Supercharge Your Hypnotic Inductions
Create More Compelling Hypnotic Inductions
Hypnotic inductions are one of the most powerful elements of any effective hypnosis session. Understanding the foundational elements of delivering a powerful induction is essential to becoming a masterful hypnotist.
Delivering Powerful Inductions Without A Script
In order for hypnotic suggestions to really take hold, the hypnotherapist must be flexible, and have a variety of techniques at their disposal. This means being adept at performing inductions without a script.
There are a lot of scripts out there, but a script is only minimally useful. Consider using hypnosis scripts as guides, looking for techniques that are useful and that you can add to your repertoire.
Then set the script aside and trust yourself to respond with skill to the needs of your subject.
Master Hypnotic Inductions
Step-by-step instructions for highly effective hypnotic inductions
Five Key Elements To Powerful Hypnotic Inductions
Some hypnotists have one or more 'favorite' techniques and they often default to using them.
However, to really master hypnosis, you need more than one approach. You need to understand the key elements of any good hypnosis session, beginning when your subject enters the room, and lasting until they leave your presence.
Knowing these foundational concepts can open the door to a world of possibilities, giving you the power to deliver more effective results, and more satisfaction for you and your clients.
What Do Hypnosis Masters Do?
A true master of hypnosis does not use just one "canned" approach. Why?
Because they understand the key elements of hypnosis and can utilize them in response to their effectiveness with an individual subject.
Having said that, of COURSE I have a favorite, and I do use it, or a variant of it, some of the time.
However, I know why it works. I know what the elements are and what they are meant to do.
So if things are not going according to plan, I can easily deviate and create a more effective strategy in the moment.
This type of flexibility helps me be far more successful with a much wider range of subjects. I have this flexibility because I know the "what" and the "why" about the following essential elements.
Five Key Elements To Powerful Hypnotic Inductions
Element 1 - Start Before You Start
Even if you have never hypnotized another person in your whole life, there are things you can do that help to induce trance. These may SEEM like they have nothing to do with hypnosis.
But they not only are they part of the skill set that will make you a powerful hypnotist, they have everything to do with inducing trance easily and more effectively.
But I have to admit, it took a while to dawn on me...
A friend and colleague (who is also a hypnotherapist) would tell me about the clients she'd seen that day:
“The first one was really easy, he practically went cataleptic before I started!"
"My second client was a natural somnambulist."
"The third was one of those clients that question everything. I thought it was going to be tough, but when it came down to it, she went into trance very deeply.”
Just in case you don't know what “cataleptic” or “somnambulist” means, it means they were showing signs of deep trance.
“Wow,” I would say. “Sounds like you had good clients today.”
I've been studying hypnosis since 1972. I had my first formal hypnosis training in 1993.
I've hypnotized hundreds of clients and taught NLP and hypnosis for many years.
I've hypnotized a lot of people that other hypnotists said were “unhypnotizable".
I've even been on national television as an expert in NLP.
By most accounts, I'm pretty good at hypnosis and NLP.
And my much less experienced friend was getting better results than I was.
So, long story a little bit shorter, I studied her.
I paid attention to what she did OUTSIDE of the actual induction, because her specific technique was one that I had taught her! So there had to be more to it, right?
I discovered, or was reminded, that a successful hypnosis session starts the moment the subject enters the room. It is the "non-induction" parts that my friend had mastered.
And they are easy to do.
1: Get rapport.
2: Give a thorough and complete pre-talk.
3: Go into trance yourself.
After that, your subject is primed to work with you and go as deeply into trance as they want to. That means that your session has a significantly higher chance of being easy and successful.
Element 2: Eliciting Hypnotic Phenomena
This one might seem like a no-brainer, but it is worth looking at. Whether by direct suggestion, or more subtle and permissive techniques, eliciting hypnotic phenomena is absolutely essential for a hypnosis induction to actually lead to ... well, hypnosis!
You can review more about hypnotic phenomena in my blog post about it.
For now, let's just review a quick list of some hypnotic phenomena.
This is by no means a comprehensive list, but the signs of trance listed above are common and fairly easy to induce and detect during a session. That is what this initial phase of a session is all about - inducing trance, so that people are more able to align their subconscious and conscious minds to achieve the goal of the session.
So, just to make things really clear:
Your induction needs to create, elicit, or enhance hypnotic phenomena.
That's it. Easy peasy, right?
How you do that depends on your subject, your style, and what works.
Direct suggestion? "Close your eyes." This almost always elicits the hypnotic phenomenon of eye closure.
A more permissive approach might be, "You can close your eyes whenever you feel comfortable enough... recognizing how pleasant relaxing that deeply can be."
Element 3: Deepen
Once you have created and elicited multiple signs of trance, it is time to deepen. Enhance those elements that exist, help your subject be MORE relaxed, breathe MORE deeply, visualize MORE clearly. So...
"Deepen" just means more.
More of what you've got, until you are clear that the subject is as deeply in trance as they need to be to achieve your mutual session goals.
Element 4: Test
Ah, the dreaded test. Many, myself included, have sometimes resisted testing for trance. After all, do we really want to know? What if we "failed"? What if the subject is NOT in a trance???
Exactly. What if? You need to know if what you are doing is working... or not.
If it's not working, it just means you need a different approach, or a bit more deepening, or a conversation about how your subject can help themselves experience trance.
You need to know, and if you want to be successful, you WANT to know.
Testing not only tells you whether your subject is experiencing trance, but it is another way to deepen the trance itself, because it helps your subject know that they are in an altered state.
This can help them allow and accept the work that is about to begin.
Element 5: Adjust, rinse & repeat
After you test, if your subject is nice and hypnotized, congratulations! You are ready to move on to the work of creating change.
But if they are NOT as deeply in trance as you want them to be, do it again.
Seriously. Sometimes, do it ALL again.
Maybe do it differently. Maybe use doing it again to teach them HOW to go into a trance.
Some subjects need to learn these things - to know that they can voluntarily not only cooperate, but help you help them.
Some Sample Scripts
Below I've included links to written versions of a couple of scripts. They can help you get started.
Nothing replaces instruction by a professional, however, and as mentioned above, keep the underlying elements in mind.
These scripts are intended to inspire and give you practice ONLY - not to replace your own ingenuity once you understand the foundational concepts discussed above.
Master Hypnotic Inductions
Step-by-step instructions for highly effective inductions
Don't forget to employ a quality pre-talk. In order for most people to allow themselves to become hypnotized you must dispel the myths and misconceptions about hypnosis.
And although belief may not be necessary, people like to believe they were hypnotized. So they need to know what the experience of hypnosis might be like for them. That's what a good pre-talk will do for you.
Follow the links below for instructions.
Modified Dave Elman Induction: (Modified): Dave Elman is one of the giants of modern hypnotherapy. His methods and insights produce dramatic results in a very short time and allows the majority of people to reach the somnambulistic state in 4 minutes or less.
Progressive Relaxation: The progressive relaxation technique is an old standby. Folks with modern training in hypnosis rarely use it anymore but occasionally it is appropriate. It's an easy one to perform even though it takes a bit of time and patience.