You sit down and settle into a very comfortable chair, waiting for the process to begin with intense anticipation. The hypnotist secures the chain of a small pocket watch from his jacket pocket. He smiles slightly as the chain stabilizes the watch's descent into the open space between the hypnotist and his client. As the hypnotist begins to swing the watch from left to right, he says, "watch the watch and only the watch, as it swings gently back and forth. You will begin to feel sleepy as the pendulum swings and will close your eyes". Your eyes slowly close as you feel the power of his magic spell begin to wash over the very fabric of your being. Before you know it, you are magically hypnotized and entirely under the hypnotist's control…
Hollywood has glamorized hypnosis to a high degree, leading to most believing that hypnosis practitioners wield incredible power over their clients. The common belief is that a hypnotist can control someone through simple eye contact or focusing on a pendulum. Once hypnotized, the hypnotist has the power to force their subject to do whatever is imagined and against their will. This belief is based on misperceptions of the images created in film and media and is inaccurate with the depiction of hypnosis.
Many continue to question the credibility of hypnosis because of the mind-control/will-dominating disillusion. Skepticism revolves around statements of mental toughness, making an individual unhypnotizable. Other deflections state that it is not "real," making it impossible for hypnosis to work on anyone. Moreover, both beliefs are followed up by the idea that hypnosis is a scam. Overall, these beliefs end with anyone discussing the benefits that have been coerced to make these statements.
If this is what you believe hypnosis to be, purge this thought from your mind. No matter how hard you wish, hypnosis is not mind-control or the domination of someone's will. It is, in fact, the exact opposite. Despite your disbelief, hypnosis is real, and those who have spoken about the benefits are truthful about their experience. Their success, by and large, happens because they have achieved their highest level of excellence, driven by their desire to change, and used hypnosis as the vehicle to get there.
Now that we have covered what it is not, you are curious about what hypnosis is…
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