Adults and adolescents may begin a medical hypnosis session by relaxing deeply, muscle group by muscle group. When the body is relaxed, in the state of hypnosis (also called a trance), the mind is more open to suggestions. From there, one visits one’s special place or safe spot – a place where one feels comfortable, happy, confident, relaxed and/or in control. Then, in that state of mind, one uses guided imagery or visualization to envision a state of health or improved performance.
The images are always positive, never negative. For example, one might picture oneself “controlling those tics” or, “controlling that headache, or that stomach ache,” or some other positive suggestion.
By practicing these techniques several times a day, patients can help themselves get better. For example, some patients with headaches can picture their headaches as a certain shape and color, and then substituting a healing, positive shape and color taking over, growing, and getting rid of that old headache. And, he has them picture themselves in the future, for example, without that headache…How will that feel?…Now take a few moments and enjoy that feeling….
No one can ever control anyone else’s mind. Therefore, ultimately, all medical hypnosis is self-hypnosis.