The Beginner’s Guide to Self-Hypnosis
There are a lot of terms that may make self-hypnosis seem scarier than necessary. For instance, you need to go into a trance-like state in order for it to work, and your eventual goal is for your brain to spontaneously respond to suggestions planted by a guiding voice. The idea of going into a trance state suggests that you are giving up control of your brain, and that’s justifiably scary.
Allowing someone else to guide your mind once it is out of your control is even more questionable for most, but self-hypnosis doesn’t require you to give up control of your mental or physical processes. In fact, it can give you greater control of your mind and body than you have ever had before.
How to Achieve the Trance-Like State
You don’t chemically alter your brain in any way when entering a trance-like state. Your brain has the power to enter different states of consciousness when you focus your mind correctly. You don’t work in deep states of consciousness in daily life because it would prevent you from accomplishing important tasks and multitasking to get through the day. Yet going into those deeper states is what you must do in order to change destructive behaviors or evoke a greater sense of peace, happiness and well-being.
To enter a deeper level of consciousness so that your brain is responsive to suggestions, get into a comfortable position in a warm, safe environment and lower the lights. Slow music or another soft repetitious sound playing in the background often helps, but you can go with peace and quiet if you prefer. Listen to a meditation or hypnosis tape that instructs you to focus on one thing in a soft, calming voice.
You can also guide yourself by speaking out loud in a low voice, but there are hypnosis tracks that you can download online or buy on CD. If you don’t like the idea of taking suggestion from an outside source but find that it’s difficult to enter a deeper state of consciousness by speaking out loud, record your voice in advance.
Start with statements that allow you to relax and push away the rush of thoughts that are always running through your mind. For instance, you may focus on your favorite playground as a child and imagine yourself running through the grass and the wind blowing in your face as you swing high. You can also imagine yourself bathing under a beautiful waterfall or relaxing underneath a large tree on a warm day.
Focus your mind only on the image, placing yourself in that environment. You should feel your body relax as your mind goes to that place, and you will enter a deeper state of consciousness than you experience in daily life.
What Happens Next?
If you use a pre-recorded hypnosis guide, the voice will ease you into deeper states of consciousness while making suggestions in line with your goals. For instance, you may imagine yourself approaching a buffet of your favorite junk foods and walking right by with a smile and sense of pride. While in the trance-like state, allow yourself to see and smell each item on the buffet. As you walk by without giving into the temptation, you take control of your brain and instruct it to act in a new way when confronted with those delicious foods.
The form of suggestion varies, depending on what you want to achieve through the hypnosis process. While some people do use these mental suggestions to break self-destructive habits like overeating, excessive shopping or smoking, you can also simply place your brain in a relaxed state as a way to overcome stress and anxiety naturally.
In the end, your guiding voice will slowly bring your mind back to the state of consciousness that you generally enjoy in daily life. You should feel relaxed and at ease when you open your eyes.
The Benefits of Self-Hypnosis
Why would you want to put yourself into a mentally focused state and throw suggestions at your deepest state of consciousness?
There are many reasons:
- Learn to relax and calm your mind whenever necessary. Once self-hypnosis is fully mastered, you can close your eyes and enter a more relaxed state in moments of intense stress. You will have the skills to do this momentarily before returning your mind to the situation at hand. This is the most natural form of stress relief available.
- Lower your chance for heart attacks, hypertension, and many health conditions related to stressful lifestyles. This comes naturally when you learn to control the stress rather than allowing it to control you.
- Obtain greater control over your emotional patterns. If you find that you’re overly emotional due to circumstances in your life or tend to cry every time you get angry, you can use self-hypnosis to even out your emotions. You can also focus on entering happy, joyous mental states to help you rise out of depression.
- Break self-destructive patterns that are creating chaos in your life. The scenarios you travel through during a hypnosis session are manifested in your mind and make it easier to alter your behavior when you encounter similar situations in the real world. Consistent and proper use of hypnosis is required to get these results, so it may take some time.
- Control anxiety and limit panic attacks. There are studies that prove hypnosis has the power to reduce anxiety in adults, but it can take some time before you start to see the best results. The more experience you gain, the better results you can expect to see.
- Naturally improve your mental focus and physical energy so that you perform better in daily life. Many athletes use hypnosis and deep meditation to improve performance on the field, but this is equally effective for students going into important examinations or professionals trying to excel in difficult work environments.
How to Maximize Results
You now have a surface understanding of how self-hypnosis works, and you realize that it isn’t as scary as you may have thought. You’re probably excited to see how this natural strategy can help you reach your most important goals, but it’s easier if you have the guidance of a coach trained in hypnosis. They don’t have to provide the vocal guidance in each of your sessions to help you, so there are ways to maintain complete control of the process while allowing your coach to speed up the process of personal growth.
For instance, a coach can help you create the guiding statements that you record for each of your hypnosis sessions. These statements are more powerful when they coordinate with your goals and are worded in a reassuring, encouraging manner. It’s a lot like telling a story, allowing your brain to slip into deeper states of consciousness smoothly. With an experienced coach, you will master this process faster and speed up your results.