A question about making tapes for clients and how much time should be spent deepening the hypnosis.

Answered by Calvin D. Banyan, MA, CI, BCH

Question:

I have learned some interesting things from your web site. It brings to my mind an important question. I was taught to make a 20 minute tape for all my clients with positive suggestions. I have found that some therapists take more time to allow their clients to go deeper into the hypnotic state, and they do not make a tape for their clients to listen to for weeks. What have you found more effective? Thanks!

Answer:

I almost never make tapes for my clients. In my experience, some clients will use them and some will not. My concern is that the clients that don't use them may feel like the hypnosis is not going to work because they didn't listen to the tapes (I call this a meta-suggestion, because it is implied and not directly stated). So you can do some good work and have it undermined because the client didn't use the tape, which suggests that they will fail, and that not enough work was accomplished during the hypnosis sessions with you.

Tapes are not bad at all, they can be a great way to reinforce the work you do, and can be especially useful for some issues. I know that there are a lot of hypnotherapists that use them for stop smoking, weight loss, relaxation training, and so on. But, I would rather teach my clients self-hypnosis (7th Path), because doing self-hypnosis is more convenient (you don't need a tape player) and can be used for almost any issue once you know how to do it (tapes tend to only work for one issue).

Furthermore, generally hypnosis tapes are restricted to doing only direct suggestion work and visualization work. In the 5-PATH® System of Hypnotherapy, we take advantage of the process in a particular way. There are times during the process when clients are exceptionally suggestible (meaning they start working immediately and last for a long, long time), these are:

  1. Right after you have given them a convincer (they are great deepening techniques).

  2. During the emerging process (the critical factor can let its guard down because it assumes the session is over).

  3. Right after Age Regression Therapy.

  4. Right after Forgiveness Therapy.

  5. Right after Parts Mediation Therapy.

  6. Right after any kind of experience that causes uncovery or insight.

It is at these times when your suggestions are the most powerful (numbers 3-6 cause the subconscious mind to go into a state of reorganization, and the client becomes highly suggestible for suggestions that are in line with what she has just experienced, the insight or other change). Always spend at least a couple of minutes doing direct suggestion techniques after doing numbers 3-6. By direct suggestion techniques, I mean such things as using scripts or the Direct Drive Technique, et cetera.

Lastly, regarding time spent in hypnosis and its relation to deepening. Usually I will use either a rapid induction or instant induction. I use a hidden test for somnambulism (amnesia for a number by suggestion). Somnambulism is the state you want. It generally takes 1 to 4 minutes to get it (if you have done your work before the session, i.e., a good pre-talk and pre-hypnosis interview). There is no practical reason to spend more time than that before you get down to work. As soon as you achieve somnambulism with your client, I recommend that you do a quick deepening technique (taking a few seconds or up to another minute), to make sure that you have your client deeper than just the threshold of somnambulism (minimum level to achieve amnesia). Remember that each time your client responds positively to any suggestion during the session, she will go deeper into hypnosis.

One last thing, the longer it takes to deepen your client, and begin doing the work, the greater the chance of her falling asleep. When you are doing hypnosis, sleep is a bad thing.

Thanks for the question,
Calvin Banyan

Thank You:

Thanks for a great response. It was very helpful....
Kay