History of Hypnosis

Have you been hypnotized on a stage as part of a stage show? We call this “stage hypnosis” and it is very different from what is done in hypnotherapy. I will never make you cluck like a duck or bark like a dog…

When did hypnosis first began? In 1779, Dr. Franz Mesmer discovered that the mind has power over the body. From his name MESMER comes the word mesmerize, which literally means to hypnotize or spellbind.

Why did it begin? Hypnosis began because there was no anesthesia for doing medical procedures or surgery. Doctors discovered that by “distracting” or occupying the mind, they could lessen the patient’s discomfort during surgery. Hypnosis is currently used during childbirth, dental procedures or surgeries when the patient does not want to use an anesthetic.

Who began the study of hypnosis and the subconscious mind? James Braid, a doctor in England, gave hypnosis its name from hypnos, the Greek God of Sleep in 1849. He is widely considered the “Father of Hypnosis” and originally he thought that hypnosis was actual sleep brought on by eye fatigue and that’s why people think of hypnosis as looking at a watch or bright object back and forth in front of your eyes. When he realized that it wasn’t actually SLEEP, he tried to rename hypnosis, but it was too late, the name had already taken off and it stuck to this day.

Can you hypnotize yourself? YES, it’s very simple and I can teach you. It’s similar to how you would be hypnotized in a session with me, but you can do it anytime.

Can you hypnotize yourself without knowing it? YES, we can that falling asleep at the wheel. You may become “mermerized” by the road and begin to operate on autopilot and miss your exit or drift into the wrong lane.

Are some people easier to hypnotize than others? YES, those people are called somnambulists, they are very suggestible.

Are there some people who cannot be hypnotized? People who do NOT want to be hypnotized can’t be. You have to allow your mind to be susceptible to hypnosis in order for it to work. Usually people who come to me want to be hypnotized for a positive purpose or they would not be there. The desire to have positive change needs to be stronger than the fear of being hypnotized.

What kinds of things can be helped through hypnosis? Most behaviors, fears, and habits can be helped with hypnotherapy. Notice I have now changed from saying hypnosis, to saying hypnotherapy.That is an important distinction. A hypnotherapist combines hypnosis and therapy to effect change in behaviors. When you come to see me or any hypnotherapist, there are 2 parts to the session. First, there is discussion about what the issue is and the change that you desire. Then, at the end of the session, you are hypnotized and the changes that you want are implanted in your subconscious. Very subtle and very powerful.