This is a question I am often asked and is article is about my personal ideas about it as well as a few thoughts on why this is useful.
An Altered State of Consciousness
Some won’t agree with me but I define trance as an altered state of consciousness. The most obvious question that follows is, “altered from what?” And my answer would be altered from the state of consciousness you were in before it was altered.
How is this useful?
Well you get several things from this approach. Firstly as a hypnotist whether overt like a hypnotherapist or covert like a hypnotic persuader you get an amazing amount of flexibility. Your role is to lead people through a sequence of altered states, starting from the one they are in when they come into the room and ending in the one that is the most useful.
The second really useful thing about this approach is that it defines trance as a naturally occurring thing that is just about altering your consciousness. For example under this definition you can have a driving trance, a watch TV trance, a just waking up trance and a thoughtful trance as you reflect on these ideas.
How can I use this?
As a hypnotic persuader you might want to start thinking about the trance you want to put people in and then work out your process to get them there. If you work with overt hypnosis then these ideas might be a route into developing resourceful hypnotic states for your client. For yourself, here is a little process you can use for study techniques, but the concept holds true for building any trance state.
A Trance for Studying a Book
Start by getting relaxed, comfortable and let go of anything that is not involved with the book you are studying. This is a good place to start any process, note that you always perform better if you are relaxed, comfortable and focused.
Ask yourself what you want to get from the book and how will you know you have got it. Then imagine yourself having got the result and using the skill, knowledge or information. Any good process should be developed around clearly defined outcomes.
Now read the front and back covers, the contents and index pages then briefly flick through the pages getting a feel for the book and the author. Based on what you have uncovered imagine having a conversation with the author. Ask them the questions you want answered; discuss their reasons for the layout, content and design of the book. What was their purpose of writing, what do they want a reader to get from it and how does that relate to what you want to get from the book?
It does not matter if you don’t know anything about the author although this process would obviously work better the better you know the author. Just using your imagination in this way will create results.
Consider the point that doing this will have sent you into an altered state of consciousness that is filled with your end objectives, the questions you want answered and asking searching questions of the material you are about to study. Have you already realised that doing this will make the reading of the book quicker, more goal orientated and get you to your outcomes quicker. This is just one simple approach to trance under my definition of it.
A Free Copy of Tranced Out
You have seen on a few articles that Josh and Taylor are releasing the first (as far as I know) home study course on Rapid and Instant Trance Inductions. I think the programme is excellent and will put out a full review of it next week. In the mean time though these guys are holding a competition to give away two copies totally free. Have a look on their blog and enter the competition here.