Self-Hypnotism - Who Will It Work For, And Why?

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The AMA accepted hypnosis in 1958 as an effective methodology for treating tension, and stress related symptoms. But does it really work, and what should a person look for when seeking a hypno-therapist, or buying hypnosis tapes & CDs?

There are many novel hypnotic modalities that are used to reach the unconscious mind to invoke change. Each method has its pros and its cons. No two people are the same, so it makes sense that the best results will be gotten by utilizing the methods that each person will have the most success with.

Most therapists who sell hypnosis recordings offer programs that consist of standard traditional hypnosis methods. A few sellers offer much more advanced and effective Ericksonian Hypnosis techniques. And fewer still offer NLP or Neuro-Linguistic Programming methods.

The newest and most effective technique is video hypnosis. Video hypnosis makes use of the latest Neuro-linguistic programming thought strategies to trigger instant change in a person. Video hypnosis methodologies are not subliminal in nature.

With "Traditional Hypnosis," we simply make direct commands to the unconscious mind. In case you are wondering, as far as I'm concerned, the term unconscious, and subconscious are equal -- they refer to the same part of the mind. This type of hypnosis works well for someone who generally accepts what they are told without having a lot of questions.

Most pre-recorded hypnosis programs sold today are based on "Traditional Hypnosis" methods. This reason is it doesn't really take much schooling to create a script and just command a person to do something. Unfortunately Traditional Hypnotherapy is not very practical for people who are analytical or critical in their thinking processes.

By contrast, Ericksonian Hypnosis and NLP methods work far more efficiently for most individuals today! This is because today individuals are taught to question everything, rather than just do what someone tells them to do. So these methodologies do work very well on people who are analytical or critical in their methods of thinking.

While it's true that these modalities are much more successful at reaching and influencing the unconscious, it's also true that it can take a lot of experience to learn how to apply these methods efficiently. So this is a task taken on by only truly dedicated hypnotists.

With "Ericksonian Hypnosis," we use little stories; called metaphors, to present suggestions and ideas to the unconscious mind. This is a powerful process, because it usually eliminates the blockage of and resistance to suggestions that is often caused by the conscious mind. There are two types of metaphors, "Isomorphic," and those of the imbedded command or "interspersal" nature.

Isomorphic metaphors offer direction to the subconscious by telling a story with a moral. The unconscious draws a one-on-one relationship between elements of the story and ingredients of a bad behavior. For example, if a child is telling a lot of lies, the hypnotherapist might tell the child the story about the "Boy who cried wolf." The subconscious would draw a comparison between the boy in the story and the child, and realize that telling lies could lead to disaster, so the child would probably stop lying.

With the Embedded Command technique, the hypnotist tells a story that distracts the conscious mind. The story includes covert suggestions that are usually accepted by the unconscious. For example: During the time the client is in hypnosis, he can usually hear the hypnotist say something like: I'm going to tell you a story about a [beach that has feelings. Isn't that] strange to [you]? It's a warm summer's day, and the beach [feels great].

The hypnotist pauses, shifts his voice tonality, and emphasizes the bracketed text. The subconscious recognizes a "Selectional restriction violation." Beaches can't have feelings. So it's like the subconscious says to itself: "Wait a minute, a beach can't feel anything, so that must mean that I'm supposed to feel something, and I'm supposed to [feel great]." Since the suggestions are hidden in a story that is misdirecting the conscious mind, its unlikely that the conscious will realize that it has just received a suggestion, so it won't block it or resist it.

"Process Instructions" direct the unconscious to remember a past experience of an experience from the past where something appropriate was learned, and then apply that learning to making a change in the present.

With "Neuro-Linguistic Programming" (NLP), rather than using suggestions, we use the same thought methodologies that are creating a problem, like nail biting or stress, to dispose of the problem. NLP in the hands of a trained NLP'er can be very effective.

NLP Anchoring: Have you ever heard an old song and had it remind you of feelings from the past? When you originally heard the music, you were experiencing those feelings, and they subconsciously became attached to the sound of the song. So the song became an Anchor for the feelings. Now when you hear the song, it triggers the same feelings again.

Anchoring can be a very powerful methodology. Suppose that you have a memory of being commended for having a great accomplishment in the past. If you get inside of that memory, you'll be able to revivify the feeling of self-esteem that you had at that time. If you touch two fingers together while you re-experience those feelings of self-esteem, that touch will become an anchor for the feelings of self-esteem.

Now suppose that you want to create motivation to stick to a diet and lose weight. If you make a mental image of yourself with a thin, sexy body, and simultaneously trigger the anchor - (press the two fingers together again), your unconscious will attach the feelings of self-esteem to the mental image of you with the thin body and your level of motivation to lose weight will increase substantially.

NLP Flash: This is a very powerful and effective NLP method that can be used to turn things around in the subconscious, so that thoughts and experiences that used to trigger feelings of stress actually trigger relaxation instead.

The NLP Flash technology is also an effective way to extinguish conditioned responses. For example: If a smoker has a cigarette while drinking coffee, his/her subconscious will associate the two behaviors together so that he/she automatically gets a strong craving for a cigarette anytime he/she has a cup of coffee. The Flash will cause the smoker's mind to disconnect the image of a cigarette from the cup of coffee so that he/she does NOT feel an urge to smoke just because he/she is drinking coffee.

With "subliminal" tapes, the recording has double tracks. One track contains a cover sound that is heard by the conscious mind. The cover sound could be anything from music to the sound of a thunderstorm. The second track contains ideas that are listened to by the unconscious mind. These post-hypnotic suggestions are repeated over and over during a session.

Subliminal programs can be listened to while you are driving or working. You don't have to stop what you are doing and relax like you do with hypnotic suggestion or NLP. Subliminals can be an addition to hypnotic programs. But Subliminals will never replace Hypnotherapy or Neuro-linguistic programming because they are not as effective! They don't even come close!! Some research claims that it can take up to 80 hours of listening to a subliminal CD before it will have any effect on many people.

The last hypnotic methodology that we're going to discuss is "Video Hypnosis." Video Hypnosis is the most effective form of hypnosis! The methods used in video hypnosis are based on the Neuro-linguistic programming technology, which works based on the utilization of a person's existing thought patterns instead of hypnotic commands.

Over seventy percent of the human race learns much more quickly and automatically by seeing, rather then by hearing. Think about it. If you feel an urge to eat or smoke when watching television, it's because your mind recorded the video image of either food in your hand, or a cigarette in your hand, and then connected that image with the image of the TV. You never spoke to yourself and told yourself in words to associate them together, true?

And that's why the Video Hypnosis mechanism is so practical. Video Hypnosis is not hypnotic in the traditional sense, relying on the spoken word. But if you've ever cried when watching a sad movie, then you know how compelling Video Hypnosis can be at reaching the subconscious mind. With this mechanism, results usually start with the very first viewing!
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