How To Get Amazing Results with Hypnosis... More Often
To be a successful hypnotist you must be able to get the clients the results they came to you for. Understanding how to do this better than the average hypnotist is what will separate you from the pack. Truly, the problem with the career of being a hypnotist is the unpredictable results. I believe that problem lies not within the phenomena of hypnosis but rather within today’s traditional model of hypnosis, i.e. direct suggestions with an anchored post-hypnotic suggestion. I hope to give you some further tools to increase your success rate, and thereby enable you to help more people reach their goals, and/or heal from limiting beliefs and behaviors.
To be an excellent hypnotist, you must be an excellent listener. Knowing what your client is wanting to achieve, why they want to achieve it, and what is preventing them from reaching the goal is of primary significance. This happens in the intake process and is crucial for success.
It is important to understand the psychology of influence. You must understand how people are influenced or rather how to influence people in a way that yields the desired results. You can get results by being skilled at influence without using hypnosis in a session at all.
And you also must know how the brain works. How it stores memories, what the conscious mind is, and how to get beyond it, i.e. the induction process.
Language of course is the symbol we use for sharing ideas, and the skilled hypnotist uses the power of language to help people identify with new ideas. It’s important to understand, we are our ideas. Ideas that we identify with, ideas that we believe in, that shape our worldview and our inner landscape. Ideas are the most powerful (and the most dangerous thing) on the planet. They are how we learn. We share ideas about science, philosophy, religion. This is how knowledge, logic, and reason are developed. This is how entire cultural traditions are passed down. The framework for the entire universe is a collection of ideas. Ideas, thoughts…words.
Further, an idea becomes much more powerful when it’s linked with an emotional state. And this is a very important point when you learn to be an excellent hypnotist. If you have a strong emotion linked with a limiting belief and you have a goal that isn’t linked with strong emotion, you’re very likely to not achieve that goal. We are more impacted by our emotional states than our logic and reason. Psychologist Emile Coue theorizes in his book about hypnotic suggestion and autosuggestion;
“When, for one reason or another, an idea is enveloped in a powerful emotion, that is more likely that this idea will be suggestively realized.” (Baudouin, 1920: 114).
“Negative ideas stick in our minds because of the powerful emotions attached to them, especially the emotion of fear.”
Humans are influenced more by feelings of emotion than logic. And you can see this play out all the time in politics, buying cars, relationships…well just about everything. Even topics that require statistical analysis and mathematical probability like the stock market or playing poker have books upon books about how to override your emotions to take logical risks. Risk aversion is hardwired even if it’s statistically more beneficial to take the risk. This is because fear is one of the strongest emotions.
We must respect the fact that fear is our survival mechanism. It’s the mechanism that we feel within us that is directing and guiding us to keep us safe. And safety, of course, is our most primitive, most primal need. But if we can learn to reduce the strength or influence of fear in our life, we can achieve more goals. The greatest thinkers, the greatest innovators, the greatest adventures have been risk-takers. It takes fortitude of spirit to overcome fear or resistance.
A great hypnotist needs to understand how we process information and that we are made up of our ideas about ourselves. We are self-defined by our ideas and we’re controlled by our emotions. The fact that emotions will override logic and reason is THE reason people have a hard time reaching goals. “Love is blind” is an example that means strong emotions blind us to reason.
The strongest negative emotions such as humiliation, disgust, fear, hurt, rejection, terror tend to make the biggest impression on us because those things are linked with our physical survival. So when we have trauma from our past, it’s indelibly or deeply embedded in us because of the strong emotion. Identifying ourselves with a new belief or a new idea is best achieved by linking a strong emotion.
Hypnosis in the past, often used negative emotions to help make behavioral changes in order to help the client reach goals. Similar to aversion therapy, the hypnotist may have had the client picture themselves dying of cancer and their kids crying at the hospital bed, to help them quit smoking then give suggestions to avoid that negative experience. And it worked because fear is a strong emotion. It motivates us. It changes how we act.
But these days, hypnosis is different, or the way we think about psychology is different than in the eighties. In this trauma-saturated moment, the last thing a client wants to do with their time is imagine more suffering. Today we use more positive imagery and link positive emotion. I think this is the correct approach. It reminds the client of the truth. That we are at the creative center of our life. The locus of control is within us. So, you don’t want to just stop smoking, rather you want to become a non-smoker, a creative act! You don’t want to stop eating junk food, you want to become someone healthy and vital.
These positive emotions and feelings the hypnotist must elicit are a little less obtuse than the negative emotions. They are things like hope, adventure, peace, balance, passion, happiness, inspiration, self-realization, bravery, daring, power, control, joy, creativity. These may not be as intense emotions as the negative ones but they are the ones that give life meaning, purpose, and richness.
If you ask your client, “Who are you without this limiting behavior or belief?” often what is left are these positive qualities. Our natural state. Strengthen or enhance their focus on the positive feelings, heighten the impression of the positive feelings, they’re more likely to achieve a positive result.
Steer your client’s awareness and hypnotic focus to feelings of great joy, inspiration, freedom…whatever is needed to achieve the goal. It’s not just an inner concept, it’s an actual emotion.
Link that new behavior with an idea or new belief and imbue it with a strong positive emotion! If there’s passionlessness about the new goal and there is a strong negative emotion linking them to the old behavior, it’s going to be very, very rare that someone achieves the goal in the way that you hope.
One of the reasons hypnosis is not widely used as much as I think it should be or could be, especially hypnotherapy, is because the results can be inconsistent. I believe this has to do with our emotions being stronger than logic and reason. So even though “I want to quit smoking and I know it’s the right thing to do and I know it’s killing me, etc.”, emotion will win out over logic. Feeling anxious socially, or not wanting to feel agitated when you’re quitting smoking, or associating smoking with stress relief…whatever strong emotion is keeping somebody locked into negative behavior, THAT is the obstacle the hypnotist must surmount. Fortunately, there is a way to do that!
I have organized the process in a model I’ve termed TRIP, Timeline Resolution & Integration Process.
It moves the client’s mind through a journey of pairing positive emotions found in hope, vision and foresight with the new belief and behavior.
Seeks insight and release of the attached negative belief or emotion.
As well as uses traditional methods of hypnotic influence such as direct and indirect suggestions, metaphors, allegory, and anchored post-hypnotic suggestions.
I hope you found this article elucidating. Please leave a comment below and let me know your thoughts.