With so many misconceptions about self-hypnosis floating about, I thought I would give you a case study along with information about what self-hypnosis really is, and how you can use it as a valuable tool to improve your life.
Jerry has been working in the Hospitality industry for 25+ years. He took over the business from his father and grew it into a successful company that now has over 20 employees. A few years ago, Jerry was a typical stressed-out executive. He felt that the responsibility of the family business success lay squarely on his shoulders, which made him fearful to the point he began to rule with an iron fist. “If you want it done right, you have to do it yourself” and “You can’t trust anyone” were his mantras. This attitude trickled over into the way he interacted with his employees. He began micromanaging them and brought the iron fist down even harder.
To relieve stress, he started using drugs, in secret. His wife noticed a change in his behaviour and discovered the drugs, which upset her greatly. Every time she tried to talk to Jerry about his drug problem, he became angry and soon, every discussion between them became antagonistic. Their marriage disintegrated quickly.
The combination of the stresses of work, partying, and his failing marriage led Jerry to begin an affair with a friend of his wife. Upon discovering the affair, Jerry’s wife asked for a divorce.
Jerry is a proud man and did his best to look the part of a successful executive to the public eye. He tried to remain focused at work but found it impossible to concentrate. He began dropping the ball, but in his pride, he blamed everyone but himself. He began having serious anger management issues, to the point that people began calling him a bully. Jerry’s dreadful behaviour led to a mass exodus of his best employees, who refused to be treated badly. Naturally, this made the situation at work even more stressful, which only made Jerry’s drug use and tyrannical attitude even worse.
The tipping point came when Jerry’s daughter Isabelle refused to have any contact with her father and this–much more so than his broken marriage or his struggling business–upset Jerry greatly.
Jerry finally realised that his life was spiralling downward rapidly and that it was 100% up to him to make a positive change.
He decided to try to reconcile with his wife and daughter and committed to changing his behaviour with his staff. But, nothing he did worked. People felt that his sudden niceness was fake and that he would soon revert to being a bully. This hit Jerry hard. He really was trying, but maybe it was too late to repair the bridges he had destroyed? He became despondent and started drinking.
His friends–the few he had left–urged him to go to therapy, but he scoffed that therapy is for weak men, not successful businessmen like him!
One day, he came across an article about self-hypnosis and decided to try it.
To his surprise, self-hypnosis immediately removed much of his stress, which allowed him to think clearly and recognise his knee-jerk reactions. He became less defensive and through his softened communications, was able to reconnect with his daughter.
His wife, deeply hurt by his betrayal, refused to reconcile. In the past this would have sent Jerry into a fit of anger. After self-hypnosis, he was able to accept his divorce, and was willing to negotiate a fair financial agreement. He also stopped smoking, partying, and drinking.
His new attitude at work was noticed immediately as a genuine change–from the heart of a man who was committed to positive change, not just a superficial treatment. His employees began to cautiously respond with greater engagement at work.
As his business started to turn around, even more stress was lifted from Jerry’s mind and his attitude changed. Using self-hypnosis, Jerry was able to turn his life around and face his challenges in a calm and reasonable manner: very unlike his old angry, reactive self.
His change of behaviour was genuine and rapid. It was genuine because the new behaviour was driven by his unconscious instead of a superficial act directed by his conscious: in other words, the change occurred where it could not be undone by an upsetting event, much like surface waves do not affect the stillness of the water at the bottom of the ocean. The changes within Jerry were deep, profound, and permanent. It was rapid, because the changes occurred within 2 months.
Jerry’s self-hypnotic script included the development of wisdom, which facilitated his decision to stop self-destructive behaviours like partying, drinking and smoking. It allowed him to break his bad habits, and most importantly, the bad habits he had been trying to keep secret from his loved ones.
Jerry is not alone as a success story!
Many people have a negative perception of hypnosis because they fear they will be manipulated and doing something we don’t want to do. That is a completely natural fear, but it does not apply to self-hypnosis! You write your own scripts according to what your values and what you wish to achieve. You are 100% in control of the thoughts you imprint in your unconscious!
The truth about self-hypnosis is that it’s a completely natural part of your life. You do it all the time anyway… and when you learn to do it with intention, you can completely change your life.
Your mind can naturally go into a trance many times a day when you’re deeply engaged in an enjoyable activity such as being engrossed in a novel or working on an art project. If you’ve ever been so engrossed in an activity that you lost track of time, completely tuned out to distractions, you felt happy and focused… you were in the same state that you are in during self-hypnosis!
Yoga, tai chi, meditation, and mindfulness are similar to self-hypnosis in that you are in an “altered state” of consciousness–i.e. less aware of external stimuli, with a quiet and receptive mind, and in a positive mood.
During an altered state of consciousness such as the one obtained while self-hypnotized, your mind is very open to suggestions, and this is the state in which positive affirmations work wonders. Many people will say that affirmations don’t work–and this is true IF affirmations are being said while in the normal waking state, where the logical mind argues with the affirmations. This is not the case with self-hypnosis, because it’s a tool that helps you bypass the normal filters of your logical mind, and easily accept any positive suggestions you wish to imprint in your unconscious.
Today, hypnosis is being used to help people overcome a fear of dental procedures, to stop smoking, to lose weight, and to overcome past trauma.
And since self-hypnosis is only a tool, don’t label it as good or bad. A tool becomes an instrument for good or bad, as directed by the user. Since you are in charge, you use the tool in a way that will benefit you!
The reality is that YOU are the only thing that is standing between your current reality and the reality you wish to experience (such as wealth, better health, a great relationship, etc.). It’s only your deeply rooted unconscious beliefs that are stopping you from saying “yes” and instead have you hiding in the shadows telling yourself, “I’m not worthy, I could never have that or achieve that!” Self-hypnosis is a tool to help you imprint positive beliefs and habits into the unconscious mind, so that you automatically develop a better response to the world around you.
As Aristotle said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” Self-hypnosis simply facilitates the adoption of better habits of thinking and doing… for better results!
When life becomes a bit too hard, taking control of how you perceive your situation can help greatly. Self-hypnosis is safe and costs almost nothing compared to other modalities. You can apply it to yourself anytime you need to and you are always in control.
Nobody has to know how you took control of your mind and your life–call self-hypnosis your secret superpower, and make your life wonderful!