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Do Online Hypnosis Sessions Work?

The short answer is “Definitely yes!” Online hypnosis sessions became especially popular during the “lockdowns” associated with the Coronavirus pandemic, and are becoming more common every day as people grow accustomed to working “remotely”. Let’s discuss.

Online/Offline Effectiveness

As I discuss in this article, some forms of hypnosis can be “more effective” than others. The essence of this question is how effective online hypnosis sessions are compared to “in office”, face-to-face sessions.

“Live and in person” sessions have a few potential advantages over online sessions:

  • Techniques that require any sort of physical contact (most “rapid inductions”) obviously cannot be performed online today.
  • The hypnotist will typically have a more complete view of you in person than on “webcam”, which sometimes provides more information about what and how you are responding, which enables the hypnotist to make adjustments in the moment.
  • An office sometimes conveys its own “suggestion” that “this is where change happens”, which is a form of state-dependent learning. (More about that below, however!)
  • “In person” sessions do not usually require reliable, high speed internet service.

Of course, “online sessions” have some advantages over in-office sessions, too:

  • Physical contact is completely impossible.
  • You get to control the air conditioning and heating to ensure you are comfortable.
  • Privacy: no one can see you entering or leaving the hypnotist’s office.
  • No driving required, which is a major advantage all on its own for many people.
  • You get to work with a great hypnotist no matter where either of you are located.
  • You can use noise-cancelling headphones to really shut out the world around you.
  • You and the hypnotist may both have more options for availability (time of day).

State-Based Changes

Your brain works by forming associations, which makes it exceptionally good at state-dependent learning. Unfortunately, this can lead to one of the most frustrating experiences we encounter in hypnosis: the client makes a change successfully within our office, but loses “access” to the change when they are not in the office.

That is simply the brain associating the change with the state of “being in the hypnotist’s office”.

Experienced hypnotists are aware that this can happen, and work to ensure you get to “take the change with you”, however, if you use online hypnosis in your “normal day to day environment”, then your brain can actually take advantage of its automatic state-dependent learning and associate the changes with your normal environment all on its own!

What If I We Get Disconnected? Can I Get Stuck?

Lag happens, voices cut out temporarily, and yes, sometimes we get disconnected. The good news is that you can’t get “stuck” in hypnosis no matter where you do it. Your brain is pretty good at recognizing that if the internet connection has completely failed, you might need to attend to that.

Again, an experienced hypnotist will address this, and may even incorporate suggestions around this just to be absolutely certain, but the worst case is simply that the session is interrupted and you have to reschedule.

The Bottom Line

Online hypnosis sessions are at least “almost as effective” as in person sessions, and can actually be more effective for some people in some situations. They are almost certainly “the way of the future” as more and more hypnotists transition to delivering online services.

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