Advanced hypnosis is often used to get rid of compulsive behaviors such as smoking or overeating. It is a way of reorganizing the mind. If the mind is like a bookshelf, the problem of compulsive behaviors can be explained as the compulsion staying at eye level. Hypnotherapy attempts to move those compulsive thoughts, for instance the urge to smoke, to a higher shelf. The hope is that if cigarettes or whatever constitutes an unhealthy behavior are not always at the forefront of the mind, they will be much easier to avoid.
Hypnosis is the relaxed state between consciousness and unconsciousness that is often experienced just as a person is waking up or falling asleep. It is a focused state of relaxation in which people, with or without the help of a trained hypnotherapist, can help themselves achieve positive change in their lives. It is a sort of meditation, during which visualization and reinforcing messages are received in order to produce long-term change in behavior.
The power behind advanced hypnosis lies in the power of the human mind. Thoughts have a strong impact on the human body. Visualization of food can trigger physiological reactions in the body, producing saliva to digest the imagined food. Thoughts directly impact the way people behave, and therefore visualizations and repeated thoughts can change behavior. Compulsive behaviors come about because of a certain thought patterns, and hypnosis helps the individual think about the situation or idea at the root of the compulsive behavior in a different way.
The human mind contains two different states of consciousness. There is the conscious mind, which is the inner dialogue of thoughts used for analyzing and problem solving, and the unconscious mind. The states of consciousness can be thought of like an iceberg, where the conscious mind is just the top, visible portion above water, while the bulk of the iceberg underwater is the unconscious. The unconscious holds core values that are formed by memories and experience that shape conscious thought. The relaxed state achieved during advanced hypnosis allows messages to reach the unconscious mind and reshape conscious thoughts.
Many therapists and other health professionals integrate hypnotherapy into their treatment plans. It is not a replacement, but a supplementation to other types of treatment for mental health disorders and stress-related diseases, such as ulcers. Learning advanced hypnosis can help create positive change such as weight loss, pain and stress management, as well as insomnia relief.
Advanced hypnosis is similar to but different than sleeping. It is common for a person to fall asleep during or just after hypnosis. Falling asleep during hypnotherapy indicates that the body is having a hard time maintaining a relaxed state. This commonly occurs when a person is sleep deprived.