The use of natural phenomenon in hypnotic induction

In this video I discuss the use of  6 natural phenomenon in hypnotic induction

Breath – deceptively simple but overlooked by many is combining your suggestions with someone breath. Usually this means you deliver deepening suggestions on the outbreath thus giving a physical suggestion in combination with the verbal suggestion.

Tiring – a hypnosis classic! you place the subject in a position where they will gradually become tired, for example the eyes focused on a elevated spot,  wait for a little while and then tell them that they are becoming tired. The real trick is to tell them they are becoming tired before they are consciously aware of it. By directing their attention to the pre-existent tiredness it gives the impression that suggestion has made this happen.

Ideomotor response (IMR) – Most people are not aware that most thought, especially about actions, tend to produce small unconscious movements, these are called IMR’s.  By directing a subject to have a certain thought a hypnotist may produce an IMR. As with tiring (see above) the hypnotist may be credited with producing this IMR but all the hypnotist is actually doing is focusing the subjects attention on something which is already present. By repeating and enhancing the IMR through suggestion it can be taken well beyond its naturally occurring level and produce some of the more impressive hypnotic inductions such as the Arm levitation.

Dissociation – we all have the ability to mentally separate from our immediate circumstances, we call it daydreaming, this is also a form of dissociation.  Dissociation means to separate from the here and now, usually by an act of  engaging with the internal mental world. A hypnotist will often encourage dissociation directly by inviting someone to imagine floating out of their body and floating off to a beautify place. Dissociation can be in both space (location an bodily awareness) or time.

Fractionation –  It has been observed that someone in a trance, however light, will go progressively deeper if they are asked to open their eyes and then invited to closed them again.  Although often enhanced with suggestion this interesting natural phenomenon has been used by hypnotists for many years to help people go gently deeper into hypnosis.

Confusion – far from my favourite as it is rarely appropriate to the anxious patients I tend to work with it is however a powerful hypnotic technique.  When in a state of confusion a person will often latch on to any single clear command or idea with far greater belief than if the were not confused. Hypnotists will often produce mild confusion in their subjects which they then break with a single clear command.


natural phenomenon in hypnotic induction

The author – Matt Krouwel is a hypnotherapist and post graduate researcher into hypnotherapy at University of Birmingham (UK)