#1 Loss of Consciousness:
One of the major misconceptions about hypnosis is that the subject will lose conscious awareness. In this altered state called hypnosis the subject does not lose awareness or fall asleep. The subject is alert and aware of everything at all times and hears everything the hypnotist says. The brain waves of a hypnotized person, even in deep hypnosis, are like those of one awake and not of one asleep.
#2 Hypnotized people do odd and crazy things:
If you have been to a stage hypnotism show, you can see how one might leave the performance with that impression. The perception is that the hypnotist’s commands are irresistible. A stage hypnotist is an entertainer. To put on an entertaining show the performer must invoke in the volunteer subjects outrageous and farcical behavior. Hypnotherapy is used for serious purposes, so naturally the subject will not be asked to engage in any of this type of behavior.
#3 Surrender of the will, loss of control:
Novels, popular magazine stories, comic strips, TV and the movies have perpetuated this myth. Many people believe that hypnosis is a surrender of the will to the all powerful hypnotist. Since the ability to be hypnotized is a subjective experience, nothing could be farther from the truth. Most experts agree that all hypnosis is self-hypnosis. The ability to be hypnotized rests within the subject. Although the hypnotist develops the hypnotic state and guides the subject through it, the subject is always in control.
#4 Weak mindedness:
A common misconception is that only the weak-willed or feeble-minded persons can be hypnotized. Contrary to popular belief, there is a correlation between intelligence and hypnotizability. The greater the intelligence the better the hypnotic subject.
#5 Revelation of secrets:
Frequently the question is asked, “Will I tell any secrets while I am hypnotized?” The answer is no. Hypnosis is wrongly presumed to be a “truth serum” that renders the hypnotized person incapable of lying, and robs the subject of the ability to keep embarrassing secrets confidential. While in a hypnotic state a person will not spontaneously begin talking, or reveal any intimate secrets they would not tell while in the waking state.
#6 The fear of getting “stuck” in hypnosis.
Often a prospective client will ask “What happens if you can’t get me out of this?”
Since the client holds the control, there is no difficulty in terminating the hypnotic state.
If my client is enjoying the hypnotic state a great deal as often is the case I sometimes need to repeat my back to awareness suggestions.
#7 Hypnosis weakens the will:
The will is not weakened or changed in any way. Clients are always in control and cannot be made to do anything against their will. Clients are not dominated by the will of the hypnotist.
#8 Hypnosis is habit forming:
Can a person become addicted to hypnosis or can it become habit-forming like a drug? No. Clients can resist hypnosis at any time, no matter how many times they have been hypnotized.
#9 Hypnotized against will:
A person cannot be hypnotized against their will. Hypnosis is not a clash of wills. It is a condition of trust and cooperation between the client and the hypnotist.
#10 A Hypnotized client can be made to commit acts detrimental to themselves or to others:
A hypnotized person will not do anything he or she would not do in the normal waking state. This also applies to sexual acts.