The Truth About Hypnosis

The Truth About Hypnosis

19 February 2024

Oprah Winfrey is a name synonymous with success. Her rags-to-riches story is an inspiration, but most people are unaware of a key aspect of her journey. Beyond natural talent and hard work, Oprah utilized an unconventional method to overcome challenges and achieve her career goals – hypnotherapy.

And, on TikTok (where else?) #hypnosis has upwards of 1.5 billion views, with users tuning in for videos in which content creators use hypnotherapy techniques to help their followers fall asleep, release feelings of anxiety, and feel more confident.

What is hypnotherapy and how does it work?

Hypnosis is perhaps one of the most misunderstood and controversial methods of psychological treatment. The myths and misconceptions stem from people’s ideas about stage hypnotism.

Hypnotherapy aims to create a state of highly focused attention and increased suggestibility. The goal of hypnosis is to build lasting, healthy, and sustainable control over your behavior. It’s all about mind over matter really.

Hypnotherapists tap into the subconscious mind and use suggestions to “delete” the connections and associations of unwanted thoughts and behavior. They are there to help release your power to control and change your habits. And, contrary to what you might see in movies or during a stage act, people don’t lose control over their behavior during hypnosis. They remain aware, in control, and remember what happens during a session.

It is worth knowing that during hypnosis, your mind feels calm and peaceful – as you enter a state of increased awareness, your body feels totally relaxed. Some may feel a sense of heaviness, while others experience a floating sensation. Most people enjoy the experience.

The most frequent clinical uses of hypnosis (along with cognitive behavioral therapy) include overcoming insomnia, breaking bad habits, management of pain, anxiety, and depression. And in terms of weight loss – research show that those who undergo cognitive behavioral therapy coupled with hypnosis tend to lose significantly more weight. There is also substantial evidence that hypnotherapy is very helpful for smoking cessation.

Is there research to back up how effective it is?

A notable study from 2013 found that hypnosis uses the powerful effects of attention and suggestion to produce, modify, and enhance a broad range of subjectively compelling experiences and behaviors.

However, hypnotherapy might not be for everyone. One study suggests that about 10% of the population is highly hypnotizable. It is possible that the rest of the population could be hypnotized, but they may be less likely to be receptive to the practice.

Hypnosis typically carries the stereotypes of stage performances, complete with clucking chickens and daring dancers.

However, this therapeutic tool can be used as an alternative medical treatment for several conditions.

It is important to use a certified hypnotist or hypnotherapist so that you can trust the guided-hypnosis process to reach your individual goals.


DISCLAIMER: The information on this website is for educational purposes only, and is not intended as medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you are experiencing symptoms or need health advice, please consult a healthcare professional.

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