The Elman Induction - Iconic, Brief, And Easy
The Elman Induction was originally created by Dave Elman, and is widely used and considered one of the most effective rapid inductions out there. It includes astounding steps like ... simply asking your subject to close their eyes!
By the way - did you know Elman was a "noted American radio host, comedian, songwriter," AND a vaudeville performer? I didn't either! But Wikipedia says it's true, so it must be, right?
Why Do We All Love Dave Elman?
Well, I can't speak for the rest of my peers, but I can say that Dave Elman's book, "Hypnotherapy", has been on my bookshelf for as long as I've been in this industry. I highly recommend it. If you click on the picture, it will take you to Amazon to buy the book - and no, I'm not an affiliate. I just want you to get it if you can.
I love this book, and the Elman Induction, for the simplicity and direct approach. The inherent knowledge of hypnosis and what is happening "behind the scenes", and bringing those underlying elements to the forefront.
After all, hypnosis is not something we do TO someone else. It is a partnership - a collaboration. Therefore, involving the subject in the process, voluntarily and with awareness, can only strengthen the bond between hypnotist and subject.
The Elman Induction Made Even Better!
Like all hypnotic inductions, the Elman Induction is made much easier by a quality pre-induction talk.
The best inductions - and I consider the Elman induction one of THE best - flow easily from the conversation that happens prior to inducing trance. In order for your subjects to help you help them, you want them to understand what the experience of hypnosis will feel like.
So that’s what I have to say about the pre-talk - at least on this page.
Help Your Subject Learn How To Be Hypnotized
You can even use the Elman induction as a training tool - because you will be asking your subject to produce hypnotic phenomena and invest in the process themselves. This will make it easier for them to go into trance, and believe they were hypnotized.
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The Dave Elman Induction lets you ask for what you want
The Elman induction asks for the subject to produce hypnotic phenomena directly, inviting them to participate voluntarily at first. This means you can use this induction to teach your subject how to go into hypnosis all the while inducing levels of trance and deepening with each "practice". With the Elman induction, you'll be asking them to DO things, having them practice choosing to close their eyes, or choosing to relax a muscle (rather than waiting for it to relax FOR them).
The following steps could be viewed as a script for the Elman Induction, but I highly recommend you practice, and understand the strategies behind the steps. This will give you the flexibility to use this so-called "Elman Induction Script" in varying situations.
The 5 steps to the Dave Elman Induction
(With some modifications to the original language to make it even better!)
1. Eye Closure
Take a deep breath. As you let it out, close your eyes and relax. Now, relax your eyelids and the muscles around your eyes, fully and completely. Relax them so completely, that as long as you maintain that relaxation, your eyes remain closed. When you’ve got them relaxed to that point give them a good try and satisfy yourself that they remain closed. (Pause)
That’s right. Stop trying and keep them that relaxed.
2. Body Relaxation
Take that same level of relaxation, and allow it to flow from the top of your head down to the tips of your toes in a nice flowing wave of relaxation. (Pause) That’s right.
In a moment, I’m going to ask you to open your eyes and then close them again. When you close them, just go 10 times deeper into relaxation. Open your eyes, now close them. (Pause) Go 10 times deeper. (Pause). That’s right.
In a moment, I’m going to ask you to open your eyes and close them again. This time, double your relaxation. Open your eyes, now close them. Double that relaxation. (Pause)
Good. In a moment I’m going to ask you to open your eyes and close them again. This time, just go much deeper. Open your eyes, now close them. Much deeper. All the way down. Good. (Pause)
4. Arm Drop Deepening
In a moment, I’m going to pick up your left arm by the thumb. Your arm will be loose and limp like a wet dish rag, if you’ve followed the instructions. Don’t help me, let me make all the effort. I’ll lift your arm up a few inches and then drop it, when I do, just allow it to make a nice satisfying plop, and go much deeper (do arm drop). Much deeper. In fact, each and every time I pick up your own arm and drop it down, go much deeper into relaxation (repeat arm drop a few times).
5. Suggested Amnesia (can be done with numbers or letters)
Good. Now we’ve got nice physical relaxation, let’s add mental relaxation to it. In a moment, I’m going to ask you to begin saying the alphabet backwards out loud. Allow each letter you say to help your mind to grow more relaxed, calm and serene. You’ll find, that within just a few letters, your mind can grow so relaxed, that the rest of the letters just fade away, grow dim and distant, become quiet and disappear altogether. When that happens, notice how good it feels. You’ll say the alphabet backwards in this matter. Z… Y…(say slowly, in time with each of their exhales), allowing each letter to relax your mind so that it grows relaxed and serene like the surface of a still lake. Within just a few letters, the rest of them will just disappear.
Begin saying the alphabet backwards now.
Relaxing more and more.
Now just allow them to disappear completely.
Are they all gone?
End of induction
Deepen and give suggestions
Don't be afraid to repeat various steps in the Elman induction if you want or need to deepen your subject's trance. Once they are deep enough that you feel you can work with them effectively, give your suggestions. Don't forget to pay attention, and deepen during the session intermittently if needed.
When you’re ready to emerge the subject from trance just say “I’m going to count to five, when I reach five or before, your eyes will open and you’ll feel relaxed and refreshed.” Count up to five slowly with your voice getting a little less soothing and a little more “awake” with each number. When you reach four, if their eyes aren’t open say “On the next number your eyes will open and you’ll feel relaxed and refreshed. Five, eyes open, feeling relaxed and refreshed.”
The Elman induction is good,
but you still need to know your stuff.
The step by step instructions on this page could be used as an induction script. That would be... "ok".
However, I highly recommend that you learn the underlying principles and concepts of what makes an induction, ANY induction, (but especially the Elman Induction), truly effective.
Having a strong foundation for your process will give you flexibility and confidence.
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