Hypnosis Definition.

Hypnosis Definition: The Definitions of Hypnosis, Suggestion, and Hypnosis Meaning.

Hypnosis is a powerful tool that has been used for centuries to help people achieve their goals.  The definition of hypnosis and its meaning is often misunderstood, but it is an important tool that can be used to make positive changes in one’s life.

Hypnosis has been around for centuries, but it was not until the late 18th century that it began to gain popularity as a therapeutic tool. In the 19th century, hypnotherapy became more widely accepted as a legitimate form of treatment for various psychological issues. Today, hypnotherapy is still widely used by therapists and psychologists to help people overcome their problems.


Definition of Hypnosis, Hypnotic Suggestion, The Hypnotic State, and Hypnotic Induction.

What is the definition of hypnosis?

A lot of topics go into hypnosis. It’s a broad subject that covers many different areas. We’ll start with what’s being said about hypnosis in academic circles. Many definitions and quotes below are from the American Psychological Society. Instead of just some person’s opinion on what hypnosis is, these definitions have come about by groups of scientists reaching a consensus-based upon over a century of research.

That being said, even though there’s extensive research behind the definitions here, and these are the best definitions of hypnosis you will find anywhere, not all hypnosis researchers agree with all the parts of these definitions, but they are a good starting point.

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Hypnosis definition

“A state of consciousness involving focused attention and reduced peripheral awareness characterized by an enhanced capacity for response to suggestion.” (APA, 2014) https://www.apadivisions.org/division-30/about

One of the first things to know about hypnosis is that it alters how we pay attention to things. In hypnosis, people tend to focus on what the hypnotist suggests. 

They rarely pay much attention to what is going on around them unless directed to do so.

In some ways, this state of focus is a bit like being in the moment of reading a really good book or watching a great movie – you are so engrossed that you’re not really paying attention to what is going on around you.

The second big thing to know about hypnosis is that it can affect how you respond to suggestions.

 A definition of suggestions is given below, but essentially these are invitations by the hypnotist to experience the world in a different way.

Hypnosis is the art of suggestion. You invite someone to experience the world in a different way by suggesting that he or she should do it in a new way, that has the ability to alter our mindset or how we feel or think about something.

For example, a dentist who uses hypnosis might suggest to his patient that their mouth is feeling pleasantly numb. A therapist may use hypnosis to help their client remember something that happened in their past without experiencing overwhelming emotions. Hypnosis typically means that suggestions are experienced more strongly or effortlessly.

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Hypnotic induction definition

“A procedure designed to induce hypnosis.” (APA, 2014)

“While some people think it is not necessary to use the word hypnosis as part of the induction, others view it as essential.” (APA, 2003)

A hypnotic induction involves suggesting to someone that they become hypnotized. It usually involves giving instructions and suggestions that will help someone to enter hypnosis.

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Hypnotic induction often involves instructions for relaxation, but although it is pleasant, it is unnecessary. 

People who are new to hypnosis often need more time to enter hypnosis, but with practice, people can usually get into hypnosis quicker than others who do not.

Hypnotizability definition 

“An individual’s ability to experience suggested alterations in physiology, sensations, emotions, thoughts, or behavior during hypnosis.” (APA, 2014)

Hypnotizability and suggestibility are used interchangeably. Not everyone experiences the effects of suggestions equally.

People who are highly hypnotizable are likely to experience the effects of hypnosis easily, readily, and profoundly.

No matter how much you try, other people won’t be able to experience very much at all. They are called low hypnotizable.

Most people are average hypnotizable, which is called medium hypnotizable.

There is a debate about whether the term hypnotizability should measure responsiveness to suggestions in hypnosis’ or ‘the difference in how responsive someone is to suggestions in and out of hypnosis.’

Hypnotherapy definition

“The use of hypnosis in the treatment of a medical or psychological disorder or concern.” (APA, 2014)

Hypnotherapy is the clinical use of hypnosis and is used by healthcare providers, including doctors, dentists, and other medical professionals, to help their patients.

Hypnosis isn’t a therapy in itself. It’s better thought of as a set of techniques that a skilled therapist can use to help you change your beliefs or behaviors.

Some professionals believe you should have a degree in a medical or psychological specialty before starting to practice hypnosis.

Suggestion definition

“One person is guided by another to respond to suggestions for changes in subjective experiences, alterations in perception, sensation, emotion, thought, or behavior” (APA, 2003)

Suggestions are what cause the most interesting and effective results from hypnosis.

For example, when someone who has a painful arm is hypnotized, they may feel focused and relaxed.

It is not until they are given a suggestion, such as “your arm is beginning to feel numb and insensitive,” that they start to experience pain relief.

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The same is true for other types of suggestions too

Direct suggestions can be “You notice changes in your arm’s feeling.” Indirect suggestions can be, “you might begin to notice changes in how your arm is feeling.

One idea is that suggestions work by changing our expectations of what we think will happen and then having the experience match those new expectations.

In conclusion

Hypnosis has been around for centuries and its definition and meaning have evolved over time. It is an important tool that can be used by therapists and individuals alike to make positive changes in their lives.

The meaning of hypnosis goes beyond just inducing a trance-like state; it can also refer to any technique that uses suggestion or imagery to influence behavior or thought processes.

Hypnotic techniques are often used in psychotherapy sessions as well as self-hypnosis sessions where individuals use visualization techniques or affirmations to create positive change in their lives.

The definition of hypnosis refers to the process of inducing a trance-like state in which the subject experiences heightened suggestibility and relaxation.  This allows for suggestions from the therapist or hypnotist to be accepted more easily by the subject’s subconscious mind. The hypnotic state can also be used to explore past memories or experiences that may have been forgotten or repressed by the conscious mind. Hypnosis can be used to help people overcome fears, phobias, addictions, and other issues. It can also be used to improve performance in sports or academics.