Hypnosis frequently asked questions (FAQ) answered here. Ask your question or find the answer in others queries about Hypnosis, Hypnotism, Hypnotherapy, self-hypnosis and more.

Simple Hypnosis Definitions
Self-Hypnosis - A self-induced state of trance.
Hypnotist - A person skilled in the art of inducing trance in another.
Hypnotic - Of Hypnosis.  Having the ability to Hypnotize. Usually refers to an object or occurance rather than a person.
Hypnotize (Alternative spelling Hypnotise) - induce a hypnotic trance state.
Hypnotized (Alternative spelling Hypnotised) - In a trance
Stage Hypnotist - A performer who uses Hypnosis to influence others in a usually humorous or spectacular display of mind power and influence. Often referred to as Stage Hypnotism.
Hypnotherapist - A person trained to present therapeutic suggestions to another willing person in whom a state of trance has been induced.
Trance - An alterered state of awareness (between waking & sleeping). A person in an induced trance is said to be "hypnotized".
Somnambulism - A deep state of hypnotic trance often charaterised by amnesia
Somnambulist - A person capable of a somnambulistic trance.
States of Awareness - Beta, Alpha, Theta, Delta. The "Beta" state being the most aware and the Delta being the least. ie. Beta = wide awake. Alpha = light trance. Theta = deep trance/light sleep. Delta = deep sleep.
Post-Hypnotic Suggestion - A suggestion given during a state of trance that it is intended to be carried out upon awakening from that trance.

If you have any further definitions you'd like added here, please email me and I'll be happy to add them.
Do you have a hypnosis-related question that you'd like an answer to?
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All serious, signed email questions are answered by return email at my earliest convenience.

While every effort will be made to provide accurate answers to your questions, Grant Boddington is in no way responsible or liable for the accuracy of those answers or for the way any person chooses to interpret or use them.

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Question from S****
Can a person be hypnotized in their sleep to help them overcome some personal problems? If my wife suggested some things while I was sleeping, would I subconsciously overcome personal insecurities or shortcomings?
Answer from Grant
Hi S****. A hypnotic trance is not sleep, but an awareness state somewhere between being awake and asleep. If appropriate suggestions are given during such a trance then the subconscious mind is generally more accepting of them. However, if you are indeed fast asleep then it is more likely that you'll not hear any suggestions your wife makes at all. The wording of the suggestions presented during trance is very important and usually requires special training, so I'd strongly suggest to you that you consult a reputable Hypnotherapist.
Question from A****
Hi...  I want to learn how to hypnotise one of my friends to help him get over a fear of flying.  I know who to talk to him to him  while he's in a trance and what to say...but not how to get him into the trance.  Will you tell me how to get him into a trance so I can help him... thanx.

Answer from Grant
The induction of a trance and then giving the appropriate suggestions while someone is in that trance for the purposes you've mentioned should only be carried out by an experienced Hypnotherapist. But it's easy enough to learn basic Hypnotherapy. Take a look at this great short course. Modern Suggestive Hypnotherapy.

In the meantime, if you look on the HypnoLinks International page of my website you may be able to locate a Hypnotherapist near you who may be able to help your friend.

Question from S****
 I went to your site but I still didn't find what I'm looking for.  All I want to know is how to hypnotize another person. Please just tell me how to do it.
Answer from Grant
You haven't mentioned exactly why you want to "hypnotize another person".   I get lots of requests from people wanting to know "how to hypnotise someone" and in many of these cases I suspect that there may be some desire to "control" others.

Hypnosis is a natural state, but requires some basic knowledge to induce easily. Then you need to learn how to utilise that trance state - for either therapy or entertainment. Anyone that you attempt to hypnotize must be willing for you to do so.  And, once they have succeeded in attaining a trance state, you cannot control them or force them to do anything against their will.

I strongly suggest that if you are keen to learn the art of Hypnosis - for either entertainment or therapy purposes; that you seek professional tuition via one of my Hypnosis ebooks or courses

Question from E****
I have a ton of questions!!!  But, I do realize you are busy...so take your pick.

I have seen stage hypnotists a few times.  What intrigues me the most are post-hypnotic suggestions.  I have seen people wide awake, back in the audience, chatting away....then the cue word is given-and they're up and about clucking like chickens, dancing, running around doing anything and everything silly.  I guess my question is-why?  What goes through their mind once the p.h. suggestion is given?  Do they realize what they are doing?  I feel no matter how deeply hypnotized I was, there would be no possible way a simple cue word could trigger such ridiculous behavior.  I'm not refering to suggestions to take off a shoe or stand up...those are everyday activities.  But to hear a cue word and then suddenly act out ridiculuos, silly suggestions without having a care in the world baffles me.  How is this possible? Also, when people are hynotized, do they know they are hypnotized?  Do they know they are up on stage acting out silly suggestions?
I've a million more, but I've babbled enough.  I'm sorry if there are too many.  I guess answer whatever one is the easiest.  Hope your eyes haven't fallen out by all my questions I just threw upon you. Thanks.
Answer from Grant
Hi E***. Thanks for your questions. I'll do my best to answer them - I'm pretty good at babbling myself!  :) When on stage in a hypnotic trance - that has been deeply induced by the Hypnotist; the subjects' "critical faculty" (the desire and ability to judge and reason consciously) has been reduced to such an extent that they are more likely to do the tasks asked of them by the hypnotist.  In this deeply relaxed state, they are closer to being asleep than awake, but are really in a state that is quite "dreamy" and their subconscious mind is very accepting of suggestions that are presented by the Hypnotist.  Often, they will not remember exactly what has happened until

reminded after the show.  Sometimes they know what they are doing on-stage but lack the desire to stop themselves - providing the task is non-threatening.

No-one can be forced to enter a trance against their will, or to perform tasks they don't want to while in that trance state.  A trigger word or action is simply a signal to perform the requested task.  I've often had people refuse to do things on stage because it was contrary to their morals or beliefs.  I guess the only way for you to know for sure how it feels is to try it!

I once was doing a show where I'd picked a deeply hypnotised subject to perform as Elvis!  I gave him all the usual suggestions (I'd done it many times before during other shows), introduced Elvis to the audience, counted to 3 and started "Jailhouse Rock".  The guy simply opened his eyes, glared at me and said: "I HATE ELVIS!"   Ooops!  I could not bypass his critical faculty enough to "make" him do something he hated!

As I am also a Registered Hypnotherapist, I must add that for therapy purposes, a much lighter trance is usually adequate - as the client and the Hypnotist are very much working together to help the client achieve a DESIRED result.

There E*** - I hope that answers most of what you've asked.

Question from L****
Hi, I have recently accessed you website and was wondering if you could provide me with some advise.  I was actually wondering what instituitions offer professional hypnotherapy training in New Zealand and whether there is a proffesionally governing body for hypnotherapy.  I realise you are not the right contact person, but I would appreciate if you could point me in the right direction.
Answer from Grant
Hi L**** Thanks for your email. 

Yes I sure do offer training!  I have a homestudy course and a 5 day practical course.  See more at www.hypnotherapy.ac.nz

If you look at the bottom of my page "Directory of NZ Hypnotherapists"  you'll see a listing for the NZ Association of Professional Hypnotherapists - of which I am a member.  There are other institutions covering Hypnotherapists in NZ but the NZAPH is definitely the biggest.

Question from B****
I have studied hypnosis myself and have induced a deep trance in at least one person that I am sure about.  However, I don't have anyone that can help me find a missing part of my life.  Though I can recall events from about age 4, I am missing events that I know occured when I was about 16 -17 yrs. old.  I tried asking former friends, but they would not talk about it.  After 25 yrs. hypnosis is my only hope.  How do I find a local professional that I can trust?  What should I look for in a local professional.

Thank you for your assistance in advance.
Answer from Grant
There are several ways of finding a professional Hypnotherapist that may be able to assist you.  I'm not sure exactly where in the world you are so here's a selection of URLs from the "HypnoLinks International" page of my website.  There are many others there, but these may be a good place to start your search:   Hypnodirect, The Directory of NZ Hypnotherapists , The UK Directory of Professional Hypnotherapists or Dr. Bryan Knight's Hypnosis Headquarters - or else you could check out your local telephone directory.



I suggest you check the credentials of your chosen Hypnotherapist and and that he/she is registered with a major Hypnotherapy organisation.  Perhaps you could ask a few friends who may have had positive experiences with Hypnotherapists to recommend one for you.  The final choice is of course yours - you must be comfortable with the Hypnotherapist  you choose.

Question from J****
Always want to improve my golf, play really well when practising as the old story goes, havn't played that well in tounaments, just started a year ago and on a 6 so have the natural ability but still lots to learn, want to see

how far I can get, really motivated to do so.  How can you help?
Answer from Grant
Yes I probably can help you with your golf - sports motivation (esp golf) is one of my fortes.    As you're aware, golf is a game played more mentally than physically.  With Hypnotherapy (especially my style of Motivational Hypnotherapy) you can learn how to more easily focus your mind towards what you're trying to achieve.

I have recently mentally trained a young golfer up to turning "professional", and he also used my Play Better Golf recording to assist him - as hundreds of others have.

Question from B****
Grant I've been practicing hypnosis for about 8 years and have been involved in small partys etc non smoking, weight loss with hypnosis and qualified as a hypnotherapist 4 years ago I've read so much about the rapid induction but are these people few and far between or am I missing something ?
I have various book on hypnosis (26 in all ) and none really go into detail about the subject ,only mentioning it in brief.  Any thing you can e mail?  Look forward to your reply  with interest.
Answer from Grant
Instant (or rapid) inductions are generally the domain of the stage show.  As both a Hypnotherapist and a Stage Hypnotist I see many chances for instant inductions on stage and in the clinic.  Rapid inductions should only be attempted when you're confident of the outcome, or your credibility will suffer.

On stage, I find the best time for an initial rapid induction is at the outset of the show following a sucessful testing procedure such as a hand clasp when the subjects entire concentration is focused on me.

After the initial induction on stage (whether rapid or normal) it's usual practice for all re-inductions during the show to be rapid as a response to a trigger - such as the instruction "Sleep", with an accomanying finger click for effect.

In the clinical situation, the only times I use rapid induction techniques are when a client has returned for followup therapy and is forming a history of easy entry into a trance state.  Of course in this situation (as with subsequent reinductions on stage) the client has had previously been "primed" during an earlier session with the use of some "ease of reinduction" suggestions.

Your own confidence, coupled with experience at picking the appropriate client and timing will all have a huge effect on the success of any induction.

Question from N****
Hi, I was wondering if hypnosis can be used to make you forget a certain incident in your life?? Please help
Answer from Grant
Hi N**** - thanks for your question regarding specific amnesia.  A VERY controversial query and actually a common request I receive - especially after a failed relationship where one party wishes to forget the other.

It's a question that would have dozens of answers and most of them as variable as the Hypnotherapists you ask.  The most consistant answer would be probably be that specific amnesia is inconsistant but very obtainable in many cases.

Generally, a deep somnambulistic state of trance would need to be achieved before specific amnesia that was to last for any length of time would be obtained. The Subconscious will itself sometimes block extremely unpleasant or traumatic memories, so it therefore figures that with some assistance (Hypnotherapy) we can also help "block" specific events or times that we may choose to.

However the best way to prevent old memories from being so clear, is to overlay them with new ones! A good regime of positive visualization and affirmation will usually do that for you. You can even learn it by yourself by using my "Be The Person You Want To Be" recording - which outlines a couple of rules for effective visualization and affirmation construction.

For a Canadian Hypnosis FAQ go to Dr Bryan Knight's Hypnosis Depot website.

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