Hypnosis is a technique that involves creating a highly focused, receptive mental state in which the unconscious mind becomes more accessible than in the normal, waking state. The therapist uses hypnotic "induction" to help the client enter a state of trance, deepens the trance, then works on a goal developed with the client beforehand. In trance one can also identify and work through unconscious obstacles to pursuing and reaching goals.
The openness and focus of the altered state allows the mind to do many things: develop goals based on deep values; imagine the steps needed to reach a given goal; and take in motivating suggestions for pursuing the goal. In hypnosis one can use the mind to influence the body in the present moment and going forward. One can learn to manage anxiety in the moment, such as relaxing quickly when sitting in the dentist's chair or preparing for an exam, or to use trance to decrease the amount of anesthesia needed for surgery and promote quicker post-surgical healing.
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