Betty Ericksons’ self hypnosis method
Betty Erickson was Milton Erickson’s wife. For those of you that know about hypnosis, this will be a very familiar name. He is often considered to be the most influential hypnotist of all time and was studied to develop other techniques such as NLP. His wife, Betty, describes this method for inducing self hypnosis.
Find a comfortable place so that you can sit or lie and relax.
Breathe slowly and focus your attention in front of you. Relax and let your body feel easy and lazy.
Decide how long you want to practice hypnosis for. When you tell yourself, “I want to practice hypnosis for (your choice of time)”,your subconscious becomes aware of this and will nudge you when the correct amount of time has elapsed
You also decide what you would like to achieve with this hypnosis. Write down a statement about the results you want after hypnosis. Doing this will help your subconscious mind to focus on that issue. One way to do this is to write, “I am practising hypnosis so that my subconscious mind can focus on issues like _________.”
The blank is for you to fill in. Speaking the sentence to yourself and writing it down helps you to tune your subconscious mind towards the results you want to achieve.
Now, focus on three things in front of you. Give each of them a reasonable amount of your time. Small things like a shadow or a photo will be good to focus on. Some people even speak out the object they are focusing on to help the mind tune into that mode and mood.
Now focus on what you hear. Separate three things that you can hear. This will help you differentiate the sounds from the surrounding.
Next think about three things that you can feel.Feel each of them for a reasonable amount of time. Subtle feelings like the weight of your watch, the temperature of your ankle or how heavy you feel would useful for your sensations.
Repeat the process of thinking about the things you see, hear and feel but only for two things each. When you have completed this do it again, but with only one thing each time.
This brings to end the “external” things that you need to take care of to hypnotize yourself. Now beings the internal hypnosis.
Shut your eyes. Remember an image. Make it an easy image to imagine – hypnosis is for relaxation, not to bring in stress. Accept whatever image comes to your mind. Don’t be judgemental – accept any image. If no images comes up, then try to think about something you would like to think about.
Next, let your mind acknowledge some sound and pin a name to it. Though the hypnosis is internal, you are allowed to hear sounds that are external to your body. The point is to accept whatever comes to you.
Do the same thing with feeling. Feel a feeling and name it. Use you visualization to do this. It could be a sensory experience, like feeling the breeze of wind, or it could be an emotion that arises. Accept whatever you can feel.
Continue the same way as you did with the external hypnosis. Use two images, two sound and two feelings and maintain this cycle.
When you are done or your subconscious gives you a nudge, open your eyes. You might feel out of place and bit fuzzy, but you will come back into the real world as per the time you had decided. Take a few deep breaths and have a good stretch. You may find that you just feel relaxed, but depending on what you wanted to achieve at the start of your self hypnosis, you may find yourself in a much better place, or closer to the solution you were looking for.
If at first you don’t succeed – it’s fine. Try again another day. As with all things, some people are better at this that others, but we can all get better with practise.
May you find peace, harmony and all the answers you are looking for 🙂