Hypnosis is possibly as old as mankind and yet myths and misconceptions about it continue to prevail. It is, in fact, a pleasantly relaxing process where the subconscious, in a state of ultra-focus, is highly accepting of suggestions that can change detrimental habits and behaviours.
We are creatures of habit and the reaction of many people to the idea of hypnosis is not surprising – fear of the unknown, disdain for the apparently non-scientific, scepticism of the effectiveness, and unwillingness to even contemplate the notion that our thinking can be harnessed and used for our good. What the nay-sayers are reluctant to recognise is that they are possibly passing up a valuable opportunity. With a more curious and accepting attitude they could have access to a host of benefits – it’s available to all, it’s quick, it’s 100% natural and yet it can transform lives.
Fear of the unknown is an invalid objection. The reality is that everyone spends time during their day in a state closely resembling hypnosis. We’ve all driven somewhere and, on arrival, had absolutely no idea how we got there: frightening for the conscious analytical mind which does not even recall the traffic lights or the turns, but no problem for the subconscious mind which fortunately stepped in and navigated the road safely. Zoning out while reading a gripping book or watching an engrossing TV show are also common examples. It’s perfectly natural for our mind to operate on two levels.
The lack of concrete scientific proof around hypnosis is not a mystery. Our thoughts cannot be pinned down and analysed like conventional data and, what’s worse, thoughts are notoriously difficult to marshal and control – a mind is like a classroom of unruly 3 year olds! However science is constantly a work in progress and it has been established that hypnosis is a genuine psychological phenomenon which is gaining wide acceptance in a variety of fields, including medicine, dentistry, law enforcement, professional sports, and education.
The idea that has been promoted to the public and politicians (often at great profit!) that chemicals are the answer to all mental problems is beginning to lose credence as people increasingly turn to more natural solutions to their fears and destructive behaviour. Evidence may largely be anecdotal but people the world over have benefitted from the relaxing and transformative effects of hypnosis. So perhaps it’s time to close your eyes, relax and enjoy it. The results may surprise you.
And you know what they say – don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!