I vividly recall the first time I unknowingly used a hypnosis technique during my geology final exam at the State University of New York at Geneseo. In 2002, I was a senior and I needed to pass the science requirement in order to graduate. I was a Communication major with a concentration in journalism studies, and the hard sciences were my weakest academic area. Walking into the testing room there was a feeling of dread churning in the pit of my stomach even though I had ramped up my studying that entire previous week. I wished that I could will the nervousness out of me in order to hone in on the task at hand. One question particularly had me on the brink of panic as I could simply not remember the answer. At this moment, I put my pen down and rubbed my head. The only thought running through my mind was, “I can’t wait to get out of here”.
As I closed my eyes for a brief respite, I began frantically searching the seemingly infinite database in my mind for any kind of a clue that could possibly help me. Suddenly, I remembered a visualization exercise that I had learned as a kid during karate class. I took a few deep breaths and with my eyes closed I heard the words, “Your mind is like a library”. I remembered my old karate instructor drilling this idea into my ten year old brain in order to help me remember various techniques. “Just go within and retrieve what you know you already know”. Imagining myself within a vast library of books while sitting in the testing hall gave me a glimmer of hope that the answer must have to be somewhere in there. So what could I do but pick up the nearest book off of the shelf within my subconscious mind and open it. To my amazement the answer nearly jumped off of the page! The term I was searching for was “genus”, which is a way of subdividing and classifying various organisms. I quickly filled in the blank on the answer form and moved on as waves of relief washed over me.
I often tell this story in order to relay the notion that most of the time, the answers truly are within us. No matter how murky or buried and down trodden they may be, with the right mindset and atmosphere they can be accessed. To me this rings so true that I became persuaded that the word “self” should always be placed in front of the term, “hypnosis” because it is something that we choose to do to ourselves. There is no spell or control that any hypnotist has over the client. The hypnotist is simply a facilitator, and it is always a conscious choice for anyone to go into this amazing resourceful state.
In 2008 I became certified by the National Guild of Hypnotists. In so doing, I’ve learned that people all over the world have been choosing to utilize hypnosis techniques for centuries in order to achieve all sorts of positive life changes. From weight loss, to smoking cessation, stress reduction and optimum test taking performance, learning how to tap into this state of mind has improved the quality of life for thousands if not millions of people. Thanks for reading and stay tuned for next week in order to learn a self-hypnosis technique to apply to your own life! Take care! Feel free to contact me with any questions or comments via email @ email@example.com.