5 Common Myths About Hypnosis

“Hypnosis is a focused state of concentration. It’s a state of hyper-awareness that doesn’t override your common sense, morals, or your gut instincts“

 

Hypnosis has a provocative relationship with mass consciousness.

Movies portray hypnosis as a mechanism of mind control, misrepresent it as a way to bypass consent.  It’s widely been known more for its entertainment value rather than its therapeutic uses. And, to be funny, if one more person asks me if I will make them cluck like a chicken, I may pretend I can.

There are a lot of myths about hypnosis floating around out there.  To help set the record straight, I wanted to share the five most common myths that exist about hypnosis.

Myth #1 – When you are “in hypnosis”, you don’t have any control over what happens to you.

Truth – Hypnosis is a focused state of concentration. It’s a state of hyper-awareness that doesn’t override your common sense, morals, or your gut instincts.

There have been many studies on this topic.  Not one has shown that someone in a hypnotized state will act against their own best interest.

To show how common a state of hypnosis is, you may have quite possibly experienced a hypnotic state without realizing that is what was happening.  Daydreaming, meditating, driving, may all be times when you experienced a hypnotic state.

Have you ever zoned out while driving and before you know it, you’re at your destination? You have no conscious recall of the drive that got there. That was a form of hypnosis.

Your conscious mind was daydreaming, but your subconscious mind was in a state of hyper-focus and in complete control.  While your conscious mind was elsewhere, your subconscious mind got you where you needed to go.

Myth #2, You can be hypnotized without your consent.

Truth – All hypnosis is self-hypnosis.  Let me explain what that means. You do the work, and I am simply the guide to help you relax into that hyper-focused state of concentration.  You have to be willing to work with me to relax; you have to believe that you are safe. This all requires consent.

No one can hypnotize you without your consent.  There is no magic teacup and spoon that when tapped three times, sends you to the sunken place.  Hypnosis must be a fully consensual partnership, or else it’s a waste of time. It’s your subconscious; no one has access to it but you.  Even I, a hypnotist, don’t have access to any of your thoughts or your deepest, darkest secrets.

Many people ask me if I will make them cluck like a chicken or bark like a dog.  Some of that stuff does happen with stage hypnosis. But that’s entertainment, and even then, volunteering to participate in a stage hypnosis show is consent.

Myth #3 – The hypnotist can read your mind and will know all your secrets.

Truth – True story, someone once told me that they had to wait until they were out of the military to use hypnosis to help them gain control over anxiety and excessive thoughts.  They feared that their high-level military clearance would be compromised because I could “get into their brain.”

It’s your subconscious mind. Unless you tell me your secrets, I can’t know them. In hypnosis, in a trace, you won’t say or tell me anything that your subconscious truly wants to keep private.

Some of my clients have experienced deeply wounding and traumatic events in their life. Their goal in working with me is to stop responding to subconscious triggers that are preventing them from moving forward in their life.  I can help them do that without ever knowing the details of the underlined trauma. I don’t have to know their secrets.

Myth #4  Hypnosis leaves your mind open for dark energies, or demons or the devil to enter it.

Truth – I thought it best to answer this myth with scripture. At one point in my life (really a whole other life ago), I was studying to be an Evangelical Minister. I mention this to say that I do know my way around a bible.

1 Peter 5:8 Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary, the devil prowls around like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour.

If hypnosis is a concentrated state of focus and a hyper-sense of awareness, then how much more watchful can you be?

Myth #5– Hypnosis is a cure-all.

Truth – It’s not.  It is a powerful tool for uprooting deeply held subconscious beliefs about yourself and life, but it is not the cure-all many hope it is. It’s not a magic wand or a mind excavation tool that can “take all the bad stuff out”.

Hypnosis is an adjunctive modality that pairs well with other holistic and even traditional mental health tools.

My favorite holistic trio is Family Trauma Mapping, Constellation Healing, and Hypnosis.  Family Mapping and Constellation Healing helps with healing the family soul from intergenerational entanglements and trauma. Hypnosis helps my clients work through the personal, subconscious patterns and emotional triggers created out of those intergenerational entanglements.

For many of my clients, I work in partnership with their therapists to help them work through difficult times or when they reach plateaus in their care plan.

It also takes more than one session.  Some clients will have one session, expect it to be a one and done magic wand, and it’s just not that.

It’s a process; healing is a process, that when stayed the course, helps you move forward in your life in empowering ways.

So there you have it, five common myths about hypnosis.

I hope you found this helpful and enlightening.

I would love to answer any questions you may have. If you are interested in speaking with me about Family Trauma Mapping, Constellation Healing or Hypnosis, feel free to book a no cost 10-minute discovery call with me.

 

Emotions Are Held In Your Body

Your body memory responds to people, places, things, stories, memories, and experiences through the perspective of your family entanglements.

You carry these entanglements and emotions more in your body than in your conscious memory.

Before your Hippocampus (the part of your brain that helps you store memory) comes fully online, your experiences are stored as body memory. This especially affects those who have experienced childhood trauma.

Emotions are normal and natural. They are meant to be felt, processed and metabolized in the moment they happen. However, when you experience trauma, the normal process of expressing emotion can be shut down, trapping your response and emotion inside your body.  It becomes body memory.

Left un-metabolized, it sits there, in your body, changing your epigenetic markers, the way you move through the world and your ability to live your most empowered life.

Helping you attune into your body is a big part of this work.  For some, this may be a foreign concept. For others a familiar norm. Either way, you will be guided every step of the way.

As we work our way through your Family Map, your body will start to respond. Emotions that have been stuck may begin to surface. Until now your response was probably to shut that emotion down, putting it back in the place it has sat for years. If the trauma is intergenerational, it has been sitting in your epigenetic expression, felt deeply by you but also unexplainable by you. Perhaps it showed up in patterns of self-sabotage or other life diminishing ways.

The goal is to acknowledge the emotion and make space for it to be felt, expressed, and then metabolized.  Our bodies are brilliant and know how to move emotions through it. However, most often we shut it down, afraid of the feeling or of becoming unraveled.  This work helps you learn how to trust your body and its ability to resolve what lays beneath the surface.

If you have not learned how to feel, express and move emotion out of your body, this process may, at first, feel foreign.  I’ll reassure you of your safety, move at the pace for which you consent, and guide you every step of the way.

If you have experienced trauma that has caused significant dissociation from your body, we move at your pace, in and out of exercises that support you as you reconnect and rebuild trust within your body.

Once you master this and see how powerful you are, this process becomes instinctual.  You will become a pro at understanding how you store emotions in your body and how to move them out.  This brings more confidence in other areas of your life as you release long-held emotions and family entanglements that have caused unhealthy patterns in your life, relationships, careers, etc.

Everyone is different, and so this process can look different for everyone.  Here is an example of how it may look while we are in session.

I ask a question that brings up an emotion connected to a memory.

You may start to express that emotion.

I may guide you to focus on your breath and find where that emotion is sitting in your body.

I’ll have redirected your attention from the emotion to where it sits in your body so that you can understand how it feels, where it lay, how and when it shifts.

You may realize that maybe for the first time you are in a safe place to sit with the emotion for a moment.

You relax into it and allow yourself to feel it in your body.

I may ask you where the emotion is sitting and to describe it to me.

I may guide you through a visualization, or we may sit in silence.

I may also guide you through additional breathing exercise so that the emotion starts to move.

When the feeling gets softer or subsidies, we move forward in the session.

At the end of our session, we talk about ways you can further metabolize that emotion by moving it out of your body.

Homework may include going for a walk and visualizing leaving the energy of the emotion in your footprints on the ground.

It can look like going for a run and visualizing the energy of the emotion leaving your body.

I can look like rocking back and forth allowing yourself to ugly cry for the first time, noticing that you may feel lighter as the tears flow and snot runs.

It can look like dancing or a challenging yoga class.

There are infinite ways you can metabolize the energy of emotion. Your body and your intuition is the best guide to follow.

Memories trigger emotion, emotions are energy, get the energy moving, and you have a new relationship with the memory.

Because I am also a Clinical Hypnotist, we may do some further releasing work to help your response to that memory no longer be attached to that emotion.

 

 

A word on dissociation and childhood trauma:

For those of us who experienced childhood trauma and abuse, dissociation is common. I share this out of my own experience.

Dissociation is sometimes the necessary  glue that keeps us moving forward.  It keeps our feelings locked away and allows us to build a life around the war within. We fear that if we let one emotion seep out, that an uncontrollable tsunami will wipe away the careful structure we have built to keep us together just enough to keep moving forward in life.

Our bodies play along. It keeps our secrets and holds our emotion.

Until it doesn’t.

We magnify our emotions by fearing them.  When they remain in us, stuck in our body, we imagine them more significant than the perfection of our body’s mechanisms to live, survive and thrive.

But the second we lean in, learn to trust our ability to process and move these emotions from stagnant to flowing,  we realize how perfect our internal systems are and how they work for us, not in spite of us.

Shifting your internal conversations from, “I can’t feel this or I’ll fall apart.” to “I was created with a perfect emotional regulatory system,”  takes you from surviving by disassociating to empowered healing.

If anything in this post resonated with you, book a consultation with me and let’s talk about it. 

 

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