To go into more detail, firstly, you're not going to 'feel hypnotised'. That's right, there's nothing to sit and 'wait for', there's no particular 'thing' to wait for. All it will feel like to you, all it would look like if someone were to be looking on, your eyes are closed, you're really relaxed and you're just listening to someone talk and talk and talk to you. Almost as if someone is reading you a bed time story.
You might feel really light, or you might feel really heavy. This is just a personal thing. There is no right or wrong way to experience relaxation in a chair and whatever happens for you will be perfect for you. There's no need to over analyze the process. Most people at the end will however report a kind of 'relaxation paralyses', where they may have felt like they could not move. They might say their arms and legs felt like stone. You might have the experience of feeling like you can not move. But you always know that you could move if you wanted to. In fact, at any moment, you could open your eyes, get up and walk out if you want to
You see, this is the power of suggestion and the power of being in a state of allowing. You ALWAYS have the choice wherever or not you're going to allow yourself to go with the flow or not. The power of hypnosis really comes from the well established and documented close relationship between your mind and body. Your body and neurology listens to YOU, NOT A HYPNOTHERAPIST. The only question is, are you going to pass on the suggestions you are listening to your body or not. Simple examples of this power are easy for me to see in that if you are following along with the suggestions that you're saying such as … 'going deeper and deeper, more and more relaxed' … then you might open your Eyes and find that your head is low and your chin is on your chest whereas you started your head was up high. This is one sign of the power of suggestion.
You're not going to fall 'sleep', wake up and have some sort of amnesia. Even though the word 'sleep' is often used during the stage shows, no one is ever actually 'sleeping', it only sees that way. As a matter of fact, you are totally aware of everything that is happening around you at all times. This includes the sounds in the room, outside the room, the sound of the therapist's voice, possibly the music that might be playing, the feeling of the chair, temperature of the room etc.
You will be aware of thoughts going in and out of your mind, and this is also very normal. Some people may say that they have a hard time relaxation, or sometimes that they have a mind that goes 'a million miles and hour'. This is also totally fine and OK.
Often these are the sort of clients that get the most substantial experience. As long as you are able to follow instructions and keep most of your attention on what is being said and how it is being said, you'll naturally drift into that 'there, but you're not kind of state.
For those who may have racing minds, I actually employ some strategies that enhance you're ability to pay attention. A part from the general induction techniques at the start, I will also engage you in some interaction. No words are needed, but they are simple things like asking you to nod your head here and there, asking you to visualize, imagine or picture a particular event of thing, and then nod your head again, and so on. These techniques assist in keeping your attention during certain moments of the hypnosis.
However, since we are dealing with the subconscious mind anyway, it does not matter if some mind wondering happens, a bit of this is inevitable. The part of you which really needs to hear what is being said, will take in exactly what it needs to.
Another thing that will not happen during a hypnosis session is that you will not find yourself doing something or saying something that you do not want to say or do. This has already been addressed above, but it's important to reiterate that YOU are in control the entire time.
At the end of the day however, everyone experiences hypnosis a little differently. It's hard to say exactly how you're going to experience it. Most people, at the very least, will report a very deep feeling of relaxation. If you're some one who practices some form of relaxation techniques, you may have an experience of 'going deeper', but it really makes no difference to your success. As you'll soon read from the common questions people ask, you're not going to get stuck in hypnosis – it's not actually possible, just like you can not get stuck in a daydream or one of those vacant gazes you probably go in And out of every day.
Contributed by guest blogger Nick Terrone