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Hypnosis Demystified: Is it Sleep?


By Columnist Ernest McLeod – Certified Hypnotherapist:


Often first time clients who come and see me have this idea in their mind that hypnosis is sleep. It’s quite understandable actually. After all the name itself is derived from the Greek word hypno – meaning sleep. Someone hypnotised certainly can give the impression of being asleep, even down to snoring loudly.

Hypnosis and Sleep

This idea of hypnosis being sleep leads to a fear on some people’s minds, “What if I don’t wake up?” or “Could I end up stuck in hypnosis?”

In the years of practicing and the many hypnotist I have met, no one has ever had a client stay stuck in hypnosis. And if the hypnotist were to suddenly disappear, the worst thing that would happen is that you eventually wake up as if you had woken up from a restful deep sleep. After a few minutes or a few hours, feeling completely rested and refreshed.

Hypnosis is a Trance State

So what is hypnosis if it is not sleep? These days we refer to hypnosis as a trance state. A state of mind, that actually most of us experience naturally, on a daily basis.

Ever caught yourself getting lost in the moment? Maybe you are enjoying a cup of coffee and just watching time go by or you are so focused on something you are doing, suddenly you catch yourself and notice that the time that has passed is a lot longer than it felt like. As if you’ve been in a daydream.

A classic example is, at the end of your work day you get into your car, maybe you put the music on and wind down the window as it’s a nice warm day, you begin to head home. Suddenly you are getting out of the car, realising you have arrived at home. You know you drove home, but you can’t really remember what happened along the way? Ever had this happen to you? You’ve been in a trance.

The Hypnotic State

This trance-like state is the exact same state that is experienced during hypnosis. A state that we naturally enter. It lies between the states of being fully awake and deep sleep. Commonly we experience dreaming while going through this state as we fall asleep and wake back up again. During which our mind is extremely active but our body can appear comatose. And it’s completely natural.

About Our Hypnotherapy News and Review Columnist Ernest McLeod
Ernest McLeod Headshot 1Ernest McLeod is the owner of The Hypno Coach, established in 2012, and has been practicing Hypnotherapy in Adelaide since 2011. Ernest is a certified hypnotherapist and studies include Hypnotherapy through ASA and ICHP Australia as well as Psychotherapy. He also holds Certified Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming and Certified Practitioner of Time Line Therapy with the American Board of Neuro-Linguistic Programming.

Ernest’s wealth of life experience includes growing up in Austria, close to Vienna. Moving to Adelaide in 1991 with his parents. His mum being South Australian. With his father working for the United Nations in Vienna, Ernest was privileged to grow-up exposed to many cultures. After graduating from college Ernest began a career as Software Developer which spanned nearly 20-years. Having also established himself as a internationally awarded fashion photographer, Ernest moved into hypnotherapy. Something that had fascinated Ernest since early childhood.

Ernest McLeod Logo

Disclaimer: The information published in this column are based on the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

2 thoughts on “Hypnosis Demystified: Is it Sleep?”

  1. I’ve never really considered hypnosis. But, now I’ve read this it makes a whole lot more sense.

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