Most people have seen how hypnosis can be used for entertainment purposes, you can probably remember seeing hypnosis acts on T.V, maybe you have even been to see a stage show and you might be wondering how hypnotherapy and hypnosis are different. Some people may be interested in hypnotherapy to help them quit smoking, reduce anxiety and stress. Entertainment hypnosis is very good for convincing people of the power of hypnosis but some believe it may put people off hypnotherapy. Many people have conditions that hypnotherapy could provide very effective help for but having seen stage and T.V shows they might be worried that the hypnotist is going to make them do things against their will or that they might give up all their secrets.

Hypnosis is Not Mind Control

It may look like mind control when you watch it on the television but that is not the case, stage hypnotists carefully select the most extroverted and suggestible members of the audience, the people that they select and hypnotise still have their own free will. The volunteers a stage hypnotist selects are playing up to the naturally extroverted side and enjoying the attention they are receiving. Hypnosis is not an unconscious state where you won’t know what is going on, hypnosis is an alert state of focused attention, you will still be aware of everything that is going on around you whilst you are in trance. Because you will still be aware of everything no one will be able to make you do or say anything you don’t want to do or say.

What is Hypnosis

The hypnotherapist uses hypnosis to put their client into a hypnotic trance, a hypnotic trance is a really relaxed state where change can occur. Studies have shown hypnotherapy requires far fewer sessions than other talking therapies to create the clients desired, positive change. To create a hypnotic state the hypnotist or hypnotherapist needs to use what is called an induction, a stage hypnotist will want to create a theatrical effect and so they will probably induce trance with what is known as a rapid induction, rapid inductions usually aim to confuse the subjects critical faculty and some stage hypnotists make them look a quite aggressive. Sometimes a hypnotherapist will use rapid induction, especially if they have already seen the client for prior sessions and want to induce trance quickly so therapy can begin but a hypnotherapist will most often use progressive relaxation techniques. It could and often is argued that all hypnosis is self-hypnosis, no one can be put anyone into a trance of any kind they have to enter it of their own free will.

What is Hypnotherapy?

A hypnotherapist will often discuss the clients problems so that they can tailor the therapy session specifically to the clients need but the client does not always need to talk about their problems, this is called content free hypnosis. The client doesn’t necessarily even need a problem, the client may just want to experience deep relaxation.

The Therapy Part

Hypnotherapy relies on inductions and deepeners to induce a trance state just like stage hypnosis does but it is with the therapy part that the similarity with entertainment hypnosis ends. Instead of making the client act like a chicken or think they are in love with a blow-up doll the hypnotherapist will use trance to help the client reach their goals. They will probably give the client therapeutic suggestions and allow the client to visualize themselves having achieved their goals, popular goals and therapy objectives might be more to be confident, have more more money or with live less anxiety.

After The Session

Most hypnotherapists will provide a follow-up recording for you to listen to after the session, many will also teach you self-hypnosis techniques, recordings and self-hypnosis can be used to reinforce the positive work carried out during the session. Anchoring techniques can also be used to help the client “change state” when they need to. For example, if a client wanted to experience more confidence in certain situations an anchor could be used to help the client get into a more confident state as and when they needed to.

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