Saturday, October 31, 2009

Instant Self-Hypnosis by Forbes Robbins Blair

Blair, Forbes Robbins. Instant Self-Hypnosis: How to Hypnotize Yourself with Your Eyes Open. Naperville, IL: Sourcebooks, 2004.

Forbes Robbins Blair’s premise is that almost anyone can hypnotize himself by reading aloud a hypnotic script. He stumbled across this discovery in his practice as a hypnotherapist.

In this easy to read book, Blair lays out the basics of hypnosis. He takes some time to debunk hypnosis myths, largely to put readers at ease about the safety of the method and moderate unrealistic expectations.

One of these myths, perpetuated by stage hypnotists, is that you are hypnotized by another who controls your behavior. According to Blair, the subject of hypnotism is always aware and able to ignore any suggestion he doesn’t like. Hypnosis can be helpful to those seeking a change, but it isn’t likely to help someone who is not motivated to change.

Much of the book is a series of hypnotic scripts. The reader reads aloud to himself to achieve a hypnotic state. Then he turns to a script related to a specific goal such as more assertiveness, stop smoking, weight loss or more confidence as a public speaker. At the end of each script is a wake up section.

If you don’t find a script that fits your goal, Blair has a simple procedure for writing your own script. You can even write it while hypnotized. Once written, it can serve as a script to be read like those in the book.

It may seem that one could hardly be hypnotized so easily. Blair says it is common to enter a light hypnotic state while reading an engrossing book or watching a movie. It is simply a matter of focused attention and heightened suggestibility. He says even a light state of hypnosis is enough to effectively plant suggestions for changes you want to make. Plus, as you practice the procedure, you become better at hypnotizing yourself.