It has been used for millenia for healing and transformation.
Yet in our society, hypnosis, although growing in popularity, is seen as marginal.
In a world that puts the emphasis on logical, rational thinking, we are supposed to reason ourselves out of psychological problems. But does it work?
In a world full of problems, I would say it doesn’t. Millions of people struggle with problems like anxiety, depression, overwhelming fears and phobias and hundreds of other problems. Does rational analytical problem solving help sometimes? Of course. But what about the rest of the time?
Einstein said that we can’t solve a problem at the level of thinking that created it, and I think he is onto something.
Is the intellect all there is to being human? Almost everyone would agree that we are much more. Where does our creativity come from? What about flashes of insight and realizations, peak experiences and intuitions? None of these experiences are rational and logical.
As humans we are capable of many different states of mind. We can think of most problems (such as depression and anxiety) as a state of mind. We can’t reason ourselves out, and trying to reason with a depressed mind only makes the problem worse. But when we access different states of mind we can begin to see things different, access dormant resources within such as creativity and find solutions that we weren’t seeing before.
Hypnosis has been seen as mystical and magical and is portrayed in the media with an air of sensationalism. But in reality it is based on our natural functioning. When you meditate or access a deep state of relaxation, you slip into a state of trance, the same state used in hypnosis.
Logical rational thinking is useful for some things, but not for others.
Why do we overuse it, instead of tapping into a range of different states of mind and different types of thinking?
This is precisely what the world’s most creative people and history’s geniuses have done: Accesses altered states of consciousness to tap into dormant resources.
When you have problems, what states of mind do you access to find solutions? Do you try to solve problems from states of stress, fear, worry and doubt? Is this an effective strategy?
Hypnosis is a broad term. There are many different approaches, methods and techniques, but the underlying principle is that we have capacities we are not tapping into.
Pantajali, an ancient Indian teacher who compiled the Yoga Sutras, wrote about the state of mind we access when we are inspired:
“When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bonds: Your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction, and you find yourself in a new, great, and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties and talents become alive, and your discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be.”
Inspiration is a state of mind, one which when we access, incredible things happen. Through my exploration of various hypnotic techniques, from NLP and Ericksonian Hypnosis to Classical Hypnotherapy and EFT, I have seen that hypnosis is a method for helping us to awaken dormant forces, faculties and talents and enabling us to become a greater person than we dreamed we could be.