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The hypnotist simply guides you into that state - it is your cooperation that makes hypnosis work.
Do not expect to go to sleep or lose touch with reality. You are fully aware, and you will know everything that is going on around you.
People who are about to be hypnotized for the first time often wonder what itís like Ė
will it really work, and how can they be sure that it worked?
What does hypnosis feel like?
Although the experience is different for every individual, one thing I can say for sure is that hypnosis feels like being very, very relaxed.
Other sensations you might experience include some of the following. You might find that youíll have a feeling of numbness, or a perhaps a tingling feeling in your hands or feet, or arms or legs, and these are perfectly normal and natural responses to hypnosis. Some people, as they relax so deeply, find that they may feel very heavy, like youíre sinking right down into the chair, or perhaps youíll feel more light, as if you were about to be floating above the chair on your own little cloud. Either way, these also are normal and natural responses to hypnotism.
You might even feel a bit disconnected from your body. As if you were not connected to your arms or legs perhaps, or at least as if you are not aware of them even though youíre sure that they are fine. While you're so relaxed you might notice that your eyelids will flicker or flutter a little bit, or your eyes might move back and forth as though youíre watching a dream. Again, this is just a natural and normal response.
Sometimes while youíre in hypnosis, you may have an extra need to swallow occasionally, and thatís perfectly OK. And while youíre so relaxed, you may find that you'll hear every word that I say, or maybe you'll notice the sounds outside, or you may find that actually you almost forget to hear my words and you let your mind wander off to pleasant thoughts and pleasant daydreams, letting your imagination bring you pleasant sights or sounds or experiences. Either way is fine. Whether you hear my words or not, your subconscious mind is listening and will accept everything that is beneficial to you.
While in hypnosis, you may find that you arenít sure if youíve been relaxing for a very long time or for a few brief moments. It seems that it really doesnít matter Ö and again, either way is fine for you.
The important thing is Ö that if you experience any or all of the things Iíve mentioned, or maybe even some of your own special sensations of hypnosis Ö however you experience hypnosis is right for you, and you'll find it an enjoyable and welcome experience.
Once in a while, on coming out of hypnosis a client might express disappointment with the experience. They insist that they have heard everything that was going on, and that they did not go to sleep. This comes from misconceptions about what hypnosis is. . The amnesia and lack of consciousness that they may have anticipated are not experienced by the vast majority of people. Nevertheless, although an individual may consciously believe that their trance was extremely light, or that they had not been hypnotically affected, the suggestions which have been given to them will in most cases exercise influence. Unless of course the person deliberately sets out to prove that the suggestions will not work, in which case, there is no way that the person will go into trance.
Those who insist that they have only experienced a light trance, or no trance at all, should realize that it is perfectly normal to hear external noises and to maintain rapport with the hypnotist, and to remember everything that occurs during the session. In other words, on coming out of hypnosis you may feel no differently than you did before being hypnotized, but the effects will be there.
To quote the June 1977 issue of "Psychology Today":
What Does a Hypnosis Session Feel Like?