Into Trance

The easiest way to decide what to say to help people experience a trance is to keep in mind that you want them to do two things: (a) pay full attention to what you are saying and, at the same time, (b) carefully observe (not control, just observe) their thoughts and sensations.

Havens, R. A., Walters, C. (2002). Hypnotherapy Scripts, A Neo-Ericksonian Approach to Persuasive Healing. 2nd Edition, Routledge


Healing Metaphors

This is from a great book I have found called The Healing Metaphor – Hypnotherapy Scripts by Zetta Thomelin,

What is important about the metaphor is its subtlety, it slips between the cracks in the resistant subconscious mind, by using a metaphor in therapy we remove that element of resistance within the client who does not want to be told what to do, it is a stealthy message slipping past the conscious mind into the receptive subconscious, unchallenged by the client’s critical faculty, just like concealing the medicine for a pet within their food.


Five Basic Releasing Questions

There are five basic releasing questions that serve as the foundation of the Sedona Method. First of all, focus on an issue that you would like to feel better about, and then allow yourself to feel whatever you are feeling in this moment. Ask yourself,

1. What is your NOW feeling?

2. Could you welcome or allow that feeling?

3. Could you let it go?

4. Would you let it go?

5. When?

From the Book, The Sedona Method by Hale Dwoskin, Sedona Press, 2008.


Under-invested Aspects and Dreams

Like most people you probably have certain behaviours and attitudes that are overinvested, and others that are underinvested. …

Jung believed that the only sure way to maturation lies in our willingness to recognize and practice our disowned character traits. He called these parts of the self our Shadow. Without them we remain fragmented. With them we not only help ourselves respond to different situations, but we also become whole.

… I like that image. It’s (what you consider) the dark side of you that always follows you around. Well, your Shadow, in the way that Jung means it, always stands just behind you. It’s there but you usually can’t see it.

Actually, it behaves in your dreams exactly the way a beach ball does when you try and hold it down under the water. No matter how hard you try to keep it under, it just keeps popping up.

Have a Great Dream – Book 2; A Deeper Discussion by Layne Dalfen


Human Givens Model

The model I use or keep in mind when I am doing hypnotherapy sessions is the RIGAAR model by Joe Griffin and Ivan Tyrrell within Human Givens Therapy,

Rapport: Build rapport quickly, start getting a ‘yes set’

Information gathering: On basic needs, interests, relationships, etc

Goal setting: Establish what the desired goal is

Agree strategy: What we are going to do is … in steps or stages

Access resources: Utilise a relaxation state, a motivation state, etc … then anchor them

Rehearse: Future pace, vividly build an experience in their mind

From the book, Advanced Ericksonian Hypnotherapy Scripts, 2nd Edition (2014), by Dan Jones


The Courage to Love

One of the obvious implications is that a person will have to face the fact that she cannot meet other people’s expectations. This signals the end of what might be called the “camel” phase of human development. I believe it was Nietschze who suggested that for the first part of life, we are camels, trudging through the desert, accepting on our backs everybody’s “shoulds” and “don’ts.” Camels only know how to spit; they don’t think for themselves or talk back. As the camel dies, a lion is born in its place.

Lions discover both their roar and the art of preening. The lion may be a little shaky at first, so support and encouragement are vital. But once the camel begins to die (e.g., signalled by depression), there is no turning back. Symptoms occupy the space between the death of the camel and the birth of the lion. A therapist can be a good midwife during this liminal phase.

Stephen Gilligan, Psychologist and developer of “Generative Change” (from the book, The Courage to Love: Principles and Practices of Self-Relations Psychotherapy)


Remove Obstacles

From ‘The Gift of Therapy’ by Irvin D. Yalom (one of the ‘must-read’ books for psychotherapists),

identify and remove obstacles. The rest would follow automatically, fueled by the self-actualizing forces within the patient.


Human Potential at its Best

From Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl,

… What matters, therefore, is not the meaning of life in general but rather the specific meaning of a person’s life at a given moment.

… Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather he must recognize that it is he who is asked. In a word, each man is questioned by life; and he can only answer to life by answering for his own life;

… We must never forget that we may also find meaning in life even when confronted with a hopeless situation, when facing a fate that cannot be changed. For what then matters is to bear witness to the uniquely human potential at its best, which is to transform a personal tragedy into a triumph, to turn one’s predicament into a human achievement. When we are no longer able to change a situation — just think of an incurable disease such as inoperable cancer — we are challenged to change ourselves.


Post-Hypnotic Suggestions

Research findings on post-hypnotic suggestion,

As one would expect, the probability that subjects will respond to a posthypnotic suggestion is positively correlated with their measured hypnotic susceptibility, and susceptible subjects do experience a certain compulsion to respond (Barnier & McConkey 1998).

Some theories of hypnosis (e.g. that of Woody & Bowers 1994) may explain this in terms of the subject’s loss of executive control over the stipulated response, so that it is executed in automatic fashion. However, this kind of explanation may be of less cogency in the context of treatment, in which the posthypnotic response may first occur hours or even days after the session of therapy.

Moreover, studies (e.g. Barnier & McConkey 1998) indicate also that responding to posthypnotic suggestion involves the active participation of the subject, who must be motivated and prepared and feel expected to respond. Also, in laboratory studies, subjects do not always respond when they are not under the surveillance of the experimenter (Spanos et al 1987).

Heap, M., Aravind, K. (2002). Hartland’s medical and dental hypnosis (4th edition). London: Harcourt


What We Become

An excerpt from the book, Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl (1905-1997),

We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way. And there were always choices to make. Every day, every hour, offered the opportunity to make a decision, a decision which determined whether you would or would not submit to those powers which threatened to rob you of your very self, your inner freedom; which determined whether or not you would become the plaything of circumstance, renouncing freedom and dignity to become moulded into the form of the typical inmate.

… in the final analysis it becomes clear that the sort of person the prisoner became was the result of an inner decision, and not the result of camp influences alone. Fundamentally, therefore, any man can, even under such circumstances, decide what shall become of him—mentally and spiritually. He may retain his human dignity even in a concentration camp. Dostoevsky said once, “There is only one thing that I dread: not to be worthy of my sufferings.” … It can be said that they were worthy of their sufferings; the way they bore their suffering was a genuine inner achievement. It is this spiritual freedom— which cannot be taken away—that makes life meaningful and purposeful.