Hypnosis Vs. Meditation -Know the Differences

March 2016

I’ve been asked plenty of times over the years:  “What is the difference in regards to hypnosis versus meditation?” or:  “After watching meditation videos on Youtube to relax with, there isn’t much difference in comparison to hypnosis, right?”  So I answer the question, but sometimes I’m not so sure they really see the important differences, and thus it could become a self-fulfilling prophecy. In other words, a client may believe they are the same and thus feel that doing hypnosis sessions can be replaced. So let’s discuss how they are both similar and different.

Let’s start with Hypnosis. Despite how it’s often sold, hypnosis is NOT just a state of relaxation. Relaxing helps bring on that state, however the two aren’t connected. We know from research that hypnosis occurs off and on constantly for basically everyone, all day long. A common example is highway hypnosis, and that’s simply someone who is driving and their mind becomes hyper focused on something, yet they still get to their destination safely, often surprised when they arrive. Another one is watching tv. Not the relaxing, at home tv session, I’m talking about the times you’re watching tv and not relaxed, yet focused on the screen. How about your computer screen at work? Hyper focus is part of the equation. Hypnosis equals:  dissociation, focus, and an increase in suggestibility. Part of the differences include how each are used. Meditation is great for relaxation and mindfulness, such as focusing on happy thoughts. Hypnosis takes this and bumps it up a few notches.

So the two are similar, but their uses are different. I always like to hear when a client comes in and they tell me they enjoy meditating. That tells me that they are practiced in how to relax and unwind. So my job is a little easier simply because their mind and body are both adapted to the feel of internal focus and relaxation. As hypnotists we often recommend that clientele try self-hypnosis at home. And so this is much more closely related to meditation itself. It’s just a simpler form of engaging in focused thought, but hardly a replacement for an office visit. It’s all an adjunct.

-Here is what Wikipedia says about Hypnosis:  Hypnosis is a state of human consciousness involving focused attention and reduced peripheral awareness and an enhanced capacity for response to suggestion. During hypnosis, a person is said to have heightened focus and concentration. The person can concentrate intensely on a specific thought or memory, while blocking out sources of distraction. Hypnotized subjects are said to show an increased response to suggestions. Hypnosis is usually induced by a procedure known as a hypnotic induction involving a series of preliminary instructions and suggestion.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypnosis

-Here is what Wikipedia says about Meditation:  Meditation is a practice where an individual trains the mind or induces a mode of consciousness, either to realize some benefit or for the mind to simply acknowledge its content without becoming identified with that content, or as an end in itself.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meditation

It’s like comparing apples to oranges. Both are fruit, but they each offer something different. You might use the apple to make pie, versus using the orange to make juice, lol. Sometimes comparing the two makes it even more confusing, but those who engage in and experience professional hypnosis procedures can attest to the differences in the usage thereof. Want a winning combination? Try adding meditation/self hypnosis when at home alongside your professional hypnosis sessions, which are in the office.

Some comparisons to this conundrum:  1. Surgery to fix a torn ligament VS. doing exercises at home to strengthen the affected area. 2. Going to the dentist to get a full deep cleaning VS. brushing your teeth at home. 3. Seeing a psychologist about a mental condition VS. meditating at home to relax and unwind for reducing stress as a way to lighten that condition. ……………We could go on and on, which is kind of fun, but you probably get the idea.

It’s really quite amazing how powerful our mind is. Hopefully this will assist someone in the realization that hypnosis and meditation are cousins. Let them work together if you feel the need, but recall their usage differences when determining if your issues might benefit from professional hypnosis sessions. Know someone who might benefit from this information? Please pass it on! Thanks for reading! www.reposehypnosis.com