When you hear the word “Hypnosis”, many people’s first impressions are of people walking around a stage clucking like chickens or doing silly things that the stage Hypnotist tells them to do. However, Hypnotherapy is a tool that many people use to help allow their minds to focus on intricate details and make positive changes in their lives. Many people have described Hypnosis as being in a calm and relaxed state. This state is known as the “healing state”. While experiencing hypnosis, people are most open to the power of suggestion & hypnotic instruction. This is when the Hypnotherapist can help the person remove the negative blocks built within their subconscious mind and help replace them with what will serve them to attain and maintain positive change.
Your subconscious mind makes up 95% of your total mind while the other 5% is your conscious mind. Your subconscious mind is where you store all of your thoughts and feelings, as well as your beliefs and values. When someone is in the state of hypnosis it is known as “the straight pathway to the subconscious mind.”
Let’s takes a deeper look at how hypnosis and hypnotherapy work. The following excerpt is from recent findings from Stanford Medical School. These are exciting findings! “A group of researchers at the Stanford School of Medicine just used brain imaging to see what was actually happening to people while they were under hypnosis. The team gathered 57 people, some of whom were highly susceptible to hypnotic trance states and others who were not hypnotizable at all.
They placed the participants in brain imaging machines, and played various sets of prerecorded instructions-two sets were meant to induce hypnosis, and two others were given other instructions.
The images captured the regions of the brain that were most active and most dormant while the participants were hypnotized. The team saw changes in three regions in the hypnotized patients.
They saw decreased activity in a region known as the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, a region known to be critical for evaluating contexts, which aids in deciding what to worry about and what to ignore in a particular situation. Reducing that activity shows hypnotized people are able to suspend judgement and immerse themselves in something, without thinking of what else they could or should be attending.
The second change appeared in some of the parts of the brain that give people the ability to separate the thoughts in their heads from the feelings in their bodies.
People in hypnosis “can picture something that makes them stressed, but they can imagine that their bodies are floating and comfortable,” said the study’s senior author, Stanford psychiatry professor David Spiegel, in an interview with CNBC. “So, when you are thinking about something, you can better control how your body responds to that thought.”
The third region affected is located very deep in the brain and involves self-consciousness. “People who are hypnotized tend not to be self-conscious, and so they will do things they wouldn’t normally do,” Spiegel said. “That has therapeutic potential. You can get people to shake up the way they react to problems and approach them from a different point of view.”
How Hypnotherapy Can Help You
- Help improve your deep sleep
- Help calm nerves
- Help ease pain
- Helps handle stress more efficiently
- Helps you be more self-aware
The list above is simply the tip of the iceberg. Hypnotherapy can help with much more focused problems, such as, smoking cessation, weight loss, sports performance, irritable bowel syndrome, anxiety, alcohol abuse and much more.