In this video clip I run through some of the main questions and confusions about hypnotherapy.
Stage hypnosis..is it real is a popular question. Also the question of control and side effects make some clients doubtful about hypnosis. The fact that hypnosis is based on the imagination and relaxation with suggestion is something that can take some time getting used to after having seen the TV hypnotist do his showy magical finger clicking stunts.
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This is an old favourite.
‘Put me under’ asks the client.
“What would that feel like” asks the therapist
“Dunno…. like being asleep I suppose”
Hypnosis is not sleep even though the stage hypnotist shouts sleep and appears to put the person to sleep.
So people do not ‘go under’ but they do feel like they are somewhere between sleep and ‘normal’ consciousness.
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Most of the time he’s being artfully clever and tricky and fooling with you but some of the time Derren Brown does ‘do’ hypnosis.
Derren know his stuff as evidenced by reading his book which gives a very frank account of his feelings towards therapy and suggestion.
Its worth a read.
Although Derren studied law he was seriously considering becoming a hypnotherapist which surprises me. Not that he wouldn’ t make a good hypnotherapist, just that his ability to perform and trick might have been lost in a one to one setting.
Derren is a master stage hypnotist but uses hypnosis very sparingly. In fact he has more fun pretending to mess with peoples minds than actually doing a number on someone. Derren Brown has a solid grasp on what is and what is not hypnosis and though he fools his audience time and time again he rarely fools himself. Except when it comes to ‘predicting’ the lottery numbers once they have been announced. Duh!
Because Mesmer didnt think his effects were due to suggestion. He thought he really did have special powers that affected his patients.
The process of Mesmerism involved high theatre, a bit like a modern stage hypnosis show. Mesmer dressed in a flamboyant style and there was a massive expectation that ‘something’ was going to happen..and it did.
Mesmer came unstuck when a rational scientific approach was applied to verifying his results. So called ‘magnetized’ water was seen to have the same effect as non magnetized water when the fluids were switched without the patients and Mesmer’s awareness, an early form of the double blind trial.
Modern hypnotherapists use the art of expectation to get results but hopefully by being honest with their clients about the limits of suggestion. Suggestion can have amazing effects on the mind and body but its not a cure-all.