Friday, November 30, 2007

The Schedule

Happy weekend, All!

Just wanted to post quickly and let you know that I am heading out spontaneously this evening and will not be around to post to Esoteric Saturday.

Come back for the Sunday Question, though!

10 Questions with Lee Darrow

Location: Chicago, IL

Cyberspace Locations: (or is it /mstrhypno?)

1. Are you a full time hypnotist, part-time or hobbyist?

Full-time entertainer, of which hypnosis is a BIG part of the business, so draw your own conclusions...

2. Do you specialize in any type of hypnosis?

Primarily stage hypnosis.

3. Is there any type of hypnosis you do not do? Why?

Please! A gentleman does not discuss such things! It is indiscreet! ;)

4. Do you use self-hypnosis regularly in your life?If so, how?

Yep! I use it to help moderate migraines, cure hiccups and to deal with stress, when I have the time.. things happen so fast, sometimes! LOL

5. Describe your hypnosis office or work setting.

Pick a stage, any stage... or someone's home... or banquet hall... you get the idea.

6. Describe a typical day in your life.

There is no such thing as a "typical day" in my life... seriously.

7. Where did you get your training in hypnosis and are you certified?

Mind Sight Consulting, the Baranowskis were my first certifying instructors, but that came late in my career. I have also studied with Steve Lankton, Michael Brown and a whole lot of other people over the last 40 years...

8. Most fabulous hypnosis technique you use?

The Bryan-san Oriental pressure Point Method (which is a placebo technique!)

9. Worse moment ever in a hypnosis setting that ended up being a valuable learning experience.

When a stage hypnotist I was watching had five people go into hysteria because he was stupid enough to do the "swarm of bees" routine on stage... and all five of them were deadly allergic to bee stings!

10. Any words of advice to potential clients or other hypnotist.

LEARN your craft! Understand that there's more to hypnosis than scripts and techniques, but also understand the psychology of phobias and how to avoid invoking them as well as being careful about your own safety.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

To Recline or Not Recline

Is there a perfect chair out there for doing hypnosis? I have begun to doubt it. What I think instead is that there is a perfect chair for each client, and it is luck of the draw if yours happens to be it. When it comes to my trsuty recliner, I have gotten everything from this recliner is perfect. This recliner is too big. This recliner is too soft. This recliner needs to recline more. And oh, I think I will just lie on the floor.

When I was going to school to learn hypnosis, we sat in hard uncomfortable chairs that did not recline in the slightest, and you know, the hypnosis worked as well as any done in the best recliners. (When I was in school, I had to walk fifty miles on bare feet, through snow...)

This had led me to remember my hypno massage I had back in May. It was pretty amazing. So, here is my latest thought - would one of those massage chairs like the Human Touch HT 7450 Zero Gravity Massage Chair be a good for hypnosis sessions? Might it provide a sense of comfort for some and could one time a session to coordinate with the chair's various settings and cycles?

I know I could go to massage therapy school, but it is just not for me, but the chair could be an interesting addition to an office setting. Any thoughts?

Talking Intake

He snickers, skips the questions on page two and hands back my intake form. I glance at it and hand it back, smiling at the skipped questions. He sighs and begins to answer them, every so often moaning about how hard they are. Sounds like an exam, does it not? Hardly. What he is moaning about is answering the questions about what peacefulness means to him or perhaps he does not feel like divulging his phobias.

In talking about hypnosis sessions in general, there are a few things that are fairly basic. The intake form or process is a big part of the session itself and provides a guiding focus for the hypnotist. It sounds elementary and maybe so, but there is an art to the intake. Whether the client fills out the form or the hypnotist ask questions and notes them, this is not just a formality. These questions help clients to pinpoint what it is that they want to work on and gives insight that the hypnotist can use to help in relaxation processes (such as taking the client to their own particular peaceful place and doing so with words that are familiar to the client - their own). Some intakes are more in depth than others. They may ask several potential questions that seem ultra personal, but again they point to clues that the hypnotist can use.

I once read someone's intake that asked specifically about a person's sexual preference. At first it seemed a little like privacy invasion, but the reason for it was sound. Say the client is wanting to work on intimacy in a relationship and part of the session includes focusing on the partner, if the hypnotist makes an assumption, the whole session may be a no go because the partner was described in the wrong sex.

So here are two questions for you out there.

Hypnotist - do you ask enough questions to get a true picture of the client?
Clients or potential clients - do you feel the intake forms you have filled out ask things that make you uncomfortable?

Hypnotist - do not be afraid to ask everything you need to know. Just be ready to explain why it will help you to know the items on your intake form.
Clients - do not be afraid to ask the hypnotist why he or she wants to know something, if it makes you uncomfortable.

Confessions of a Mild Mannered Hypnotist

It is one of those mornings that feels like it has been stuffed down my brain in a most unpleasant way. Yikes. Deadlines and other nasties await me. It is more admin than hypno.

So, I am going off on a tangent from our scholarly talks of forms of hypnosis and am going to take a few moments to indulge another passion. Stop groaning, I cannot help my love of the macabre and movies. It is part of my personality and I am going to free it for a little while.

It all comes down to coincidence. Yesterday, I did a group guided meditation for the general public. I do them for $10 a person, but find I get a lot of past clients who attend. Afterwards, I step out of the room, grab a cup of tea and then return to gabwith whoever is not in a hurry to get back to their lives. Inevitably, what happens is that people use this time to just let go of whatever it is that is bothering them and my office becomes a group confessional.

So, here it is, the new movie Sweeney Todd is about to be released. Well, to go along with the opening, they have released a confessional page where the viewing public (you and I) can record our confessions. That is the coincidence. Confessions. Yesterday, I was the listener to other's confessions and now today, here is this site that does the same thing.

Therefore I have my own confession to make. As I listen to other people's (I am not a Catholic priest, wrong sex and all, nor can I provide any absolution) confessions, I tend to have some various song running through my head that receives a little bit more focus than the words of the confessions But because I do feel a bit guilty saying that, I must scream for contrition and also say that I am not one to work on other people's problems in a group environment and I do view the time period as one where all that is really needed is the venting opportunity. Hence, the website is a fantastic thing.

And as for the songs, now I have the sound track from Sweeney running through my head. My other confession is that as a teenage I owned the album from the Broadway version. What a great story. What great music. And oh swoon, Johnny Depp.

If you have enjoyed my confessions about confessions, you might just find Sweeney Todd on MySpace interesting. You might also want to visit the official Sweeney Todd movie site.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

A Look At Traditional Hypnosis

All the cliches come into your mind - swinging stop watches, swirls, a hypnotic voice that sounds a bit like Dracula honing in on his victim, people barking like dogs and quaking like ducks. Seem familiar? If you were to ask a modern day hypnotist about these things he or she would probably just grimace or embrace the cliche. But they are cliches none the less, and cliches, like stereotypes have come about for a reason. The reason is because people live up to the expectations.

So, here is where we will start our discussion on tradition hypnosis, keeping in in mind that hypnosis is all about using suggestions to create some form of inner change, whether long-term or short-term. The idea of traditional hypnosis fits this definition perfectly as it means that the hypnotist will make suggestions to the subconscious or unconscious part of the clients mind. It relies on post-hypnotic suggestions that the client responds to after the session. Post-hypnotic suggestions are instructions that the subconscious mind utilizes to help create the inner change.

So what happens during a traditional hypnosis session? You will probably fill out an intake form, be given a pre-talk, begin a relaxation process or be given a simple mental task to focus on, will be given a method to deepen your relaxation, which will be followed by the suggestions. Then you will be brought back to normal consciousness. Depending on the hypnotist, you may or may not be tested to see how suggestible you are to that particular hypnotist's suggestions or may be given convincers that you are in a hypnotic state. We will delve into all this sooner rather than later because these concepts are found in much hypnosis work.

So what do the stereotypes have to do with all this? Well, the swinging watch is what is called an eye-fix induction, where the person being hypnotized is directed to focus on the object. While he or she focuses, suggestions are given for relaxation. This involves a little more than just saying the words "You are getting sleepy." The placement of the watch in proximity to the client is important as are the visual cues the client gives during the process. The same goes for the swirl. The hypnotic voice? This is a simple technique to instill a little monotony, trust, and calmness. Barking like a dog and quaking like a duck? Those are the post-hypnotic suggestions (we will talk about this later, but rest assured you will only do what you are inclined to do with the post hypnotic suggestion, in other words you will not do anything against your will).

In a traditional hypnosis session, the session relies mainly on the hypnotist, who will do a great deal of talking. As the person being hypnotized, you will not be asked to interact very much, other than responding to various instructions. For most people, it is an incredibly relaxing experience.

I am Not the Evil Step Mother!


Last night I started thinking about the whole idea of hypnosis in classic fairy tales a little bit more. For awhile I was pleasantly pleased by the idea that fairy tales involve a lot of trance factors. Then it dawned on me (okay, so I am a little slow) that in every instance I could think of that remotely related (all the poisoned apples and finger pricks) were done by the hands of the evil so and so. So much for the mythic trance. Darn. That is awful PR (public relations in this case, not page rank) for us. So, maybe it is time to write our own positive fairy tales where hypnosis saves the day.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Poison Apple Suggestion

In blogging about serious subjects, ahem, like hypnosis, every now and then, a break is needed. I dread monotony like I dread the cold descending upon the body that has been warmed in the blankets of sleep.

This past weekend, I saw the movie Enchanted (which I loved by the way) and then last night in perusing the tele, there was some horror movie themed around Snow White. So, three is a charm. There is a new book by Harald Walter Azmann called The True Snow White - Limited Premiere Edition. So there she is, ever popping into my life this week. Am I feeling the ungraceful elements of aging or the a blossoming experience of adulthood, which Azmann's book delves into?

But one thought about that story has continued to nag at me today. It is the whole poisoned apple thing. Is this not perhaps another form of hypnosis - such as chemical hypnosis? I should add that to the list. One could look at the poisoned apple as literal poison with an antidote (or anti-venom) that is caused by the components of a simple kiss. Or is it something more akin to hypnosis - the suggestion that only a true love's kiss can awaken the princess from her trance or that without she would die if it was not administered at a particular time (I suspect Sleeping Beauty's fate is a more apt reference, but since Snow White is the one nagging at me, I feel inclined to discuss her). One might say it is not so much suggestion because how did Snow White know the parameters of the poison? Here we could go even farther and say it was Universal Consciousness. LOL.

Actually now that I think about it, fairy tales are a great subject for hypnosis and how it could be an element in so many. And really, when you come down to it, fairy tales are a form of Ericksonian hypnosis, hypnosis based around metaphors and such. We will definitely be talking about this more.

A Definition of Hypnosis

Before going into lengthy diatribes about the various forms of hypnosis, I thought it might be fun to get a general definition.

What is Hypnosis?

Some might say this is a tough question. Merriam-Webster defines hypnosis as:

a trancelike state that resembles sleep but is induced by a person whose suggestions are readily accepted by the subject...
Nice. Cut and dry, yes? No. What exactly is a "trancelike state"? What does "induce" mean? Wait. Backtrack again to the word "state." Whoa Nellie.

Confused? It could be really easy to become confused when grappling with subjects of consciousness and the brain. Suffice to say, we are still learning what really goes on in the mind, which I suppose, is akin to the mystery of life.

To simplify or better yet - Ellie's Definition of hypnosis:
hypnosis is all about using suggestions to create some form of inner change, whether long-term or short-term.
Now one could take this farther and use the word "state" from the Merriam-Webster's definition, but again this gets fuzzy. There are a few different camps of hypnosis theory. One says that hypnosis is a "state of mind" or an "altered-state of consciousness." Another says it is focused concentration and expectation that create the results. Personally, I believe the answer is found in both. Focused concentration means putting your mind in a certain "state" of consciousness. The two go hand in hand. I suspect later we may need to devote sometime to delve into this more (and feel free, as always to leave you thoughts on this).

But for now, you have my definition, which may help clarify the perspective in which my words revolve on this blog.

An Ongoing List of Forms of Hypnosis

Last I week I mentioned we would be talking about the various forms of hypnosis, and guess what - we are. It is not something that can go in one post, but is going to take some time. Also, please feel free to jump in the comment section to voice your thoughts, opinions, and questions. It would be great if we could get a definitive list of types of hypnosis, but it seems to be ever growing and changing.

Here is a basic list of what comes to my mind this Tuesday morning:

  • Traditional Hypnosis
  • Authoritative Hypnosis
  • Permissive Hypnosis
  • Conversational Hypnosis
  • Clinical Hypnosis
  • Scripted Hypnosis
  • Self-hypnosis
  • Interactive Hypnosis
  • Regression
  • Parts Therapy
  • Manchester Protocol
  • North Carolina Protocol
  • Theatrical Hypnosis
  • Ericksonian Hypnosis
  • Neuro-Linguistic Programming (I am torn on this one - I am not so sure that it should be considered hypnosis, as it is its own thing, but it is used in hypnosis...any thoughts?)
  • Distance Hypnosis
  • Emotional Freedom Technique (again this is its own thing, but is sometimes used in hypnosis)
  • Forensic Hypnosis
  • Emergency Hypnosis
  • Non-verbal Hypnosis
  • Group Hypnosis
  • Driving Hypnosis
  • Covert Hypnosis
  • Media Hypnosis
  • Tapping (this is more technique, but I think it counts)
Again, this is just what comes to my mind on my first cup of tea. I really would like to keep the list going, so please do add to it.

Monday, November 26, 2007


When looking at last week's poll, no one checked doing charity work during the holidays. It really is hard to make time for such things with all the hubbub of craziness that seems to be around.

What makes me think of this is that our local police department dropped by the office a few days ago to collect for their own charity. I was rather surprised by this. I suggested that I would be happy to volunteer my time or do a class in emergency hypnosis or relaxation techniques for the police officers or even to do the occasional guided meditation for de-stressing. But, what they really wanted was extra funds. It seems our tax dollars do not provide enough monies to keep our law enforcers in tactical equipment, such as that provided by 511 tactical. I was really shocked to hear this. I would have thought Kevlar vest were standard issue, but apparently not.

I did donate to the cause, but was a little saddened that they had no interest in my volunteer time. However, I may pitch it to the higher-ups anyway.

Do any of you volunteer your hypnosis services to help other's in the community and if so, what sort of experiences have you had?

Following a Suggestion

Happy Monday. Positive thoughts, positive thoughts, positive thoughts.

As I drink a combination of Colombian gourmet and 8 O'clock Coffee, it is time to gain a little focus again. Let's see - the poll picked up a bit this week, I am glad to see. Looks like we can all use a little stress relief during this time of year. Did you read Gloria's answers to the 10 Questions? I hope she will forgive me, but she brought up a really good point in her email to me. She suggested that I change the question about negative hypnosis experiences to something more positive, as we need to spread the word about the positive aspects of hypnosis. Amen! So, I have reworded the question a bit. I think it is important though that we do talk about experiences, both good and bad (especially for those who are getting into the field). It is important for others to know that being a hypnotist is more than reading a script and hoping for the best. There are some harrowing moments for us all (as in any field). The important thing is how we come out of that experience. Both Michael and Gloria answered that question extremely well - their experiences turned out well in both cases, with lessons learned. So the new question will encompass this idea - harrowing experiences that were learning experiences.

As for the Monday answer to the Sunday question about pain scales, I will get more into that a bit later. In the short term, suffice to say that I do not really use them in my work. Usually I have clients visualize (if they visualize) their pain as an object or with borders and work on it from there. And the question is still and always open for comment.

Poll Results

The results from - What is the greatest gift you offer?
0 - Talent
1 - Skills (12%)
3 - Compassion (37%)
2 - Listening (25%)
0 - Patience
2 - Love (25%)
0 - Beauty
0 - Wisdom
0 - Other
Total Participants - 8

The results from - What is important in life?
9 - Kindness (75%)
6 - Patience (50%)
5 - Loyalty (41%)
5 - Strength (41%)
0 - Remaining Aloof
0 - Not Considering Others
0 - Concern Only for One's Self
2 - Other (16%)
1 - Nothing At All (8%)
Total Participants - 12

The results from - Are You?
3 - Analytical (23%)
6 - Creative (46%)
7 - Imaginative (53%)
4 - Logical (30%)
5 - March to your own drum (38%)
4 - Good at following directions (30%)
6 - All of the Above (46%)
0 - None of the Above
Total Participants - 13

The results from - What do you to do to relax during the holidays?
4 - Use Self-hypnosis (44%)
3 - Meditate (33%)
2 - Yoga (22%)
1 - Exercise More (11%)
1 - Eat (11%)
2 - Drink (22%)
4 -Watch TV or Movies (44%)
2 - More time with the family (22%)
2 - Avoid the family (22%)
6 - Listen to Music (66%)
1 - Other (11%)
Total Participants -9

The results from - In consideration of the upcoming holidays, do you:
5 -
Celebrate one or more (62%)
3 - Get through them with hypnosis (37%)
3 - Need more relaxation (37%)
2 - Work more (25%)
1 - Work less (12%)
0 - Find nothing changes
0 - Do more charity work
3 - Focus on family (37%)
5 - Stress more (62%)
0 - Other
0 - Do not celebrate the holidays
Total Participants - 8

The results from - Are You Participating In:
1 - National Memory Screening Day (50%)
1 - The Great American Smokeout (50%)
0 - National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
1 - Other Health Awareness Event (50%)
0 - None
Total Participants - 2

The results from - My Biggest Fear Is:
0 - Heights
1 -Vertigo (14%)
0 - The dark
0 - Public speaking
0 - Looking foolish in public
0 - Mean people
0 - Illness
0 - Not being in control
0 - Driving
1 - Being enclosed in a small space (14%)
1 - Being in a crowd of people (14%)
1 -Being around an animal (14%)
3 - Other (42%)
Total participants - 6

The results from - Hypnosis for Phobias:
1 - I have used it successfully (50%)
0 - I would like to try it
1 - I have hypnotized others for phobias (50%)
0 - I am too afraid of hypnosis
0 - It did not work for me
Total Participants - 2

The results from - When it comes to subliminal messages, do you:
3 - Believe they work visually (60%)
2 - Believe they work audibly (40%)
2 - Believe they do not work (40%)
1 - Use them in your life (20%)
2 - Are affected by them (40%)
0 - Are not affected by them
Total Participants - 5

The results from - The best use of hypnosis for weight loss is:
1 - to decrease food portion size (14%)
3 - to increase desire to exercise (42%)
4 - to decrease food cravings (57%)
2 - to regulate the metabolism (28%)
4 - increase self-esteem (57%)
3 - get to the root of the cause (42%)
0 - other
1 - none at all (14%)
Total Number of Participants - 7

The results from - Have You Used Hypnosis Successfully for:
4 - Pain Control (100%)
4 - Faster Healing (100%)
2 - Anesthesia (50%)
0 - Reducing Cancer Side Effects
Total Participants - 4

The results from - Mind Control:
2 - is NOT related to hypnosis (40%)
3 - uses hypnotic techniques (60%)
2 - uses NLP techniques (40%)
2 - is a form of self-hypnosis (40%)
2 - does not exists (40%)
1 - other (20%)
Total Participants - 5

The results from - Are you a lucid dreamer?
1 - Yes (20%)
2 - No (20%)
3 - Would like to become one (60%)
0 - N0
Total Participants - 5

The results from - What Relaxation Modalities Do You Use?
6 - Hypnosis/Self-hypnosis (100%)

2 - Meditation (33%)
1 - Guided Visualization (16%)
1 - Massage (16%)
2 - Yoga (33%)
1 - Other (16%)
Total Participants - 6

The results from - Do You:
3 - Give clients session audio (42%)
3 - Do not give session audio (42%)
2 - Give other audio (28%)
1 - Want your session audio (14%)
2 - Do not want session audio (28%)
1 - Other (14%)
Total - 7 participants

The results from - To Which Hypno Organization do You Belong?
6 - National Guild of Hypnotists (75%)
1 - The British Association of Therapeutical Hypnotists (12%)
1 - International Medical & Dental Hypnotherapy Association (12%)
1 - International Medical & Dental Hypnotherapy Association (12%)
Total Participants - 8

The results from - During consultations hypnotists should:
8 - Do a pre-talk (88%)
2 - Do tests (22%)
4 - Do convincers (44%)
4 - Do actual hypnosis (44%)
2 - Other (22%)

The results from - Did you go to the NGH Conference '07?
4 - Yes (44%)
5 - No (55%)
0 - Went to another conference
0 - What is the NGH
Total Participants - 9

The results from - When doing hypnosis, would you rather:
0 - use a pocket watch
0 - use a pendulum
3 - use a spot on the wall (33%)
0 - use a light toy
2 - use the unexpected (22%)
0 - use a sound
3 - use just words (33%)
0 - use touch (arm rise, etc.)
0 - other
Total Participants - 9

The results from - Should hypnotists be licenced?
3 - Yes (30%)
1 - No (10%)
2 - Only Hypnotherapist (20%)
6 - Certification is enough (60%)
Total Participants - 10

The results from - Hypnosis is best used for?
7 - changing habits (77%)

4 - Long-term results (44%)
3 - Quick fixes (33%)
6 - Resolving emotional issues (60%)
5 - Entertainment (55%)
0 - Nothing at all
0 - Other
Total Participants - 10

The results from - Used hypnosis to stop smoking?
2 -
Yes and I was successful (33%)
0 - Yes, but I started again
0 - No. I was not successful
3 - I have never smoked (50%)
1 - Quit with another method (16%)
Total of participants - 6

The results from - Which answer(s) best describe your relationship to hypnosis?
2 - full-time hypnotists (15%)
6 - part-time hypnotists (46%)
3 - clients of hypnosis (23%)
5 - hypnosis is a hobby (38%)
2 - have never been hypnotized
2 - want to be hypnotized (15%)
0 - do not want to use hypnosis
Total of participants - 13

The results from - If you are a hypnotist, how often do use hypnosis personally?
4 - all the time
1 - at least once a day
2 - at least once a week
Total of
participants - 7

Sunday, November 25, 2007

A Question of Scale

As the weather fluctuates between cemetery weather, a day at the beach, and a day in Alaska in the winter, various aches and pains begin to rear their ugly head more and more. So, today it is a question of pain. In 10 Questions with Michael Raugh, he mentioned another hypnotist who refuses to even use the word "pain" during sessions, as it in itself maybe a suggestion in itself. Then there are those who use pain indexes to have a starting and ending point or for a guideline. There are several of these scales.

The Sunday Question is:

Do you use a specific pain scale in your practice or life and if so, which one and why? Or do you not believe in pain scales and if so, why?

Saturday, November 24, 2007

The Esoteric Swirl

There is nothing more fabulously fun in imagery for hypnosis than the cliche of the swirl. But I feel we should pay homage to it. There are questions all over the web about whether you can become hypnotized by watching these nifty animations. The answers are all over the place depending on if you are a devotee to the hypnotic arts or between that and a wet blanket. But do they work? You tell me.

This swirl was created by Conal Elliott at He has several wonderful graphics similar to this.

Friday, November 23, 2007

10 Questions with Gloria Constantas

1. Are you a full time hypnotist, part-time or hobbist?

I am part-time now, but moving toward full-time for 2008!

2. Do you specialize in any type of hypnosis?

It seems people come to me for phobias, and personal issues like better work performance or having more satisfying relationships. I like to work with college students or professional people.

3. Is there any type of hypnosis you do not do? Why?

There was one guy I referred to another hypnotist, as I was uncomfortable talking to him about his particular type of addiction. I thought if he seriously wanted to change, he should work with a male hypnotist.

4. Do you use self-hypnosis regularly in your life?If so, how?

Yes, daily affirmations and self-hypnosis. I am constantly trying to improve in all areas of my life.

5. Describe your hypnosis office setting.

I share an office with my husband. So it looks like a standard office. I just bring my zero-gravity lounge chair in for the client and I sit at a desk for intake and then beside them for the hypnosis.

6. Describe a typical day in your life.

Wake up, give thanks, rush to work, check email, write blog, talk to teenagers, try to teach them self-hypnosis or meditation techniques, meditate or do self-hypnosis, see clients, pick up child, make dinner, say hi to my spouse, retire early.

7. Do you have a website or blog? is my main blog or is it

8. Most fabulous hypnosis technique you use?

I like the progressive relaxation induction because all my clients have too-busy-syndrome and need stress reduction. They always enjoy it! But the most amazing to me is regression for fears or other concerns. I am also fascinated by pain reduction techniques; I have seen clients with chronic pain reach complete relief during the session and for some time afterward!

9. Worse moment ever in a hypnosis setting.

Probably when a friend wanted me to hypnotize her for a fear of heights so she could go hiking in the mountains and cross a wood and rope bridge over a river. I used the affect bridge and she couldn't or wouldn't go back to the cause of her problem. I tried twice. Since time was short, I just had her imagine being at the end of the bridge feeling triumphant that she had crossed it and then did the awakening. She was sure she could make it over the bridge, but I wasn't! A week later she rushed up to me and told me what a great hiking trip she had had, and that she crossed the bridge no problem! She even went back to the middle of the bridge to get a picture of herself on the bridge!!!

10. Any words of advice to potential clients or other hypnotist.

Hypnotize anyone and everyone, including yourself! There are just so many benefits!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Ellie's Favorite Five - Progressive Relaxation Scripts

For those who are celebrating the Thanksgiving Holiday, I wish you most digestible day! It seems like the perfect time to consider more relaxation and this is a great way for us to begin exploring the various forms of hypnosis.

I present to you my current favorite five progressive relaxation scripts (if the links do not work, please let me know). These are based on a Google search, ease of finding the script, no hidden strings - meaning they are free, and I just had to find them appealing.

Progressive relaxation is a therapy onto itself, where one literally progressively relaxes each part of the body to create a feeling of relaxation. A large amount of hypnosis is based on deep relaxation and this is a classic way to get there. I think it has surpassed the swinging pocket watch. There are several hypnotist who do not use them because there is a potential for putting someone to sleep rather than in a hypnotic state.

Also, these are what are called scripts. Scripts are fairly common in hypnosis, especially traditional hypnosis. There are pros and cons to using such things, but for those who do not use them, they are always a good source for fresh inspiration.

So, here they:

  • Maryann Laraia - Hypnosis Improves Life - Very basic script involving body awareness.
  • Hypnohut - A nicely guided progressive relaxation.
  • Arthur A. Leidecker - APA Recommends - Fairly intense progressive neuro-muscular relaxation induction involving the tightening and releasing of areas of the body. Please note that there are some people who find discomfort in this or have medical conditions of which it may conflict. This is rare, but I have to say it anyway. Also, this is a PDF file.
  • Roger Bergman - A very in depth progressive relaxation involving counting, breathing awareness, and imagery.
  • Terrance Watts - - This is his soothing, body conditioning progressive relaxation.
Enjoy! Also, if you have one you really like, please feel free to share it.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Answering the Question - Is All Hypnosis Equal

The thing about hypnosis that I think many people do not understand is that there are several different forms of it. This can be frustrating as a client because it may not be clear what the session will actually be like and from a hypnotist standpoint it makes it difficult when we look at studies to know what hypnotic procedure was used to get the response.

As hypnotists we are always finding ourselves explaining to people that hypnosis is not what you see on TV. There seems to be this mythic place people want to go to, almost wanting to be put into a zombie state and come out of it "fixed." It is never this way. There may be pendulums, pocket watched, swirlies, sounds, or words. But how the hypnotist proceeds can also vary. In other words you could go to two different hypnotist and have a completely different experience for the same issue.

This ultimately means that as long as you want to be hypnotized, it is possible. Just because you may have trouble with one hypnotist, does not mean you will have the same experience with another practitioner.

For the next little while, in addition to our regular segments (Esoteric Saturday, the Sunday Question, the Monday Poll, 10 Questions, and In the News), along with happenings in the practice, we will begin to look at the various forms of hypnosis that are practiced out in the world.

The Signs of Emotional Eating

With the big eating day looming before many tomorrow, and with answers on the holiday stress poll, it appears that we could all use a little help to maintain our stress and perhaps our eating habits. I recently was able to focus on the fact that when I get frustrated, I start craving the worst of the worse when it comes to junk food. With this I was able to utilize self-hypnosis to help me through some of the more pronounced frustration triggers.

But what if you need help figuring out if you are an emotional eater and you do do not have a hypnotist handy? Here are some questions to ask yourself.

  • Do you find that hunger comes on quickly or urgently?
  • Do you crave unhealthy food (who me)?
  • Do stressful or unpleasant events cause you to want to eat?
  • Do you find yourself suddenly eating and have no conscious memory of eating so much?
  • Do you continue to eat even after you are full?
  • Do you feel hunger anywhere other than your stomach?
  • After you satisfy your hunger, do you have feelings of regret?
These are the signs of emotional eating as specified by Dr. Roger Gould, a board certified psychiatrist who is one of the world's leading authorities on emotional eating and adult development. He is also a pioneer in online programs for weight issues. If you find that your eating fits any of these questions, you may have emotional eating issues.

So you are probably saying, "Great. Now what?" If so, he has an interactive (you answer questions) website to help you understand your emotions and eating habits in relation to holiday stress. Then he offers a free Holiday Survival Guide .

I am a big believer in every little thing helps. To those of you on the poll who mentioned stress being a part of your holidays, this may offer a little relief.

Let me know what you think.

Hypnosis as a Cure

Yesterday I blogged about IBS and a study that found great success with using hypnosis as a cure. Yes, the source actually used the word "cure." Then of course, I found the usual medical sites saying that hypnosis can help eliminate the symptoms, but it does not "cure." Normally, the later just irritates me a little and I go about my day. But not today.

I guess it depends your school of thought on whether hypnosis is a cure or not. I suspect that those in the medical fields or organizations that more represent doctors and psychologist, one would probably say that hypnosis is not a cure, but a tool in complimentary medicine. I give you that, it is a great tool used in complimentary situations. But I think it can also be a cure, especially in cases where the client has eliminated or worked through some psychological concept that was creating a physical effect. But I can understand that this might be a threat to traditional medicine (or at least some pharmaceuticals).

Do I think it can always be a cure? No. It depends on the issue and the client. And as I say that, here is the paradox, though hypnosis can cause a curative outcome, it is the client who creates the cure. It is the client's work, mind, thoughts, and connection with his or her subconscious mind that brings about the result. Hypnosis is the vehicle in this case. So maybe when other's say hypnosis is not a cure, maybe this is correct. It is just a tool in self-healing.

Does this make sense? What are your thoughts?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

A Fake Fireplace Induction, Anyone?

Over the past weekend I received a package from, whose tag line is curiously awesome gifts - such as a Wall Mount Bottle Opener or other unique toys, of which they sent me to play with and try out. The three items were fake snow (a tiny package of white powder that you add to water and the powder has a mild eruption, creating fine granular looking snow), small candles that have flame colors that match the candle wax color, and a DVD of fireplaces all ablaze. An interesting lot. I had thought I might create an Ellie animation involving all, but my time is too limited at the moment.

I needed to pick one to write about here and though the snow was entertaining, it was such as quick eruption that ensued that I have not been able to effortlessly include it in a hypnosis session (someone who is not so one track mind probably could, but I cannot seem to walk and hypnotalk at the same time, so it would be tough). The candles were great, but that is so classically a candle flame induction, it did not seem creative enough. So that left the video.

After playing it on my computer for awhile (it has a lovely soundtrack), it really is almost as hypnotic as a real fire place. What I learned is that I am drawn to fireplaces because of the warmth factor, so this video does not even come close to helping with that, but it could make for an induction. There are a variety of scenes to chose from, each with their own appeal. The Christmas scene would be good because there is an added element of a toy train traveling through the picture on occasion. This could be a deepener (when you see the train coming through, you begin to relax more and more each time). Another interesting scene on the video is a psychedelic fire that twist and turns and is rather warped. It is strange enough that I think it would hold the conscious mind in awe long enough to use it as an induction. And then there are the simple basic, repetitive flames, perhaps my favorite. Again this could function like a candle flame induction.

So, you may be asking "why not just use a candle?" Good question. So here is my answer: one is often in places that do not allow candles. That is the perfect condition for this video (provided you have a television and DVD player or computer handy). And what about airplanes? Ever been sitting next to a fearful soul that you wanted to help? I can see a lot of potential for this in that situation. Sure you could just do a verbal session, but this would give them something to really focus on. Provided there are no fire phobias...

A Little Good New for IBS Sufferers to Start the Day

Good morning! I am a bit foggy today, so I think I will spend this morning's post on an In the News piece. It actually pinged into my inbox yesterday, but it is old news from May. Since I missed it at the time, maybe you did, too.

The subject is Childhood Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and hypnosis. Arine Vliegaer, M.D., Ph.D, of Saint Antonius Hospital in Nieuwegein (Netherlands) headed a randomized controlled trial and found hypnosis created a cure for IBS by the end of treatment in 59% of 53 young patients. This compares to the 12% who received standard care. And here's the really nice part: 85% were cured through hypnosis after a year of follow-up.

The subjects of the study (I think it might be okay to use the word subjects here as it refers to experimentation) were between the ages of eight and 18. All had suffered an average of 3.4 years from abdominal pain and IBS with no evidence of there being a physical problem. Considered a common condition for pediatric office visits, this has a "reported prevalence of between 1% and 19%."

Traditional medical care for IBS includes pain medication and education on sensitive gut. Finding potential triggers is also encouraged.

The Nitty Gritty of the Study
The control group was given standard medical care with six half hour sessions of supportive therapy. The mean pain scores for this group fell, but from 14.5 to only 9.8 by the end, though there was a little more of a drop after a year to 8.0.

The hypnosis group received three months of six half hour hypnotherapy sessions using the Manchester Protocol. The mean pain intensity scores for this group dropped from 13.5 at the beginning of the study to 3.0 at the end.

Only participant did not complete the treatment. This research found an 80% improvement in pain scores.


Monday, November 19, 2007

When Your Swing Gets Swung

She swung with the best of them. Literally. Yeah, yeah, yeah, you know what I mean. A little Lindy this way. A little West Coast that way. She would wear her red dress, you know the one, sleek, yet with a skirt, that twirled when she spun, showing off her...legs (what did you think I would say?). You would see her in the dance clubs, not the night clubs, but the dance clubs where people go to dance, to really dance. And there she would be, slipping out of her heels and lacing on her dance shoes. Before you could look, she would be flung under and over a gaggle of want-to-be partners. I have never been so jealous of someone else in my entire life. I am all legs and left feet.

But then the night came when her fling got flung and across the floor she skittered, helplessly unable to avoid a collision with a bar stool. Sadly the bar stool won. And no I was not happy. I felt worse for even being jealous. But we were young.

And so it was, years later, when she discovered that I had become a hypnotist. She knew I had worked with some athletes with pain management. Her dance injury that night so long ago definitely qualified as a sports injury, because dance was more than just a past time it was a competition of endurance for her. Not one to give it up, she has continued, but fought miserable pain in her shoulder from the torn rotator cuff.

I asked her what she had previously tried to help alleviate her pain. Not being a pill popper, she had gone the route of ointments and gel pain relievers. She liked the feel of these.

So, I came up with an idea for her session using something like Freeze It Gel. Basically, she put it on her shoulder for the session, and I used if for deepening sensations caused by the product to increase her sense of healing. She did this through the imagery of the healing light moving deep within. I also used it as a post-hypnotic suggestion, that when ever she applied the product, she would receive the same deep feeling each time, but it would also remind her to take care of her shoulder and use it as a body message to be more careful. (Just so you know this was done in conduction and guidance with her physical therapist and doctors).

Now she can apply Freeze It before she dances and maybe it will allow her more time to enjoy the dance. She can just roll it on over her shoulder and be good to go, and then before going to bed, she can use the gel. She said she like the sensation, sort of a cool feeling that took her mind off the ache when doing the session. Now, if I only I can win her a year supply, she would be good to go.

I believe hypnosis is not necessary for the product to work for other's though. The ingredients are all natural like Aloe, Vitamin E, an extract from the South American holly shrub, menthol (there is that tingly sensation), and camphor. And the combination in Freeze It is good for decreasing:

  • Aches and Pains after exercise (put it on before you exercise)
  • Arthritic pains
  • Sleep issues related to pain (put it on before going to bed to help sooth the pain)

By the way, she gave me permission to show her famous shoulders off in the photo above.


This morning there was a little glitch in the blogvertising submission process for the post I did called Changing Things Up. Well, I networked on the Posties Forum for a solution and found others in the same boat, and they turned out to be some really lovely people. I was perusing one of their blogs while waiting for an answer from the advertiser and became intrigued with an idea off of It goes nicely with my Sunday Question concept.

mindbump suggested by The Real Eureka Springs

"Describe something seemingly unimportant or ridiculous that makes you happy."

So, okay, I will give this a go.

Something seemingly unimportant or ridiculous that makes me happy is having a bedtime story read to me before falling asleep. Even now, in my late thirties, I am a complete sucker for this. I love to read, and maybe after spending my days listening to my own voice while doing suggestion work, it is nice to hear someone else's.

So there you go, canal boy, there is my answer.

Changing Things Up

Suddenly the holidays have kicked into my mind, as if you cannot tell from the Sunday Question or the Monday Poll. Yes, they are on mind. I am doing a weight loss session with the group for stress reduction, will meet once in December and reconvene in 2008. When I originally set up the group, I thought I would take them straight through the holidays; it seems like a good idea with all the stress, pressure and temptation the season brings with it. What transpired was a half hour group meeting that turned into a vent for holiday stress and no time to spend with the group. Everyone seems to have this obligation, that family gathering, and on and on goes the list. And perhaps this is the crux of some of their issues: not making enough time for themselves, not considering their own needs. I could preach a sermon on this, but I suspect you all have some empathy towards this.

But I will share with you the most common peace antagonist that plaques the group. Family obligations and logistics. This really saddens me, but I am just as guilty as they are. It seems a time when compromise is the buzz word, leaving half-hearted results in the needs of pleasing others. Now I am not advocating being totally self-centered, but there seems like there would be another way.

I sometimes think picking a local that everyone could travel to (a neutral zone) might be a solution. For my family it would be somewhere like Oregon. I have no relative there, no memories, nor do any of my family members. No one has said, "Oh, I love Oregon. Let's go there." And why not? Sure it will probably be cold, but there might be snow (something that seems to appeal to several of my family members) and there are still brisk walks on the beach and the sound of crashing waves. Very hypnotic. One could rent a house or a condo for that "homey" feeling, have packages sent in advance, and heck, even have the groceries pre-delivered and waiting. No sterility of a hotel. Lincoln City holiday rentals offers all of this. One phone call and it is done. A change of environment might just be the thing.

It is like clearing the mind, opening the horizon of possibilities, and perhaps a chance to spend little quality time with loved ones with out the distractions of normal life.

At the moment, the voice in my head is trying to be pessimistic about what others would think of this idea and what excuses they would come up with, but I am heading it off with a meditative La, La, La, La, La, Fa, La.

A Monday Answer

What is it you are most thankful for in terms of hypnosis or alternative health modalities that has made a positive difference in your life?

It is a quiet morning and I have my trusty sidekick, Cup o' Tea, beside me, so I thought I would have a gander at my own question. Perhaps you will consider answering it as well?

Aside from the various times I have used hypnosis for my own issues, I would say that learning how to go to that quiet place where time is not existent and thoughts are mostly silent is the one thing I am most thankful for in the hypnosis realm. Until I was hypnotized and learned self-hypnosis, I really thought meditation and such was a pure lark. Why would anyone find it appealing? Now I get it. Whenever life seems a little too frantic or stress is looming large, I take a few minutes out, shut my eyes (set the intent to relax or state in prayer-like form what it is that is bothering me or that I need help with) and begin the process. When I am done, I find calmness and some peacefulness remain. It has allowed me to be a more compassionate person and to see reason in some of life's pain. Plus, I often feel rejuvenated or as though my stress has deflated like a balloon.

Now to move on and think of a poll question for today. Did only two of you actually participate in the health events of the year?

Sunday, November 18, 2007

A Hypnosis Session or a Date?

Recently, one of my friends began to take an interest in my services and began to ask a lot of questions that came down to hypnosis and relationships. Ever had these conversations? My friend is a recent divorcee but has been celibate for two years. She is trying to decide if she would like to continue this way or look at other options. This is where the hypnosis comes in. She wanted to know if I would hypnotize her to stop those adult desires or the craving for a relationship.

I truly suspect she rdoes not want hypnosis, but an opportunity to meet single men who might stimulate her both mentally and physically might be a better course.

So we have become acquainted with It is a site that reviews, compares and contrast various dating sites. In the dating world, apparently the different dating and match making sites are all a little different and one may be better for one's needs than another. For instance of one is looking for the ideal marriage partner (my friend is not), their review of eHarmony cites that this would be a great resource. Then there is Lavalife, which could be similar, but also features options for those just looking for intimate encounters (a little too far the other way for my friend). Dating has gotten so complicated. I am just waiting for the one that offer genetic testing for compatibility.

So, she is now emailing me about this guy or that, though she says she has not finished bugging me about hypnosis as a potential fix. LOL.

A Question of Thankfulness

One talks about time distortion as evidence of hypnosis, but I think it is evidence of life in general. I cannot believe this week is Thanksgiving. How did that happen?

These are the questions rumbling around in my mind currently as the second pot of coffee slowly drips away the morning. But in honor of the American upcoming holiday (I won't get into the politics about why or why not it should be celebrated, etc.), I think this Sunday's question will be one of thankfulness.

What is it you are most thankful for in terms of hypnosis or alternative health modalities that has made a positive difference in your life?

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Blog Battle Royale III

It is Boxing Day here! Amazing. About a month ago, I wrote a post called How to Incorporate Subway into a Hypnosis Session and entered it in the Izea Blog Battle Royale III. I am actually a finalist, which means I won a $50 gift certificate (which I am sharing with my weight loss group - it is only right), a super cool t-shirt, and an iPod Classic. I am so amazed and pleased, I just cannot help but burst and share the news. So this means that I will, in the incoming weeks, be posting about my adventures with an iPod and such (just giving you a head's up).

I am also working on a very short video meditation for winter relaxation...

Simple Minded Esoteric Saturday

I was all prepared to present a little Hypnosis death metal on this fine Saturday, but frankly, today, it just had no appeal. The only thing about the band that is hypnotic is their name. So instead, I shall show my age and share with you another 80s song by Simple Minds, called Hypnotized.

Personally, I think this is just a beautiful video. Interesting imagery. Great photography. Though when I experience hypnosis, I do not have an Opium Den like play I travel too, but why not? That would be interesting guided imagery to do...not that the transparent hypnotist recommends opium or illegal substances. Children: Do not try this at home.

Happy weekend!

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Grandfather Clock Induction

When I was little, I used to stay with my Nan. Every afternoon around 3 pm, she would plop me on her couch (with all sort of comfy pillows and a quilt) and then she would tuck me in for a nap while she had a quiet cup of tea all to herself. Not one for appreciating naps at those early ages, I knew well enough to keep still. It would allow me to be with people again much sooner. So, I would watch the old grandfather clock that stood by the doorway, its gold pendulums going back and forth and forth and back. I would wait in anticipation of the chimes (loud bongs) and sure enough I would fall asleep. I still can fall asleep with the ticking of a clock.

So after dealing with a few children clients, I have begun to wonder if doing an eye fixation induction utilizing a grandfather clock might be helpful. Sure it is like the pocket watch and pendulum inductions, but why not? It is subtle part of the decor, so it becomes more friendly. Would relaxation start to happen on its own, if you, as the hypnotist were to let these clients get comfortable, alone in your office, where the focal point is the grandfather clock, standing there majestically?

My other idea is that the interval chimes could act as a deepener. That might depend on the chime. So, I have been looking up chimes at and found a blog entry on it at From there I was referred to They apparently carry all sorts of Howard Miller grandfather clocks, of which some of these have sound files attached. I have to admit, I was a little thrilled to see that there are some clocks that are still cable driven. I had expected them to be long out of date. The clock that I am most attracted too is one such type, the Howard Miller Newell Grandfather Clock. It is simple, clean and would not look to "homey," yet would catch the eye. But, that is aesthetics, and I am concerned with the sound. The only sounds I could find were of Westminster Chimes. They are fairly classic. The clock I like mentions it has "bim bam chimes," so I cannot tell if that is the sound it makes or if it is Westminster. This is the one thing that I wish was a little different about the site, but maybe they are in the process of adding more sounds?

Maybe I am getting too hung up in the details, but I think such a clock would be a nice touch for an office and a great induction (and maybe deepning tool, too). Have any of you out there tried this?

10 Questions with Michael Raugh

1. Are you a full time hypnotist, part-time or hobbist?

Part-time with aspirations of going full-time when my children are grown. Right now I see a few clients a month and do a lot of freebie hypnosis just to keep my skills sharp.
2. Do you specialize in any type of hypnosis?
I work a lot with students on academic skills (memory, test anxiety, motivation to study). I also do my share of smokers and have been known to indulge in more light, recreational applications of hypnosis now and again.
3. Is there any type of hypnosis you do not do? Why?
I don't do weight management. Part of the reason is credibility -- I have a lot of work to do myself in that area -- and part is Maryland law, which requires that I pay for a health club license to do weight management hypnosis. When I'm happier with my own situation I'll pay the fee and branch out, but for now I refer weight clients out.
4. Do you use self-hypnosis regularly in your life?If so, how?
Oh, yes. I end each day with a 20-30 minute self-hypnosis session to get myself ready for sleep. I also use it during my morning and evening commute to help me make the transition from IT geek to dad/hypnotist.
5. Describe your hypnosis office setting.
I practice in my home. I have a room near the front door and the powder room with a pocket door for privacy, two comfortable recliners, a desk (against the wall so I'm never tempted to sit behind it), credenza for paperwork, and bookcase. Scattered around the room are various toys and props including a wall-mount candle holder (vanilla scented candle) with a silver spiral design on the front, a Tibetan prayer bowl, a brass pocket watch hanging on a hook, a pair of Chinese singing balls, a Salvador Dali print of "Soft Weeping Watch", and a couple of plush toys with sleepy expressions. Oh -- and a big glass jar half full of old, broken cigarettes. (The smell upon opening that jar is enough to put anyone off tobacco for a while!)
6. Describe a typical day in your life.
Up before 6:00am, hopefully enough before that I have time for a workout session on the stationary bike; catch a commuter bus to the day job, using self-hypnosis during the trip to pass the time and get my mind focused for work; a full day as a high-level IT geek for a government agency; another bus ride home, again using self-hypnosis but this time to leave work at work and to pleasantly ignore the afternoon traffic and crowding; arrive home and assume "Dad mode," checking homework and feeding my boys (I have 4 children, the younger two of whom are in high school); if there's a client booked that evening, pick up the office and entry way and hopefully do a little advance reading on the issue to refresh my mind and have more ideas readily available before the appointment; work with the client if there is one, otherwise spend the evening with the boys or running household chores/errands until bed.
7. Do you have a website or blog?
I do keep a website: . It has general information on hypnosis and about me, along with a couple of mini-session MP3 files that people can download and links to other hypnotists and interesting places (like The Transparent Hypnotist Blog). ;^)
8. Most fabulous hypnosis technique you use?
Has to be Parts Regression. You can use Parts on so many different things that I find myself going to it almost out of habit (and then making sure to ask myself if it's really the best tool for that particular job). Depending on the client's interests I'll do Parts as a cocktail party conversation, a Donald Trump-style boardroom meeting, a locker-room team gathering, a bunch of kids in their secret clubhouse, or whatever metaphor seems to fit.
9. Worse moment ever in a hypnosis setting.
My first solo client! I did everything wrong: I was nervous during the pretalk, I didn't get them talking enough to spot her primary representational system, I blanked out on the induction and ended up pacing and leading her into what I was sure wasn't a deep enough trance, I misworded a suggestion about tension and saw her stomach tense up dramatically ... and somehow, when she came out of trance, she was smiling and happy anyway.
10. Any words of advice to potential clients or other hypnotist.
For a potential client: Forget everything you've seen, heard, read, or been told about hypnosis. Let go of all your expectations, relax, and enjoy the ride.

For another hypnotist: Make friends with as many other hypnotists as you can! My hypnotist friends are a great source of ideas and inspiration and they're people I can talk to about this stuff who understand our jargon and processes.

10 Questions and a Follow-up

Drum roll please. Today you will find a new type of post that is about to be unveiled. For a little while I have been mulling the idea over, but was totally inspired by As you all continually read about my antics in the field of hypnosis, I want to know yours. Hence, we are now going to have a new series called "10 Questions." These questions will be the same for everyone and hopefully it will provide a whole realm of insight into the hypnosis field.

Also, you will notice yesterday I tried out the new label "blogvertising." That wasn't so hard was it? But in the realm of this blog, I was quite serious about hearing what your dream hypnosis trip would be. Or perhaps you have already done a trip where you took your hypnosis artistry on the road?

Thursday, November 15, 2007

My Dream Hypnosis Trip

Today I spilled coffee all over a suede jacket, not to mention my pants (and it hurt). I am working overtime to not let that be the sum of my day. You know how that goes. Sometimes it is easier than others. However, I am now cold. So indulge with me for a few glorious minutes while I try to move my attitude to a better place.

The topic is: what is your ultimate dream hypnosis job? Is it traveling around the world doing hypno shows? Working in a meditation lodge in the mountains? Street hypnosis in the largest cities in the world? Doing a workshop in Tibet? Seriously. What would it be?

Today, even though the coffee hurt, I would like a cup of Cafe Au Lait in Paris (I have never been). Yep, a hypno trip, staying in one of the nice Paris hotels. Then, since this is my fantasy, I would like to work with clients who have height phobias (that being one that I have personally conquered through hypnosis) at the top of the Eiffel Tower (consider this my being inspired by the mass hypnosis event in Scotland recently). That's 324 m up, you have to minus a few because that includes the height with the flagpole. Then I would soar down from this height and head to a museum, maybe the Louvre, and do a few sessions on guided imagery (got to pay for those nice hotels). After this, I would go well into the mountains, the Roane Alps, and find some where cozy to bed down and have my own mystical experience of some sort. I hear that France hotels are fairly nice if you find the right one.

Okay, so there. That is my fantasy. How about yours?

The Verdict

Time is quickly flying by this morning. I have already burned my mouth on a hot tea cup and I should think about dragging the iron out (but I don't want to, so I won't). I always tell myself I will not see clients first thing in the morning, but then I read somewhere that doing regression work and such is best early in the day. At this point I almost would rather substantiate that and sit here in my bathrobe for another hour or two, but alas, that is not to be. And I am as ever, grateful to have the client.

Just thought I would leave with the verdict in a trial from Allegheny, Pennsylvania. Perhaps you have been keeping up with this (or remember our conversations from this past summer), about an appeal from a 2003 murder trial of three Mount Lebanon men. One of the men contended that his little brother had been hypnotized (by their mother) to testify against him. This little brother received immunity for testifying.

Yesterday, a state appeals court upheld the original judge's decision that the witness had not been hypnotized.

Source: Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

A Follow Up...and a little more

I just heard from my source (sounds covert, eh?) from the PG&E that when they mentioned 60% of their smoking cessation employees had quit cold turkey, they did indeed mean that these employees quit with the help of hypnosis. Not what I would call cold turkey, but it is good to know that this was the case. Go PG&E!

Also, I just wanted to clear the air a little more. For those of you who are faithfully (or even occasionally or maybe even once) visiting the transparent hypnotist, your support has meant and does mean a lot to me. As this blog does do blovertising on occasion, I suspect (and have been told) that it may be hard to know what to comment on and so on. First, comment on anything you like. You are ALWAYS welcome to do that. And if it is something within the blogvertising that you disagree with, please do not hesitate to comment. If for some reason comments are not appropriate, I will disable them. I moderate comments, as well, to avoid certain spam issues (and the inappropriate immaturity that occasionally surfaces on the Web).

However to be a little more transparent, I have created a new label that will accompany such post. They will know be known as "blogvertising" or will say "Sponsored by." Please also know that I chose these on a basis of what is going on in my practice, so I still try to keep them informative or applicable. But also I blog about programs and sites I like as well, often with no monetary gain.

Again I thank you all for reading, writing in, and participating. Know that you are appreciated.

Thumbs up to PG&E

When I think of winter, an image that comes to mind is one where it is cold, raining or sleeting, and there huddled together at the entranced to buildings are the smokers, taking their five minutes to catch a quick fix. Maybe it is me, but I really am not a fan of the cold. I think that would be so humiliating to be forced to stand out there and give in to the quirks of my subconscious mind.

It is nice to see certain employers actively taking a stand and doing something to try to help these people. And yes, I am aware the employer has everything to gain from doing so: healthier employees may equal a higher quality output (people do still care about that, don't they?), less health care expenses, and maybe even better morale. In a press release today, PG&E announced that they are trying out group hypnosis for their employees to help with smoking cessation. So big clap on the back for PG&E. They are testing this out in San Francisco, Fresno and Sacramento, and if it proves successful they will make it a company wide program.

They started the pilot this past summer and had a 60% success rate for people quitting cold turkey. It is possible this is the number who quit by using hypnosis (it is not clear in the release). The hypnotist involved is Mary Mitchell, who regresses her group back to the time when each member tried his or her first cigarette. Then she uses NLP to replace the thoughts of this moment with the positive suggestions for change.


Tuesday, November 13, 2007

My 10 Answers

A special thanks go out to Mike, Tish, Mark, Bush, Garry, and Christine at Today they were kind enough to feature the transparent hypnotist on their blog. And welcome to all of you who are visiting because of that.

You can check out my answers here. For those of you who are blogging and are not familiar with this blog, the opportunity exist for you to be featured as well. Just visit their site and click on Ten Questions with YOU.

A Comparison

Perfection. What a wonderfully, cruel beast it is. It creates standards and expectations. It can leave some feeling accomplished and others dissatisfied. Sometimes I feel it helps when a client is a perfectionist, but in other ways it can also create a huge let down.

What brings this to mind is my poor nephew (the one trying to buy my a decent digital recorder) and his various issues lately. He is doing well in his studies, but when he does not get an A, he is devastated beyond words. It breaks my heart. Some of you may be thinking, "Oh poor him, I'd like to have that problem?" I see your point, but it does not make it any easier for him.

He emailed me earlier and mentioned being confounded by my digital recorder needs (now I feel awful, I had thought it an easy solution). He has to get the perfect one, and I cannot convince him there is no perfect one. It just needs to be able to record for about two to three hours and have a USB (or firewire) port so it can be downloaded. But he informs me this is not so simple. He looked at the last comparison shopping site I mentioned and decided he wanted more choices. So now he is looking at Quick Shop. Though the site at the moment is what the company calls a "sneak peek" into the site, as they have yet to announce it, my nephew feels it is fairly comprehensive.

He has asked me to look at this comparison site and let him know if anything sparks my fancy. Good grief. Now I have to make the decision. The good thing about the site is that it list several options and where they can be found for various prices. At least I can be conscious of his budget (he is a student, keep in mind). But I may wait a bit, I may be getting an iPod Touch soon (more about that later) and perhaps I could just get a mic for that.

If any of you are game, if you would not mind going to the site and letting me know of any of your experiences with the digital recorders, I would be very appreciative.

Please Stop Hitting Me While You Sleep

You are abruptly awakened from a sound sleep. You are being thrashed by your partner (yet again). you try to stop them, but as they are in another state of conicousness, it is hard to bring them to awareness of their actions. Then they turnover and seem to go back to sleep. In the morning, you confront his or her (yet again) and they denie it. They have no memory of doing such as thing. And he or she is probably telling the truth. He or she may have a form of parasomnia.

Here is another study for your box of hypnosis-does-good. The Mayo Clinic College of Medicine’s Sleep Disorders Center has done a long-term study on hypnosis and parasomnia. What is parasomnia? This is the distinction and category that sleep disorders such as talking, walking and eating while you sleep, as well as night terrors, restless leg syndrome, and teeth grinding fit nicely into. Also, some people have sex or drive while asleep. We have all seen a few of the later, I expect. However, this is serious stuff, as it causes inappropriate psychical responses during slow-wave sleep or non-REM modes, which means the person with this disorder may hurt themselves or someone else without knowing it or doing it intentionally. These are often triggered by stress or depression.

The five-year study was done to see if hypnotherapy would be useful in treating people with parasomnia. It followed 36 people for this duration to see what the effects of hypnosis would have upon the disorder. The ages of the study participants varied between age sex and 71 years (four were between the ages of six and 16). Each was given one to two sessions of hypnosis with follow-ups at one month, 18 months, and five years. At the one month mark, 45.4% had stopped experiencing parasomnias. At 18 months, 42.2% remained without symptoms, and at five years 40.5% were still free of symptoms.

Did the hypnosis relieve these people of the symptoms or did it work because hypnosis is a great stress reducer or perhaps the depression was released during the process? That is undecided, but in my book, it beats medication.

A potential finding of other studies on parasomnias show a link between it and Parkinson Disease. It is possible that the parasomnia is a potential warning sign of it.

Insight Journal
When the Brain Disrupts the Night (from the New York Times)

Monday, November 12, 2007

The Other Phobias

If any of you are participating in events this week, it stands to be a busier week than normal. Please feel free to share what you are doing (you can even use the comment section for advertising your events).

When I was tabulating the poll responses just a little while ago, I noticed three of you cited "other" as your response to your biggest fear. Would you consider sharing the phobia (you can even post anonymously if you would like)? When I posted the list of choices, I wet through the ones that first came to mind and those of my clients, so I am curious as to what bothers you.

Personally (it is only fair that I answer this), my biggest fears fluctuate depending upon the situation. Sometimes it is a fear of not having a stable income - what will happen to me if things do not work out, sometimes it is dealing with rude people in the bank or grocery store, sometimes it is fearing that my blood sugar will drop too low at an inconvenient time. But, I suspect these are not so much phobias, as certain neurosis. Last week I told you about my sudden issue with walking on rough terrain on the edge of a hill. My partner says he thinks it is more of a fear of turning my ankle because I obsess over ankle support. What strange creatures we are.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Stepping into the Mist

The script goes something like this:

You are now entering the mist, perhaps it is blue or white, but it could be any color you prefer, as long as it is a good color, a color that allows you to feel comforted, nurtured. This is a good mist, a timeless place where you can go to heal and revive. The mist is a healing mist.

And there I am, floating in this place of timelessness, resting, peaceful. In some aspects, I wish I could stay here indefinitely. No cares. No worries. Perhaps a uroboric time or perhaps a time of true connectedness with the great and powerful All. Maybe it is nothing.

This is the starting point of an inner journey of self-exploration within certain hypnotic philosophies (read regression). And when guided, one emerges for this powerful mist into awaiting clarity.

For me the mist has always been a mystical concept. When I was a teenager, I remember being driven through the rocky, coastal areas into a misty landscape, and I always had the secret hope that once we cleared the mist, we would be in some wonderful, historic place. Mist as a mode of time travel. It never scared me. Rather, I would occasionally long to be wrapped in its comforting oblivion and hopefulness.

But here we are, ripped from these comforting, tranquil moments of contemplation into a nightmare. Thank you very much, Hollywood, we now get to witness The Mist by Stephen King. Perhaps not as dreadful as the imagination can make it with the words of his written story, the horror of the unknown is about to be unleashed (once again) on the big screen.

But, many of you are aware, I am a horror junky, so this will probably not escape me. The basic plot is that a group of townspeople are all trapped in a supermarket by a strange and enveloping mist. This mist is not healing. It is a mist that cloaks horrible creatures and brings about certain death. Though very much in the horror genre, this could also be a psychological thriller. It shows the depravity that can occur in time of torture and tragedy; the insanity of fear and how it can strip away the layers of controlled consciousness, and release the beast within us all.

I suppose this mist does a similar thing to my therapeutic mist. It does show other consciousness depths, but not in a pleasant way. It stares our natural fears in the face, but shows what can happen if we let the fear get the better of us. This too, perhaps, is a learning experience of the loss of self-control and fearal aftermath.

If you want to begin the visualization process, do check out the web site and the trailers. It is a nice use of Flash. Oh, and the movie comes out on November 21.

A Question of Events

This morning I am changing things up a bit. No, you will still get the Sunday question to ponder, but rather than asking you it over a cup of coffee or tea, this morning, it is all about apple cider. Hot apple cider. At the moment it is plain in its sweet but tart glory. Perhaps later it will evolve with a dollop of fresh whip cream (if only I had that mixer) and a touch of nutmeg.

So, as I sip this pre-evolutionary drink, I think the Sunday question will touch upon events.

In your practice (whatever that maybe - hypnosis or not), do you participate in community events such as the Great American Smokeout, National Memory Screening Day, National Breast Cancer Awareness, and so forth? If so, which ones and why? Do you do it for business reasons or personal ones, or perhaps a little of both?

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Inking Out

While I am watching old movies on this fine Saturday, I am also trying to print out a newsletter for my weight loss hypnosis group. Normally I would send a newsletter to a printer, but I am doing less then ten copies. However, one page is full color (pictures from Halloween) and the other three are black and white. So, when this is done, I need to look at buying new ink cartridges. I use an Epsen Stylus CX5000, which means that several cartridges are needed.

So this time, I got industrious and found a few tips at for ink conservation. I guess it is not an urban legend that turning off and on your printer uses ink. Interesting. It also recommends that when printing in black and white (three of my pages), that one should set the print settings to just black and white. This is just part of their Seven Steps to Saving Ink.

This site also explains in plain English the differences in generic print cartridges, refilling ink cartridges and why one might or might not want to use these products. This information can be found in their article on Generic and Remanufactured Cartridges. I have my own biases, but it is good to be a bit more educated.

Along with this information, provides online sources for cheap inkjet cartridges and discount laser toner and coupons for these, up to 80% off retail prices. The company collects coupon codes for specific online sellers and makes them easily accessible.

So, another tool for finding the best deal for your printing needs.