Thursday, December 6, 2007

Just How Analytical Are You?

When you think to yourself, do you want a cup of coffee because it is warm and comforting or do you want a cup of tea because it is refreshing, your decision is based on a series of analytical processes. For instance, I am drinking tea this morning because my analytic prowess's say that I am too lazy to make a pot of coffee. LOL.

When I learned about various hypnotism theories, it was stressed that there is an analytical scale on which everyone can be charted. Finding out a client's place on this chart would help the hypnotist know what sort of induction to use that would benefit the client. If the client was found to be very analytic, relaxing in general might be difficult for that person, so progressive relaxation would not be the best way to begin to bring about a state of hypnosis.

The Analytical Scale
On one side of the analytical scale is a person who is a hundred percent analytical, which seems to mean totally rational and not so prone to uses of the imagination. On the other side is the exact opposite of this. It is a person who is extremely creative and very imaginative. Often this is shown as a line chart, but I think the idea of scale is much better. A scale has to balance and it creates a whole. In a line chart, this does not matter and so how can a person be balanced?

Testing for the Analytic Client
Sounds ominous, does it not? Really, it is very simple stuff that is more fun than not. This sort of thing may also be called testing for hypnotizability (is that even a word?), which is often done during stage hypnosis shows. Perhaps you have seen or experienced the whole "clasping your hands together and not being able to separate them" phenomenon?

The Old Balloon and Sand Bag Test
One of the most famous test is that of closing your eyes, holding your arms straight out in front of the body, one palm turned up and the other down. Imagine or think about a balloon being tied to the wrist of the hand that is facing upwards. It is light and airy and begins to pull that arm upwards. Now, on the other wrist facing downwards, a bag of sand is looped over it and the weight drags the arm down. Mind you, the hypnotist guides you through this, also employing his or her voice to give the suggestions of the balloon pulling the arm up and the bag of sand pulling the other down. You are then asked to open your eyes and look at your arms. If the balloon arm is higher than then the sand one, it is believed that you are able to bypass the analytic side of your mind and use your imagination to image the weight changes. If your arms remained the same, it may mean that your analytic mind kicked in and said something to the affect of "there is no balloon or bag of sand, so why move the arms?"

So, what does this all mean? If the hypnotist believes that you are more analytical, the suggestion work of the session with revolve around giving your conscious mind tasks to focus on and occupy it while the hypnotist inputs the suggestions.

Also, confusion may be added into the mix on purpose to help bring about a new state of consciousness. What these procedures do is more of less catch you off guard and move you rapidly into a hypnotic state. They work on an element of surprise. Another confusion techniques is to overload the conscious mind to a point where it basically gives up critical thought processes and essentially takes a coffee break.

Where Words Fail
Some hypnotist use a form of hypnosis they term analytical hypnosis. To the transparent hypnotist, this would mean using the idea of keeping the mind focused on certain activities to create change. However, in researching this a bit, it sounds more like a hypnotherapy process of analysis, rather than analytic process. So, I will not be discussing "analytical" hypnosis because I disagree with the terminology, though I may cover the same concepts under a different title.

What say you?


Bill said...

That's an interesting notion, and I've met my share of rigid scientists and stupid artists. Nevertheless it falls apart when you consider Inventors. Inventors tend to possess both excessive creativity and exceptional analytical skills. Thus those two concepts are likely to be independent variables, not opposite poles on the scale of suggestibility.

The Transparent Hypnotist said...

Hi Bill!

Thanks for commenting. I see your point, but I guess I may not have explained it in clear enough terms. It is not analytical as in personality or job typing. One might think of scientists as analytic sorts, but in reality, brilliance (as in inventors as well) occurs in abstract and imaginative moments. And you are right about them - creativity and analytical are independent variables, but in the case of hypnosis and how one reacts to a hypnotist, they do tend to be contrast. It is more about how one intakes information than anything else. Does this make sense?


Bill said...

Hi Ellie,

I think I see your point, that a mind that's more analytical than the base state has to be distracted before suggestion can take hold. I'm not sold on the use of the word creative at the other end. It seems like the principal claim is that the individual internalizes the visualization of the hypnotist's words versus the analyst who considers the words and applies known context first. I'm not sure what I'd call that, but creative isn't it.

The description sounds an awful lot like the difference between the person who experiences the world through direct input versus through what they think of the input which starts to sound like the MBTI's sensor/intuitive scale.