Hypnosis can, and does work on anyone. The only variables are the depth of trance that can be reached, and how much the patient truly wants to change. A patient who can easily be guided into a deep trance, and who also has a deep desire to change, will benefit the greatest.
A state of trance is simply a state where the patient feels very relaxed, and where the mind reaches a daydream-like state. How deep that daydream-like state becomes will be a guide as to how successful the hypnosis will be.
People who do not manage to enter very deep states of hypnosis can still benefit from hypnosis, but more sessions may be required to reach the desired goal.
You May Think That You Want To Change, But Do You Really?
People visiting hypnotists have varying degrees of motivation. Some people truly believe that they want to lose weight, or quit smoking and that is what they say when they first speak to the hypnosis practitioner.
After a few questions however, it can become very clear that the patients’ motivation is misguided.
One form of misguided motivation is in the form of the patients’ husband, wife or friend telling the person to lose weight for example. The patient then states this desire as though it’s their own desire, when in fact they were encouraged to seek help by someone else. The ‘someone’ else is possibly more motivated than the person sitting in the chair opposite me telling me that they want to change.
Another more subtle form
During the initial consultation, I would recognise that this desire has “Away From” motivation at its source (moving away from their current job.) This would lead me to ask what is so bad about their current job that makes them want to leave it. Their answers could be numerous, but often one main theme will emerge.
Let’s Presume That These Are His Answers:
- My boss always wants me to give speeches, and I hate speeches.
- The money is OK, but not fantastic.
- Some of my work colleagues don’t seem to work as hard as I do.
- My supervisor makes me give presentations, and I really don’t like doing those.
Hearing his reasons for wanting to leave his job, two of his main reasons involve dealing with groups of people, namely, the speeches, and giving presentations.
I would use more questions to investigate if his actual problem was a lack of confidence when dealing with groups of people, rather than the other reasons that he mentioned.
It could very easily be the case that he doesn’t need more confidence to leave his job, but that he needs more confidence to be happier doing the job that he already has.
If my patient could feel happy and confident giving speeches and presentations, then he may decide to keep his job, and also improve so much that his “OK” pay is improved in the process.
Not everything is always as it first seems.
Who Does Hypnosis Work Best On?
The best candidates for hypnosis are people who can completely trust the process of hypnosis, and who have a clearly defined goal for the hynotist to work on.
A good hypnotherapist will explain to the patient in advance, what the entire hypnosis process entails. They will also explain the common fears and myths that are commonly heard regarding being hypnotised.
Because hypnosis relies on the subject being deeply relaxed, any fears must be eliminated before the session commences.
If the subject is completely confident that hypnosis will work for them, then such a person is the best person to benefit from being hypnotised.
But What About Stage Hypnotists? They Can Hypnotise Anybody!
Actually, they can’t.
Not everyone wants to dance like a chicken in front of an audience (or even in private!)
The people who volunteer to go up on stage are fully aware that hundreds (if not thousands) of people will be watching them. It takes a certain kind of person to want to go on stage and be hypnotised, and those are the very people who are chosen for the act.
Many people are afraid of giving a speech at a wedding, let alone standing up on stage in front of a live audience plus a TV crew. So, the people who end up on stage are very outgoing people who actually love being the centre of attention.
More timid (or normal) members of the audience wouldn’t volunteer in the first place.