Often people say to me that they can’t be put under, usually challenging me to try it there and then. It’s quite silly banter really, but very much associated with the mysticism of hypnosis.
Stage hypnotists don’t always help this perception. Great examples of activating the inner self are used for show. Don’t get me wrong, I think some acts are absolutely amazing, and I’m certainly a fan.
However, sometimes it brings hypnosis to a plane of silliness that is hard to break away from. A lot of people I know think they’re just too rational and intelligent to be hypnotised. On the other hand, I remember reading a cartoon as a kid on how only the simple minded couldn’t be hypnotised (I think it was Goofy, from Disney).
So what is true? Hypnotic susceptibility is something that’s been researched a lot by academics.
Some of the researchers looked at what could make a person more likely to be hypnotised. Many others were more interested in knowing how deep they would go.
They all agree it’s not a complete black & white situation as the trance status may be different between two people, and so hard to measure. Detractors of the practice may also get hypnotised if the right circumstances are met (which gives me some wicked pleasure!).
Does it matter?
To be honest, I don’t think it does. Although I am very drawn to evidence based research, measuring if or how much a person gets into an hypnotic trance is of no concern of mine.
Ultimately, you’re not here to be turned into a chicken. You’re interested in hypnosis as a means to be treated to a particular ailment that afflicts you. This is an hypnotherapy practice after all.
The key success factor for achieving good results is motivation. It does make a difference if someone comes to my practice with a particular goal in mind and motivated to go through the process.