The Difference Between Hypnosis And Hypnotherapy

You have most probably watched hypnosis acts on T.V or on-stage and be wondering what the difference is between hypnosis and hypnotherapy, some people may have a condition they would like help with but be afraid of hypnotherapy because they have seen the stage acts where people behave like chickens or think they are in love with a table leg.

What Hypnotherapy is Not

Hypnotherapy is not a form of mind control, stage hypnotists specifically select the most suggestible members of the audience but the people they select still have their own free will. Some people are put off of hypnosis because they have that the hypnotherapist can create an anchor to make them do stupid things, many hypnotherapists do use anchors but not in a bad way.

A hypnotherapist can anchor the desired state in a client, for example, if a client wanted to feel more confident or relaxed in public the hypnotherapist can help the client create an anchor to get them into the desired state when they need to be. As we said above, the client or subject being hypnotised does not lose their free will, you cannot be hypnotised to become a bank robber or assassin unless you want to be a bank robber or assassin.


The hypnosis part of hypnotherapy puts a subject into a hypnotic trance, a hypnotic trance is usually an extremely relaxed state. To create this state the hypnotist or hypnotherapist needs to use an induction, a stage hypnotist will probably use what is known as a rapid induction, rapid inductions aim to confuse the subject and may look a bit aggressive. Some hypnotherapists will also use rapid inductions but many will use progressive relaxation techniques, if you were to try self-hypnosis you would probably use a progressive relaxation technique.

What is Self-hypnosis?

As we said above when a hypnotic subject is not put into a trance they do it of their own free will so it could be argued that all hypnosis is self-hypnosis. If you were to create your own hypnosis recording, buy one online or somewhere else this would be considered self-hypnosis. Progressive relaxation techniques are very similar to guided meditation. Self-hypnosis would be considered a form of hypnotherapy, more can be learned about self-hypnosis on Wikipedia.

The Difference Between Hypnosis And Hypnotherapy

What is Hypnotherapy?

Hypnotherapy could be either pre-recorded self-hypnosis, many pre-recorded hypnosis sessions are available online. To get a bespoke hypnotherapy session the subject would either need to learn hypnosis and record it themselves or visit a therapist. A therapist will discuss any issues that the client wishes to resolve, the client does not even need to have an issue, they may just want to experience a deeply relaxing experience or past life regression. To put the client into a trance state the hypnotherapist will to perform some kind of induction this could be a rapid induction or progressive relaxation, some therapists will use a mixture of the two.


A rapid induction uses a relies on confusion, when the conscious mind is confused it goes to sleep and allows the hypnotist to communicate with the subconscious mind. To perform a rapid induction the therapist will put the client off balance and then shout “sleep”. Progressive relaxation may take the form of a body scan, progressive muscle relaxation and the therapist may use confusing language, what is known as binds and truisms.


After the induction comes the deepener the purpose of the deepener is to relax the client further and induce a deeper state of trance, the therapist does not want the client to fall asleep just to relax deeply. In the deepener, the therapist may ask the client to visualize themselves walking down a flight of stairs or travelling in an elevator to the basement of their mind.

A stage hypnotist will probably use a rapid induction and then they may bring the client out of trance before putting them back into trance, the principal of this in and out of trance technique is that it takes the subject deeper everytime they go back into a trance state. Some hypnotherapists will use this in and out of trance technique too.


It is here that the similarity with stage hypnosis ends. Instead of making the client think they are Julius Caesar, a chicken or dog the hypnotherapist will ask the client to visualize themselves with more confidence, more money or without the issue they want to fix. The hypnotherapist may also use suggestion therapy or regression to childhood to help the client heal old memories. is a site that offers 10 hours of free hypnosis downloads, find out more on Facebook.

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