Who can be hypnotised?
I truly believe that everyone can be hypnotised. It may be that some individuals need to experience deep relaxation before commencing behaviour changing sessions, but with the right understanding and guidance everyone can benefit from hypnotherapy.
The human race as hypnotherapy subjects shows us that individuals have different levels of suggestibility. To achieve a trance-like state individuals can be broken down as follows:
15% Highly Suggestible
70% Moderately Suggestible
15% Minimally Suggestible
In practice there are four common prerequisites to achieving a hypnotic trance like state:
Confidence: A client will need to have confidence in you and your skills in order for them to feel safe and relaxed enough to be able to enter trance. Alleviate all of their fears and concerns prior to the session commencing. Therefore, you need to have confidence in you, it will be sensed.
Relaxation: A general level of relaxation needs to be achieved prior to taking a client into trance. If your client is angry, anxious or suffering hypervigilance you may find that they are not relaxed enough to let go and freely enter a hypnotic state. Trust your instincts, work with the individual that you have in front of you. Help them to achieve a more relaxed state prior to commencing the session. Spend time building rapport with body language, mirroring and matching. If you still don’t feel that they are relaxed enough to partake in the original session that you had planned, i.e. weight loss, confidence etc., use the session to help them feel more relaxed and calm so at least you can send them home feeling calmer and more at peace.
Concentration: Your client needs to be able to concentrate on what you are saying long enough for trance to occur and for therapy to be effective. Try to help your client clear their mind just for the duration of the session allowing for maximum concentration. Ensure the environment is calm and quiet, with minimal disturbances, and give your client the opportunity to talk out their worries or problems prior to commencing the session.
Cooperation: The single greatest obstacle of clients entering trance is their fear of losing control. Many clients regard hypnosis as “mind control” believing that hypnosis has the ability to override a client’s own self-control. Many clients who are fearful of this still pursue hypnosis with the notion that it can be used as a quick fix, a “magic wand”. This distorted view has often been associated with the client having seen hypnosis portrayed through entertainment media. Such association creates beliefs and attitudes for the client that contributes to misleading information and negative experiences. Allay all of your client’s fears before commencing a session.