The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the view of the American Council of Hypnotist Examiners.
By Michael Mezmer
At this year’s annual A.C.H.E. international conference, I will present a workshop titled, “Powerful Presentations of Hypnosis,” and will include many of the inside secrets that I learned while studying under Gil Boyne and have further developed and utilized in my work as both as stage hypnotist and hypnotherapist. Many of the techniques I will be sharing are rarely focused upon in workshops today. Of course I will not just be teaching classic skills, but also my own variations and methods that have given me continued success in our field.
I have found through watching and attending workshops, both on line and in person, that most of the focus is on specific hypnotherapy techniques. While learning and mastering those techniques is critical to a good hypnotherapy practice, they do not create the complete hypnotist. As a historian of hypnosis, there are many techniques that I regularly employ, both in my stage and hypnotherapy work, that have all but been forgotten by modern hypnotherapists. It seems to a great extent the modern hypnotist focuses on the therapy methodology more than hypnotic image and presentation.
The public has certain expectations in regard to hypnotism, and I believe we should strive to meet them. One specific aspect that I find important is how to create and develop your image as a hypnotist. Through use of voice, image, and creating a unique style, you will better be able to meet the public’s expectations and in embracing those expectations you will ultimately have a more successful and profitable career in hypnosis.
It is not only critical to develop presentation skills for public presentations; you should understand that many of the skills and philosophies inherent in presentations will enhance your hypnotherapy work as well, regardless of what your current focus or discipline may be. In reality, a well-executed stage hypnosis performance is literally no different than a powerful group hypnotherapy session. The people who participate in a stage hypnosis show are seeking a release, the same release hypnotherapy clients are seeking for a malady or negative programming. The structure, performance, and techniques utilized for a stage hypnosis show are virtually the same ones needed to do a powerful and successful group hypnotherapy session.
A major strength that is gained from learning how to execute hypnosis in public is that of being fearless. When you can hypnotize people under any circumstances– even with a roller coaster screaming by–then you can literally have the confidence to hypnotize anyone, anytime, anywhere. A “new” style of our art that is becoming prominent is that of “street” hypnosis. Many practitioners are operating impromptu on the street. Do you feel so confident that you could walk up to a stranger in a public setting and induce hypnosis? If not then there is opportunity for you to learn some key techniques that will improve your ability to induce hypnosis in any situation. Hypnosis should be limitless and not bound by four walls or a formal situation. Practicing such presentation skills as “street” hypnosis can strengthen your hypnotherapy skills beyond anything you might have imagined.
I regularly consult with a prominent medical group’s patients on a variety of important issues. Many hypnotherapists wish to work in concert with medical doctors. I connected with one specific doctor through my stage show. One night while performing my show, unbeknownst to me, I included the doctor’s daughter as one of my participants. That is what led to my consulting with his medical group. My point is that public presentations of hypnosis can open many doors that normally might be shut to hypnotherapists. Whether you want to expand your business through talks to service groups, present stop smoking seminars, weight control workshops, or workshops on any other subject, the basic and advanced techniques for working in front of the public that I use will enhance that work.
When you enhance your skill set beyond typical therapy related hypnosis it will enable you to present your own workshops, demonstrations, and even a basic hypnosis show. There are many secrets to success in hypnosis, but most of them go back to your inner self. Learning to successfully present yourself in a powerful and positive way to those you wish to work with will help you enhance the person that you already are, and amplify your talents to a new level.
I would like to extend my personal invitation to attend my workshop; it will be a unique and fascinating learning experience. I am looking forward to meeting many of you at this year’s conference and sharing my special knowledge and skills with you.