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Learn The Real Truth About Hypnosis

Jun 30, 2008
Hypnosis is the art of influencing the subconscious mind of an individual in order to change their fundamental thought process. Simply put, hypnosis allows us to change our automatic behaviours and set ways of thinking. We may desire change if we have a bad habbit, a phobia, a negative pattern of thought or if we simply wish to live a more relaxed and less stressful life.

The mind can be best thought of as being divided into two parts, the conscious and the subconscious. Separating these two parts of the mind is what's called the 'critical mind', which acts as a barrier between information passing from the conscious into the subconscious. The critical mind is what prevents negative or harmful thoughts from entering within our subconscious.

It allows us to reject negative suggestions, or dismiss unfounded views. If for example, someone were to say to you 'dance around the room clucking like a chicken', your critical mind would reject such a suggestion.

Hypnosis works by sending a person into a state known as a trance. When a person is in a state of trance, their critical mind is temporarily weakened. This allows information to flow freely from the conscious into the subconscious with very little critical analysis. A hypnotist can use this state to pass suggestions directly into a person's subconscious without the person being able to easily reject the suggestions.

If a hypnotist were to suggest to a person to 'cluck like a chicken' when that person was in a state of trance, then odds are the person will do just that - because their critical mind would be temporarily weakened. This of course would not be possible if the person was not in a state of trance.

Every day we enter into states of trance and act upon certain suggestions without even realising it. If we see a certain advertisement we may buy a product based purely on impulse. We may eat a certain food shortly after thinking about it. We're often hypnotised by many external suggestions so subtly that we don't even realise it.

A state of trance is caused by a process known as 'overloading of message units'. A message unit is basically any form of information our mind interprets, be it interpreting a spoken word, imagining an image, even feeling a change in temperature. An overload of message units occurs when too much information is passed through our critical mind at any one time. This is caused when we try to analyse too much information too quickly.

A hypnotist is able to cause an overload of message units often through a process known as 'misdirection', which involves confusing a subject about a certain thought or sentence. When someone is in a state of confusion, a vast number of message units are passing through their critical mind, and it is much easier for the person to enter into a state of trance.

Hypnosis isn't just about fancy tricks. In fact, when someone is in a state of trance, positive suggestions may be planted within the person's subconscious that will greatly benefit the individual. Suggestions such as not desiring to smoke cigarettes, or not desiring to eat a certain food, can lead a person to either quit smoking, or to lose weight.

One of the most interesting things about hypnosis, is that even when someone is in a state of trance, they can only accept suggestions that are within their moral and ethical boundries. If you tried to tell a good man to randomly start yelling obscenities at people, then it would not matter how deeply he was in a trance, he would reject the suggestion. This is because our ethics and morals are tied deeply within our subconscious, and cannot be altered if we do not will it.

Hypnosis has only really come into professional use since the 1970's, when a number of qualified psychologists and psychiatrists, the most notable of which being Milton Erickson, introduced the field into clinical use. Since the time of Erickson, hypnotherapists have been using hypnosis within clinical settings to treat everything from pain and anxiety right through to addiction, phobias and a number of other psychological ailments.

As research into the field continues, hypnosis is gaining greater scientific use and acceptance. With no known harmful side effects, hypnosis is set to expand further and further into the medical fields to help people live more happier, healthier, and ultimately fulfilling lives.
About the Author
John Hubert is a professional Hypnotist and author of a number of hypnosis articles and guides. You may learn about hypnosis by visiting his website which contains comprehensive information on self hypnosis, covert hypnosis and neurolinguistic programming.
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