By D. Mitchell Lovette, CH
Hello, I’d like to spend a few moments with you before your session to talk a little bit about hypnosis, perhaps answer some of the questions you may have on your mind. This will save us a lot of time when your session actually begins.
Please have a clipboard and a piece of paper, write down any questions you have so we can discuss them when I am with you in the office.
Now for you to understand how hypnosis works, it is very important for you to understand how your mind works. You know we never think about how our mind works. We basically say to ourselves, if we think about it; I think so I exist and we leave it to that. But you know we really have three very separate and very distinct minds. They do different things and they have a hard time inter-relating and communicating with each other.
First we have the conscious mind. Well, that’s where we are right now. Below that level of awareness, we have something called the subconscious mind. And yet there is a still deeper part of us, the unconscious mind. Well, for the reason you are considering Hypnosis, we can eliminate the unconscious mind. Basically, that is a part of us that does two things. First, it controls the strength or weakness of the immune system and, secondly, it controls the functions, the automatic body functions, such as; our heart beating, our eyes blinking and things on this order. We don’t have to worry about these today, so let’s just forget about that part of us for now.
The conscious mind is where we spend most of our time. I want you to understand that it basically only does four things and no more. The first thing it does, it analyzes. What is that? Well, that is the part of us that looks at problems, analyzes them, figures a way to solve those particular problems bothering us at the moment. It is also the part of us that makes the hundreds of decisions we have to make just to get through an average day, decisions we think are automatic; but in fact, are not. Things like, “Should I open the door?” “Should I turn the water on?” “Should I tie my shoes?” Well, we think those are automatic functions, but we must make a decision as to whether or not we want to do these things.
Now, the second part of the conscious mind is a part that starts to get us into a little trouble sometimes. We call this the rational part of our conscious mind. This part of us must give us a reason why we behave in any particular fashion. You see if we don’t have a reason why we do the things that we do, we become anxious, nervous, frustrated and if it goes on long enough, it can lead to serious mental illness. The mental hospitals, for example, are full of people who do things and they don’t know why they do them. The only problem with the reason the rational mind may give us why we behave in any particular fashion is number one, it is never original. For example, a smoker says he smokes because it calms him, makes him feel relaxed, gives him time to pause and gather his thoughts. An overweight person will say, I’m overweight because I eat when I’m bored, I eat when I’m nervous or I have a glandular problem. The problem with this reason is, it is never original. Before the smoker developed his habit, he heard other people that smoked say, “I smoke because it makes me feel calm and relaxed.” Or he heard an overweight person say, “I’m just overweight because I eat when I’m nervous.”
The problem with this is, we understand and know the reason why people are smokers and overweight. Generally, smokers start because of their need for security. They want to belong to another gang of friends, usually in their younger years, somewhere between twelve and twenty. Security is a basic need for all human beings. We generally get all the security we need when we grow up in a nice family. But usually at the age of twelve or thirteen, in that area, our parents don’t seem as smart as they use to be, so we shut off our ability to gain security from those individuals and we want that security by being part of a group of kids at school. Some of them smoke, some of them don’t.
If we feel that we don’t belong to this particular group, because our subconscious mind is a very interesting part of us, it must protect us against danger and not getting the necessary security we need is a definite danger to us. Frequently it will say smokers are accepted and secure. When that happens, the next time someone offers you a cigarette and you take it, immediately you feel like you are part of this group and your security level goes up. That is why people start smoking. It has nothing to do with being calm or relaxed. So you must understand that the reason the rational mind gives us for why we behave in a particular fashion is never original and most always incorrect! You don’t start smoking because it makes you feel calm, you start when you need security!
Now, the next part of the conscious mind is what we call will power. Now, we are all familiar with will power. You might say, “I’m going to put down this pack of cigarettes and nothing on God’s earth will make me start smoking again.” Well, we all know how long that lasts! You know if you go on a diet how long that lasts; just until willpower weakens and then the old habit pattern comes back again. The last part of the conscious mind is what we call working memory. That’s the memory we need every day. How do I find my way to work? What’s my husband or wife’s name? What are my children’s names? What is my phone number? The memory we need just to get through an average day. Now this is all that the conscious mind does. It does nothing else. I want you to think of this part of your mind. For example, if you’ve ever seen that show on TV called Star Trek, I’m sure you are familiar with the character called Spock. Spock is a very logical and analytical person. So our conscious mind, if you will, we call our Spock mind; very logical and very analytical and frequently wrong.
Now, where the REAL you, me and everyone else lives is in the level below the conscious called the subconscious mind. The subconscious mind is awesomely powerful. It can make you into anything you would like to be. Rich and famous, thin, happy or sad, it is the real us. To understand how the subconscious mind works, you need to understand that it is very much like a computer and it operates just like a computer operates. You know that if you go out and buy a computer, put it on your desk and ask it a question, it will not be able to answer you. The reason is, at that point the computer has no programming in it whatsoever. Now a computer can only operate based on the programming that is placed in it and it must operate on that programming, it has no choice. You know that if you change the programming in a computer that you buy at a store, it no longer can operate on the old programming and it must operate on the new programming information that has been placed into it. Well, this is the way our
subconscious mind works. It is a computer. It functions on the same rules and regulations as an electronic one does, only it is much more powerful. We program our computer every day of our lives through our life experiences. When we are born, our computers are basically unprogrammed, there is a little bit of programming in it, but not much. Every day we add programming to our internal computer. Now, the primary rule of our computer is this. It must, underline, exclamation point, make us into the type of person that it perceives us to be based on all the programming that has been placed into it and will continue to be placed into it until we die.
For example, if that computer of ours, based on its programming, says we’re fat, we’re fat. If it says we’re thin or a smoker, a success or a failure that is what we are. It adds up all the programming and makes a decision about us, about the type of person that we are. This programming has been placed in there from many sources and it must operate on this programming.
What is some of the operational software, if you will, that is in this internal computer? First is all our memory, since the day we were born. We think of things that have happened to us in the past as either forgotten or as retained in the form of memory.
So, what we are doing here, is we are talking about the working memory of the conscious mind. The subconscious mind is like a video camera. Everything that has ever happened to you, that you have heard, seen, smelled or tasted is locked permanently into the memory banks of your subconscious mind. We never forget anything. If there is a reason to, in hypnosis we can access that memory bank and it seems like we can actually travel back in time. For example, in regression hypnosis we can travel back and re-live your first birthday or your birth. Now this is much more than recall, it is actually like you are there, it is happening all over again. You can see what happened, you can smell, you can taste, you can hear very clearly. We never forget anything in the subconscious, only at the conscious level.
The second programming we have in the inner mind, the subconscious mind, is habits. Now, you have three kinds of habits. Only three. You know you have some good habits, of course you do, and you know you have some bad habits, don’t we all. But really most of our habits aren’t good or bad; most of our habits really are utilitarian habits. We automatically respond in a certain fashion when something else happens. When the telephone rings, for example, we don’t look at it and wonder what it is, we automatically pick it up and depending on our mood, and we answer it in a certain manner.
Now the next thing in our subconscious mind is emotion. Of course, we wouldn’t want to be without our emotions, love and caring and all those other good emotions, but sometimes our emotions get us into trouble. The conscious mind cannot deal with emotions in any way, because that is not part of its job. Anytime we need emotional information our conscious mind parts like the Red Sea and we deal with this particular situation from our irrational, juvenile like, but highly intelligent and suggestible subconscious mind. As I said, sometimes it gets us into trouble; I know that many times in the past you’ve dealt with a situation which didn’t activate a lot of emotion, just a little bit, but caused an enormous amount of trouble due to emotional triggers.
Then after the situation was over and that analytical conscious mind took over again, you heard yourself thinking or saying something like this, “Why did I say that?” “Why did I do that, it was so stupid.” And that inner subconscious mind laughed and said, “Yeah, but it was so much fun, and it met your needs.” This has happened to all of us at some time or other.
Now, the next thing in the subconscious mind, and probably the most important part of it is our protective mind. It must protect us against danger real OR imagined. You see a threat imagined by the subconscious mind is just as if it was actually happening, it can’t tell the difference. And it must protect us against danger. Without an intervention that reaction can often be, fight, flight or fear.
A quick example, some time ago a woman came into see me, she was five foot one, and she weighed just a few pounds away from 300 pounds. She sat in the chair and told me about how she had an eating problem, but years of experience told me she didn’t have an eating problem. I knew that an event in her past caused her subconscious mind to protect her by making her heavy. Briefly, what happened with this particular woman was, and she could not recall this with her conscious mind, when she was just a little six year old girl, her step-father abused her, she told her mother and her mother didn’t believe her. She felt guilty, as if she was doing something wrong. But she didn’t get heavy at that point.
When she was in high school in the fifties, she felt as if she was a little bit more promiscuous than she felt good to herself about. She felt the boys in high school were just trying to hurt her. That didn’t cause her to become heavy either. But when she was twenty-four years old and she married the “white knight”, the man who could do no wrong. On their honeymoon, the second day they were married, they were having dinner and he decided to cleanse his soul and show her how much he loved her. He told her that when he was just a young guy, 18, 19 years old and in the Air Force, he use to pick up women and just use them and throw them away. Well, you can imagine what the subconscious mind felt about this one man that this woman felt she could trust above every other man in the world would actually do this to a woman.
The subconscious mind then went back into its memory banks and into its computer information and said, “The step-father hurt you very badly, the boys in high school were trying to hurt you very badly and now this one man you could trust above every other man says he could do this to a woman, then he certainly has the capability of doing this to you. And instantly it made this decision, men hurt women; therefore, I must protect you against men. Now, it can’t teach her karate, can’t buy her a gun, so it protected her in the only way it could and this woman began gaining weight rapidly. So very soon she became very fat and certainly men no longer had an interest in her and she was protected. That is how the subconscious protects us sometimes, in a way that we would prefer it didn’t, but protection is its primary job.
The last part of the subconscious mind is a negative part of us. Although the subconscious is so powerful, it is also the laziest part of us. It doesn’t like to do the work that is required to accept positive suggestions to give us change in areas where we would like to have change. It likes to keep things the way they are, it takes too much work to make change in a positive way. And positive suggestions are one of the most difficult things to get into our subconscious minds. On the other hand, negative suggestions go into this inner part of us like a hot knife through butter, because it doesn’t take any work to accept a negative suggestion.
Let me show you how this works. You take a very heavy person and they get out of the shower. They’re standing in front of a mirror toweling off, what do you think they are saying to themselves as they are looking into that mirror? “Boy, am I fat.” Now that idea or thought of words go right into the subconscious mind and the subconscious mind says, “Yes, that matches the programming that I have in here that matches my perception of you.” Therefore, it accepts that suggestion so the perception of that individual being fat becomes stronger and they become heavier. On the other hand, if you take that same heavy person and stand them in front of that mirror and have them say, “I’m thin, I’m trim and I’m attractive.” That goes toward the subconscious mind and the subconscious mind says, “No, that does not match the programming,” and it’s not allowed in.
How do we get suggestions into the inner mind? Now, it is so important for you to understand this, if an idea, a thought or a concept is allowed to go into the subconscious mind, it must happen. You are changing programming and that inner mind must respond to new programming. But it is not that easy.
Let me explain how it works. You make a decision, oh, let’s say to stop smoking. You make your mind up at the conscious level that nothing in the world is going to stop you from ending the smoking habit. Now, your conscious mind says, “That’s wonderful and I support you one hundred percent, you are going to be healthier. You are not going to get emphysema, or heart or blood diseases.” But, to have change effectively happen, you have got to get it down into your computer in order to change that programming. And so you say fine, and you start to send that idea down to the subconscious mind. But here is the problem.
There’s one more part of the conscious mind that I haven’t told you about yet. I want you to think of this part of your conscious mind as a kind of an employee, if you will, of the subconscious. Every Friday night the subconscious gives it its pay for the week and it does exactly what it is told and it only has one job. That job is to stop, to put on hold, like a red traffic light, any suggestion of positive change that we give ourselves or receive from an outside source. It stops it.
And then in a way we don’t understand, but we do know it happens, there is a communication between this part of us called the critical factor of the conscious and the subconscious mind. The critical factor says, “Well, this person wants to stop smoking, can I let this suggestion in?” Now remember, if that suggestion goes into the inner mind, it must happen. But the subconscious mind says, “Wait a minute. He’s been smoking for twenty years, he needs cigarettes for security.” Or whatever reason the reason may be for that person. “Besides you realize I have to do so many years of re-programming and I just don’t feel up to it, I don’t want to do it, reject the suggestion!” Well, the critical factor’s boss, so the critical factor of the conscious mind kind of turns into a mirror and rejects that suggestion and it can not go into the inner mind.
Now, we only have one other place to take that idea and that is to will power. That is in the conscious. And we all know how long will power lasts. How many diets have we been on, how many times have we tried to stop smoking.
Well, how do we get the right suggestion into that subconscious mind? Well, in our practice, we use something called hypnosis. Now, what hypnosis does is this. It by-passes the critical factor, that is blocking part of our conscious mind. It’s like giving it a couple of dollars and sending it to Wendy’s and we’ll tell it when to come back. Now, this is what most people who are ignorant of hypnosis think hypnosis really is. If this was all hypnosis was, then some of the stories you may have heard about hypnosis might be true. Things like I can control you or I can make you do anything I want you to do and you'd have to do it. We’ll if this was all it was, that would be true. But God did not leave us that vulnerable. Yet, this is true up to this point. But the instant this critical factor of our conscious mind is bypassed, what happens is this, we go into a very deep state of hypnosis.
Now, when we are in the state of hypnosis, it is not what you expect it to be. Our bodies, if we are using a relaxation type of hypnosis, are very relaxed; but, the more we go into hypnosis, the more our conscious mind becomes alert. In the deeper levels of hypnosis, your conscious mind is two to three hundred percent more alert than you are at this very moment. All of your five senses, including hearing, smelling, tasting, and seeing are hundreds of times better than they are right now.
So when you are in hypnosis, you are not asleep, you are extremely alert, probably more alert and clear minded than you have ever been before. Now the important thing to understand about this is that the conscious mind takes on a different role when you are in hypnosis. I want you to think of it as playing the role of the guardian of the gates protecting you. When you receive a suggestion in hypnosis, you hear it loud and clear.
Now when you hear that suggestion, and these are the tools for success or failure with hypnosis. When you hear that suggestion with your conscious mind, you must, and you really do have no choice, make one of four decisions about that suggestion. Which decision you make determines whether that suggestion is allowed to enter your subconscious mind or whether it is rejected. If it is allowed to enter, you will have the change that you are here to achieve, if it is rejected, there will be no change.
What are those four decisions or choices? Well, the first one could be, when you hear the suggestion, you think or say to yourself something like this, “I like that suggestion, boy, I know that one is going to work!” Now, that mental attitude at the conscious level allows that suggestion to go into your computer, the subconscious mind, and change begins. Unfortunately, you have three other choices. The next choice could be, well, forget actually hating a suggestion, or feeling it is something against your morals or beliefs, but perhaps that suggestion is just a tiny, little bit uncomfortable to you. Like that pair of shoes you wanted to buy that time, but you knew if you did, you would end up a cripple in about three months, because they just didn’t fit right. Well, if that suggestion sounds just the tiniest bit uncomfortable to you for any reason, it is automatically blocked with the conscious mind and it is not allowed to enter the computer—and there is no change.
The next choice could be that you are neutral about the suggestion; you don’t care if you get it or you don’t care if you don’t get it. It is kind of a meaningless suggestion to you. The conscious mind automatically blocks that suggestion and it can not get into your computer.
The last choice you have is probably choice which causes more people to fail with hypnosis, if they do fail. It goes something like this. When you hear the suggestion, you say to yourself, “Oh, I like that suggestion, boy, I hope it works!” The word hope is the twin sister of the word try and try means automatic failure. If you look back on your life being honest with yourself, any time you tried to do something, you failed. “Okay, mom, I’ll try.” “Okay, dad, I’ll try.” Try means failure. If you look back at your life, anytime you have said to yourself, “I’m going to do it,” and there was no question about it, you did it, and you probably did it very well. Hope is the twin sister of try. You could hope for the cows to come home, that doesn’t mean they are going to come home. So, if you say hope or try, that suggestion is blocked by the conscious mind, it is not allowed to enter the computer and there is no change.
A little thought. If you eliminate the words hope and try from your personal and professional vocabulary from this moment on, within a week you are going to feel better than you have felt in a long time. The only time a suggestion is allowed to go into your computer is if you take the mental attitude when you hear that suggestion, “I like that suggestion, I know it’s going to work.” And that is how easy it is!
Now, let me give you some real truths. The first is this, there is no such thing as hypnosis! There never has been and there never will be. I have been in the field for many, many years and I have never hypnotized a single person and I doubt that I ever will. There is only one form of hypnosis, there always has been and there always will be. ALL hypnosis is self-hypnosis. You don’t need me to go into a beautiful, deep state of hypnosis all by yourself and you certainly don’t need me to give you suggestions of positive change in any area of your life. You can do that all by yourself. The reason you are here today is only because you do not know how to do it! But, we teach people how to do that all the time. It’s the easiest thing in the world. But all I can ever be for you or anybody else is not a hypnotist, because if I called myself a hypnotist, that means I could do something and I guess you are suppose to respond in a certain fashion and I can’t do that. The reality and the truth are, all I can ever be is a guide for you, and nothing more.
If you allow me to be your guide, I’ll show you how to place yourself in a beautiful state of hypnosis. In this state you will feel a wonderful physical relaxation while becoming mental alert. If you allow me to be your guide, I’ll show you how to stay there until we’re finished. If you don’t want to be in this beautiful relaxed state, the slightest thought by you and it is over and you are back to your normal state of awareness. But, if you follow my guidance, I’ll show you how to stay there. And then the most important thing of all is, if you accept the suggestions given to you with the correct mental attitude, “I like it, I know it’s going to work”, you’ll have your change occur in the way you want it. If you take one of the other choices, you’ll fail. I can’t force a suggestion into your mind. Only YOU can ALLOW it to happen.
Hypnosis is a 100% consent state by you. You must allow things to happen. You can stop them from happening with the slightest thought if you don’t want it to happen. Now, I want you to understand that anyone, as long as their IQ is above 70 and they want hypnosis, can go into a very deep level of hypnosis, how fast? “POP”! Just like that! The only thing that keeps a person from going into that beautiful state of physical relaxation and mental alertness is if they have a fear or a misconception about what hypnosis really is and I would like to talk briefly about some of the more common fears and misconceptions of hypnosis.
Some people feel that when you are in hypnosis, that you are asleep. Well, I want you to know that when your mind is three or four hundred percent more alert than you are at this very moment, this is about as far from sleep that you are ever going to get, in this lifetime anyway. Hypnosis has nothing to do with sleep.
Some people are afraid they won’t “wake up” from hypnosis and that is true, I agree with that, I have never known anyone to “wake up” from hypnosis. You see there is only one thing you can “wake up” from and that is sleep. If you are not asleep, you can’t “wake up.” Semantics, yes, but we use words in our profession. They are our only tools. The term is "emerge from hypnosis". Any time you would want to emerge from hypnosis, all you have to do is have the slightest thought that you don’t want to be in this relaxed state anymore and instantly, it’s over and you are back to your normal awareness.
Then there is that powerful misconception that some people have that says I can control you and make you do anything I want you to do. I have to be honest with you, I wish that was true, because than I could guarantee you success. But remember you have those four choices when you hear a suggestion and that the only time the suggestion is allowed to enter your computer is if you say, “I like it, I know it’s going to work.” I can’t force that in, I can’t control you!
I want you to know that you and you alone are responsible for your success. You and you alone are responsible for your failure. What mental attitude you take when you hear a suggestion determines success or failure.
Some people have the misconception that they will tell me all their deep dark secrets when they are in hypnosis. For the same reasons of mental alertness, you are more in control of anything you choose to do or say while you are in hypnosis then you are right now. If you don’t want to tell me something, then you won’t. If I was to ask you for information that was none of my business, you would simply tell me it is none of my business. No one can make you divulge information that is proprietary. As a matter of fact, if I wanted that kind of information from you, I would have a much better chance of obtaining it now, in your normal conscious awareness, because right now, you are mentally dull compared to your mental capabilities when you are in hypnosis.
Some people say, “Wait a minute, wait a minute, I hear what you are saying, but I’ve seen stage hypnotists work and I know those people control those folks.” “I’ve seen them bark like dogs and think they have body odor,” or something on this order. Many years ago, when I was a young man, I was a stage hypnotist. Let me tell you how it works.
When a stage hypnotist comes to town, there is advertising and a lot of people are interested so they show up. They want to see the show and a lot of them would like to be volunteers as subjects for the stage hypnotist. Now, when that stage hypnotist comes out and gives a little bit of a short lecture on hypnosis saying he is showing the entertainment side of hypnosis and there is a clinical side, he tells the people, “You know this whole show depends on you, the audience, you’re the people that I need for the show.” And he asks the people, “Is there anybody here who will volunteer to come up on stage?” Well, you would be amazed how many hands go up!
But that stage hypnotist does not necessarily take those people at all. He tells those people, "You know,” he says, “really good subjects are those individuals who have the best ability to imagine, a wonderful imagination and the ability to concentrate,” and he says he will give the whole audience a test for imagination and concentration. He is kind of telling a little fib, for he is testing the audience to find out two very important things. First, who goes into hypnosis like this “POP” He has a stage show to put on; he can’t waste time with long hypnotic techniques. More importantly, he is testing those people to find out who wants to have fun and who is uninhibited in public. These are the people he invites up on stage. They usually enter hypnosis very rapidly and very easily. And those people when they hear the suggestion, because they want to have fun, take the mental attitude, I like it, I want it to work and it does.
Many times on the stage, a person thinks they want to do these things, but when it comes time to actually have it happen, they don’t have the correct mental attitude and the suggestion is ineffective. These people, the stage hypnotist sends back to their seats, or, if it’s long enough into the show, he will sit them on a stage chair and ignore them for the rest of the show.
Stage hypnosis operates by the same rules as clinical hypnosis, you always have the choice as to whether or not you want that suggestion. If you don’t want it, truthfully don’t want it, it will be rejected and there will be no change.
So, you see, hypnosis is up to you. People ask me what my success rate is with smoking or weight control. I have to be honest with those people. My success rate is 100%. I’ve had a lot of training in hypnosis over many years. I know exactly what to say to my clients and if they allow those suggestions, they’ll have a wonderful change and if they reject them they will have no change. So my success rate is always perfect. Will yours be perfect? If you accept the suggestions with the correct mental attitude of, “I like it, I know it will work”, yes; you’ll have 100% success. If you accept with any other ideas of possible failure you will have difficulty. It is up to you, but I help you create that proper attitude for success.
I know you are going to enjoy our sessions together, I’d like you to. If you have any questions, just write them down on a piece of paper, so when we meet in the office, we can talk about them a little more. If there’s something I haven’t covered in our talk you would like to know more about, I’ll be happy to discuss it with you. And remember hypnosis is a wonderful, wonderful way to change our lives and it is available to you. Thank you for giving me this time with you. I look forward to our first session together! Please call me at (281) 755-8081 if you have an questions you wish to discuss.