Liberation In Mind

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What is Hypnosis?

Hypnosis = relaxation effect + suggestion.

Mindfulness/meditation = relaxation effect + non-attachment.

The term hypnosis was coined by a Scottish doctor called James Braid (1795-1860). It comes from the Greek word “hypnos” meaning sleep. But hypnosis is not the same as sleep. Dr James Braid realised this, and later tried to change the name, but unfortunately the name stuck and its use has persisted to this day. Dr James Braid published his findings in Neurypnology (1843), arguably the first book on hypnosis.

The British Medical Association BMA and the American Medical Association AMA, looked into hypnosis in the 1950s and concluded it was a safe and an effective tool. They suggested it should be taught to medical students. However, their conclusions and advice have been ignored.

Typically, hypnosis is described as a natural, relaxed, altered state of consciousness and focused inner attention.

Some examples of hypnotic experiences include:

  • Deep relaxation.
  • Being completely absorbed in watching a movie or reading a book.
  • Being in the “zone” when exercising/training/performing.
  • When you are daydreaming.

When your mind is relaxed, your critical/analytical parts of your mind are less active, and your mind is more open to suggestions, particularly suggestions which you want to take on board.

So, during this relaxed hypnotic state, your subconscious mind is more open to suggestions, which can be used, to help you, make positive changes in your life.

There is a saying, that the job of a hypnotherapist is to un-hypnotize you from all the bad habits and thought patterns you have been hypnotized into during your life.

In summary, hypnosis is a natural, relaxed, safe, focused, state of consciousness. It is a natural and useful technique. You can use it to change unwanted habits and thought patterns, to help make your life better.

Best wishes,


Dr Paul Ogilvie
Dr Paul Ogilvie