1. Health

Learn Self Hypnosis For Stress Reduction

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Updated March 12, 2006

Hypnosis has helped many people reduce stress, quit smoking, manage pain, perform better and accomplish a myriad of other mental and physical tasks. Many people use hypnotherapists to achieve the deep state of relaxation and suggestibility required, but it’s also possible to hypnotize yourself! Try this powerful stress management tool today. You can learn self hypnosis quickly and practice in a few easy steps.
Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: Five to Thirty Minutes

Here's How:

  1. Find a quiet place, free of distractions, and block off some uninterrupted time.
  2. Get into a comfortable position. Many people like to recline, but others simply fall asleep if they get this comfortable, and prefer to sit in a cozy chair or in a cross-legged position. Experiment, and see what works for you.
  3. Decide on a goal for your session, and put it into a positive statement for later use. For example, if you’d like to help yourself become less messy, decide on the positive phrase, “I’m becoming organized and efficient” (or something similar) rather than the negative statement, “I’m becoming less messy”. Since the subconscious mind doesn’t always register negatives, your mind might focus on the word ‘messy’, reinforcing that idea, rather on the goal of ‘organized’.
  4. Start breathing deeply, expanding your abdomen on the inhale instead of raising your shoulders. Imagine that you are breathing in ‘calmness’ and breathing out all the stress from your day. Feel the oxygen spread from your chest through your arms and legs and to your fingers and toes.
  5. Pick an environment that’s relaxing to you, and imagine going further and further into it. Imagine that you are walking down a long corridor, or deep into the woods, for example, leaving your current surroundings far behind. You may not get a feeling of ‘Wow, I’m in an altered state now’, but if you keep focusing on this visualization, you should get there. It’s more like the state you get into while daydreaming or deep in concentration than what you may be expecting.
  6. When you are completely relaxed and feeling far from your regular life, begin repeating the positive phrase you chose for this session. You may choose to visualize the words, focus on their sound in your head, or visualize the end result.

Tips:

  1. Some people find that soft, mundane background music or sounds help. Others find it distracting. Experiment, and see what works best for you.
  2. If you don’t feel any huge changes the first couple of times, keep at it. Self-hypnosis works in subtle ways. You may be surprised.
  3. If you can’t think of a positive way to frame your desired result, like if you want to quit something, for example, use a phrase for something that replaces the undesirable habit.
  4. If you find it hard to relax and focus, you may want to record your voice directing you into a deep state of relaxation and repeating the desired suggestions of phrases.

What You Need

  • Some free time
  • A quiet place (at first)
  • Comfortable clothing
  • An open mind
  • A clear idea of what you want
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