“Each separate being in the universe returns to the common source. Returning to the source is serenity” – Lao-Tzu
In the next few months we are facilitating a series of classes for experienced hypnotherapists, based around the life’s work of David Kennedy. The response we’ve had to the title of the classes – “Spirit, Healing and Hypnosis” – has been quite overwhelmingly positive, from other therapists and also from our clients and potential clients.
In these sometimes-scary and somewhat austere times, people want some magic back in their lives. Simple magic, and safe magic…but something that’s a little different from just conscious, decision-based change.
Hypnosis work can help us to tap into a source of wellbeing, and healing. Sometimes it feels like the change comes from somewhere “other”, and sometimes it feels a little magical.
It’s difficult trying to find a way to communicate the ‘magical’ elements of the work we do, without scaring people off. We don’t claim to have magical powers and as we are always at pains to say, hypnosis does not involve the “power” of the hypnotist.
But still, if everyone is doing their job properly, something special occurs between the hypnotherapist and their subject. This beautiful quote from a blog post on Psychology Today describes this ‘something special’ :
“Clinical hypnosis is the practice of beneficial social influence, one-to-one. Since most of that effect occurs outside of the client’s or patient’s conscious awareness—or, more accurately, within their nonconscious mind—it feels non-volitional, even magical.”
Non-volitional responses (“I don’t know what happened but I just don’t feel like eating chocolate anymore”) are lovely signs that the work has been effective, and that the change is meaningful. The magic is that the change arises, regardless of the source of that change. The hypnotherapists’ job is to help elicit that response. And sometimes it really does feel magical – even with seemingly mundane things like a craving for chocolate.
For some people, the source of the hypnotic “magic” can have a spiritual basis. Other people see the creation of the trance state as a series of exercises designed to focus your mind, that in turn lead to a change in brain wave function, leading to suggestibility … and there the hypnotist may exert “beneficial social influence”. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how you make sense of it. If a hypnotherapist is doing their job well, the transaction will be what it needs to be to create the opportunity for change you seek.
Hypnotherapy can create the opportunity for greater possibilities, and some of those possibilities may be truly magical.