Understanding hypnosis

Hypnosis with Caroline Hamblin is an effective and gentle experience. But many of us wonder what exactly ‘hypnosis’ is.

Hypnosis a state we all slip in and out of all day long: when we are just drifting off to sleep or when we daydream. Or when we allow ourselves to be off-guard and fall into a relaxed state yet still be fully aware of our surroundings on a conscious level.

Here are two examples of when hypnosis occurs:

  • Most of us remember times we are supposedly listening to teachers throughout a lesson, but find our minds wandering. Often we find are able to recall content at a later date or for an exam.
  • For those of us who drive, we can find ourselves journeying along a monotonous length of road such as a motorway and suddenly have the realisation that perhaps ten or so miles can’t consciously be recalled? Of course in reality it takes a great deal of conscious awareness to keep driving safely, despite ‘wandering off’ for a while.

Now look at the above from a different perspective. During a hypnotherapy session, the environment is calm and relaxed which frees your mind to experience a heightened sense of awareness. You may hear that car whizzing by outside, but it is of no consequence to you. It is just not important. You will find yourself immersed in the experience of the session where imagination takes centre stage.

Professional and ethical use of hypnosis always aims to put the client back in control to manage their own life better, whatever that means to them.

The International Association of Pure Hypnoanalysts describes hypnosis in the following manner:

This information is designed to allay some of the fears concerning the use of hypnosis, the myths and mystery surrounding which are totally undeserved, and to make clear that what takes place is very normal and non-magical, with predictable results. There is absolutely no question of being controlled or manipulated, or even induced into a deep trance state. People in hypnosis (often referred to as conscious hypnosis) are not asleep – they are often more aware of what is taking place than usual and their senses function more efficiently than normal. Anybody can enter the hypnotic state. The only exceptions are people with severe learning difficulties, very young children and inebriates. People who say or think: ‘nobody could get me under’, or ‘I wouldn’t want anybody controlling my mind’, or ‘I might blurt my secrets out’, are really demonstrating that they have a total misconception of what hypnosis really is.

The state of hypnosis, a totally natural phenomenon, is most pleasant and particularly relaxing and a person can converse easily whilst within the state. It is inconceivable that any harm could befall them. Indeed the centuries old technique of hypnosis is being used increasingly as an adjunct to orthodox medicine where it is proving a valuable alternative to drugs for anaesthesia, to accelerate healing, relieve stress and control pain. A good definition of hypnosis is – a state of relaxation and concentration at one with a state of heightened awareness induced by suggestion.

General questions & answers

Can anyone be hypnotised?

Yes, if they want to be. The only exceptions being those under the influence of drink or drugs or the mentally impaired.

Can a person be made to do something against their will?

No. Hypnotherapy is all about negotiation and persuasion. You cannot be made to do anything against your will and if anything improper were suggested you would not comply.

You will always remain in control and always be treated with the utmost respect. You’re probably concerned because you’ve seen stage performances where volunteers are made a fool of. These people are carefully chosen for their extrovert tendencies: people who enjoy the chance to show off!

Is it mind control?

No! The therapist is not out to control you. His or her sole motivation is to help you. The skill of the hypnotherapist is to work within your control and still bring about change at a deep level.

Am I awake and aware of what is happening?

Yes. Probably more aware than in your normal waking state. Hypnosis is a combined state of relaxation and concentration with a heightened sense of awareness.

What does hypnosis feel like?

There is no such thing as a hypnotized feeling, only one of deep relaxation. Rather like being on the verge of sleep.

Is Caroline qualified and governed by a professional association?

Yes. Caroline underwent hypnotherapist training in 2003 and is now a full practising member of the International Association of Pure Hypnoanalysts.

Do you treat children?

Yes. Hypnotherapy is suitable for both children and adults.

Is my therapy confidential?

Yes. Caroline’s work is governed by a strict code of ethics and conduct which assures you of professional, confidential and expert hypnosis treatment.

Understanding hypnosis