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Can hypnosis make me do or say things against my will?


I think it is responsible to say that hypnosis is disinhibiting and a person conducting hypnosis must acknowledge the tremendous responsibility for this powerfully transformative tool.  

What is absolutely true is that you cannot possibly go into a state of trance against your will. If there is any apprehension, distrust, fear, ambivalence your mind will not be able to cooperate in the way it needs to in order to move into deeper and deeper trance states.

Hypnosis is effective because it quiets the parts of the brain that reflects upon experience. Therefore, under trance there is a disconnection between action and awareness of action— between behavior and reflection. 


During hypnosis, this kind of disconnect between action and reflection allows the person to engage in activities either suggested by a clinician or self-suggested without devoting mental resources to being self-conscious about the activity. Neuroscience research observed observed "reduced connections between the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the default mode network, which includes the medial prefrontal and the posterior cingulate cortex. This decrease in functional connectivity likely represents a disconnect between someone’s actions and their awareness of their actions." This is what enables us to enter into flow states, or to become completely absorbed in an activity to the exclusion of all else. However, even in these states of absorption, we remain alert to danger or information of over-riding importance.  Here is a link to the article summarizing this research:

Will I be aware during an hypnosis session and will I remember?

Yes, you will be aware and you will remember.  It is not necessary to enter into the deepest state of trance in order for hypnosis to be effective.  There are 6 stages of hypnotic state, from light to deep trance.  A state that is in the 3 and 4 range is more than adequate for a successful hypnosis.  In that range, you are able to come out of hypnosis at will.  Hypnosis at this stage requires you to participate in maintaining the hypnotic state. Some people desire the deeper trance states because for some it can be a very pleasant and rejuvenating experience. 



Hypnosis Procedure:

Hypnosis sessions are typically 60 to 75 minutes.  Usually 3 sessions are required. You will receive an audio recording of each session to listen to on your own in order to reinforce the hypnosis session.  I will also teach you self-hypnosis.  

The first part of the hypnosis session is to formulate what you need to change and what is false self-beliefs are blocking the ability to change.  Perhaps a habit has so often hyjacked your wish to rid of it that you have come to believe that you are incapable of conquering that desire for the cigarette, the cake, the text message to an unrequited love, the anxiety that interrupts focus in sport or academic performance, the last gasp of PTSD triggers that just won't quit. 

The second part is to design together the hypnotic suggestion that I will repeat to your mind when your mind is in the very highly receptive state of hypnosis.  

Next is the induction phase.  This is when you follow instructions to quiet your mind and body - for example, opening and closing your eyes until they are too tired to stay open, or imaginal tasks such as writing letters on a blackboard in your mind.  

Once you are in the desired state of hypnosis I will read the script we created to your sub-conscious mind. Essentially, I am speaking straight to your sub-conscious mind. It is only necessary to be in this state for 20-25min for the hypnosis to be effective. 

I then instruct you out of hypnosis so that you are fully alert.  I will send you off with the mp3 session recording.

You will use this recording to reinforce the hypnotic suggestion and to learn to practice self-hypnosis. 

Depending on the issue, 1 to 3 sessions are recommended, with follow-up booster sessions.   If the problem is not ready to be resolved in 1 to 3 sessions, then more psychological work is necessary or other supports need to be in place. I think of hypnosis as the finishing touch for good psychological work accomplished.

Fee schedule for hypnosis session:


60 minute session = 125.00

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