Hypnosis is a heighten state of suggestibility and therapy modality, as well as, a self-help technique and a stage entertainment. It has been around for a long time and there are many methods of use for hypnosis. It is actually a very natural state that we have all experienced. It can be used in a therapeutic setting to help us in dealing in many ways. Over the years, the portrayal of hypnosis in stage shows and in movies and television or books has led to many myths and misconceptions about hypnosis. It has a mysterious reputation in many regards that is not deserved.
I would like to clear up some of those myths and provide a better idea of what hypnosis is and what it is not. As a double certified Master Hypnotherapist, hypnosis is one of the most valuable tools I use in helping clients to move forward and make the changes they want to achieve their dreams and goals or find a sense of peace in their lives.
#1 – Only those who are weak-willed or gullible can be hypnotized.
False: Anyone with an IQ over 70, a willingness to be hypnotized and the ability to focus and follow simple instructions can be hypnotized. Recent studied have confirmed that different people may need different methods to induce hypnosis, but if they are willing they can be hypnotized.
#2 – Hypnosis is mind control and may cause you to loss conscious or have amnesia.
False: In hypnosis, the client is never under the control of the hypnotist. They remain totally conscious and generally have a heightened sense of focus and awareness. The hypnotist is simply a facilitator guiding the client through the process. It is extremely difficult to get someone to do something under hypnosis that they do not want to do. That being said, stage hypnotists do get people to do some strange things. The explanation for this, is that those who volunteer are generally inclined to be more extroverted and in a state of exhilaration caused by the show and stage excitement. They are inclined to go along with silly suggestions, much like those who behave out of character when intoxicated of in a party atmosphere.
#3 – Hypnosis is like a truth serum and you cannot lie while hypnotized.
False: This is blatantly false. People can and do lie as easily when hypnotized, as not and cannot be made to confess or tell the truth, if they are otherwise inclined.
#4 – Hypnosis is dangerous and you might get stuck in hypnosis.
False: Once again, blatantly false! Hypnosis is a natural state that we have all experienced and go in and out of every day. Just before falling sleep, upon waking and while watching TV, movies, sometimes while driving on the highway or reading a book are common times when people enter an “environmental hypnosis”. It is not possible to get stuck in hypnosis even if the hypnotist does not count you out, you will emerge from hypnosis as soon as your body and mind enter a new state and can be done by yawning, stretching or move to a new position.
#5 – Hypnosis is a “Miracle Cure” that works for everyone and everything.
False: While hypnosis is very effective there is nothing that works for everything and everyone and it cannot be guaranteed to work. It is highly dependent on the motivation of the client whether it will be effective.
#6 – Hypnosis is Sleep!
False: Even though the Hypnotist may say “Sleep!” while inducing hypnosis, the client is not asleep! They may have their eyes closed, but they are aware of their surroundings, have a heightened sense of focus and will generally remember everything that is happening.
#7 – Hypnosis is witchcraft or against religion.
False: Hypnosis has no links to witchcraft or black magic and is not mentioned in the Bible or has no connection to any religion. It is a natural state and will with heightened focus and awareness and will not make any inclined or susceptible to any evil or negative influences that they would not otherwise, be inclined toward.
#8 – Hypnotists are flamboyant or weird!
False: While this may be true for some individuals or stage hypnotists, it is definitely not a characteristic or requirement for the field.
#9 – Hypnosis will retrieve lost memories
Maybe: While it is possible to retrieve some lost memories through hypnosis, memories are fragile and “not always even true”. There is no guarantee that memories will be retrieved or that what you recall is exactly how things happened. It is always a recalled perception. Hypnosis is, however, effective in many cases at helping to retrieve desired memories.
#10 – Self-Hypnosis is the same as hypnosis by a professional Hypnotist.
False: While self-hypnosis is a useless state and can be of value, it is not the same and can take you to the same level of hypnosis and professional guided hypnosis.
These are some of the top myths about hypnosis. I hope I have cleared up some misconceptions and you have a better idea of what hypnosis is and feel more comfortable with it. It can be a valuable tool in helping people get past trauma and make desired life changes or build positive habits. It is one of the modalities I use in my Life Coaching and is amazingly fast and effective. Are there any other beliefs you might have about Hypnosis that you are not sure about? I will be happy to answer any questions or concerns you might have or set up a “Discovery Session” to see if hypnosis would be useful for you.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org . Ask a question via the comment form on the blog or call: 206-566-1615.
About the Author
Kate Olson, CPC, CHt, is a Life Coach, Clinical Hypnotherapist, NLP Master Practitioner & Certification Trainer, EFT Practitioner and Reiki Master practicing in Seattle at Embrace Change Hypnosis & NLP and Northern Lights Life Coaching .
She offers workshops & classes, as well as, individual and group coaching. Her emphasis is on assisting clients in finding path, purpose and peace. Kate focuses on integration of mind, body, spirit wellness with all of her businesses. It is her mission to help clients find joy through connection, creative expression and change facilitation. Kate is a speaker, writer and radio show host of "Embrace Change with Kate" on Contact Talk Radio, in additional to her private practice. She is passionate about creativity, travel, personal growth and living with joyful purpose. Kate's businesses operate as Dba's under Total Well Resources, LLC.