Many people are familiar with the hollywood representation of hypnosis. A mysterious hypnotist swinging a pocket watch and a person falling into a sleep-like trance. They are now under the hypnotist command!
Like many things in hollywood, that representation of hypnosis is completely false. Client’s of mine have found that hypnosis is not a sleep like state at all, in fact it is a very focused and relaxed state of mind. It can be very enjoyable for people to be in hypnosis, but is there a way to experience the benefits of hypnosis without trance?
The short answer is, yes!
Neuro Linguistic Programming
One of the best ways to get results without any sort of trance is through a process called Neuro-linguistic Programming, or NLP. NLP was developed by Richard Bandler and John Grinder after they tried to break down and model how some of the best communicators work.
I often times describe NLP techniques as imagination games. What most people don’t realize is that you can get real results from imaginary circumstances. That’s because the brain cannot tell the difference between a real event and a vividly imagined one.
By imagining certain processes it’s possible to reduce physical pain, calm anxiety, reduce alergic reactions, and change your perspective on an emotional event.
15 Minute Phobia Cure
One of the most famous examples of the effectiveness of NLP is in it’s treatment of fears and phobias. Traditional psychology employs tools such as psychoanalysis, exposure therapy, and stress management techniques. Those strategies can be effective depending on the client, but they often time take many hour long sessions. It’s not uncommon for a client to be in counseling for months to get the results they desire using those methods.
NLP practitioners made waves by reducing the stress response of phobic individuals by 50%, 75%, even 100%, with a short mental exercise.
Real life example
One of my colleagues was having dinner at a restaurant. When the waiter found out he was a hypnotist, he said that one of his coworkers was TERRIFIED of heights. So much so that she couldn’t even go to the second floor of the restaurant and look of the balcony. Even a height that small was too much for her.
My friend asked to talk to the waitress with the fear of heights for a moment. He led her through the NLP phobia protocol for a few minutes. After it was done, she said she didn’t feel any different. However, when he asked her to go to the second floor and look over the balcony at them, she did it without hesitation. She wasn’t scared at all!
All of her coworkers were completely blown away! In the past even the mention of heights would cause a visible fear reaction in her, but now she was able to wave to everyone on the Balcony’s edge comfortably.
How I use hypnosis without trance
When you see me for a hypnosis session, sometimes traditional hypnosis might not even occur. I like to weave conversational hypnosis, reframes, imagination games, and NLP techniques throughout my sessions.
I find the best way to help a person make the change they desire is through an organic process. Sometimes that includes very traditional hypnotic trance, other times it does not. Clients can be surprised that the problem they originally came to see me for just seemed to have evaporated before they even were hypnotized!