What Is Hypnosis?

What is Hypnosis?


 The US Federal definition of hypnosis is summed up in the words

"Bypassing the critical factor of the mind and the establishment of collective thinking"

what is hypnosisI use the diagram on the left to explain hypnosis to  clients or when giving talks. Imagine there are two parts to your brain ( I believe there are hundreds of layers but for simplicity…), the conscious part and the unconscious. The conscious part of your brain is the analytical and logical factors, it is also where your willpower is housed (Willpower is a conscious decision, that is why it is so weak in some people). Everything you see, hear or feel is analysed and turned into 'your' logic before being stored into your subconscious memory where it resides until recalled or needed. The problem with this is you apply your analysis of the information with what could be wrong or faulty logic and so the information received by the unconscious is corrupted by your preconceived fears, doubts and learned thinking. This conscious part of the brain can be measured in brainwaves and they range in consciousness order:-

Beta Beta is our 'normal' waking state. You are alert in this state or could be tense or afraid. This is the state a client will be in when they first walk through your door if you're a practicing hypnotherapist. If the electrical activity in your brain were measured they would be in the range of 13-60 puIses per second on the Hertz Scale.

Alpha Alpha is a relaxed state most associated with hypnosis. Your mind is in a physical and mental state of relaxation and ready to learn. In this state your conscious mind (the analytical factor talked about above) has slowed down and a hypnotherapist has the opportunity to talk directly to your subconscious. In this state your are suggestable but still aware of what is going on around you and remain in control if you needed to deal with a situation. The electrical activity in your brain has now slowed down to 7-13 pulses per second on the Hertz Scale.

 Theta In Theta your brain is very deeply relaxed and also associated with light sleep and deep meditation. In this state bursts of inspiration and creative thinking which appear to come from an outside source are likely. A trained and skilled hypnotherapist can help guide you to this state with a little training. Some people report a buzz being in this state and enjoy the amazing stress relief this state allows you to have. Direct suggestion to you in this state is very powerful. Your brain electrical activity will now be down to 4-7 pulses per second on the Hertz Scale.

Delta Delta is a state of  unconsciousness, very deep sleep or catalepsy. I have seen a trained hypnotherapist enter this state and placed in an unnatural postion on a chair with her legs straight out in front of her and left there for many minutes. In this state you would have very little or no recollection of what was going on around you. I would estimate that only around 20% of people could enter this state during an hypnosis session and it would take quite some time and training to reach this level. Your brain electrical activity is now down to just  0.1 and 4 cycles per second.

What Is Hypnosis?

Most people think of hypnosis as being in a trance like state, but that’s not really an accurate description.  When you’re in a hypnotic state you are really in a super-relaxed state of mind where your conscious mind is so relaxed that you’re not thinking at all about normal everyday things.  Being hypnotised allows you to connect with your subconscious mind and pull up memories, experiences, and other events that played a significant role in your life or in your development.  

Hypnosis can be described as an altered state of consciousness. Hypnotherapy is the use of hypnosis for a beneficial purpose. A lot of people think of hypnosis as being in a trance-like state, but that’s not really an accurate description. Being in hypnosis is a natural state not unlike a daydream, it is a super relaxed state of mind and you remain in control the whole time. You would never do or say anything you don't want to, you are just so relaxed you can just cut off from normal everyday things that clutter your mind and cloud your thinking. Being hypnotised allows you to connect with your subconscious mind, this is where you store your memories, experiences and past events. Our brain is unique and by far the most complex organ in the body. It's 100 billion nerve cells connect to shape our thoughts, memories and aspirations. We all want to reach our true potential so many people are turning to hypnosis and hypnotherapy to help their brains find that extra gear.

Usually a hypnotic state is induced by a trained therapist or medical professional but there are courses that you can take that will teach you how to hypnotise yourself.  If you are going to try hypnosis for medical treatment you might want to get a professional to start the treatment and then if they work for you learn how to hypnotise yourself so that you can continue the treatment on your own whenever your condition flares up.  While you are in a hypnotic state the therapist or medical professional will create what is called a hypnotic suggestion. The hypnotic suggestion is what tells your subconscious what to change.   So for example if you are being hypnotised to help you deal with your alcohol addition a hypnotic suggestion telling your brain that you no longer need alcohol to function combined with physical treatment for the withdrawal symptoms that you’ll experience when you stop drinking should make you entirely free of alcohol dependency.  Your body will no longer crave it once you have detoxed and after a hypnotic suggestion telling you that you don’t need the alcohol your mind won’t be convinced that you can’t function with it.   Doctors aren’t entirely sure how the brain creates a hypnotic state only that a hypnotic state exists and can be induced in most people.  Hypnotic suggestions aren’t an easy fix to medical problems, and many times using hypnosis for medical treatments requires several sessions in order to be fully effective.

But there is a growing amount of evidence that using hypnosis to treat hard to treat conditions, especially the kind of medical conditions that have psychological components, can be a very effective way to help an individual create lasting changes in his or her life that will improve health and wellness.   Conditions that don’t seem to respond to other treatments usually respond well to hypnotic treatment. If you don’t really approve of Western medicine or if you just prefer a more holistic approach to your health care you can try using hypnosis to treat everything from Asthma to pain hypnosis-hypnotherapy watchcaused by medical procedures like bone marrow biopsies, Breast Cancer treatment and wound cleaning and stitching. For people that are highly susceptible to hypnosis sometimes hypnosis can even replace anesthesia that would typically knock a patient out during surgery.  It’s not common practice to hypnotize someone before surgery but for people that have had bad reactions to anesthesia medications hypnosis is one option.



Hypnosis has come a long way in the past fifty years. Instead of just being viewed as a stage trick like magic, hypnosis has been found to have some real medical benefits.  There are many physical problems that have psychological connections that can be cured or at least managed by using hypnosis.  As Western medicine started to embrace the idea that Eastern medicine has embraced for a long time, the idea that the mind and body are connected and that what effects the mind also effects the body Western doctors are embracing hypnosis as an effective type of treatment.



Hypnosis can be use to cure or manage everything from a smoking addiction to the pain of childbirth to the discomfort of chemotherapy.  Hypnosis can even be used to control pain during surgery or medical procedures instead of drugs, it’s that powerful.


Hypnosis can also be used to manage psychological conditions like depression, and can provide relief from anxiety and phobias. Hypnosis can cure childhood traumas and help you change the unhealthy behaviour patterns that you might have learned a child in order to survive in less than ideal circumstances.  Hypnosis can be the key to moving ahead with your life and living a healthy, productive life on your own terms.


Weight Loss Hypnosis Hypnotherapy is particularly effective with weight loss, obesity and other eating disorders. Clients find weight loss hypnotherapy can provide extra motivation and techniques taught during the hypnosis session will help you make the changes you want quickly and easily without the hunger pangs associated with dieting alone.

Stop Smoking Hypnotherapy Hypnosis is well known for helping people to stop smoking. It is probably one of the most effective ways to help people stop smoking. Smoking cessation hypnotherapy is a powerful intervention for people who really want to break this habit. If you are looking for an experienced hypnotherapist in Andover for stopping smoking and are serious about giving up your addiction then by calling Connect your goal to stop smoking becomes a reality.


Overcome Unwanted Habits Hypnotherapy is one of the most successful ways to treat nail biting, sucking thumbs and other unwanted habits.

Stress Management Techniques Hypnotherapy teaches you to learn how to relax deeply, how to get rid of tension and how to control your emotions.

Build Confidence and Overcome Fears and Phobias Hypnotherapy is exceptionally effective at helping people develop their confidence and overcome fears. Most phobias can be helped in just a few hypnotherapy sessions – people may have held onto their phobias for years and been held back in their lives as a result. Through hypnosis sessions a new deep confidence can be developed.


Insomnia and Sleep Better Many people suffer from insomnia or broken sleep. Hypnosis can help you sleep well and wake up feeling refreshed and ready to face the day ahead. Hypnotherapy sessions or my hypnosis downloads can be an incredibly effective way to help you get to to sleep and get a good nights rest.

Lots of people use self-hypnosis to help with their other medical treatment and also just to improve their daily lives. Self-hypnosis, if done properly, can help you become more confident, make you more comfortable speaking in public, and help you make better decisions.  Self-hypnosis can also be used for deep relaxation to help you get rid of the stress of your busy life.

Now that you know all the benefits that can come from hypnosis and self-hypnosis are you ready to give it a try? You can start changing your life, and your self, for the better today!

Good luck to you as you start your journey to better health through hypnosis and I hope I've helped you in your quest to find out What Is Hypnosis?

For the few that have read this far and wish to understand more I would recommend the online course that is advertised in the sidebar. While this is not a substitute for a good college course it does give a very good insight into hypnosis and hypnotherapy and is much cheaper than an offline course in the real world. If you are still interested in hypnosis after doing this online course I would still recommend finding a reputable college to train at for the real world practice you would receive there. If you are in the UK look up the Institute of Clinical Hypnosis in London, they run courses throughout the country.

For those that are more interested in the sort of hypnosis you see on the television, stage shows and illusionist tricks the advert on the home page is actually quite brilliant and insightful.  With this sort of training you will amaze your friends and an audience if you wished with some fantastic illusions and mind trickery. Hypnotherapists hate this sort of hypnosis but it is certainly mind boggling and impressive to watch, you will learn how some things you see on tv are achieved. I would suggest that even trained clinical hypnotherapists would benefit from learning some of these techniques and some of them make brilliant 'convincers' to your clients.

Hope you have found this little article on What is Hypnosis? useful and if you have any questions or queries then please email us and we will do our best to help you.