5 Things You May Not Know About Hypnosis
Hypnosis has been around for a very long time, with almost every ancient culture practicing hypnotic trances of some form. Despite its long history, however, many people still associate hypnosis with the mythical, or films and stories told in the media. With stage performers and movie characters representing the practice in mainstream media, the true facts about hypnotherapy are not known by most. This article will discuss what hypnotherapy is all about, and dispel some myths and misconceptions.
1. Hypnosis is an ancient art form
Hypnosis can be traced back over 3000 years, and it was in fact still used in the 1800s as a method to practice anesthesia on patients undergoing surgery. With the development of modern medicine, however, anaesthetics were discovered, meaning hypnosis was no longer required in the field of medicine.
2. Hypnosis cannot make you do things you don’t want to do
There is a popular belief amongst the general population that hypnosis enables someone to control the mind of another, making them do whatever they desire. However, this isn’t the case. Hypnosis works on the principle of making somebody more suggestible. This is effectively the theory behind the practice of hypnotherapy, and what allows a hypnotherapist to encourage a person to think or act a certain way. If a subject’s morals, desires or goals do not align, however, they simply will not perform the suggested action. Hypnosis can therefore only help achieve something that a person would have been willing to do under normal circumstances, and won’t force a person to act unnaturally if they don’t agree with it at a conscious level.
3. Hypnosis does not make you unconscious
The belief that hypnosis is a state of sleep and lack of control of one’s mind or actions is not true. A subject under hypnotherapy is in fact still conscious and in full control of themselves, but they are in a state in which they have a heightened level of suggestibility due to their deeply relaxed state. This state can be induced by various techniques, although most people associate hypnotherapy with a click of the fingers as this is what performers often do. This may be the case sometimes, but it’s important to note that performers have limited time and, as such, often prescreen their subjects to ensure they’re easily suggestible.
4. Hypnosis can be experienced on a daily basis
Fundamentally, hypnosis is simply a state of deep relaxation and does not have to be induced by another person. In fact, many of us experience some form of the hypnotic state on a daily basis. Watching television, daydreaming, drifting off to sleep, and even being immersed in a book are all forms of a hypnotic state. Key similarities can be drawn between the mindful practices of meditation, and hypnosis.
5. Hypnosis can help you reach your subconscious mind
Because hypnosis places you in a mentally relaxed and suggestible state, it allows the true subconscious mind to be accessed. This is how people are able to overcome traumatic experiences or rid themselves of bad habits. By accessing the subconscious mind, and clinically removing the barriers of limiting conscious beliefs, a hypnotherapist can release negative trauma or stress, and change negative behavioural patterns or habits. Memories are stored in the subconscious mind, so even if a patient has no recollection of an event, hypnotherapy can help them access it. Whilst hypnosis and hypnotherapy are fascinating practices, they are legitimate therapies that are extremely useful in helping people overcome many types of obstacles. Hypnosis is not a ‘magic art’, but rather a valid technique that can be used on a willing person to assist them in dealing with many issues related to the mind – and the mind controls us in more ways than people often realise!
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