Hey there, this is Joshua Howard from 180 Theory.
Welcome to my video series, “About Hypnosis”. This is video number eight, “Inductions”.
So, what is an induction? An induction is a process that will cause a person to go into trance if it is used by, with, or on them. And so if you’ve been following along in this series, then you know that people go in and out of trance states all day long. For instance, common inductions of everyday trance are a good story, sitting at a desk, hearing a captivating speaker, doing something you’re passionate about, driving home after a long day, listening to a really boring speaker, getting lost in your head, focusing, etc.
And we know that a hypnotic state as I’ve covered in previous videos is having a hyper-attentive focus on something, bypassing the critical factor or the reality principle—the part of the mind that is hypercritical and focused on reality being the way that you’re used to, and stimulating the unconscious mind—creating a situation in which the unconscious mind can take over and allow the imagination to kind of run wild.
So, a hypnotist’s induction is relatively similar to the natural inductions because a hypnotist uses very similar mechanisms to facilitate trance states. For instance, an eye fixation. You can find a spot to stare at on the wall and just stare at it without blinking or changing your focus. After a little while, you’ll start to notice your eyes feel tired. Now, a hypnotist in their office would link that tired feeling and the eyes closing with entering a state of intense relaxation.
They’d say something like, “As you stare at that spot on the wall, you just start to notice how heavy and tired your eyes are feeling. As your eyelashes start to sink deeper and deeper and knowing that as your eyelashes touch together and your eyes close, you’ll find yourself just falling deeply into a nice, comfortable, relaxing state of hypnosis. Can you feel that now as it’s happening?
And anyway, I would keep suggesting things like that to the subject as their eyes closed. Linking the eye closing to hypnosis itself.
And so, if you’re interested, just go ahead and try it for yourself. Just go ahead and stare at a spot and don’t blink or change focus and notice what happens as you get more and more focused on that spot…
When this induction works in a hypnotist’s office, why does it work? Well, it uses the feeling and sensation of the eyes already getting tired, which is already linked in our minds with tiredness, altered states, sleepiness, drowsiness, as well as boredom and frustration. And so what happens is that together, this convinces the mind to sort of escape into a trance state.
And so, again, hypnosis is a natural phenomenon that is triggered by a hypnotist. It works because that is how our minds work anyway.
When our minds get hyper-fixated on something and our focus is attended to one thing, the rest of the world slips away because we need our focus to be attentive to that one thing. For instance, if you were trying to work on something like writing an essay or reading a book, and the whole time you kept thinking about all the other things you could be thinking about in the world and all the other things you needed to get done and all the other things that were on your mind, reading that book or writing that essay would be impossible! (In fact, this is a common complaint of people with test or studying anxiety…)
What makes it possible is going into that trance state and having your mind block out certain things and allowing your focus to get fixated on one thing, to bypass that reality principle that is constantly checking into the world around you so you can get focused on what you’re doing, and to really allow the unconscious mind to come in and offer you helpful, good, interesting, deep things.
I hope this video was really interesting and taught you a little bit about inductions and what they are.
If you’re in Denver, CO and you’d like to experience hypnosis, then, I hope you checkout my website at 180theory.com. I’d love for you to come in and have a local session with me.
And I hope to see you on the next video.