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Stanhope Medical Centre

Suite 26

2 Sentry Drive

Stanhope Gardens 2768

Sydney

The Ponds Medical Centre

Riverbank Dr & The Ponds Boulevard,

Kellyville Ridge

NSW 2155

Tel: 0425-305 369

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Understanding the misconceptions about hypnosis can alleviate your fears about being hypnotised, so here is a list that I come across most frequently, in no particular order...

Hypnosis Is Magical and Mystical

Throughout history, hypnosis has often been connected with the occult. The concept of hypnosis having an occult connection has often been the image perpetuated by some of the earliest known practitioners, the Egyptian priest-hood, who entranced religious followers.

Magic and hypnotism were often linked by people who wanted to invoke a fearful sense of power and control over others. Hollywood movies and lowbrow fiction also contributed to the idea of the hypnotic bogeyman. Often the underlying implication is that the public should be afraid – be very afraid – of anyone who wielded the evil ‘hypnotic eye’.

Consequently, even today people erroneously believe that hypnotherapists have a power that allows them to manipulate others, but this is simply not true!

The reality is that trance is a natural state of mind. Hypnosis is any technique that brings about trance. In actual practice, all hypnosis is self-hypnosis – you can’t be hypnotised unless you are willing. Hypnotherapy is simply a way of using trance to help with problems. Nothing mystical involved at all.

Of course, the results of good clinical hypnotherapy may seem like magic once you are rapidly relieved of your problem, or achieve your goal with ease!

You’re Under the Power of the Hypnotherapist

This misconception is related to the one that says hypnosis is magical and mystical. The idea is probably influenced by stage hypnotists who appear to have power over those they hypnotise.

Just keep in mind that people in stage hypnosis acts are willing participants. Hypnosis is really just self-hypnosis and the participants in a stage hypnosis show choose to join in – even if they appear not to.

It is simply not true that a hypnotist has any control over you.

No hypnotherapist can make you do anything that you don’t want to do, or anything that is not in character.

Hypnosis Is Dangerous

Hypnosis in itself is not dangerous. You are particularly safe when working with qualified hypnotherapists.

You are always in control and can come out of trance whenever you want.

One caveat I offer is to avoid personal involvement with unqualified hypnotherapists and stage hypnotists. Unscrupulous people, who have had only minimal instruction in trance induction, often set themselves up as hypnotists without understanding the complexities of psychological problems.

This is not the type of practitioner you want to seek help from.

A qualified hypnotherapist will ensure that you are taken care of emotionally and will treat you with care, dignity, and respect.

Hypnosis Makes You Cluck like a Chicken and Lose Control

Now is the time to draw distinctions between stage hypnosis and clinical hypnotherapy.

Stage hypnosis is about entertainment and laughs.

Clinical hypnotherapy is about helping you with problems, or achieving goals.

A stage hypnotist simply uses hypnosis for a laugh.

A clinical hypnotherapist is serious about working with your stated goals. Keep in mind that the stage hypnotist carefully selects who comes up on stage. Usually compliant extrovert types are ideal for a stage hypnotist.

The people chosen are willing to do any silly things suggested to them. Stage hypnotists may vary in their qualifications and hypnosis experience.

Some may even be qualified hypnotherapists, but a stage hypnotist will never treat you with the individual respect and attention you get within the context of one-on-one clinical hypnotherapy.

You Have to Keep Your Eyes Closed and Stay Completely Still

Anyone can move while in a hypnotised state. You may need to scratch an itch, and that’s perfectly all right.

It doesn’t break the trance state.

Although a lot of trance induction involves closing your eyes and being in a relaxed state, this is not always the case.

Athletes are often in trance while competing in sports

An athlete seeking hypnotherapy in order to enhance her sporting performance, will not be asked to close her eyes or to relax.

A hypnotist works with such an athlete by bringing about an alert trance. This type of trance is more about recalling past peak performances while the eyes are open and movement is occurring.

Relaxation and improved sporting performance are not compatible! Can you imagine running a race or playing any competitive sport in a super-relaxed state? You need the ‘edge’ to perform well.

Similarly, children who come for hypnosis can go into trance even when their eyes are wide open and they’re moving around.

Also, clients for whom eye closure or relaxation is a threatening occurrence, such as those who suffer panic attacks or have issues of severe trauma, may not be given suggestions to relax or close their eyes because this may invoke the very state of fear that they are seeking treatment for.

Hypnosis Is Therapy

Hypnosis is not therapy, it is a therapeutic technique. Hypnosis can be used as a tool, or a complement, to various types of therapy and counselling.

Hypnotherapy is the therapeutic aspect of hypnosis.

Hypnotherapy can be combined to work very powerfully with a range of counselling approaches – even forms that are contradictory in their approach such as behavioural therapies, which don’t recognise the concept of the unconscious, and psychodynamic approaches, which do.

You May Not Wake Up from Trance

What wakes you up in the morning? If you said ‘My alarm clock’, you’re missing the point. You always wake up from each night’s sleep – even when your alarm clock doesn’t ring.

Similarly, you always awaken from trance

Remember, trance is not like being in a coma and is not sleep.

Trance is a natural state that you enter several times a day while you daydream, exercise, or focus intently on a problem at work.

You return to a ‘normal’ state of non-trance after each trance state. So, if you think about it, you have a daily practice of awakening from trance states – several times a day!

I admit that it’s a bit of a contradiction to use the word awaken for a state that is not sleep. However, this is common terminology that hypnotherapists also use, even though all are aware that hypnosis isn’t the same state as sleep.

It’s just one of the widespread paradoxes that has become commonplace!

Likewise, you can come out of a hypnotic trance state at anytime that you wish. As a qualified hypnotherapist I will look after you and carefully bring you out of trance.

You Go to Sleep during a Hypnosis Session

Don’t worry, I won’t let you fall asleep. You remain quite aware of your surroundings, even in trance, and may even hear sounds both inside and outside the room you’re in – a fact that can help you feel safe and allow yourself to enter trance.

You may be surprised that you clearly recall what was said to you during the session.

Some People Can’t Be Hypnotised

If you want to be, most people can be hypnotised – the exception is those who really don’t want to be.

Sometimes fear and misconceptions about hypnosis can create an unconscious resistance.

This is why a qualified hypnotherapist will take a lot of time, the first time you meet, to answer your questions and earn your trust before any hypnosis takes place.

You Don’t Need a Hypnotist – You Can Hypnotise Yourself

The main thing I emphasise is the need to work with a hypnotherapist before trying self-hypnosis.

It is practically impossible to work on your own unconscious problems unaided?

Even experienced hypnotherapists seek help from others to work

on their deeper psychological issues.

However, once you experience hypnosis with a hypnotherapist, you are in a stronger position to decide when, and when not, to apply self-hypnosis.

Common Misconceptions About Hypnosis & Hypnotherapy

If you’re still unsure about any aspect of Hypnosis or Hypnotherapy then why not get in touch and I’ll do my best to answer your query.

To contact me call 0425-305 369

Or send me an e-mail at Michelle@hypnotherapyclinicsydney.com

You can also fill out my Enquiry Form here

The Australian Society of Clinical Hypnotherapists - Click HERE to visit the website Visit the Main Hypno-Band Website HERE