By Susanna Sweeney, MSC, MBACP, CHT
Most articles on suggestion hypnosis are written for hypnotists to help
them sharpen up on their techniques and add extras to their toolkit.
What I want to do in this article, is this: I want to give you, the prospective hypnosis client, an understanding of what suggestion hypnosis is, what the ideas behind it are, what to expect and how you can get the very best out of it because I believe that education can really help you to get the best from your hypnosis treatment.
So, let's get started!
Suggestion is one of two basic ways of working in hypnosis therapy- the counterpart being regression hypnosis.
on what issue you are attending hypnotherapy for, the two can be used
separately on in conjunction to help you achieve your goal.
Regression hypnosis, in short, facilitates you to visit experiences in the past- often the distant past such as early childhood that set off the problematic issue you are attending hypnosis therapy for and helps you to.
Apart from those exclusions, suggestion hypnosis is safe, and very well contained.
The basic idea behind suggestion hypnosis is this.
In my article: "What is Hypnosis?" I talk about the brain state of hypnosis. Thanks to cutting edge technologies using different types of brain scans, we can now see that the brain- when in hypnosis- does different things to when it’s in a conscious waking state.
Increased suggestibility during hypnosis is one such example. As an adult, when in a conscious waking state, your mind has very strong inbuilt censors in operation that stop change. That’s why quitting smoking or losing weight, or any other change, for that matter, can become so difficult.
For the purposes of suggestion hypnosis, hypnotherapists use this increased suggestibility during hypnosis to feed your subconscious mind suggestions which are designed to help you change the issue you want to change.
Let’s look at this in a little more detail.
Our minds are constructed in such a way that every
culture, every parent, can condition their children according to the
needs of their particular environment. It is for this purpose that young
children’s minds are wide open to suggestion.
Why would this be so? This mechanism makes sense to me in evolutionary terms.
Think about it.
parents living in year round freezing conditions will have to instill
very different behaviors in their children compared to parents living
in sub-Saharan Africa. In order to survive, their kids require a very
different set of skills.
Because children are so easily suggestible, everything the caregivers say will impress itself deeply on their minds. Fear responses in particular are deemed essential to survival, so our minds make sure we take those messages in at a young age and never forget what we should be afraid of, in order to survive.
After the age of seven, the gates to the subconscious start to close.
We can see this in children when, as they are growing up, they stop
believing in magical creatures such as fairies and dragons and suddenly
become much more astute as to what is imagination and what is reality.
To use hypnosis language, they become much less suggestible.
Now, their conscious minds start to take center stage, and the programs that have been established in the subconscious mind run quietly in the background, determining their behavior. They will quickly become unaware these programs exist, and will be unaware of the power they have over them.
The programming will now be locked behind censors that make sure that the programming remains unchanged.
In this way, we become our own worst task masters, and limit our personal development.
So, how DOES one change in adult life?
To change the programming laid down in childhood in a fast an effective way you
are well advised to work in a non-ordinary state of consciousness such
as hypnosis.Hypnosis works well because it allows you to target the subconscious mind directly.
Otherwise, working in your conscious mind and using willpower, you could be struggling for years to achieve the change that you want. And that’s not because you are doing anything wrong. It’s simply a peculiar thing about how our brains work.
Let's look at what this looks like in practice. What techniques can you use to re-educate your subconscious mind?
Reframing is a technique that helps you to evaluate a
situation you feel stuck in from a birds eye perspective while in
When your hypnotist uses reframing, the hope is that you will be able to start seeing new possibilities, or ways around the issue. You may suddenly find yourself seeing possibilities where, previously, it seemed like there were none.
hypnotist will use metaphors and storytelling frequently during
suggestion hypnosis because they are an ideal teaching tool for your
subconscious mind. Your subconscious mind thinks in images rather than
the logical sequences used by the conscious mind.
Metaphors and stories can help your subconscious mind to evaluate a situation or behavior from a different point of view. Metaphors and stories can help convince the subconscious mind to adopt new, desired attitudes, emotions and behaviors.
Using revivification, your hypnotherapist will help you to recognize resources you have used in the past to deal with a similar issue. Your hypnotherapist will guide you to see how these resources can be used to solve the current problem.
Reintegration allows two conflicting
parts or voices within you to talk to one another. The idea is that if
one part of you wants change and another does not, the part that is
resisting can be ‘talked around’ to see that the planned change is
desirable for all of you.
For example, if you want to stop smoking, but there is a small voice within you that is afraid you might gain weight, your hypnotherapist might set up a scenario where the two voices can communicate so that the resisting part can understand that continuing to smoke puts your life at risk the longer you continue, and that it is possible for you to stop smoking without gaining weight.
Hypnotherapists use suggestions within sessions for a variety of purposes:
hypnotherapist will use posthypnotic suggestions to suggest to your
subconscious mind desirable emotional states and new healthy behaviors
which are designed to help you overcome your problem issue.
These posthypnotic suggestions can be anchored to certain triggers.
For example, if you are attending hypnotherapy to stop smoking, your hypnotherapist may suggest to your subconscious mind that after the session, every time you see someone smoking, you will feel a deep feeling of disgust.
This, of course, is designed to keep you away from cigarettes first of all during the critical quitting period, and furthermore for life after that.
What does it feel like when you carry out a posthypnotic suggestion?
If you are not sure if hypnotherapy works at all, you may be interested
in my take on the question: "Does Hypnotherapy Work?" Some of my ideas may
If your question of whether or not suggestion hypnosis works is informed by you believing that you cannot really be hypnotized (as an incredible number of people do), you may also have internalized other hypnosis myths which I recommend you bust before embarking on hypnosis therapy- simply so that you can get the best out of it.
But if you are open to an honest, simple answer, informed by my experience of working as a hypnotherapist as well as being a hypnosis client, then simply read on.
Some factors that
will make a difference are:
You can help yourself here by doing your research to find:
Let me conclude this article by helping you prepare for suggestion hypnosis in the following section.
Discover the power of hypnosis through 10 amazing facts about hypnosis you most likely have not heard before.
Find out the benefits of hypnosis over coaching and traditional talk psychotherapy in helping you change your life for the better and achieving your goals.
You may have heard anecdotal reports about hypnosis being nothing more than unscientific ‘mumbo-jumbo’ which might have planted this question in your mind. So, does hypnotherapy work? Find out my answer to this charged question, and it probably isn't what you would expect.
Find out the three worst mistakes any hypnotist can make so that you can avoid them and find the right hypnotist for you.
Evolution has given humans a powerful tool that enables us to be the most dominant species on the planet- yet this tool contains a critical flaw that is limiting many people and preventing them from living their dream. This may be limiting you, too...
Learn the secret language of hypnotherapy geared towards the requirements of your subconscious mind so that you can reach your goals more easily.
Find out the most common issues that hypnosis can help you with and see what you could do with hypnosis to change your life.
This article is a great starting point to understanding what to expect from hypnotherapy treatment, including what you can do to get the most from your treatment.
Hypnosis has been shrouded in mystery. There are many myths or, simply, false beliefs attached to hypnosis. You, too, have likely picked up a few of them as they are ‘around’ in public consciousness. Let me bust those myths for you so you can be free to enjoy and appreciate hypnosis for what it is.
Hypnotic trance is referred to with much mystery. Is it really that spooky? Allow me to talk you through what the experience is like.
This article covers everything you want to know about suggestion hypnosis, including what it is, what it can do for you, how it works, what techniques are used and how you can get the very best out of it. Suggestion hypnosis can help you to reach your goals and change your life.
Regression Hypnosis can help you to clear blocks relating to the past which are causing you trouble now. Find out how it works, how it compares to coaching and psychotherapy and see if it is suitable for you.
This article fills you in on how you can get the very best from regression hypnosis and is a must read if you are thinking of embarking on hypnotherapy treatment for a complex personal issue.
Some hypnotists offer specific sessions to uncover past life memories. Is this a good idea? Find out what my thinking is on how to get the best results from past life hypnosis.
Does online hypnotherapy work or is it inferior to face to face work as some people say? Find out what's involved and form your own opinion about advantages and disadvantages working online with us.
Find out about a novel psychosensory treatment we combine with hypnosis which can help you clear trauma, fears, phobias, anxiety, low self esteem and more while also supporting you in building resilience and positive emotions.
Discover how well hypnosis could work for changing your particular bad habit and how you can make it into a starting point for changing your life.
No more scripts. The new way to work with live issues. It's dynamic, fast, gentle and powerful.
Can you help yourself with hypnosis? Find out here...
You will find this question answered but in a way you probably would not expect. Find out how self hypnosis is always at work, whether you harness it as a skill or not...
The Benefits of Self Hypnosis
Find out in this article how you can benefit from self hypnosis in your life, including what issues you can use it for.
Self-Hypnosis Relaxation Techniques
A good place to start practicing self hypnosis techniques first before infusing them with images regarding your specific goals, or changes that you want to make in your life is with relaxation techniques. Find a sample relaxation script on this page that you can start using today.
Self Hypnosis for Goal Setting
Goal setting is key in working with personal goals. If you don’t get your goals just right, you are much less likely to get good results. Find out how to overcome the seven most common mistakes with goal setting when you use a self hypnosis based approach.
Self-Help Hypnosis- 7 Challenges and How to Overcome Them
Like any other form of therapy, self-help hypnosis, too has some limitations which you should be aware of before you start practicing. I also offer some practical tips and solutions to help you overcome most of these limitations.
In this article, find out the history of auto suggestions, the science behind them and how you can use them to your advantage to change your life.
In this article, find detailed instructions on how to design, administer and troubleshoot your auto suggestions successfully so that you can use them to change your life.
I hope at the end of this article you have a better idea of what suggestion hypnosis is all about and what you can do to get maximum benefit from it.
Are you going to give suggestion hypnosis a go? Let me know in the comments underneath.
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