What Does Sleep Have To Do With Hypnosis

When you enter Hypnosis you’re actually more “awake” than you are now. You actually become more alert and aware, but because you’re in a very relaxed state, it appears from a outside point of view that you are asleep.

I honestly think this has been one of the biggest misconceptions of our profession. The idea that when someone is hypnotized they enter a “deep” sleep. It’s funny because in reality sleep has nothing to do with hypnosis, at all!

Although Hypnosis can be used to help people sleep better, but that’s for another blog post on another day. So the big question is…..

Why Do Hypnotists Say The Word “Sleep” When Performing Hypnosis

The word “sleep” is nothing more than a shortcut for the client and the Hypnotist. When we say the word sleep, it means to “close your eyes and relax as if you are going to sleep”. You see, since birth, we have all been programmed to know what sleep means.

Sleep is a basic function of our bodies, and we don’t have to be trained to go to sleep. While many people haven’t experienced hypnosis, we’ve all experienced sleep and can remember the feeling.

The truth is, we experience stages of hypnosis in the moments right before sleep and right before waking up.

If we break it down to different brain waves, then hypnosis would be Theta, the state right before Delta, which is natural sleep. This is a normal process for us, so it’s not unusual that the subconscious mind understands the shortcut of the word “sleep”.

Another thing to note is that most people have seen hypnotists use the word “sleep” and the person seems to fall “asleep”.

Please remember as well that the subconscious protects you in a sense by not falling completely asleep. Just imagine the dangers  if you were to fall asleep whenever you got hypnotized.

Relaxation Isn’t Sleep, and It Isn’t Hypnosis

So combine all of these different elements and when your client hears the word sleep, they close their eyes and appears to have fallen asleep. In reality, they are just in a really relaxed state. Think about it for a second. You’ve just had a really rough day at work.

All you can think about is coming home and just relaxing on the couch or the bed. You just lay there for a moment, relaxing, enjoying that peaceful moment. If someone was to come in and look at you, relaxing there with your eyes closed it might look like your alseep, but you’re just “relaxing”

Now please don’t confuse relaxation as hypnosis because they are not the same. Relaxation isn’t even a part of hypnosis.

The word “sleep” and the suggestions we give during and after the induction help to establish a great state of relaxation. Another reason we know the person isn’t asleep is because they hear and respond to our suggestions.

Besides “sleep”, other words can also be used to trigger the hypnotic state. Actually, words aren’t even necessary to establish Hypnosis. There are complete non verbal inductions which don’t require a single word!

Yet, over time, it is has become sort of a standard in our profession to say the word “sleep” during the induction. As a little side note, most of the time when you hear a hypnotist use the word “sleep”, it’s usually related to stage hypnosis: rapid and instant inductions.

It has now become common for many Hypnotists to use these Instant and Rapid Inductions within their practices.

Sleep Is Just A Shortcut For Hypnosis

So whenever you see a hypnotist or hear a hypnotist say the word “sleep”, it’s nothing more than a shortcut for “Close your eyes and relax as if you are asleep”.

I hope you found this article interesting, and if you have any questions about Hypnosis or want to suggest some hypnosis training topics for me to cover, please let me know in the comment area be