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Lifestyle:  Self Hypnosis To Reduce Stress

How to hypnotize yourself
Now that you have a very basic understanding of how the conscious and subconscious mind work, your first step is to learn how to put your mind in an Alpha state yourself in order to facilitate the changes that need to be made. Since self-hypnosis is simple to learn we will begin with that modality and give you several examples that you can use for self-hypnosis.

The first thing you need to do is learn how to hypnotize yourself. There are three tools that you will be using: suggestion, concentration and imagination. If you have a good imagination you will have no trouble mastering these techniques very quickly. It is important not to try too hard. The whole concept is to just relax and let yourself go. If you try too hard you will become tense and this is exactly what you don’t want. Also ignore any analytical attitude. If you don’t, you will keep the conscious mind awake and the whole object of hypnotizing yourself is to relax.

Relax and let yourself go
We assume you want to hypnotize yourself or wouldn’t be doing this. You can’t go into self-hypnosis against your will. Therefore you can’t do it unless you follow the rules. Before we begin, it is important to realize that there is no set “script” to the verbiage of a hypnotic trance. There are different techniques used by pioneers in hypnotherapy. The first technique was developed by one of those pioneers. His name was Charles Tebbetts who was already a teenager by World War I. Charles is known for his comment that, “all hypnosis is self-hypnosis, and the power is in the mind of the person being hypnotized.”

Our first technique is called “Fractional Relaxation,” and is one of the best induction methods for beginners. It takes a little longer than some other formulas, but it’s a great conditioning technique for faster methods which can be more easily learned later. It relaxes the body completely, often to the point of partial or total loss of bodily awareness. Tension is released and the conscious mind drifts in and out of awareness of the surroundings, often viewing mental images of forgotten events from the subconscious. Here’s how you do it:

Lie down on your back, arms parallel to your body, fingers loosely outstretched and palms downward. Separate the feet by eight or ten inches so that no part of your thighs are touching. Use a pillow if you wish, and make yourself as comfortable as possible. Remove or loosen clothing that binds you in any way and remove your shoes if they are tight. The idea is to get comfortable and relaxed. If you are recording this procedure, use the second person throughout, but if you intend to use it without a recording, memorize it in the first person. It is given here in the second person so it may be read directly from the book into the microphone. Start reading in a soft voice, rather slowly, and gradually slow down more and more, drawing out your words and pausing often between sentences. Your voice and the pace of your speech must suggest drowsiness and relaxation. Speak in a very slow monotone.

Now let’s assume you are in the described position, and are listening to your voice coming from your recorder. He is what you should hear:

“Fix your eyes on a spot on the ceiling and take three long, deep breaths. Inhale, hold the air in your lungs for three seconds, and as you exhale slowly, you will relax all over. Now let’s take the first breath. Inhale. (pause) Exhale – Sleep now (pause) Now another deep breath, even deeper than before. Inhale. (pause) Exhale – Sleep now. (pause) Now another deep breath, even deeper than before. Inhale. (pause) Exhale – Sleep now. (pause) Now as your whole body begins to relax, and as every muscle and nerve begins to grow loose and limp – your eyelids also become heavy and tired. They grow heavier and heavier, and will close now. The lids have become so tired and so heavy, it would be difficult to open them, but you have no desire to try because you want them to remain closed until I tell you to open them. (pause)

Now, I want you to concentrate all of your attention on your right foot. Relax the toes of your right foot. Imagine they are like loose rubber bands dangling from your foot. (pause) Let this loose feeling spread back through the ball of the foot, and then all the way back to the heel. (pause) (Drag out the word all and speak very slowly fro this point on, pausing between ALL sentences.) Now, let this relaxed feeling go up into the calf of the leg. Let the calf muscles go loose-and-limp and LA-A-A-ZY. (long pause) And now, while your muscles and nerves are relaxing, let your mind relax also. Let it drift away to pleasant scenes in your imagination. Let your mind wander where it will, as you go deeper – deeper into drowsy relaxation. You are breathing easily; all of your cares and tensions are fading away, as you go deeper – d-e-e-p-e-r into drowsy slumber. Every breath that you take – every noise that you hear makes you go deeper, deeper, into pleasant, comfortable relaxation.

Now let the wonderful wave of relaxation move from your right calf up into the large thigh muscles. Let them go loose and limp. The right leg is now completely relaxed and comfortable. (pause) Now the left foot. The toes relax, the whole foot relaxes just as the right one did – limp and lazy. Let the feeling of pleasant relaxation go up into the left calf. Let the calf muscles go. Your legs are feeling heavy like pieces of wood. As you relax the left thigh muscles, they feel heavier and heavier and you become more and more drowsy. Now as the wave of relaxation moves upward through your hips and abdomen, you let go more and more. Think of your abdomen as an inflated ball. Your are letting the air out of the ball and it spreads out and relaxes completely. Stomach and solar plexus relax. Let them go – as you go further into deep – deep slumber. (pause)

(slowly) The fingers in your right hand are now relaxing and so is your wrist. Now your forearm relaxes. On up to your right shoulder – your whole right arm is relaxed and numb. You probably feel your fingers or your toes tingling. This is a good sign, so continue to go deeper. And now, just go on over, into a deep, deep hypnotic sleep. (pause)

The fingers on your left hand are completely relaxed. Your hand and forearm are letting go. Up, through your elbow, to your upper arm, relax. Now the left shoulder, let go – loose, limp and lazy. Now relax all the large back muscles, from your shoulders all the way down to your waist – let them all go limp and loose. (Remember, plenty of pauses. Continue to speak softly and very slowly.)

Relax the muscles in your neck. Let your jaws separate and let the chin and cheek muscles go loose and rubbery. (pause) Now let your eyes go. Let them go completely – relax and feel comfortable and good. Relax the eyebrows too and the forehead. Let the muscles rest. Back across the scalp – let the entire scalp relax – from the forehead all the way back to the back of the neck – all relaxed – all resting – all loose. You are now completely relaxed.

Your body feels boneless. You are going deeper and deeper into restful hypnosis. Your mind is experiencing a wonderful feeling of tranquility. Your subconscious is now receptive to the helpful suggestions I am now going to give it.
(At this point the suggestion is given to the subconscious mind.)”

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"Rapid Induction Technique" of Self Hypnosis

What we are using in this next example is a variation of the Fractional Relaxation Technique called the “Rapid Induction Technique.”

1. Make yourself as comfortable as you can on a mat, a couch or a chair.

2. Inhale deeply and exhale, releasing all muscular tensions everywhere in the body. Continue to breathe naturally, easily and gently.

3. Close your eyes. Focus your attention gently on your subconscious mind and give it the following commands silently and in sequence:
    a. Address yourself by name. (The name or nickname to which you usually respond automatically when called by another person. Say silently to your subconscious mind, “I WANT YOU TO RELAX, VERY DEEPLY, NOW!”
    b. Let go and let down. Feel your mind, your emotions and your physical body sink quickly and deeply into relaxation, drifting ever deeper and deeper until you reach a plateau of relaxation.
    c. At this point, again address your subconscious mind by name and once more say silently to yourself, “I WANT YOU TO RELAX MORE DEEPELY, NOW!”
    d. Feel yourself plunging deeper into relaxation, going down further and deeper until you reach another plateau of relaxation.
    e. Once again, address your subconscious mind quietly, silently, by name and repeat the command, “I WANT YOU TO RELAX MORE DEEPLY NOW!”
    f. And finally, once more, address yourself in a silent whisper, calling yourself by name and giving yourself a final command, “I WANT YOU TO RELAX MORE DEEPLY NOW!”
    g. At this time you should reach a very effective level of deep relaxation when you can give yourself very effective suggestions toward achieving your desired goals.
    h. You may give yourself suggestions in the form of visualizations, positive verbal suggestions, altered feelings or emotions such as:

  1. Visualizing your ideal configuration and weight.
  2. Replacing any fears, anxieties, depressions or other negative feelings by a sense of self confidence, optimism, pride or other positive emotion through verbal suggestions and suggested feelings.
  3. Permitting a feeling of deep pervasive peace to envelop you.
  4. Suggesting to your subconscious mind – time contractions – for example, that the next hour will seem like only ten minutes have passed.
  5. Any other suggestions consistent with your selected goals.

4. With daily practice for about two weeks, using this Rapid Self Induction Technique, you should be able to put yourself into an effective level of deep relaxation, within 30 seconds whether lying down, sitting or standing up.

5. After you have mastered the Rapid Self Induction Technique, with an additional 1 to 3 weeks of daily practice to achieve a state of deep, effective relaxation within 1 to 5 seconds merely by closing your eyes and silently saying to yourself, “RELAX.” This almost instant self induction should be practiced consistently in all positions (lying, sitting and standing) to maintain proficiency.

Create your Suggestion
Now that you have learned how to induce an advanced state of relaxation, you must learn how to structure the suggestion you would like to teach to your subconscious mind. The subconscious mind must obey suggestions as though they were orders. While in hypnosis, with the conscious mind somewhat inhibited, it is possible to reach the subconscious mind directly with the suggestions that you want it to program.

It is very important to understand that the subconscious operates without the benefit of your conscious reasoning. Therefore you must be extremely careful with wording your suggestions. Structure them correctly and the subconscious will carry them out for you faithfully without conscious effort of any sort. Your motivation must be strong. Start your suggestion with your motivating desire:

  • Because I have a strong desire to live stress free, highway gridlock no longer upsets me”
  • “Because I have a strong desire to have an attractive, slim figure and because I enjoy wearing a size nine dress my body no longer requires more calories than it needs to live healthy”

There are examples of two complete auto suggestions. A couple of factors are important. You must always phrase the suggestion in the present tense as if the action has already occurred. You must never mention the negative behavior you wish to eliminate.

Suggest action, not the ability to act. In other words, don’t say, I have the ability to live stress free. . . .and so on. You must be specific.

Use repetition when writing your suggestion. Repeat it, enlarge upon it and repeat it again in different words. Embellish it with convincing adjectives. Repeat your suggestion daily until it becomes entrenched in your subconscious.
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