This is one of the words I hear most often when clients describe how their experience was. Clearly, what is happening is transcending what most people expect will occur in a virtual, hour and a half encounter with another human.
As someone who has used psychedelics many times as part of my healing journey, I often describe this hypnosis thing as the closes thing to a drug trip without taking drugs. Others with similar backgrounds and experiences have confirmed this sentiment.
(As an aside, if psychedelic healing is part of your worldview, Navya’s online Hypnosis Assisted Psychotherapy can complement it very nicely. It can help you prepare to have a better drug trip, and if you’ve already done some, you can tap back into those same experiences during your sessions.)
If we run with this drug trip analogy, it makes sense why this experience is so hard to quantify. Even the visuals of a hallucinogenic trip cannot be accurately captured by even the most skilled artists – the fantastical works they produce still don’t come close to expressing what the actual experience is like.
All the more so when it comes to the world of imagination, sense of self, memories, and feelings. Words fail us on a good day, and when you’re talking about a deep journey into your subconscious mind, words will not come close to expressing what’s actually going on.
What’s Happening During Hypnosis?
It might be best then, to describe some of the phenomena that often accompany these experiences. Doing so absolves us from describing the complete picture, while still establishing enough details that one can understand that something very different is going on here.
Clients often experience strong sensations in their bodies. From incredible lightness to incredible pain, these sensations often emerge quite suddenly as certain themes or memories emerge, then fade away just as quickly once the issue is resolved.
Have you ever experienced the feeling of your own body stabbing you in the back? And the truth is, in a way that pain was always there, you’re just able to realize it now. Similarly, the relief of having released that pain, the freedom, and ease that follows, especially when it’s due to your own courage and effort, is equally immeasurable.
Clients can feel a variety of sensations, making this a highly tangible experience. Hands tingle. Legs feel heavy. The stomach clenches. The heart lets go. This adds a visceral component to the journey that helps make it a deeply real experience.
Altered sense of self
While you’re in this place, you often experience yourself, and the world, differently.
If the usual sensation is that of looking out at the world through two portholes in your face, well, now things might be different.
You might feel as though you’ve zoomed way, way back into the back of your brain. You can still see out into the world, but you’re staring across the vast expanse that is your mind. The world is very far away.
Or you might expand bigger than your body, feeling as though you’ve filled up the entire room, expanded to encompass the entire world, staring at the vastness of space and earth as a tiny dot.
This is the power of the imagination, our ability to alter our perception of reality. And with it comes the ability to put our problems in perspective: they are huge, painful problems. But the universe is so much bigger. It can contain it all in its accepting, matter-of-fact embrace.
If surprise is one of the most common experiences for clients, I’d say that the deepest source of their surprise is the actual insights that emerge during an online hypnosis session. It’s a sense of “I didn’t realize this was behind everything,” “I didn’t think that would come up,” and “I had completely forgotten about that experience”.
People often encounter deeply hidden memories, associations, and views of the world that would not emerge nearly as quickly (if at all) in a regular therapy session.
There are two main reasons for this.
Firstly, your mind is protecting you most of the time by blocking access to a lot of this information. In the goal of getting you through the day, and sticking to the habits that have gotten you this far in life, your mind suppresses this potentially disruptive information for the sake of preserving the status quo.
It takes being in a very relaxed state and establishing a deep sense of trust with your critical mind, the gatekeeper of all that lies beneath the surface, for it to allow these experiences to emerge. During an online hypnosis session, we deliberately seek this out, with the mindset that the deepest insights and change come when you’re exerting the least amount of effort and exertion.
The second reason these memories and insights don’t normally emerge is because they make no sense. Logically, they cannot be traced from a point A to a point B. These are insights that jump straight to D. They make perfect sense while you’re in an altered state of being. And from there, it’s actually quite easy to retrace your steps and explain how A perfectly leads to D. The discovery of a new invention is the hard part. Replicating your discovery takes a fraction of the effort.
This is a journey of discovery, and we deliberately attempt to go where you have not gone before. We embrace the illogical as the baseline of much our behavior. Being human doesn’t make sense. We are full of contradictions. With this as the starting point, we can allow our fantastical mind to take us to fantastical places, allowing our intuition to be our guide, to heal us by getting out of its way.
I love this work
What I love about conducting online Hypnosis Assisted Psychotherapy sessions with clients is the ability to join clients on a journey of discovery. Discovering the moments that are most important to them. The values that guide them. New ways of experiencing their body, their emotions, their mind, and their existence.
It feels like one of the best possible ways to spend an hour and a half with someone.