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3 gentle ways to bring your clients out of hypnosis

How to smooth the transition from trance to normal consciousness - by Mark Tyrrell

On the verge of waking

"On the verge of waking" courtesy of bbrown6

Like everything else in life, all good trances must come to an end. (Pity, that!) But what is the best way to terminate the 'hypnotic' part of your session?

We don't want coming out of trance to feel too jarring to the client. And I think it's important to remember that therapy doesn't come to a sudden halt as soon as your client opens their eyes or 'comes back to the room'. In the aftermath of trance people are still very open to new learning, so those few moments when people are leaving your therapy room may be a perfect time to make suggestions (more of this in a future blog).

So, short of shouting in someone's ear - not recommended! - what are some great ways to bring someone out?

Here are three of my favourite strategies.

1. Prime your clients to come out of hypnosis

Just as you seed suggestions conversationally before your client goes into hypnosis, so too you can prime their expectations before making a more direct suggestion to awaken.

For example, you can talk about how people tend to awaken naturally from both sleep and hypnosis:

And you know how when people are at that point where they are about to wake up after having been asleep, and bit by bit they start to become more aware of their surroundings again, and of their body resting there...

or

What happens when... it's almost time to come back to the room and fully awaken... is that you'll notice you become more aware of my voice again... and start to think in more everyday ways once more... and people feel so refreshed and alert when... it's time to come out of trance... when you are ready in a few moments...

Here I begin by describing the general experience (while using 'embedded commands'). Then I gradually start to make my suggestions more clearly directed to the person in front of me; an elegant way to begin the awakening induction.

2. Make coming out of trance contingent upon a therapeutic gain

We should turn everything to good use in therapy and the client's re-emergence from trance is no exception. So we could say something like:

And those eyelids may feel rather heavy... like the eyelids of someone deeply asleep... almost glued together... and you may well find that... those eyelids just won't open... until your unconscious mind gives you a clear sense of the wonderful changes you can expect...

or

As you come out of trance... you can notice just how relaxed and comfortable you are going to feel... both now and later... when you really need to...

3. Give them a cue

We cue how people are to respond by how we use our voices.

When we want to cue people to feel relaxed and calm, we naturally tend to sound particularly 'soothing and gentle'. Similarly, starting to talk in a more 'normal' conversational tone acts as a cue that they can now begin to come out of hypnosis back to everyday consciousness.

Continuing to sound overly relaxed and soothing while asking someone to become more consciously awake is to send mixed signals!

But the point is that this change should happen gradually rather than suddenly. Gently increase the pace and energy of your delivery so that there is a smooth transition.

You might also use the client's name more prominently (people pay more attention when they hear their own name) and bring in some neutral topic you were discussing before they went into trance.

Ultimately, bringing someone out of trance is just as important as taking them into trance, and needs as much skill and care as any hypnotic induction.

You can learn How to Stop Anyone Smoking with Mark Tyrrell on our Smoking Cessation Training Course (online).

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Mark Tyrrell
Creative Director