What is Hypnosis?
Hypnosis: Fact and Fiction
Is Hypnosis Dangerous?
Deepening the Hypnotic Trance
Testing the Hypnotic Trance
Rules of the Mind
The Power of Creative Imagination
How to Set Realistic Goals
You Can Learn to Relax
Glossary of Terms
Finding a Hypnotherapist Near You
Certification: Licensed Professionals
Hypnosis Training For Professionals
Hypnosis Learning Modules
Are you looking for information about Distance Counseling? Visit:
American Distance Counseling Association
Are you looking for a Private Telephone Counselor? Visit:
Rules For Structuring Auto-Suggestions
- REPETITION: This is the most important rule in making successful suggestions. A suggestion cannot be repeated too often. All advertising is based on suggestion, and advertisers know the value of repetition. Commercials of TV are repeated again and again, as you have undoubtedly noted with some annoyance.
A suggestion has the power to suppress or inhibit its reverse concept in the mind. Once a suggestion is conditioned in our nervous system, there is an impulse to carry it out immediately. That action temporarily bars any impulse to carry out the opposite impulse not to act, and vise versa.
- BE POSITIVE: A suggestion is more likely to be accepted if it is characterized by a firm belief in the idea presented. Doubt seems to block results and negate the suggestion. You should think positively about it and feel sure the desired results will come. If you say, "I'll try," you are implying doubt. You really expect to fail and probably will. Your attitude should be that you are going to do it and not try. When you say, "I can't" you probably mean "I don't want to."
Eliminate every possible negative word. DO NOT mention what you are trying to move away from. Create a word picture of what you wish to move toward. If you suggest, "I am not self-conscious" you trigger the feeling of self-consciousness, and the memory of past experiences when you have felt self-conscious. Instead suggest, "I like people. I enjoy the company of people. When I am with people, I am calm, poised and relaxed.
RIGHT: "I sleep deeply, soundly, all night long."
WRONG: "I do not toss and turn for hours before going to sleep."
- BE LOGICAL: A suggestion should be accurate and a sound reason given for its acceptance. For example, it is futile to eliminate a headache by suggesting; "Your headache is gone," for the subject feels the discomfort of the headache and knows it is there. Even in hypnosis, his first thought would be, "It is not gone, I still feel it." Most subjects would then reject the suggestion and the headache would continue. However, if we suggest, "Your headache will gradually lessen and in a few moments will be gone," it allows time for the suggestion to take place. If a logical reason is given why the headache will go away, the suggestion is almost certain to be accepted. For example, it can be suggested that his body is relaxed, he is resting and there is no longer a reason for the headache to remain.
If your desired result is one that can be measured, such as weight or a bowling score, suggest the exact improvement you desire. Some people seem to believe, if their ideal weight is 125 pounds, they can suggest they will lose weight until they reach 115 pounds. The idea being, if they are only partially successful they will still reach their goal. You cannot fool yourself. Suggest exactly what you want.
There are circumstances where it's wrong to suggest perfection. "I always organizes my time perfectly" is an impossibility for a mother of three children. "I am always enthusiastic" is a poor suggestion. Do you want to be enthusiastic at a funeral?
- USE VISUAL IMAGES: A verbal suggestion will be more forceful if a visual image can be formed and added to it. Visual images will always aid the processes of conditioning. For example, if you are tired and wish to overcome this feeling by suggestion, visualize yourself doing something where you are active and full of energy. In your imagination see yourself playing golf or tennis. Carry this thought out for three or four minutes and the results can be quite surprising. Your visual images should always represent the desired end result.
- USE EXCITING AND EMOTIONAL WORDS: It is well known that conditioning takes place very rapidly when we are experiencing some strong emotion. If a suggestion can be woven into some emotion, it is very beneficial. This may be by means of words or a visual image or both. Desire for success can be such an emotion. Use such words as: vibrant, sparkling, thrilling, wonderful, powerful, radiant, loving, generous, exciting, delightful and beautiful.
- BE SIMPLE: Be sure your wording says what you mean and is not ambiguous. Use simple language. Avoid long technical terms and psychological or metaphysical phrases. This is not a thesis you are writing for a professor to score. Simple words have the greatest force. Ernest Hemingway became famous for the simplicity of his writing, yet it had a tremendous impact.
- USE PRESENT TENSE: Always, when ever possible, phrase your suggestions as though they were already an accomplished fact. Even suggestions for future behavior should be given in the present tense. For example, "Next Thursday when I stand to speak at the company dinner, I am calm, poised and relaxed." Suggestions phrased in the future become another "New Years resolution" easy to forget and not taken seriously.
Never refer to past conditions in your suggestions. This brings a dual image into your mind, the image of how you have been and how you wish to be. Naturally the image of how you have been is the stronger of the two. An exception to this rule is when you are dealing with a physical condition, such as a broken leg. The progressive form of the present tense is used to bypass the critical factor of your logical mind. "Each day my leg grows stronger and healthier." If you were to say, "My leg is strong and healthy" your logical mind would reject the suggestion.
RIGHT: I am... It is... I feel...
WRONG: I will... It will... I am going to...
continued on next page