When learning or being introduced to hypnosis either as a hypnotist or subject, in all likelihood you’ll be introduced to what I refer to as “traditional” inductions/techniques/suggestions. These are commonly used inductions and techniques which are the “go-to” for the majority of hypnotist and tend to include:
- Visualisation techniques (encouraging the subject to visualise specific items or situations, such as walking along a beach or allowing them to visualise a space of their own creation (though typically it’s the hypnotist who dictates the contents of the visualisation)).
- Countdowns (typically used to deepen or lighten a trance these can be incorporated into visualisation techniques – for instance suggesting the subject walk down a staircase – or can be used standalone – e.g. “I am going to count from 1 to 10 and with every number you hear me say you’ll find yourself going deeper into trance. Once I reach the number 10, you’ll find yourself deep in trance”. The reverse can be used to count someone out of trance.
- Suggesting the subject relax/try to not think of anything (this one seems pretty self explanatory).
The above list is obviously not intended to be an exhaustive list of traditional/typical hypnosis inductions,techniques and suggestions. Rather its intention is to give a flavour of some of the most commonly used.
Most hypnotists incorporate these techniques and suggestions into scripts which are relayed to the client. The “bottom of the barrel” hypnotists will literally sit and read off a pre-written script to their client. I would highly recommend avoiding any hypnotist that utilises this approach as it shows a complete lack of effort, understanding and engagement. There’s no room for flexibility or adaptation to the needs of the client.
Thankfully such hypnotists are rare and most professional hypnotists will have memorised scripts which include the above or similar techniques. The benefits of having a script memorised are that you can pay more attention to your client and how well they are responding to the inductions, techniques and suggestions that you are using.
There are still potential drawbacks to this approach, however. For instance what if the client does not respond to the techniques you’ve chosen to use? What’s your fallback? Another common technique? What if that also doesn’t work? By relying heavily on traditional hypnotic methods you’re not only limiting yourself as a hypnotist but also potentially your clients ability to successfully enjoy trance.
I’m not saying this with the intention of scaring anyone. In many cases traditional inductions work very well – which is why they keep being taught. The issue I am trying to highlight is that traditional hypnosis techniques do not work for everyone. So, what’s your plan when you have a client for whom traditional inductions aren’t effective? In an ideal world the hypnotist would know before hypnotising their subject that traditional inductions aren’t likely to be effective (discerning this is outside the scope of this particular post as the topic itself deserves a whole blog post of its own) but the information I’m going to share can also be applied if you’ve tried (or been on the receiving end of) a more traditional approach and it hasn’t been effective.
So – you’ve discovered (either as a hypnotist or subject) that traditional hypnosis techniques don’t work for you. What next? Is all hope lost? Is the subject incapable of achieving trance?
It’s okay! All hope is not lost and I can assure you that an inability to trance using traditional hypnotic techniques does not make the subject bad or incapable. How do I know? Many, many, many years of successful experience with hypnosis.
The first step is realising that you are not bound by traditional hypnotic techniques. They are not chains that you are incapable of breaking free from. They’re tools. Often very useful tools but any good artisan knows that your toolbox can (and should) be expanded as you learn and discover more. A hypnotist is on a journey just as much as their subject. With every interaction we learn, discover and should be experimenting. Failure is not a dirty word. Mistakes are going to happen. That’s inevitable. What matters is how you respond to them. You can choose to either:
- Blame the subject and say that the traditional techniques worked for other people so should have worked for them – the fact it didn’t means they’re obviously a bad subject (which, just to be clear, is utterly the wrong approach to take)
- Recognise that different people process and understand information in different ways and that there is not one single technique that will successfully work with 100% of people.
Let’s assume you choose the second option. Understanding that no single technique is going to work on everyone is a good start but how do you practically apply that to hypnosis?
The answer is actually pretty simple. Learn, understand and get curious and creative. Teach yourself the mechanisms of why traditional hypnosis techniques work. Understand why they are effective. Next get curious about why these techniques don’t work on certain people. What are the common denominators? Once you have a handle on what types of people traditional inductions work well for and what types would likely do better with other techniques, get curious about what has been holding back such people and how you can evolve new techniques to address that. If you have an understanding of the basic underlying principles of hypnosis and how it works (again, too big of an issue to address in this particular blog post) then you have the basic tools you need to get creative about discovering other options.
For instance through working extensively with analytical people I’ve learned that many traditional techniques simply aren’t effective. It doesn’t make analytical people bad hypnosis subjects (far from it). It simply meant that I had to figure out what didn’t work for them (e.g. being told to “relax and not think about anything” is akin to saying “try not to think of a pink elephant” to an analytical person. It achieves the opposite of the intended result and isn’t helpful. Ok – so, now I know that what do I do? I experiment and discover what does work. For instance utilising their analytical abilities instead of trying to suppress them. That’s good but it doesn’t end there. I know I want to use their analytical abilities but how? How do I do that? Figuring that out is the next step…and so on and so forth until you have workable solutions that you can utilise to effectively trance analytical people.
Learning and understanding at this level doesn’t come easily. It requires tenacity, a desire to learn and understand and a recognition that if things don’t work out the way you wanted it doesn’t mean you’ve failed. Quite the opposite – you’re learning what doesn’t work, which is actually really valuable information. You’ve only failed if you keep repeating the same mistakes over and over again.
Teaching yourself how hypnosis works, rather than simply relying on common techniques is incredibly liberating and definitely makes for a better hypnotist. It opens doors to more opportunities, greater flexibility and adaptability and ultimately more success. You’re no longer bound by specific scripts or techniques. Through learning and experimenting you’re ultimately increasing your odds of success with all types of clients. You’ll feel more confident and secure and less flustered if things don’t go to plan or the client doesn’t respond the way you expect because you’ve expanded your hypnotic toolbox to such a degree that if one technique doesn’t work you have plenty more to choose from.
You can and will develop your own unique style and as your confidence and ability grows, so will your success. The same applies to subjects. They will feel more comfortable with you and will enjoy much more success with engaging with trance.
When you are not bound or held back by set techniques and develop the confidence to adapt them to your own (and your clients) needs and even develop your own techniques you’ll discover a whole new world of opportunities and possibilities. Allow yourself to break free from traditional inductions – use them when they suit you (and your client) instead of being beholden or overly reliant on them. You owe that much to yourself and your client – to be the best you possibly can be.
If you train as a hypnotist, the odds are that you will be taught a number of specific inductions (methods a hypnotist can use to induce trance). Typically these will include techniques like visualisation (encouraging the subject to visualise specific things), progressive relaxation (having the subject gradually relax every part of their body from head to toe, or toes to head), countdowns (counting the client down into trance) or a combination of these and similar. In many instances hypnosis students are taught to simply read outloud pre-written scripts based upon the aforementioned ideas and in the worst case scenario never graduate beyond simply reading out scripts to clients (not going to lie – the thought alone of this makes me cringe).
Now – I am not here to belittle the techniques (except for “experienced” hypnotists reading to clients directly from scripts – that will always be wrong) as they definitely have their uses. They provide a solid foundation for new hypnotists to build their craft upon. They’re tried and tested techniques that work on a majority of individuals (though not all) when applied appropriately. They can also be used (for those who are curious enough) to understand exactly how hypnosis works and precisely why these styles of inductions work so well for so many.
But rarely in my experience are hypnotists taught or encouraged to move beyond the basic inductions they’ve been taught. As a hypnotist becomes more experienced they may tweak or adjust elements of these inductions, but it’s not common to see anyone break out, get creative and invent their own inductions. I guess the thinking is stick to what you know works, and there’s nothing intrinsically wrong with that approach, but as I mentioned earlier, these tried and tested techniques don’t work on everyone so what do you do when faced with a client who doesn’t respond to the techniques you’ve been taught? Many hypnotists will (wrongly) assume that the subject is bad/difficult to trance when this could not be further from the truth. The limitation does not lie with the client. It lies with the hypnotist.
In order to be a truly successful hypnotist you must be able to adjust and adapt your approach to meet the needs of your client. In many cases this can be achieved by tweaking the commonly used inductions you have been taught, but there is so much more potential with hypnosis for those who are adventurous enough to look beyond the horizons of their original teaching.
The question then becomes – how? How do you expand your hypnotic horizons and break away from the traditional inductions you’ve been taught. Surely these specific techniques are taught and used for a reason? Aren’t you risking failure if you stray from the tried and tested path and strike out on your own? Well…yes. But you’re also potentially achieving a great deal more understanding, success and achievements.
In terms of *how* one goes about breaking free from traditional inductions, I’m not going to lie – there is no easy way or shortcuts. You need to invest time in furthering your learning by understanding the mechanics of how hypnosis works. Inductions are techniques that utilise specific actions and package them in a useable way. If you look beyond the induction and into exactly what underpins the induction and makes it work successfully, then you’re a long way to understanding the principles of hypnosis and the specific techniques that underpin the often successful inductions.
Once you understand the mechanics – how hypnosis works “under the hood” so to speak – then you can begin to build new frameworks/inductions of your own design based off the intrinsic principles of successful trance. It’s a process. You’re not going to be able to manage perfectly original and 100% successful inductions overnight. What you will be able to do is begin to branch out from the more traditional inductions. Perhaps change up some elements, experiment, throw in a few original ideas and incorporate them into inductions you know work. Basically what you’re aiming for is to experiment and have fun.
If you try out an idea and it doesn’t go to plan, it doesn’t mean you’ve failed. Quite the opposite. You’ve learned something really important. If your subject doesn’t trance, it’s not a problem. Not everyone responds to the same induction techniques. But the more you experiment, the more you understand how to read people and get a better idea of what techniques are more likely to be successful. This can be a matter of trial and error, but as long as you remain calm and professional it is not a disaster which cannot be overcome. You simply pivot, explore different techniques and discover what works for your client. The way you frame the experience (for instance explaining that everyone is different and responds differently and so you’re working out how best you can help them) and your attitude will have a much bigger impact than you assume.
The more you experiment, the more you learn. The more you learn the more you understand. And the more you understand, the more confident you will become in exploring more original aspects to inductions and eventually more original inductions themselves.
The key is to be confident and not allow yourself to be dissuaded when things don’t go to plan. Everything is a learning experience and opportunity and the benefits of getting comfortable with breaking free from traditional inductions far outweigh the negatives. As a hypnotist you’ll be far better placed to help your clients by tailoring inductions specifically to them and their needs rather than relying on generic inductions and as a result your sessions will be much more successful. Trust me – I know. I took this path and now excel at successfully trancing people who have previously struggled. I’ve had multiple clients come to me after trying to trance for 20+ years (more than one was 40+ years) and because I’ve taken the time to explore and experiment, I have been able to successfully trance them where other hypnotists could not.
Breaking free from traditional inductions may not be quick or easy, but I promise you (as someone who has been a practising hypnotist for nigh on a decade now) it’s definitely worth it!
If you have any questions, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Want to book a session with me to experience what I have talked about first hand? Check out the live sessions page here on my website
Hypnosis is an incredible tool. It can be used to accomplish all manner of things and its scope and potential should never be underestimated. As I regularly remind my clients, the only limit to what’s possible with hypnosis is your imagination. It’s a substantial claim, but one that I ceaselessly enjoy demonstrating.
Different people choose to explore hypnosis for different reasons. Some are curious about the trance experience in and of itself, whilst for others trance is a vehicle which they intend to utilise to explore other desires.
There is no right or wrong way to use/explore hypnosis, but for the purposes of this blog I am going to focus on the utilisation of hypnosis (yes I used an “s” and not a “z” – I’m British) for pleasure. Pleasure is, after all, a big draw for many (understandably) and it is also my specific area of expertise.
If you’ve paid careful attention to the homepage of my website you’ve probably noticed the tagline “I can make all your fantasies come true”. Many assume it’s simply a marketing ploy, but the reality is far more exciting. The reality is that I mean every word, as many of my clients have already discovered to their utter delight and after having successfully overcome their initial disbelief.
Pleasure is powerful. Inspirational. I’m sure you’ve felt that deep, intense craving for a particular kind of pleasure before, haven’t you? At times it sneaks up on you…at other times it speaks to a more enduring, aching longing…that need and desire for pleasure is always with us, and hypnosis offers a powerful means to fully explore the myriad of possibilities and opportunities that exist.
After all – pleasure means different things to different people. Yes, erotic pleasure is one very exquisite option, but there are others…the tranquil, blissful and serene sensation that comes with surrendering to trance (and is so often overlooked)…the pleasure that comes from being able to quieten an anxious mind and deeply relax a tense body…the options for indulgence are many and varied, as are the levels of intensity that can be explored and played with (ask me about my numbers triggers the next time you enjoy a session with me and you’ll see what I mean).
You can use hypnosis to explore familiar pleasures and discover new ones…to push boundaries and stretch your comfort zone and in doing so allow yourself to become open to a world of new possibilities. The anticipation and reward of new discoveries are in and of themselves pleasurable as well as the pleasure of the discoveries themselves.
Pleasure can be compounded in hypnosis…have you ever been able to explore what it feels like to enjoy multiple different yet simultaneous kinds of pleasure? Well, now you can. Now it can be your reality. Soft, gentle, intense, aching, decadent pleasure…all within your grasp when you trance. Who wouldn’t want that? Hmm?
But what if you’ve already tried to trance but struggled? Does this mean that you’re somehow cut off from the opportunity to indulge in the pleasures I have been talking about? Of course not! Many of my existing clients previously struggled to trance before they sought me out. Today they are my walking success stories and repeated proof that with the right guidance and understanding, almost anyone can achieve trance easily.
The key to success is finding a hypnotist whose style works well with your abilities (because you most certainly are able) and the willingness to invest in the opportunity. Some clients have found my mp3’s alone have worked for them, whereas for others success came after enjoying a live session with me. There is no right or wrong – only what works for you.
The journey toward exploring pleasure begins with a single step…take it.
My mp3 store: https://www.queenofdreamshypnosis.com/mp3-store/
Live sessions: https://www.queenofdreamshypnosis.com/live-sessions/
I am a firm believer that analytical people make some of the best hypnosis subjects. I completely dispute the frustratingly pervasive assumption peddled by far too many hypnotists that analytical people are “bad” or “difficult” subjects because in my (many years of) experience this simply isn’t true.
I have had the pleasure of hypnotizing countless people and nothing brings me more joy than working with an analytical subject because right from the get-go I know that they are going to be amazing to work with.
How do I know this? Because analytical people are blessed with an incredible, often untapped and underappreciated gift. Their gift is that which far too many hypnotists incorrectly malign – the ability to analyse.
I don’t know how, when or where the assumption arose that analysing one’s trance experience is a negative thing and not to be encouraged but I do know that it’s utter nonsense. Yes, many people respond well to being told to “relax and not think”. It gives them permission to switch their mind off and focus on what the hypnotist is saying.
But that technique isn’t a catch all. It doesn’t work for everyone. If you’re analytical, being told to “relax and not think” often leads to the opposite effects (am I relaxed enough? How do I not think? I’m thinking about not thinking! type thoughts). This in turn leads to distraction and frustration and the (totally wrong) assumption that trance is at best difficult and at worst impossible for analytical people.
But what would happen if the subject was given permission to analyse? To be told that it is okay to explore and think about their trance experience as they are experiencing it? What if the hypnotist could gently guide the subject’s focus without imposing rigid rules around relaxation and not thinking? What if a more flexible approach was encouraged and more appropriate support offered to the subject by the hypnotist?
Well, I can tell you from my own experience (and I have chosen to specialise in working with analytical and so-called “difficult” subjects so that should tell you something) that this is when the magic happens.
Giving the subject permission to leverage their analytical abilities and appreciate them for the gift they are rather than a problematic hindrance transforms the hypnotic trance experience from one of stress and worry (will I be able to trance? Is it working? Am I doing it right?) To one of confidence, positivity and self-assurance (Yes, I notice that. Yes, I feel how that sensation has evolved, etc).
By allowing a subject to utilise their innate analytical gifts, and appropriately supporting them in doing so, they (the subject) are able to engage more deeply with the hypnosis experience. The result is that they trance faster and deeper than the average person. Because they are able to self-verify more quickly than the average person how their trance is evolving, they progress at a faster pace and enjoy a more profound hypnotic trance experience.
This is how the magic happens – encourage a subject to utilise and engage with the tools and gifts they already possess rather than trying to suppress them and they come alive. I have seen it time and time again, and the more they experience this, the more confident in themselves and their abilities they become and the more effective the trance experience becomes.
Success is often contingent on the support of an experienced hypnotist with experience of supporting analytical people which is why I constantly recommend people do their research, but the ability itself of a person to achieve trance does not lie with the hypnotist – it lies with the subject. The hypnotist’s job is simply to guide and support the subject and allow them to achieve their true potential.
I promise you – if you are analytical, you are a gifted hypnosis subject. If you’ve struggled to succeed so far that is not your fault in any way, shape or form. Different people learn in different ways. Once you find a method that works for you, you will be able to achieve things you never even imagined.
So – now you’re aware of the potential that lies inside of you, how do you get started?
I typically recommend live sessions over mp3s initially as in my experience this is a good way to lay the groundwork, create a solid base to build upon and allows the hypnotist to tailor the experience specifically to you. Some hypnotists offer in-person sessions whilst others, such as myself, offer remote video sessions (see my Live Sessions page for more information). I don’t believe that one is better than the other – if anything video sessions offer more flexibility and choice as you don’t have to travel, plus are just as effective as in person sessions. Ultimately, it comes down to what you’re comfortable with and what the hypnotist you’ve chosen to work with offers.
Remember – You need invest in yourself and appreciate your worth. Take your time, find a hypnotist whose style works for you and enjoy the journey!
***trigger warning: this blog contains details relating to inappropriate triggers used on a minor***
Those of you who know me know how I pride myself on my ethics, especially when it comes to hypnosis. It is very important to me that my clients know and feel safe with me. That they understand that their well-being is my priority.
Recently someone added a comment to a blog I wrote. I didn’t feel that the comment was appropriate to allow in response to the blog itself due to potentially triggering content, but I have included it below as an illustration of why ethics are so, so important in hypnosis (I should add that the story below is essentially “hearsay” as I have no way to independently verify what the original author has claimed occurred):
“At a stage show a couple of years ago at the Hypnothoughts Live conference in Las Vegas, a 15-year old girl was among the participants. She was implanted with a trigger that when her shoulder was touched, she would orgasm. After the show, people (men) kept coming up to her and touching her shoulder – it was VERY distressing to both the girl and her mother, who was present.
This should have been a NO-NO! It was highly improper and unethical, on the part of the hypnotist, especially with a minor and not to have removed the suggestion!”
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out why the above behaviour is incredibly inappropriate and that in itself makes the alleged event even more dismaying. It is so obviously, blatantly unethical and downright predatory – not only of the hypnotist but the men who chose subsequently to take advantage. The fact that the individual in question was also a minor makes what transpired even more heinous.
I simply cannot emphasize enough how important ethics is in hypnosis. Your hypnotist should make you feel safe and confident in their abilities as well as satisfied that they are placing a significant emphasis on your well-being. Trust your gut. If something feels “off”, even if you can’t put that feeling into words, you do not need to proceed. If you are in trance and the hypnotist suggests something that you are not comfortable with, you are not obliged to follow through. What will most likely happen is that you will snap out of trance at which point you can verbally object to the hypnotists suggestion. If the suggestion you were uncomfortable with wasn’t a deliberate ploy on the hypnotists part then they should be able to calmly talk through with you what happened and why, take this in to account and be mindful moving forward. They shouldn’t ask or encourage you to trance again until you feel comfortable and confident to do so. If the suggestion was deliberate (sadly bad, unethical hypnotists do exist as the above story illustrates) then you have the option to walk away altogether.
I think part of the problem is that people feel that once they are in trance they lose all control and feel as if they have to follow through with triggers and commands, even if they are not comfortable with them. This is simply not true. You always have a choice. It doesn’t matter how deeply you are tranced. If this is an area of concern for you then I would recommend listening to a free mp3s I have – “Art of Control”. If it makes it easier for you, listen through the first time without trancing to make sure you’re comfortable with the content. Doing this won’t prevent you from being able to achieve and enjoy trancing to this recording when you are ready to.
If you are a hypnotist reading this – please be mindful of ethics and ethical implications of what you’re doing and/or want to do. Your subject is placing their trust in you. Please don’t abuse it. Your subjects physical and mental well-being should be your top priority.
Thoughts? Comments? Please share below.