Do you think you could be hypnotized?

The more I think about it…the harder it is to picture myself ever being able to be hypnotized. I think my mind and thoughts would get into the way every time and it would keep making it impossible to go under.

I’ve tried a couple times with people I knew. It sort of worked one time. I kind of got into trance, and the person did a couple tricks with me (pretend your arm is light, like attached to a balloon and then my hand did sort of rise on its own, or pretend your hands are stuck together and then getting them unstuck is hard). Not really anything more complex than that, though I’ve heard you can “work at it” and get better. So maybe I could, if I kept doing it.

Back in 2002 I was seeing a therapist for some incidents I went through as a small child. There was come confusion as to what exactly happened and by who so he thought it would be a swell idea to try to hypnotize me to find out “what really happened”… For whatever reason he couldn’t put me under. I think it was more that I was to scared to relive what I didn’t reminder. What I do remember scares me enough…

One of my aunts was training in therapeutic hypnosis and needed guinea pigs, so she did it to everyone in my family. I couldn’t really “go under”, though. I responded to some of her suggestions, but it was an entirely conscious thing and I was responding because I actively wanted to. There was never any point where my response to her surprised me, or I wasn’t aware of what I was doing, or anything else. I can remember my thought process exactly, in fact. She attempted to hypnotize me to help me overcome my tendency to grind my teeth and at one point while I was in the “trance” she asked why I ground my teeth.

And while I was very relaxed and comfy and feeling a bit suggestible, no answer came. There was no nice, tidy little reason for why I ground my teeth and no amount of hypnosis was going to make one appear. She wasn’t speaking to my subconscious–just me. So, I thought about it for a minute, and then offered a plausible psychobabble reason, so that she wouldn’t feel bad.

I’ve heard plenty of stories from people who either claim to have been hypnotized or know someone (usually it’s a cousin) who has been.

I just don’t see it happening for me. Why would be told to to relax etc put me into some kind of different state? Relaxation (true relaxation) for me doesn’t just happen because a stranger who will want to control some aspect of me tells me to do so. If anything, my anxiety would go up if told to relax. (not really anxiety, but awareness and alertness). It seems counterintuitive to me. YMMV.
ETA: Exactly, **Caerie. **

What everybody else has said. I tried it several times with a seemingly reputable hypnotherapist in the hope that I could get to the bottom of some nagging issues (no specific incidents in mind-none that I could recall at all at least). Oh I could go in pretty deep, but I was always in conscious control, no long-forgotten traumas came bubbling up from my subconscious-nada. Essentially I spent $30/hour to take a few nice almost-but-not-quite-asleep naps.

I’ve had several hypnotherapy sessions for quitting smoking. The first time, I didn’t feel like I’d been hypnotized but I quit smoking immediately and stayed quit for about ten years.

Another time it didn’t work at all – the hypnotist talked too fast and nobody in the group came close to being relaxed, let alone hypnotized.

Another time I think it did work. When I “woke up”, an hour had passed. I assume we were being given suggestions during that hour. Everyone still had their clothes on anyway. But I lit up as soon as I left the room.

So I think I’ve been hypnotized twice – it just wasn’t what I expected.

Nope. Like CaerieD, I do the things the hypnotist suggests because I don’t want to embarrass him/her. I’m just like that - being around someone who’s embarrassed is excruciating for me.

Trance work, meditation, extended prayer and the like are similarly difficult for me - I almost wrote “impossible,” but I’m not giving up yet!

Is that old idea about how far you can roll your eyes back being correlated to hypnobility still considered true? 'Cause I can’t roll my eyes back very far at all: my irises are still totally visible at my range of motion.

I’ve done it a couple times, once (to stop smoking cigs) wtih 100% effectiveness. A good hypnotist helps you focus and it’s really not that hard… just summon the inner OCD within yourself :slight_smile:

I went to a hypnotherapist a few times but didn’t really feel like anything was happening. It would probably only work on me if I was already really sleepy/had just woken up.

Yes. I was hypnotized a few weeks ago. I thought for sure it wouldn’t work, but it did. It’s a little scary when you “come to” and see how much time has passed.

My aunt had a few tests she’d been taught to administer, to determine how likely it was that someone could be hypnotized. The ones they were teaching at that point (about three years ago) were tests on suggestibility, like if you hung a pendant from your hand, could you subconsciously influence the way it would swing, etc. Everything that she did indicated that I’d be easy to hypnotize, but I wasn’t.

In my case, I think it’s that I have a little too much meta-awareness of my own thought processes. The same thing happens when I attempt to meditate, where I end up analyzing everything and my reactions to it, and can’t simply shut off or at least slow down.

Not only could be, but was. By one of my psych profs way back when. I told him during a break that I was uncomfortable speaking in front of people, so he had me sit in a chair and told me to focus and concentrate on following his finger. I went under like a submarine with the doors open. When I opened my eyes, he was ten feet away. All he said was “very interesting”, and we didn’t follow through on what that meant. I’ve always wondered.

Seriously though, the closest I came to being hypnotized was in college, we had a magician/hypnotist do a show in the cafeteria, the furthest under I got was him biting into a lemon and all of us tasting it (power-of-suggestion thingy)

the next stage he had us put our hands together and interlock our fingers, he told us to imagine glue between our palms, on the three count, he told us to take our hands apart, anyone unable to do so was brought up on stage, there were about 5 people, I was not one of them, I was unaffected by the “glue gag”

the people on stage went through all the normal stage hypnosis gags, forgetting their name, age regression, one woman was commanded to scream whenever a certain word was uttered, another was given the hypnotic suggestion to run up and kiss the hypnotist whenever a keyword was uttered, and was then instructed to go back to her seat in the audience

the one gag I wish my friend** had been in on (he wasn’t hypnotized either) was one where the hypnotist put a $100 bill on the stage, told the mark if they could pocket it they could have it, as soon as the mark picked up the bill, the hypnotist said “that’s 500 pounds”, the mark’s hand immediately hit the ground due to the “heavy” weight
**Oh, did I mention, my friend’s from England…

I could not be hypnotized, because I would never agree to let anyone try. I have a thing about being in control of myself (well, except for a few alcohol-related incidents in college ;)). Which is just as well, because my job doesn’t allow me to ever get hypnotized.

I’ve had two amateurs and a professional try to hypnotize me, and there was no effect whatsoever.

I was hypnotized by one of those campy entertainer types. It was pretty hilarious. I’m not surprised that I was able to be hypnotized - I’m generally pretty open to suggestion. Anyway, I was extremely aware of everything I was doing, to the point that I felt a little silly to be doing it (I pretended I was Val Kilmer - I am a woman, by the way.), but felt extremely compelled to do it anyway.

I’ve never been hypnotized for an actual therapeutic reason.

On one hand I’m a very trusting person, which should make it easier. On the other hand, like CaerieD, I analyze myself a lot so…

I’d be interested in trying it, but I’m not paying for it.

I am not a trusting person, so I don’t think I’d be willing, consiously or otherwise, to let someone else have control of my mind/body even to a small degree.

Yeah, made going under for surgery fun…:rolleyes::stuck_out_tongue:

But it’s that inner OCD that would make it impossible for me to be “put under”. Which is weird, because I’m very suggestible, but also anxious and (as has been said) meta-aware (which I associate with a tendency to OCD). Meditate? I don’t think so…there’s too much to process: the mat or floor I’m on, the temperature of my feet (if bare), the uncomfortableness of my legs when I sit crossed legged too lon, my need to blow my nose, my scalp itches, last night’s dinner and how I could change the ingredients to improve it, what my son said this morning, has my partner made his move in Scrabble beta yet, when am I going to get serious about a new job and life etc…

no way could I meditate. I can live in the moment, fleetingly, but not meditate. Since I can’t do that, I doubt I could be hypnotized.