Hypnoidal states are states of mind that are similar to hypnosis that we all safely experience every day of our lives. Despite this, I am sometimes asked if hypnosis and self hypnosis are dangerous, and occasionally I am told by somebody that he or she would never undergo hypnosis because it's dangerous!
However, hypnosis is a quite natural state of mind in which the analytical capacity of the conscious mind is temporarily switched off and the unconscious mind is temporarily more dominant. This allows some degree of access to the unconscious mind, so that it is possible to deal with issues (such as reaction to stressful stimuli) that are controlled by the unconscious mind. When you learn how to do self hypnosis and use the self hypnosis techniques that I will teach you in this website, then you will be able to induce a trance-like state for yourself whenever you wish, and can use the relaxed and detached state of mind to work directly with your unconscious mind and generate positive change for yourself.
Hypnosis and self hypnosis are natural and safe states of mind
We all experience states of mind like hypnosis on a daily basis – states of mind called hypnoidal states. Like hypnosis, and like the state of mind you can create by use of the self hypnosis techniques I will teach you, hypnoidal states are characterized by physical and mental relaxation, but also by a degree of detachment (sometimes called dissociation).
There are three:
the hypnogogic and hypnopompic states - those states of mind you experience as you fall asleep and as you wake up from sleep.
Have you ever been so engrossed in a book or film that you haven’t noticed the time fly by, or so focussed on something that you haven’t noticed anything else for a while? This is known as ‘waking hypnosis’ – during which your attention is so closely focussed on something that it is to the exclusion of everything else! This is just like the hypnotic trance state - a state of physical relaxation but of heightened and focussed mental awareness.
What about when you are daydreaming, and you don’t notice routine things happening around you? Your awareness is focussed and there is some dissociation. Daydreaming is also considered to be a state of mind like hypnosis because of the dissociation that can occur - in your daydream you can imagine doing things that are not possible in reality.
The hypnogogic and hypnopompic states
What about when you are falling asleep and in those few moments immediately before you drift into sleep you have bizarre thoughts or a falling sensation – a state of mind known as the ‘hypnogogic state’?
The hypnopompic state is the time just as we are waking up from sleep - once again, the unconscious mind is still slightly more in control than the conscious mind, and our thought processes are not quite as they are when we are fully awake. In both these situations there is physical and mental relaxation with some detachment, so they are considered to be like hypnosis.
Hypnoidal states vs self-hypnosis
These states of mind (hypnoidal states) are quite natural – something we all experience every day. The difference between these states of mind and hypnosis is that, in hypnosis, the state of mind is created deliberately with the specific intention of creating positive, beneficial change. So, by learning how to do self-hypnosis you can generate these natural states of mind in yourself to improve your life.
There is one final similarity between hypnoidal states and self hypnosis. You will agree that you've never been stuck in a hypnoidal state! We all experience them every day, but no-one ever gets stuck in one! Similarly, it is not possible to ‘get stuck’ in a self-induced trance. The worst thing that might happen is that you might fall asleep, and even this possibility can be limited by practising in a sitting position rather than lying down! In any event, your unconscious mind will ‘tell you’ when it’s time to return to full awareness, even if you have fallen asleep!
So, you can be confident that learning how to do self hypnosis and using the self hypnosis techniques is simply a safe means of controlling a natural phenomenon to your own advantage.
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Self hypnosis is not a substitute for medical treatment for medical conditions. Under no circumstances should you stop taking medication that has been prescribed for you by a doctor unless you are told to do so by that doctor.
If you suffer from epilepsy, or if you are being actively treated for depression or any other mental health problem, you should seek medical advice before learning self hypnosis.
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