Probably not as you think or expect. Many of the misconceptions people have about what hypnosis is or what happens during hypnosis are result of it being portrayed unfairly by Hollywood and television.
Most people think of the evil hypnotist waving the gold watch or pendulum in front of a person who is then under the complete control of the hypnotist. Nothing could be more ridiculous or further from the truth of how does hypnosis work!
Watch this 2 min. video about all of the myths and misconceptions about hypnosis dispelled.
(After you're finished, keep scrolling down to read the rest of the article, or click on the menubar on the left for articles and videos on how hypnosis works to quit smoking or lose weight.)
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In order to answer the question, how does hypnosis work, below are the top ten misconceptions that people have regarding hypnosis and hypnotherapy:
False Fear and Hypnosis Misconception #1: Hypnosis is sleep or loss of consciousness.
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: Hypnosis is not sleep. Many people think that while doing hypnosis, they will go into in a state of sleep like when they go to bed. Not true. Hypnosis is merely a state of physical relaxation and actually heightened mental alertness.
False Fear and Hypnosis Misconception #2: A person won’t hear anything but the hypnotist’s voice because they’ll be in some weird altered state with swirling colors, etc.
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: Hypnosis is not some crazy, psychedelic state. The subject is able to hear everything that is going on in the room, and outside of the room. There is no selective hearing in hypnosis.
False Fear and Misconception #3: A person doesn’t remember what the hypnotist tells them.
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: Absolutely false. A person remembers everything that is said to them during hypnosis.
False Fear and Misconception #4: When doing hypnosis, you are under the complete control of the hypnotist.
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: In reality, hypnosis allows the subject to be more in control. The people who you see in the stage hypnosis shows are exercising their control by volunteering to go up on stage. They know it is an acceptable context in which they can let their inhibitions down.
In a therapeutic context, any suggestion that is out of context of self-improvement will be automatically rejected by both the subconscious and conscious minds. This is one of the laws of the mind.
False Fear and Misconception #5: Not everyone can be hypnotized, only the weak-minded and the gullible.
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: EVERYONE who is of normal functioning intelligence, is willing to be hypnotized, and is willing to follow instructions within a context of self-improvement, CAN in fact be hypnotized.
False Fear and Misconception #6: Hypnosis is about putting things into your mind and mind control.
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: Hypnosis is NEVER about “putting things into your mind" and “mind control."
The fact is that people have within themselves the beliefs, attitudes, and resources to accomplish their goals. But because of their past, or their environment, or constant negative conditioning, those beliefs, attitudes, and resources have been suppressed.
To answer the question, how does hypnosis work, what hypnosis does is merely reinforce the positive beliefs, attitudes, and resources a person has to help them accomplish their goals.
It is similar to going to the gym. Exercise helps condition and build a person’s physical muscles, while hypnosis helps a person develop and condition their “mental muscles" to help them accomplish their goals.
False Fear and Misconception #7: What if I can’t be “de-hypnotized"?
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: There has not been one case of a person ever not “coming out of hypnosis," and for good reason. Because hypnosis is basically the state right before a person falls asleep.
So if for some strange reason, the hypnotist were to leave the room, or in an extreme case, die, the subject would merely drift asleep, naturally wake up, and end up with an expensive nap!
False Fears and Hypnosis Misconception #8: Hypnosis causes people to reveal their deep, dark, hidden secrets.
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: Absolutely false. A person always has control of what they say and do during hypnosis. Remember, any suggestion that is out of context, or violates one’s morals, ethics, and values will automatically be rejected.
False Fears and Hypnosis Misconceptions #9: Hypnosis is harmful.
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: There has NEVER been a documented case of anyone suffering harm from the use of hypnosis.
False Fears and Hypnosis Misconceptions #10: Hypnosis is satanic, or devilish, or supernatural in some way.
How does Hypnosis Work? Truth: Hypnosis is merely a state of relaxation and heightened mental alertness that helps people easily achieve their amazing goals.
Our mission at the AbsolutePeak Hypnosis Center is to educate the public as to how does hypnosis work, so as to allow many more people to experience this wonderful modality of human change.
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* Important Disclaimer : While hypnotherapy is a powerful tool to accomplish change, it is not a "magic wand." It DOES take some conscious commitment and effort on the client's part. While we have an excellent track record and 12+ years of amazing results for our clients, every person's results may vary. Hypnosis is a partnership, and your results will depend in part on YOUR level of participation and effort. We can't "make you" do anything. But if you are ready to make powerful changes in your life, this is a powerful tool to help you in your journey. Contact us today to learn more.