Self-hypnosis: what is it that you want?

by Matt Edwards; Sports, Exercise and Health Dept

Imagine or remember this. Sat in the library or at a desk, reading up for next week’s essay. Get to the end of the page, and realise….you’ve not taken in a single word. In fact it’s like you’ve just woken up, drifted back to reality. Where have you been?

One way to think about this is as follows;- it happens sometimes when you’re driving (“how did I get here?!”) –  it’s a kind of light ‘trance state’, a zoning-out, where your mind and body can do quite complex things like reading or driving, but – and this is the good bit – you’re doing this stuff quite happily whilst an important part of you is thinking about something else entirely.

Sometimes called day-dreaming, it’s a natural and useful experience, even a skill, that too often we’re told not to engage in.

You can learn to deliberately use and enhance this skill through self-hypnosis. Self hypnosis is a powerful, congruent way to go into and explore these kinds of natural, resourceful states of mind. Whether for simple relaxation, or as a chance to allow your mind to examine an idea or a goal or an issue, the change in mind-body state that self-hypnosis encourages can be enormously powerful.

Imagine being able to have better control over your state of mind, to decide how confident you want to feel going into your PhD viva, as one recent student I worked with discovered for herself.

How good could that be? And what is it that you want?