The relaxed mental state of hypnosis allows a client to block out external stimulus and enter a trance-like state. In Hypnotherapy, this trance-like state lets the client achieve a heightened self-awareness so as to elicit life changes.
Under hypnosis, you are in the same relaxed state often experienced when lying in bed before falling asleep. Although you are awake, you focus on the internal thoughts and memories that the hypnotherapist guides you through.
Hypnotherapy is a two-way process between hypnotherapist and client. One must consent to being hypnotized and cooperate throughout the whole process. Unlike a stage act, where people cluck like chickens when a bell is rung, the hypnotherapist can never force you do anything without your consent. What hypnotherapists do is therapeutic versus stage hypnosis done for entertainment. Most people have been in a hypnotic state at some point in time. For instance, have you even been driving your car, then suddenly realize that you were daydreaming and cannot remember driving the last 25 miles?
There are two applications to hypnotherapy. In Suggestion therapy, the power of suggestion is used in a hypnotic state to change behaviors (stop smoking or avoid overeating). Suggestion therapy can also treat chronic pain by helping clients change their perceptions on the pain itself. In Hypnotherapy, analysis is used to uncover the root cause of issues that one is experiencing. The relaxed state lets the client recall events from their unconscious, which may not be evident while in a non-hypnotic state. Using these two applications, the hypnotist is able to help the client resolve tough issues and overcome distressing obstacles that they have been enduring. Studies show that Hypnotherapy is both safe and effective.