictory to be coming out of the mouth of a professional hypnotist that has been practicing the trade for nearly 6 years, but allow me to elaborate here if I may: All hypnosis is self-hypnosis, so when you are acting as the therapist or hypnotist then your job is to simply to help the person to hypnotize themselves. This, of course, can be done in a few different ways. The first example is the hypnotist or therapist acting as a guide, and walking the subject along with them to the Promised Land. Other hypnotists prefer to lead their subject by example. Thirdly are those hypnotists or therapists who are a bit more authoritative and commanding, simply ordering their subjects into a trance. Now, of course, each and every approach works, and in this study just so you can become familiar with all three approaches we will take you through the process of all three techniques. That way you can make a determination as to what approach works best for you and your personality.
Now that we have clarified that hypnosis is not rocket science let’s look quickly at the reason so many people believe that it is. The reason for that belief is quite simple really, so many people have the belief that hypnosis is difficult simply because so many hypnotists have said that it is! And we hypnotists are a pretty convincing crowd. For the longest time, however, the hypnotists was much like the magician, they learned the tricks of the trade and then carefully guarded them from the unknowing public. Most people who have ever been to a magic show usually leave impressed by the skills of the magician. As a matter of fact I had the recent pleasure of being in Las Vegas, Nevada and being invited to a David Copperfield show with some of my business associates. Well let me tell you Mr. Copperfield is an incredible magician and I would highly recommend seeing his show if you are ever afforded the opportunity, because it is truly incredible. Now the reason I say that of course is that I sat in utter amazement as he performed routine after routine, why? Because I had no idea how he was able to pull off such things, now if I had known the secrets of the show, I assume the whole thing would have been quite mundane and even boring.
Of course being in Las Vegas also afforded me the opportunity to have seen a few headline hypnotists practice their craft. There are two in particular that I would personally recommend if you were to be in Vegas and looking for an entertaining show to see. My personal first choice is a gentleman by the name of Kevin Lepine (who as of this writing is currently the headline entertainer at the Binion’s Casino down on Fremont Street (in old Las Vegas). I have seen Kevin’s show on numerous occasions and even been up on his stage once and although I don’t say this to brag, he made me the Star of the Show. Although it is an adult show, so leave the kids at home. The second headline hypnotist that I would recommend is a gentleman by the name of Marc Savard who currently has his show at Planet Hollywood. But once again this is an adult show, so have a fun night out without the kids. Both of these shows are awesome.
Hypnotists unlike magicians are not bound by the secrets, and as such much more information is being made available to the general public these days, it was never kept secret but the subject is gaining popularity today thanks to the power of the Internet. More and more hypnotists are selling more and more programs online and by doing so revealing the techniques used to hypnotize as well as in many cases the actual scripts that are used. All of this makes the subject so much easier to learn about then it was when I first started studying it back in the 1970’s. Back then just like the secrets of the magicians, many of the hypnotists back in the day wanted the unsuspecting public to believe that it was in fact harder than it truly is. But that simply is not true.
Hypnosis is all based on effective communication between the person doing the hypnotizing and the person being hypnotized. The only real tools that a good hypnotist needs are a creative mind, and a soothing voice. Hypnotism can be performed just about in any setting, and just about anyone can with a little bit of practice learn how to do it, and do it successfully.
As we begin this short course on hypnosis I want you to know that we will be learning in small bite sized chunks. As we learn a particular concept it will be up to you as the student to practice what you learn, practice it until you feel completely comfortable with it, practice it until you remember it, and completely understand the steps and process outlined in the exercise. It is not my intention for you to memorize long therapeutic scripts, but more importantly the concepts that will allow you to eventually write your own scripts. It is truly at that point that your creative juices begin to flow and the fun really begins. You will be able simply by following along through the process be able to write script just like an old pro in no time.
Now of course it is essential to understand that you will not become a super star hypnotist simply by reading through this book just one time, that would of course be like sitting behind the wheel of a race car, having never driven before and taking it for a spin around the track at full throttle. It simply would not be reasonable to expect you to do that. But through practice and repetition, having some fun with friends at parties, or simply getting a few willing people that would like to share the experience to allow you to sharpen your skills would be a great way to start off, as a matter of fact that is the way most budding hypnotists do start off.
I have, however, throughout this short course included instructions that will enable you to create your own induction scripts as well as therapeutic ones. You are after all expected to put some effort into the process, remember you will not be ready to take your show on the road after the first read through.
It is through constant study and practice that you too will hone your skill, and master your craft. That of course can only be accomplished by engaging in the practice. There are a lot of hypnosis courses out there and they all have pluses and minuses to them, for example some of the authors of those courses can take a simple concept that could be stated in one short paragraph and drag it on and on and on. Why? Simply to beef up the book and their self-perceived value. We are of course not going to do that here, as it is my objective is to get you from the novice to the proficient hypnotist in the shortest time possible, so we will cover the nuts and bolts, and maybe even throw in a washer or two along the way. But by the time you get through you will have a firm foundation on which to build your hobby, or new found career on that is for sure.
So pay attention, and learn your lessons well, and at the end I will make you a special offer that will surely get you moving to success as a hypnotist. Yes you can become certified as a hypnotist by the American Self Help Institute.
The use of hypnosis is a valuable tool in many different areas of your life, and you can become quite proficient in that practice. But it is my desire for you and should be your desire for yourself to learn how to safely and ethically hypnotize others whether it is for fun or for therapeutic reasons.
It isn’t just about reading the book, it is about consuming the information, and as you do you too will be well on your way to becoming a proficient hypnotist.
Because it is essential to understand that all hypnosis whether it is hetero-hypnosis or self-induced is self-hypnosis. Of course the subject (the person being hypnotized has a critical role to play in the process. It must also be noted that some people are better subjects than others. Not everyone is that good at entering trance states. There are some people who are fantastic, and will need very little input from you before going into trance state, but, most people need at least a few instructions to help them along the way. Then on the other end of the spectrum there are of course a few people that simply don’t seem to be able to ‘get it’ at all. But, don’t be discouraged, you see the more you learn about hypnosis the more you able you will be to help others to enter the euphoric state known as hypnotic trance. As your skills develop along the way, you will develop certain strategies and techniques that will add to your repertoire of hypnotic resources and make you a more versatile hypnotist. Once you have done so then you will have greater success. Now if you only learn one induction technique, and that particular technique only works on 20% of the population, you will then of course only be successful 20% of the time.
Unfortunately this is in fact what happened to Sigmund Freud, his limited knowledge of induction techniques meant that his success in accomplishing the desired level of suggestibility was frustrating to him. Being disgruntled, he soon began to make himself feel better by displacing his own personal short comings onto trance itself, even going so far as to state that it was simply not a reliable form of therapy. Some might say this was his biggest Freudian slip and what he actually meant to say was that he was simply not a flexible form of therapist. Because he was not happy with hypnosis he went on to develop psycho-analysis and other talking therapies that all seem to take forever to do very little. Of course I could not resist telling this joke at this point.
Question: How many psycho analysts (psychiatrists, psychologists, etc) does it take to change a light bulb?
Answer: One, but it is extremely expensive, it takes a long time, and the lightbulb itself must desire to change.
Now I don’t say that to diminish the relevance or importance of such therapy, simply to poke fun and make light of the subject.
So learn as many different types of inductions that you can because there is no one size fits all when it comes to inductions. Flexibility is very important, and not to worry because we do have that covered in this book.
Unfortunately, what we can’t control is the quality of your volunteers. Now that being said of course if you are only able to practice on people that are poor subjects then you may begin to believe that you are a terrible hypnotist… I of course refuse to accept that! So with that in mind I strongly suggest that you practice on as many different and as varied people as you possibly can. Now you don’t need to worry about finding willing subjects because as soon as word gets out that you are a hypnotist you will have no shortage of eager volunteers.
Now in the perfect world it would of course be preferable to only hypnotize people that would be great subjects and go into trance almost instantaneously but this is a luxury that you can only really expect if you are on the stage. Because in that situation you get to pick from the entire audience viewing your show, you get to test them for suggestibility and throw back anyone you think might not be a suitable subject or cause a problem. However if it is your intention to pursue a therapeutic practice well then you simply don’t get any choice at all in that case. Someone calls you to book an appointment and desires to lose weight, or quit smoking or deal with any other issue that you have chosen to build your practice on, and simply said they expect you to be able to deal with their issue, and that’s that. Now of course even in your clientele there will be the ‘easy deep goers’ but don’t become reliant on them. Learn the various techniques that will expand you knowledge so that you can help just about everyone and watch your practice and you bank account grow. Of course if you get a particularly tricky customer accept the challenge and recognize it as an opportunity to develop your skills.
It is my hope that you have enjoyed this post and found the information informative as well as educational. Please feel free to leave any comments below, and I look forward to seeing you in the next chapter.