I thought this article by Steve Jones was especially interesting.
Usually there is a lot said about putting one under the spell
of Hypnosis, but very little about how to get out — and it’s
more than just counting backwards from 10!
Trance Termination: The Start for Hypnosis to Work
The end of a hypnosis session is the beginning of a new way of
thinking and acting. One important step in the whole hypnosis
process is that ending, known to hypnotherapists as “trance
termination.” How it is brought about and what you do next can
make all the difference in the effectiveness of your hypnotherapy.
During hypnosis you are put into a trance-like state. This allows
you to put away the conscious, often over analytical mind for a
short time and allow a spoken message or script to take center
stage in your thought processes. It is here that hypnosis is
turned into hypnotherapy; where suggestions are made that can bring
about changes in your life. In order to move from the dreamy state
of the trance to real life the trance is specifically terminated.
It goes beyond just being commanded to wake up. In fact, you are
often instructed that now you can go to sleep. You are so
completely relaxed with hypnosis that self-hypnosis used at night
before bed usually ends with sleep. In an office or clinical
setting, you are instructed to become more fully alert.
There are 5 basic steps that lead up to trance termination:
1. A review of what was learned during the session. This also
includes instructions on what to do with this new information. The
summary helps reinforce the desired changes.
2. The second step further reinforces changes but by giving
instructions to also forget to over-analyze the new information. It
is sometimes part of the amnesia step of the total hypnosis process.
3. Awakening. This step is meant to gradually re-orientate the
individual into a state of awareness.
4. Distraction is used next. It is done by mentioning something
that either has nothing to do with the hypnosis session or bringing
up a topic that may have been discussed before starting the trance.
It is similar to amnesia in that it keeps the person from dwelling
too much with the conscious mind on the information from the
5. Finally, the hypnotherapist can ask questions to the person
hypnotized to see what they experienced. It further fills the gap
between consciousness and the subconscious experience of hypnosis.
Sometimes a person undergoing hypnosis is not ready or willing to
discuss the session at this point, and that is okay. The
hypnotherapist does not push the issue. It is just another way to
bring them to full consciousness.
Whether your trance is terminated with verbal instructions to wake
up or go to sleep doesn’t matter. The important part is that you
are mentally moving from the hypnotherapy to a natural state,
either full consciousness or sleep. So what is next?
1. Understand that this process is designed to help you not focus
on the messages so you won’t over-analyze. Accept this and know
that the therapy is still working.
2. Don’t work too hard at remembering because it will be stressful
3. Finally, look at the big picture. Is your willpower stronger?
Are you starting to achieve the goals you set for yourself with
hypnotherapy? These are the real results that you can see and
measure over a relatively short period of time.
Trance termination is the final step to the hypnosis process. It
is as important to the effectiveness of hypnotherapy as the script
itself. It is used in self-hypnosis and personal hypnotherapy
alike, and it works to bring about desired changes.
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Steve G. Jones is a board certified Clinical Hypnotherapist who
works extensively with Hollywood actors, writers, directors, and
producers, helping them achieve their very best. Click Here to