Cindy Tincher

FAQs about Hypnosis

What is hypnosis?

Hypnosis/Self-Hypnosis is a perfectly safe programming, exploratory or relaxing technique that can benefit anyone. It is the ultimate means of heightening motivation by programming your subconscious mind to work in cooperation with your conscious desires.

People generally do not understand hypnosis and thus they are wary of it. They think of it as entertainment, magic or some mystical form of control. In reality, meditation results in the same altered state but it doesn't conjure up the same negative images.

You are already familiar with hypnosis, although you may not realize it. You go through these altered states of consciousness, or brain wave levels, a minimum of twice a day; when you are crossing over into sleep and when you are awakening. You probably go through the states more often than that, if you immerse yourself in reading, daydream, or drift into "highway hypnosis" while driving or commuting.

Let me explain it this way. Brain researchers and medical practitioners have divided the brain into four levels of cycles per second activity:

Hypnosis simply fits into these areas of cycles-per-second of brain activity.

Will I be asleep or unaware while in a hypnotic state?

For most people hypnosis is a mid-alpha range activity — although you are definitely in hypnosis, you remain fully conscious of everything that is going on around you. If someone walks into the room while you are experiencing hypnotic trance, you will hear them and sense their presence.

I thought only the weak-willed could be hypnotized?

The best hypnotic subjects are not unintelligent people. The more strong-willed, intelligent and imaginative an individual is the better subject he usually is.

How do I know if I can be hypnotized?

Hypnosis is a perfectly safe technique that anyone who can concentrate for a few moments can learn. People with very low IQ's, very young children, or those with some types of brain damage are not good subjects, for they have short attention spans.

Can everyone be hypnotized, then?

Approximately nine in ten persons can be hypnotized. Once an individual overcomes their apprehension through understanding the truth about hypnosis, it is an easy experience, and one in which the subject will awaken feeling more relaxed, at ease and at peace, than before going into hypnosis.

Can I be made to do or say anything against my will while in hypnosis?

Directly proposed hypnotic suggestion cannot make you do anything against your morals, religion or self-preservation. If such a suggestion were given you would either refuse to comply or would wake up. Furthermore, the ego cannot be detached under hypnosis, so secrets will not come out while in trance. You would not do or say anything you would not normally do or say if you felt relaxed about the situation.

Are there different levels of hypnotic trance?

There are many overlapping levels of hypnosis, but for the sake of simplification we will break them down into three:

What do people experience while in a hypnotic or trance state?

Most people do not recognize the state of hypnosis. They expect to become unconscious, and unless you are the one in ten who easily achieves deep level trance, this is not at all what the experience is like. The chances are you will remain aware of everything going on around you. This does not mean you are not hypnotized, it simply means you are experiencing a hypnotic level somewhere between a light and medium trance.

You may experience different body sensations: heaviness or floating, coolness, even disassociation from physical sensations in various limbs or parts of your body.

Those in trance states often also experience time distortion. A half hour can seem just like a few minutes in a hypnotic state. It is different for everyone, but normally as you are conditioned you continue to go a little deeper each time you seek a state of hypnosis or trance, and attain a deeper level more quickly, until you attain, quickly and easily, your individual "natural level" of trance.

What�s to keep me from just going to sleep? How will I know I wasn�t just asleep?

Normally you don�t go to sleep during trance work. However, if you are very tired, you may pass from hypnosis directly into normal sleep. Suggesting to yourself that you will not fall asleep, however, can usually prevent this.

Conversely, you can use hypnosis to induce deep, healing sleep if you suffer from insomnia.

If my clients were to fall asleep, they would not awaken from their trance states when I instruct them to do so. (Some of them are reluctant to awaken, because the state is so relaxing and often blissful — but they will be compelled to awaken just the same.)

Can hypnosis be used to remove pain?

Suggestions given in hypnosis are not magic or panacea but they can be effective tools in preserving and restoring your physical and mental health. An aspirin, for example, can relieve a headache but it doesn't remove the cause of the headache. Similarly, hypnosis can be utilized to remove or manage pain, but does not cure the cause of the pain. Hypnosis should never be used to manage pain for which the cause is unknown or undiagnosed. Pain is a signal from your body that something is not aligned with a state of wellness.

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