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Hypnosis: The Ability of the Mind to Learn Through Suggestion By Cindy Locher

FOR AS LONG as I can remember (literally!) hypnosis has been part of my life. I consider myself fortunate to have grown up with hypnosis. My dad, a Master Social Worker, learned hypnosis as one of the tools he used to work with the "juvenile delinquents" at the correctional facility where he worked. (I'm not sure if that is the correct term any more!) When I was three, I was hypnotized to get over a fear of dentists because of a traumatic incident. As I grew up, I grew up with hypnosis as a common thing in my household. 

When I decided to study hypnosis professionally and start my own clinic in 2007 I didn't fully realize the mixed reactions people have about hypnosis. Probably because my own experience was so positive and I never anticipated negatives, my business grew through the “great recession” and continues to grow to this day! 


People often think of hypnosis as being in a trance.  But hypnosis is more than just a trance state experience—it is truly the ability of the mind to learn through suggestion. And when you think of it that way you realize hypnosis is happening all the time. We are constantly learning new things, often by accepting suggestions from people around us or from some form of media—the internet, books, articles, movies. Most of the time the new things we learn add to our lives in a positive way; sometimes they don't.  And when they don't, or when something we learned long ago no longer serves a good and useful purpose in our lives we often feel stuck—not understanding how to let go of that old learning and become who we now know we can be.


I often say that my job isn't really to hypnotize people—it’s to de-hypnotize them, so they can release those old learnings and create new learnings that are in keeping with how they want to be. 

What do I mean by de-hypnotize? Any belief you hold that doesn't allow you to be everything that you can and desire to be was accepted by your subconscious mind at some point in your life. Whether it's a habit, or a self-concept or a way of viewing the world, your subconscious mind learned that by accepting suggestions from the people around you and events that happened to you throughout your life. And that learning happened through the same suggestion-to-learning pathways that are used in hypnosis. So in a very real way, you've been hypnotized by life to accept limitations and pattens of behavior that you never actively chose. Using hypnosis we can replace those "accidental" learnings with intentional learnings. Hypnosis is the best tool for progressively stepping into your potential.


At ChangeWorks Hypnosis Center my colleague Jeff Bellis and I work every day to help people reach their goals using hypnosis and NLP (Neurolinguistic Programming), a related modality for change. This is truly a life-calling for me and I'm honored and blessed to be able to help so many people tap into their own abilities to create change in their lives.

Whether you're looking to change a "bad" habit such as smoking, release excess weight, let go of an old fear, phobia or anxiety, improve your sleep or your athletic or academic performance, we can help you do that more easily than you've thought possible before. 


You may have seen or heard about stage hypnosis shows, where people do silly things and even dance around the room or sing like Elvis. Yes, that's real hypnosis and actually fun. I've participated in stage shows many times, but in Clinical Hypnosis the experience of hypnosis is coupled with deep relaxation of the body and mind. In fact, I've heard so many times from clients "that's the most relaxed I've ever been." Hypnosis will help you to release the stress and tension set point that you don't even realize you have, helping your body relax more deeply and easily and also improving sleep, even when sleep isn't the goal being addressed.


There's a saying in the hypnosis field, "All hypnosis is self-hypnosis." And it's true. As hypnotherapists we are skilled in what takes a human mind into the hypnotic state and we are trained to observe for signs that our client is in fact in hypnosis, however we are not in your mind. YOU are creating this amazing state of mind that opens your faculties of creativity, inventiveness, forgiveness and self-understanding and love. The result of working with hypnosis is a greater appreciation for the incredible being that you are, which strengthens the most important relationship in your life—your relationship with YOU!


There are a lot of myths out there about hypnosis. If you choose to come visit us you'll learn that there's no way to get stuck in hypnosis and, since we aren't in your heads (as I mention above), we can't make you do anything that goes against your morals and values. Hypnosis is really easy to do, safe, enjoyable and most importantly, effective.  


“Just wanted to say ‘Thank you!’ The hypnosis really did work. For the most part I just read and did my crossword puzzles and even looked outside at the ocean. Crazy I tell ya! The flight back was ok but the landing—not so much. We started to land, the tires were on the ground and all of a sudden we had to go back up. Second time we landed we did stay on the ground but we slid a bit because it was so slippery out! Before meeting with you I would have totally freaked out but I didn’t!  Thank you very much!” —Tammy Schultz, Minneapolis, MN

“I just wanted to send you a note on my hypnosis experience with you. First a little history on my battle with anxiety. It started around eight years ago when I thought I was having a heart attack and I went to the doctor and they did a stress test and decided it was just stress. So I was told to sell a couple of my businesses and get a hobby and I was also put on Paxil. This seemed to work for stopping the panic attacks but it did not solve the anxiety problem and I did not like the way I felt on the drugs. Whenever I tried to go off the meds I would start having anxiety and panic attacks again. I also had my thyroid checked and my testosterone which was low and that helped lesson the depression after the panic attacks. I went to see a counselor who explained how anxiety worked and told me it was all in my head and I also read a number of books and ordered the Lucinda Basset (Midwest Anxiety Center) tapes off the infomercial. All of this helped reduce the frequency and severity of the attacks, but it was all still in my head and I didn’t have idea what I could do about that. So I called you to try hypnotherapy and I will have to say I was a skeptic but I agreed to follow whatever you told me to do to the letter to give it a fair chance. After the first session I had the feeling that I could not have a panic attack even when I was feeling stressed. The suggestions you gave me during hypnosis gave me some tools, and for the first time I had made changes ‘in my head’ even though I was not in a deep state of hypnosis until the fourth session. I had realized after trying to blame everything and everyone for my anxiety that I needed to take responsibility for it, but I just didn’t know how to change what was going on in my head. I want to thank you Cindy for doing what you do. You did in five sessions what I had been trying to do myself for over eight years. I will take the responsibility to keep up on the meditation and self hypnosis, I plan on making it part of my lifestyle just like my exercise and healthy eating. Thank You.”—Daniel Erickson, Anoka, MN


We would love to see you at ChangeWorks Hypnosis Center in Apple Valley, MN and we also know that seeing a hypnotherapist in person isn't possible for everyone.  Because of that we also offer distance sessions via Skype or Zoom and a library of hypnosis sessions is available at www.HypnosisFirst.com

Not sure how to get started? Download the HypnosisFirst app on your Apple or Android device and enjoy several free pre-recorded sessions, then contact us directly to learn more about how we can help you achieve your goals.

Schedule your free consultation with Cindy Locher or Jeff Bellis today! Visit www.MinnesotaHypnosis.com. Call (952) 356-0010.

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