What is Hypnosis and How Does It Work?

Engaging the Power of the Subconscious Mind

Everyone has had the experience of setting goals for themselves, or deciding to change old ways of being, only to find themselves slipping back. It is almost as though an inner battle is being staged between the part that wants to move forward, and a part that seems to be drawing one backwards.

In a sense this really is happening. The conflict is between two parts of our mind: the conscious and the subconscious. I sometimes think of the mind as an iceberg. The part you can see is the tip of the iceberg, or the conscious mind. We are aware of what is going on there. We know what we are thinking, and what we want. The part below the surface that we cannot see is the subconscious mind. We cannot be consciously aware of what is happening there, precisely because it is “sub” conscious—beneath the level of consciousness.

The subconscious mind directs much of our behaviour. It is where our drives and impulses originate. We may subconsciously be using food to comfort some unrest at the subconscious level. Consciously we may be determined to control our eating, but it is the subconscious mind that often sabotages our good intentions. The same can be true for how we think about ourselves (self-esteem), or our mental outlook—whether we are positive or negative.

If we are struggling with change, it may be time to direct our efforts towards the subconscious, as opposed to more conscious resolutions and affirmations. This can be done effectively through hypnotic suggestion or guided imagery. In this process the body is completely relaxed, the mind is calm or gently distracted, so that the desired messages bypass the conscious mind and register at the subconscious level. The conscious mind is completely aware of all that is being said, but because the subconscious mind is engaged through the process of deep relaxation, the message goes in at a deeper level.

While this process is completely safe and effective, it should be utilized only by those with professional training. I have had much success with this in my practice, and as a result of this success, I wanted to make the process available to others. I have thus produced a series of guided meditation/healing CDs that can be used at home. So far there are thirty-six titles, including topics such as healing depression , releasing stress , weight loss , self-esteem, healing the body and positive thinking.