Myths and misconceptions seem to surround hypnotherapy, making it more difficult for people to fully understand it. This is exacerbated by Television shows and movies, where it appears possible for a Hypnotist to control the mind of their subject. Here we will expose some of these myths to reassure you that hypnotherapy is a safe and practical therapy, where you are always in control of your own mind.
A person can be hypnotized against his or her own will – Hypnosis is a relaxed state of mind that cannot be achieved without your full cooperation. Therefore it is not possible to hypnotise someone unless they want to be hypnotised.
Only the weak minded can be hypnotised – In fact it is the exact opposite! Only people who can concentrate well and use their imaginations can be hypnotised. This accounts for approximately 90% of the population, although responsiveness to hypnotic suggestions may vary in each individual. Some individuals may go into the hypnotic state very quickly and deeply, while others may take several minutes to achieve the same state of relaxation.
If you can hear the hypnotherapist you are not hypnotised – This misconception has probably come about due to another common misunderstanding which equates the state of hypnosis with sleep. Hypnosis is not sleep, but rather a very relaxed state of mind. Many people believe that when they are hypnotised they will not be aware of anything that is happening around them. In reality, if you lost all connection with your hypnotist, how could you follow their instructions to enable therapy to take place?
An individual looses the control of their body while hypnotised – Hypnosis is a relaxed state of mind, it is not sleep. Hypnosis requires your full cooperation, and it is not possible for a hypnotist to make you perform tasks that you would not normally do. You have complete control of the session and can open your eyes and stop your hypnotic state at any time.
An individual does not remember anything when woken up from hypnosis – Hypnosis is carried out in a complete awake yet relaxed state of mind. In this relaxed state the mind is actually better focused and concentrating. As a result, you are even more likely to remember the words that were spoken and the feelings these aroused in you.
Hypnosis is dangerous to practice on your own – Hypnosis is never dangerous, but practising it alone can be somewhat difficult. Your therapist can teach you techniques for self hypnosis which you can then use to compliment your sessions with the therapist.
You can remain permanently stuck in hypnosis – No one has ever got stuck in hypnosis. It is however often a very pleasant state of mind making some people reluctant to come out of the hypnotic state. Your therapist, who acts as your guide throughout the hypnotherapy session, will steer you to the natural end of your hypnosis to ensure you come out of the hypnotic state feeling refreshed and relaxed.
Is Hypnotherapy dangerous?
Hypnosis was approved by the Council of Mental Health of the American Medical Association in 1958, as being safe to practice with no harmful side effects. No one has ever been seriously hurt from hypnosis. Elizabeth carries full Professional Liability Insurance.