If you’re like me, you probably have a very specific mental image of hypnosis: a dangling pocket watch, a sinister-looking man and someone telling you you’re getting very, very sleepy.
While this might make for great cartoons, this really is not an accurate picture of what hypnosis is like. In fact, as alternative medicine has gained popularity, more and more people are considering hypnosis as a legitimate psychological treatment. But does it really work?
The simple answer is yes…but not as well as it could.
There are a lot of misconceptions surrounding this topic, because it’s a little bit weird, and tends to be associated (however vaguely or wrongly) with mysticism or cheap magic tricks. Some people think it’s all just smoke and mirrors, while others see it a dangerous or perhaps even anti-Christian. The complicated truth is that there is some legitimacy to it, but there are also some risks. I’m here to help bust those myths and help you understand the facts about hypnosis.
First of all, what exactly is hypnosis? Hypnotism is a psychological technique that allows the practitioner to disable the conscious mind as well as the mental barriers that go along with it. This enables them to make changes and suggestions, which can alter nearly anything about how the subject thinks and behaves. For this purpose, hypnotism is an absolutely functional and natural tool, neither a parlor trick nor anything sinister.
So how does it fare as a psychological treatment? In recent decades, countless people have turned to hypnosis for its therapeutic benefits —and let’s be clear, it DOES have therapeutic benefits. I myself was trained by Dr. Robert Sturgeon, a master hypnotist who at that time was chair of the psychology department at Lipscomb University. While working with him, I personally witnessed some miraculous results. Those stories you hear about people whose depression spontaneously heals or people who quit smoking with no side effects are rare—one in a hundred, maybe even one in a thousand—but they do happen. On the other hand, moderate improvements in a person’s thoughts or behavior are far more common. With a good hypnotist, you can generally expect some level of improvement about half the time. It’s fast and pretty easy for the client.
Hypnotism is not without its risks, though. Those defenses that hypnotism lowers were there for a reason. Remember that however professional a hypnotist might be, your mind is still largely a mystery to them, and the changes they attempt don’t always have the desired effect. I’ve witnessed that, too. I knew someone that approached a professional hypnotist for a very minor issue, and while they were in that hypnotic state, the hypnotist mistakenly allowed a suggestion to be implanted by someone else nearby. The results were disastrous. The client’s issue became so bad that it was debilitating, where before he had been relatively healthy and happy. And these types of problems can be nearly impossible to fix, even by the original hypnotist.
Now I’d like to quickly add that this wasn’t really the fault of the hypnotist, and these sorts of problems are rare. But that’s with a good hypnotist, and unfortunately they aren’t all good. Some of them are relative amateurs who got their certification through a mail-order course. These people scare me, and their qualifications usually look the same as the good ones, so it can be difficult to tell the difference before they’ve had a chance to dig around in your head.
Fortunately, you don’t have to let them. I made the personal decision a long time ago that hypnosis wasn’t for me, though I stop short of saying that it shouldn’t be for other people. Still, I knew that it was a powerful tool, and I’ve since reshaped it into what I call Reverse Hypnosis. While traditional hypnosis is meant to disable the conscious mind, Reverse Hypnosis heightens it instead, allowing you to take charge of your own mind. This one simple change makes a difference of night and day. You don’t need training or a special education to use this technique, and there’s no danger of a hypnotic suggestion going wrong. You get the changes you want because you’re in full, conscious control at all times.
My goal has always been to put that power in your hands. To make it safe and to give you the tools to help yourself as no one else can. Reverse Hypnosis is available exclusively on Dr. Alex All Access, my monthly membership program that gives you access to all my courses, including brand new ones like this. If you’re already a member, you can access Reverse Hypnosis now for free! If you’re not a member, All Access is a low-cost way to get access to Reverse Hypnosis and other content with absolutely no commitment or strings attached. I hope you’ll give it a chance.