Self-hypnosis is not a magic bullet. It's not a cure. There's no magic wand. But if you master self-hypnosis, it might feel at time like it's doing something magical for you, and that would be awesome. Most people won't get to that place with self-hypnosis, though, for one simple reason:
They won't approach self-hypnotism as a skill to be mastered.
Most people won't even choose hypnosis as a solution to their problem. It is not mainstream, in that way. Of those who are open to using hypnosis, the majority will seek a hypnotist to do the heavy lifting. They'll purchase a session, or perhaps a package of sessions, and report to the hypnotist for consultation. That's totally fine.
In fact, in some cases, going to a hypnotist is the superior option. Some folks, in some cases, will get a more efficient and effective result by trusting in the experience of a professional hypnotist. That's better than fine; it's awesome. But in some situations, it's well and good for the individual to take a more active role in their path to the solution. Sometimes learning self-hypnosis is the better option.
Learning self-hypnosis is empowering. When you go see a hypnotist to get help with a challenge, to some extent you are seeking the solution outside of yourself. When you learn self-hypnosis, it keeps you at the center of solving the problem. You are working on multiple skills, really:
- You learn to induce the hypnotic state.
- You learn to create hypnotic suggestions.
- You learn how to think differently so that you can find a way around the problem and move toward a solution.
The people who struggle with getting hypnotized by a hypnotist are very often folks who struggle with control issues. There's a part of them that thinks that getting hypnotized means giving up some level of control to the hypnotist. This isn't really true, but if they can't remove that false belief, it's unlikely that they will be successfully hypnotized. Why not just keep them in the driver's seat and teach them self-hypnosis? Leverage the need for control instead of negating it.
When a person is open to learning self-hypnosis, the most important thing to help them understand is that it's not an innate ability; it's a skill. All skills can be learned and improved. Learn your basic techniques, get yourself to a place of proficiency, and then decide if you want to move on to mastery. Those who do will have a powerful tool in life's tool box. They'll be able to better manage their stress, improve their sleep, and create a host of other positive outcomes and results.
It's the difference between being a consumer and being a practitioner.
There are plenty of times when it's appropriate to be a consumer. The problem I'm trying to highlight is when one takes the path of the practitioner (learning self-hypnosis) but approaches it like a consumer. That's when things break down and disappointment follows.
Learning self-hypnosis is like learning to cook, or to play an instrument, or to salsa dance. There are some things you have to know (content) and some things you must know how to do (process). If you want to get the most from your self-hypnosis experience, you must develop the proper skills:
- Learn multiple methods of induction.
- How to properly create hypnotic suggestions.
- How to identify limiting beliefs and de-bunk or re-frame them.
As you develop these skills, your brain will actually grow stronger nerve pathways that make it easier to get into hypnosis. Your level of absorption in the hypnotic experience will increase over time, and your confidence will grow. That confidence will lead to better results, if paired with fundamentally sound technique.
I've seen people lose weight with self-hypnosis, manage chronic pain, and improve their golf game. There are so many wonderful applications of this skill! When you're ready to add this skill to your life, let us know.