Jenks Hypnosis and Training Center, LLC

805 N. Fir, Jenks, OK 74037    (918) 298-6884
Located in Jenks, America, near the heart of south Tulsa

More Discussion About Characteristics of Hypnosis

If you have looked around the internet at very many hypnosis websites, you have probably read quite a few words about the hypnotic state.  Well, here are some more!

For a number of years I have used three words to describe characteristics of hypnosis:

and a bonus:


This is the part where I say that you can't be hypnotized against your will.  Authorization is another word for permission, and you have to give it, consciously or subconsciously, before you can enter the state we call hypnosis.

This authorization does not have to be something you say out loud. It can be as subtle as mere curiosity.

Authorization is not a permanent thing, either. Just like many other aspects of human communication, it is something that is reevaluated from moment to moment. The hypnotic state is really a dynamic interaction between you and your guide, or hypnotist.  It is based on trust, often called rapport, between the two of you.  If something happens to break that trust, then the hypnotic state will change or disappear.

Each of us goes into and out of hypnotic states many times every day.  One of the most common hypnotists in our world is the TV advertisement.  As you watch that ad you are constantly reevaluating your authorization for it to maintain your attention (hypnotic state).  If you enjoy the ad or for some other reason you continue to concentrate on it, the message goes into your subconscious.  However, if you lose your trust, or rapport, with the way the ad comes across to you, you come out of the concentration state and the commercial is not as effective.


Our imagination is like an iceberg, partly above the conscious threshold but mostly below it. In other words, our imagination bridges the separation between our conscious mind and our subconscious mind. When we enter this state we call hypnosis, it means that we have tapped the power of the imagination.

As I have heard quoted in several different forms, "What a person's mind can perceive and believe, that person can achieve." If we can imagine it, we can accomplish it!

Now, I'm enough of a pessimist to take this saying with a grain of salt, but I do agree with its spirit. I see the results of this every day, both in the outside world around me and in my work as a hypnotherapist. We actually are (or become) what we imagine ourselves to be.

When you achieve and maintain this state we call hypnosis, we can send ideas, or suggestions, into the subconscious part of your imagination by utilizing the conscious part. Once your unconscious imagination accepts the new ideas, your perception of those ideas will change and your life will change. This is the true power of hypnosis.

For example, if a person is overweight, he/she has a perception of himself/herself as overweight and all the baggage that goes with that perception. When we tap the subconscious part of his/her imagination, we can change the body image that he/she has of himself/herself. Once the subconscious accepts the new perception, it will work just as hard at maintaining that newly accepted body shape/size as it used to work at maintaining the old, fat one. Change your perspective, change your life.


Concentration is the focus, or narrowing, of attention. When the stage hypnotist swings the watch in front of the volunteers' eyes, he is focusing their attention on him. As they watch the watch and listen to his words, they are narrowing their experience of the world to just what is happening on that stage.

In our normal, everyday state of mind we are using our senses - eyes, ears, etc. - to know what is going on around us. We are somewhat selective in what we look at, listen to, etc. But we keep our attention moving around so we can be aware of more things.  That is important most of the time. For example, when I am driving I want to know everything that is happening around me, for my own safety and that of others.

But to really understand something complex or to follow something that is happening over time (like a movie), we must focus on it. And when we focus on something we enter a state that is hypnotic-like. This is a natural part of being human. As hypnotists we have learned to amplify and utilize this normal human condition and we call it hypnosis.


Relaxation is the bonus in my explanation.
Why? Because it is not a necessary part of the hypnotic state, but hypnotists often use it as if it were. One of the reasons for this is that it works, and we all like to use something that works well and is enjoyable at the same time.

Most, but certainly not all, of the inductions that we use include instructions for relaxation. We often use words like, "Your eyes are getting heavy." This heaviness would be an indication of tiredness and a desire to rest (relax) and close. When you hear me say those words, you evaluate how your eyes feel. After a few repetitions of the suggestion your eyes will probably actually feel tired and heavy. This indicates to you that you are accepting my suggestions and that you are actually starting to enter a hypnotic state.

Now that last paragraph is not a trick or any sort of deception on my part. We had previously agreed that we expect for you to achieve the state of hypnosis. To do this we expect that you will accept and follow my instructions. (See Authorization, above) The fact that you feel your eyes getting tired and heavy is an indication to both of us that you are, indeed, accepting my instructions. Then, as we continue into hypnosis my suggestions of relaxation are accepted and indicate further progress toward our goal of deep hypnosis.

The bonus part is that hypnosis really feels good as a result of this deep relaxation. If we are working on managing stress, the relaxation will assist in the relief of the stress and tension that have built up, often in your neck and shoulders.

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