The other night I was watching a movie with my family.
It was one of those movies where I was completely engrossed in the story. Transfixed. So much so, that I felt transported to the time and place of the movie. Enchanted by the movie’s surroundings and captivated with emotion, it was only feeling the tears streaming down my face that brought me back to noticing how mesmerized I was with the film. This trance-like state that we can experience while absorbed in a good book, cooking a meal or watching a movie is similar to what happens to you during hypnosis.
The definition of hypnosis
The definition of hypnosis began with an 18th century German doctor, Franz Mesmer, whose name is the root of the verb “mesmerize.” Another 18th century Scottish surgeon, James Braid, coined the term hypnosis from the term hypnos, the Greek god of sleep, because mesmerism at this time involved a sleep-like condition.
What is hypnosis and how does it work?
Also known as hypnotic suggestion, hypnosis is usually created with the help of a hypnotherapist. For some people, it can bring a feeling of being deeply relaxed and calm, allowing you to be more open to suggestions and less critical or disbelieving. The purpose of hypnosis is to help you gain more control over your behavior, emotions or physical well being.
My good friend, Anmarie, who is a certified hypnotist, explained it to me like this: “Hypnosis can create a calm, quiet place, where you are more open to creating a desired change in behavior.” She went on to tell me, “ Hypnosis allows you to bypass your conscious mind and therefore directly make a change within your subconscious mind. You no longer have to use will power; it makes it so much easier.”
Who can hypnosis benefit?
Anmarie went on to say, “People who achieve positive results with hypnotherapy are clients who are really motivated, excited and committed to make a change. In my experience, using hypnosis for either pain management, or for changing negative behaviors such as smoking or over-eating, can be very successful.”