Deepening the Hypnotic State
How Do We Measure Depth of Trance?
When we think of hypnosis and hypnosis training, we obviously think about how to induce the hypnotic state and how to deepen it. However, what does it actually mean to deepen a hypnotic state? Do we just get people more and more relaxed, or are there other ways to measure depth of trance and to truly show that someone is hypnotized? The classical methods of Dave Elman often speak of light hypnosis as being mere physical relaxation, and deep hypnosis being mental relaxation, yet there are more advanced ways to understand depth of trance. Click here to read more about how our hypnotherapy training programs take you much deeper than mere relaxation.
Measuring Depth of Trance
Hypnosis is better measured by responsiveness to suggestion rather than by the subjective experience of relaxation in the client. There are different charts that measure depth of trance based upon the hypnotic phenomena which can be elicited. We can measure responsiveness to suggestions for catalepsy (the inability to use a certain muscle or muscle group), amnesia (causing someone to forget general or specific things), pain control (reducing or eliminating uncomfortable sensations), and/or hallucinations (adding or removing something from someone’s experience). Once the hypnotherapist knows all about these different types of phenomena, then he/she can better understand how deep the client really is.
Does depth of trance even matter?
For most Hypnotherapy, depth of trance is not all that important. We can achieve great results with our clients using only light to medium states of hypnosis, and generally it would seem that many modern practitioners pay less and less attention to the depth of the state itself anyway. However, when it comes to topics such as pain management, deep transpersonal work, and even some uses of stage hypnosis then depth of trance is still very important. If a client is not responding well to suggestions, then he/she simply cannot reach desired goals, yet we must remember that the majority of hypnotherapy sessions do not require the deeper trance states to be effective.
So How Deep Does the Rabbit Hole Really Go?
The deepest levels of hypnosis are often characterized by the word “somnambulism,” which acknowledges a state where certain responses can occur which would not occur in light or medium hypnotic states. A somnambulistic client is exceptionally open to taking suggestions, they respond without their critical mind getting in the way, they often have a very trusting disposition, and they know how to let go and to be responsive to what is being asked of them. When someone is willing to take positive suggestions for their own greatest good, then the sky is the limit for how deep we can go with them. The real key to depth is therefore simple responsiveness to suggestion, and we can all learn to get better at taking suggestions which are for our greatest good and which can lead to the beautiful deeper layers of our own inmost being.
To learn more about our hypnotherapy training courses and program, please visit www.InstituteofHypnotherapy.com or give us a call at 800-551-9247.