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Positive suggestions given though hypnosis in order to reprogram one's life script. 



Slow brainwave activity state of hypnosis (resting but awake). Also known as hypnoidal. Alpha is slower (deeper) than Beta, the awake state, and faster than Theta, a deep hypnotic state.  



A specific stimulus such as a word, image or touch that through the rule of association evokes a particular mental, emotional, and/or physiological state.  



A process by which a subject comes to respond in a desired manner to a previously neutral stimulus that has been repeatedly presented along with a stimulus that elicits the desired response.  


Behavior Modification

The process of changing behavior by using techniques based on learning theory. The techniques include systematic desensitization, aversion therapy, and assertion training.  



Knowns in the subconscious.



The brainwave activity state of the normal wake state. Higher than Alpha and Theta.


Body Syndromes

A body syndrome is a physical manifestation of an emotional trauma. When an emotion is held in or repressed instead of being processed and released, the emotion will express itself as a physical discomfort.  



A medium depth of hypnosis, between "hypnoidal" and "somnambulism".



Moving between levels of specificity. To chunk up means to move to the bigger picture, to chunk down would be getting to greater levels of specificity.  


Circle Therapy

Used only for the extinction of fears. It is the process of having the subject repeatedly confront his/her problem while in the hypnotic state. Since anxiety and relaxation are incompatible and can't be experienced together, the anxiety will gradually disappear. After having brought up and passed the fear many times, a reversal is given that the harder they try to bring up the old fear, the more difficult it becomes. In fact, the subject will feel a new emotion ("replacement"), amusement and a tendency to smile.  


Conditioned Response

The learned response to an indifferent stimulus, which has been attached to it by repeatedly pairing the stimulus with the reinforcer.  


Conscious Mind

The 12% of our mind of which we are most aware. The part responsible for logic, reasoning, decision-making, and will power.


Contradictory Square

An example is when a person with a high IQ is in a job that does not require or will not use the high IQ. The person is in conflict or incongruence between what they ARE capable of doing and what they BELIEVE they are capable of doing.  


Critical Mind

An area of mind that is part conscious and part subconscious. Any time a suggestion is given to a subject that is detrimental to his well-being or in total opposition to his way of thinking, it will affect critical area of mind, and he will critically reject it by abreacting.  



The process of removing a person from a hypersuggestible state.  


Defense Mechanisms

All defense mechanisms stem from the basic instinct of survival. They operate on an unconscious level and they serve to deny or distort reality, thoughts, and action. Some Defense Mechanisms are: Repression, Denial, Rationalization, Projection, Displacement, Turning against self, Reaction Formation, Overcompensation, Intellectualization, Withdrawal, Regression, Sublimation, and Disassociation.  



Slowest brainwave activity pattern of sleep, and the deepest, somnambulistic state of hypnosis. Also see Alpha, Beta and Theta.  




A light stage of hypnosis, usually associated with emotional suggestibility; also used to refer to the state of consciousness which is passed through in  the transition from sleep to waking, and vice versa. It is characterized by rapid eye movement (REM), with an up/down motion of the eyes.



A medium depth of hypnosis. Characterized by a side to side movement of the eyes.



The deepest state of hypnosis, where the client responds with amnesia, anesthesia, negative and positive hallucinations, and complete control of the senses. This type of person usually has 50% emotional suggestibility and 50% physical suggestibility. It is characterized by the eyes rolling up underneath the eyelids. 


Direct Suggestion

Hypnotic suggestions in the form of a command, or instruction. Contrast to Inferential Suggestion. 


Ego Sensation

Change of feeling in the physical body or part of the body. 


Environmental Hypnosis

A state of hypersuggestibility, triggered when an individual is in the presence of an overabundance of message units coming from their environment. This causes the person to try to escape the intense input. A kind of "walking hypnosis."


Extraverbal Communication

Communication by physical gestures or movements that infer a suggestion to an individual, according to his interpretation. Body language is an example.


Fear of Falling and Loud Noises

Babies are born with only two fears, that of loud noises and of falling. All other fears are learned and can be unlearned. 


Fight or Flight Reaction

A primitive and involuntary reaction that is triggered during danger or anxiety, in order to protect oneself or to escape from danger. 



A state of equilibrium. What the body returns to when the parasympathetic nervous system is activated to respond to the fight/flight mechanism of the sympathetic nervous system. 



A state of waking hypnosis and exaggerated suggestibility to influencing factors in the environment, especially to negatives; possibly the greatest cause of all emotional and physical problems. 



The process of acting out a role in the hypnotic state, which can be used for increasing talents or reducing the effects of earlier traumas in the client’s life. 



A light stage of hypnosis, usually associated with Emotional suggestibility; also used to refer to the state of consciousness, which is passed through in the transition from sleep to waking, and vice versa. 



An altered state of consciousness which results in an increased receptiveness and response to suggestions. While associated with relaxation, hypnosis is actually an escape from an overload of message units, resulting in relaxation. Hypnosis can be triggered naturally from environmental stimuli as well as purposefully from an operator, often referred to as a hypnotist. 



A therapist who utilizes hypnosis as a primary tool for assisting clients to achieve their goals. A Hypnotherapist often differs from others therapists by focusing on the role of subconscious behaviors.


Official definition of HypnotherapistIn 1973, Dr. John Kappas, PhD and Founder of the Hypnosis Motivation Institute, wrote and defined the profession of a Hypnotherapist in the Federal Dictionary of Occupational Titles:

"Induces hypnotic state in client to increase motivation or alter behavior patterns. Consults with client to determine nature of problem. Prepares client to enter hypnotic state by explaining how hypnosis works and what client will experience. Tests subject to determine degree of physical and emotional suggestibility. Induces hypnotic state in client, using individualized methods and techniques of hypnosis based on interpretation of test results and analysis of client's issue. May train client in self-hypnosis conditioning." 



A person skilled in the technique of inducing the hypnotic state in others. Hypnotists are often associated with the use of hypnosis for entertainment (stage hypnosis). 


Ideomotor Response

A response emanating from an individual's subconscious mind via the central nervous system. Such a response is a way of avoiding judgments of the conscious mind. Examples: handwriting, index finger raise while in hypnosis. 



Imagery is a feeling and experiential state. Unlike visualization, which is only on the idea of "seeing" something in the mind's eye, imagery uses all five of the senses. Hypnodrama allows a subject to act out subconscious conflicts in a sage environment in an attempt to vent and resolve them. 



The technique of hypnotizing a person. The patter used can be either maternal or paternal; either one sends message units to the brain, preparing the subject to enter the hypnotic state. 


Inferred Suggestion

A suggestion given that contains a message other than the immediately obvious one. Usually, the underlying meaning is not immediately understood consciously by the subject, but he will have a delayed reaction to it. It is especially effective with Emotionally suggestible subjects.


Knowns (Pain/Pleasure Principle)

Knowns represent pleasure, in that they are things we have associated or identified before. A Known may be either positive or negative but is accepted by the Subconscious because it has been experienced before. Conversely, Unknowns represent pain, or physical or psychological threats that have not been associated or identified before. 


Laws of Suggestibility


Reverse Action

The most common law, it's sometimes referred to as Reverse Psychology. A person will respond to the stronger part of a suggestion if the alternative presented is considerably weaker.



It is represented by the fact that the more we do something, the better we become at it. By repeating suggestions in hypnosis, the stronger the suggestive idea becomes.



The use of authority or that of being an authority figure to "command" the client to accept a suggestion. Capitalizing on one's position as "therapist" or by using an authoritative tone are two approaches to apply the Law of Dominance.


Delayed Action

When a suggestion is inferred, the individual will react to it whenever a jogging condition or situation that has been used in the original suggestive idea presents itself.



Whenever we repeatedly respond to a particular stimulus in the presence of another, we will soon begin to associate one with the other. Whenever either stimulus is present, the other is recalled. The post suggestion to re-hypnosis works under this law. 


Life Script

Formed from the positive and negative associations we've made throughout our life and stored in our subconscious mind. This is reflected in a person's present life situation. 


Literal/Inferred Suggestions


Literal Suggestions

A direct suggestion with no underlying meaning; used primarily with Physically suggestible subjects.


Inferred Suggestions

A suggestion given that contains a message other than the immediately obvious one. Usually the underlying meaning is not immediately understood by the client consciously, but he/she will have a delayed reaction to it. It is especially effective with emotionally suggestible clients.


Magic Five Minutes

The last five minutes before sleep, when a person's mind is in a natural light state of hypnosis.



A soft, gentle, lulling approach to hypnosis. A progressive relaxation uses the maternal approach.


Mental Bank

A tool used to reinforce many types of therapies and speed the progress in such areas as; procrastination, motivation, goal attainment, prosperity, smoking, etc. It is a powerful means of affecting the subconscious mind using the synergistic approach of belief, daily reinforcement, scripting, time of day, and dreams. 


Message Units 

All of the input sent to the brain by the environment, the physical body, and the conscious and subconscious minds. When too many message units are received (overloading), a state of anxiety results. 



Appearing to be guiding someone into one area with the intention of directing him into another. It can be used effectively as a deepening technique in hypnosis. 



A hypnotic modality is anything that attempts to control or modify the human behavior through the influence or creation of belief systems. 


Neuro Pathways

Every time we think a thought, make a movement, experience something, this is transformed into electro-chemical energy which is then stored in the brain. We create pathways that allow the energy to travel in a similar fashion each time it is triggered. The more it is triggered, the easier it is for the energy to go that route. This is how habits and behavior, both good and bad, are created.


Parataxic Distortion

This occurs when we respond to a person or situation in a distorted way. We are not responding to the situation or person, but rather to what they subconsciously trigger in us. 


Paris Window

Used to widen the perspective of the client, so that he or she can see their problem from more than their own viewpoint. The window is a four-paned one, where three panes contain a question for the client. The questions are, 1). How do you feel about the problem? 2). How do you think others feel about your problem? 3). How do you feel about how others feel about your problem? 4). The fourth pane contains the answer to the client's particular problem based on their newfound perspective.



The authoritarian approach to inductions and therapy, using a rapid patter with commanding, or even demanding, words. 



A rhythmic series of words in a semi-monotone or monotone, spoken either slowly or rapidly, causing stimulation of different senses and leading to the hypnotic state. 


Pre-Induction Speech

An introduction to hypnosis to prepare the client for the induction. It should include an explanation of hypnosis and an idea of what he/she can expect to experience in the state. It addresses any fears and misconceptions the client may have, all the while building up message units. 


Primitive Mind

A human being's primitive brain, with which a person will react whenever threatened beyond the point where he/she can reason. This primitive brain produces the fight or flight response, the unthinking impulses of self defense, or any other rapid reactions without reason. 



The operator/client relationship, in which the client has faith and confidence in the operator, and the operator has concern for the client. 


Reactional Hypnosis

Repeatedly awakening the subject and re-hypnotizing him with a post-suggestion to re-hypnosis. An effective method of achieving depth in hypnosis. 


Secondary Gain

A reason, primarily subconscious, why a person continues to perform a certain behavior. 


Self-Hypnosis - Hetero-Hypnosis



A hypnotic state that is self-created.



A hypnotic state that is created by another person, including the listening to of tapes or CDs.


Shock Induction

A very rapid conversion into hypnosis. Shock inductions are primarily used only in emergencies or possibly to "jar" a client when in therapy.



A situation where a person responds equally well to all suggestions, both direct and indirect, affecting both the body and emotions. This person would have a 50/50 Suggestibility (50% Physical Suggestible and 50% Emotional Suggestible). 


Stages of Loss

There are five stages a person must go through to completely deal with a loss. Not every individual will display all the symptoms in the same manner. The stages are 1). Denial, 2). Anger, 3). Bargaining, 4). Grief, 5). Resolution


Stop Mechanism

A technique used in hypnosis to call attention to a behavior or thought a client may do or have in the future. When this thought or behavior arises they will hear in their mind "NO!" The Hypnotherapist reinforces this suggestion by stating the thought or behavior the client may have, snapping their fingers and saying "NO!" to the client. This is reinforced several times with the client repeating it to themselves silently but strongly. An example would be if the client thought about lighting up a cigarette when they were trying to or had already quit. 



The 88% of our mind that is mostly below the level of our awareness. The part of our mind responsible for reflexive action, ideomotor responses, and contains the positive and negative associations we've made throughout our life. 


Suggestibility (Emotional/Physical/Intellectual)

Suggestibility is the way a person learns and processes information.


Emotional Suggestibility

A suggestible behavior characterized by a high degree of responsiveness to inferred suggestions affecting emotions and restriction of physical body responses; usually associated with hypnoidal depth. Thus, the Emotional person learns more by inference than by direct, literal suggestions.


Physical Suggestibility

A suggestible behavior characterized by a high degree of responsiveness to literal suggestions affecting the body, and restriction of emotional responses; usually associated with cataleptic stages or deeper.


Intellectual Suggestibility

The type of hypnotic suggestibility in which a subject fears being controlled by the operator and is constantly trying to analyze, reject, or rationalize everything the operator says. With this type of subject the operator must give logical explanations for every suggestion and must allow the subject to feel that he is doing the hypnotizing himself. 


Sympathetic - Parasympathetic

The two divisions of the Autonomic Nervous System.



When activated causes physiological changes to occur, preparing the body for fight/flight.



A self-regulating, stabilizing system that brings a person back to a state of balance, or homeostasis. 


Systematic Desensitization

The process of inducing a relaxed state in the client and then having him/her visualize or imagine an event that was traumatic to him or her in the past. The relaxation then becomes the dominant force, and as the client begins to relate to being relaxed and calm while relating to the trauma area, he/she allows for removal or desensitization of the trauma. 


Theory of Mind

The mind is divided into four areas; all of which must be affected to enter the state of hypnosis.


The Primitive Area

Part of the subconscious and established from birth. It contains the fight/flight response and the fears of falling and loud noises.


The Modern Memory Area

Also a part of the subconscious and contains all of a person's memories (Knowns).


The Conscious Area

Formed around the age of 8 or 9, and is the logical, reasoning, decision making part of the mind.


The Critical Area

Also formed around the age of 8 or 9, filters message units and accepts or rejects them from entering into the Modern Memory. If the Critical Area is overwhelmed, it breaks down, activating fight/flight, causing a hypersuggestible state, that is, hypnosis. 


Venting Dreams

The third stage of dreaming (after Wishful Thinking and Precognitive Stages), characterized by the mind's attempt to vent, or release, the overload of message units accumulated during the day.

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Related Tags: Hypnosis glossary, Hypnotherapy dictionary, Los Angeles top hypnotherapy, Best hypnotist in Santa Monica

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