If you want to use hypnosis for therapeutic reasons, there are three personal assets you will need. They are: imagination, concentration, and a genuine motivation to be hypnotized. Each time someone works with a group to induce hypnosis, we can still justifiably say we are talking about self-hypnosis. It is every person's individual option: they either wish to collaborate with the operator and experience hypnosis, or they do not.
Hypnosis involves releasing some of the power of your subconscious mind, and this takes time and practice. Once learnt, however, it can then be used to improve many aspects of your life. Therapeutic hypnosis is not accessible to everyone, but most of us can reach light or medium states through concentration, coupled with patience. Deep levels of hypnosis produce the best therapeutic results, but even beginners may reach healthy states of relaxation and inner peace.
At the lighter levels of hypnosis, their operators usually experience feelings of relaxation and calmness. It is also possible to perceive some physical changes. Some people, for example, may experience tingling sensations in the fingers, blinking eyelids, a sensation of weight in some parts of the body and others. The intensity of these early experiences is usually low, but a few weeks of practice can teach you how to develop these skills even further.
Another element that often relates to initial hypnosis is the distortion of time. Most people who undergo hypnosisl believe they were hypnotized for a shorter period of time than it was in reality. However, after they have experienced hypnosis a few times, a person will start to get a better perception of the passing time.
As the hypnosis subject progresses to medium levels of hypnosis, the altered state becomes more enhanced. Physical perceptions may gain more importance, and the subject may experience heightened tingling feelings or heaviness in the lower body. Some subjects experience floating sensations, and all these feelings are perceived as being very real by the one being hypnotized. This stage allows the hypnotist to suggest stronger visual images in the subject's mind. At this level, creating illusions becomes more accessible. New thresholds that were unavailable previously now become apparent. Conscious awareness may fade for the subject when the level of hypnosis deepens.
A subject who reaches the somnambulistic levels of hypnosis, can achieve even better mental and physical responses. Several physiologic responses can be observed, such as the REM (rapid eye movement) usually associated with dreams during sleep. At this stage the patients may experience complete conscious amnesia, as if they are virtually absent from their surrounding reality. This is also the level where strong hallucinations can occur, not only during the actual hypnosis process, but even after it ends. Hypnosis can be viewed as the sleep of the nervous system. There is a decrease in the rate of respiration, but not as strong as the one experienced during sleep. Circulation also slows down, together with the brain waves.
Brain wave variations in intensity commence with beta, the fastest, then slow to alpha, theta and delta. Beta waves are primary when the mind is under a normal state of consciousness. Reduced levels of hypnosis decrease the brain wave activity to alpha, and deeper levels may take a subject's brain waves all the way to theta.