Hypnosis isn’t as crazy as that embarrassing stage shows you’d like us to believe. In fact, every time we indulge in a movie or browse our phones for hours, we are actually activating a mild state of hypnosis. We have taken our turn by asking the hypnotist all our burning questions about this misunderstood practice, and in the end, it turns out, self-hypnosis isn’t definitively difficult – or scary either – as you think. Here’s the scoop.
The question is what self-hypnosis is – and is it really possible?
According to Shauna Cummins, professional hypnotist and author of WishCraft, everyone has the power to be hypnotized. In a way, she adds, all hypnosis is self-hypnosis, because a person’s own mind is always at work.
In fact, it is just as much a real practice as meditation, she says”. That’s why you can learn it and practice it; you can read a book; you can try on your own or work with hypnosis pathways”. nevertheless, when you first start out, she adds that it never hurts to have a session with a professional hypnotist first.
Stages of hypnosis.
The stages of hypnosis are not static. They are ultimately considered to be brain wave states, “so it goes in and out like a wave,” Cummins says (and the research confirms), but you will usually experience three phases:
- Pilot stage: This is the initial stage, which Cummins also called the conversation stage, in which you are just starting to settle down but are still quite aware. Your brain produces wakeful beta waves, and you will begin to understand what the hypnosis session is all about.
- The alpha stage: According to Cummins, this stage is when the mind and body begin to calm down and you enter a state of intense relaxation and further meditation.
- Theta stage: Finally, this stage, will enter the third stage in which your mind is producing will enter the theta waves associated with deep meditation. It is almost dreamlike, and this is where the mind becomes receptive to any intention to act with.
Benefits of practice.
Hypnosis does work by placing us in an allusive state in which what we imagine feels real to the unconscious mind. The idea here is that we are able to break negative patterns and behaviors by allowing our subconscious to let go, which is difficult to do in a normal waking state.
“Everyone is the most suggestible in this situation, so it’s an ideal time to offer your own suggestions.” According to Cummins.
You can apply self-hypnosis principles to a number of goals, including but not limited to:
1- Break an addiction.
It is not easy to get rid of an addiction of any kind. Hypnosis is often associated with smoking cessation, and one small study suggests that it may help people with more serious drug addictions as well.
Hypnosis can be a very limited alternative addiction treatment, according to peer-reviewed research. However, with any goal, it is considered important for the subject to believe it is possible, and hypnosis seems to help people do so.
2- Be more confident.
For example, if someone wanted to be more confident, their hypnosis session would be largely about imagining what that confidence would be like. You should bear in mind the pretense rules here: When we clarify what we are really trying to achieve and how we feel, we can embody it better.
3- Live a healthier lifestyle.
On this note, Cummins notes that she often sees the use of hypnosis to help people achieve goals such as losing weight, eating better, or just enjoying better health in general.
The idea is that when we’re really able to imagine what it will look like and feel like when we are in good health, we can move with more confidence toward that goal.
4- Being less anxious or anxious.
For people who struggle with stress and anxiety, hypnosis can be used as a tool to step back and notice these feelings from a distance. You can imagine what it would look like if you didn’t feel it, from this objective place. Cummins adds that she has also seen people with anxious habits, like nail-biting, find success with hypnosis.
5- The general chaos.
Finally, hypnosis may be the only thing that helps you out of that headspace, if you feel stuck in any area of your life.
“When you have this really strong desire but are stumbling around your behaviors,” says Cummins, hypnosis is a great way to achieve alignment and truly immerse yourself in an inner source of motivation to make the change you desire.”
How to sleep yourself.
Cummins shares a short self-hypnosis routine for beginners, here. Read the steps here, or follow the audio instructions below:
1- Prepare: Find a quiet place where you will never be disturbed and sit in a comfortable chair with feet flat on the floor. Gala you will not sleep! You can then lie back – if you want to make it more relaxing and healing, feel free to do without words light candles and play surrounding music. Don’t forget to silence your phone.
2- Fix your vision: choose a focus point somewhere in front of you and above you in your field of vision (spot on the wall, etc.), and focus on that point. Relax your shoulders. Imagine your peripheral vision begins to blur and relax. Expand your awareness to the two corners of the room in front of you while maintaining focus on the point, your peripheral vision is blurred and relaxed, and your shoulders relaxed. Extend your awareness to the two corners of the room behind you while keeping the focus on that point. This expands your awareness and stimulates the relaxation process. Lighten your gaze and enter the whole room without even moving your eyes.
3- Set your intention: Write or state out loud what your intention or desire is on the journey of self-hypnosis (for example, to feel more calm, more focused, more confident, financially plentiful, healthy, creative, etc.).
4- Breathe: Take three deep breaths, and repeat: Breathe in relaxation. Exhale. Repeat this process more than three times, if desired.
5- Be an observer: Imagine that you can run the scenario that you want to change. Imagine it as it is. So, imagine you can notice that you are living this like a movie of mind, if you are tense or delusional, through a compassionate lens as if you were your best friend. This can be more visual, or more emotional, depending on how your brain is working.
6- Feel it in your body: Think about your intention or desire, imagine where the energy of your desire resides in your body. It could possibly be in your heart, your stomach – wherever you feel most comfortable. Breathe again, think about your desire. If your wish was a color, what would it be? If it is an emotion, what are feelings? Place your hand on a part of your body where you imagine wanting to live. Keep breathing and giving life to your desire.
7- Use your imagination: Next, visualize the situation as you wish.
8- Move your intention through your body: You must focus on the energy of this positive state that moves around your body. This is your willing mind. It’s a sacred well of intended energy, and a reservoir of unlimited resources always available to you.
9- Engage your senses: Imagine the best possible scenario, where things go better than you had hoped.
In your mind, try to experience this with all of your senses – feeling it, seeing it, and hearing it. Imagine making it stronger, brighter, and more intense. Fix this feeling in your body. Bring your hand where you feel it is stronger in your body, and breathe in.
10- Wrap up the session: Gently exhale yourself by breathing in relaxation and exhaling several more times. Hold your hand where you feel the positive resources and emotions in your body. Thank yourself for giving yourself this moment of relaxation and the intended journey in your mind.
The best 4 Tips for Maximizing Effects:
1- Work with your intention throughout the day.
When your self-hypnosis session ends your goals are endless! Throughout the day you must carry your intention with you, and constantly make use of that space of mind where your goal appears to be real.
According to what Cummins said, “Say your intention before going to bed, breathe it into your body, and hold it in place. Say it in the morning when you brush your teeth or have your coffee, inhale it in your body, and stick it in.” The more you remember it, the more powerful it becomes.
2- Give yourself a blessing.
As with any exercise, Cummins says it’s very important to cultivate a sense of compassion and curiosity with yourself. According to her , she notes “It’s a practice- and an ability, so don’t be hard on yourself, have fun, and do it consistently, in order you can really figure out the right way to how your mind works and how to make it work for you.”
3- Keep in your mind that a little goes a long way.
Once you’ve completed the self-hypnosis process, Cummins says, it won’t take long for you to reach an acceptance state, adding, “It’s amazing how your mind follows your instructions.”
4- Notice your triggers.
Finally, when you are working towards your goal, know that negative emotions may arise during hypnosis. This is completely normal. And as Cummins says “When you need more support, or if you feel resistance , adjust that and understand what you need to bring sympathy to this area: bring awareness to it, and watch it outside your body with a sense of vigilance”.
You can start working through it with some of the tools described in this primer on shadow work, once you’ve identified those feelings.
The bottom line.
Your unconscious mind can be an ally when you’re looking to achieve goals, trigger negative patterns, or reinforce positivity. Practicing the basics of self-hypnosis is one way to get a better understanding of this world that lies within.
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