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Why a Personalised Induction Will Always Be More Effective

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Hypnotherapy can be very powerful tools if engaged correctly. It is therefore essential that the most precise script is used for the correct person. When undergoing hypnosis, the induction ensures that the subject is sufficiently relaxed to experience the process fully. The form which this induction takes can be dependent on the therapist, the type of hypnosis being undertaken and the initial consultation conducted by the therapist. Some therapists may rely on a standard format for all inductions, whilst others advocate the use of personalised scripts tailored to each client. Whether this is a more effective method and produces better results for those undergoing hypnosis is a question open to debate, firstly the debate for personalised inductions.

Personalised inductions

When meeting a subject for a personalised induction for the first time it is essential to build a good rapport. This can be done quite easily by chatting, observation and general discussion. Clients can also be scored or assessed on their appearance, behaviour and personality which gives a clearer insight to them. This kind of assessment is subjective, by the therapist and gives a general indication rather than a definitive answer. However it provides a useful tool for the therapist to use, in order to begin personalising the induction for the subject. As a therapist, it is important to try to find the most effective way to communicate with the subject. Positive language is used as the mind does not respond to negatives very well. By doing this and using positive reinforcement about changes that the subject wishes to make are all ways of building a good understanding relationship with the client; and by doing this provides a starting point for a well-designed personal induction.

It is important that as a therapist we view everyone as individuals. All of us have different likes and dislikes, values, beliefs and backgrounds. Personalised inductions incorporate a subject's possible likes and dislike including their hobbies and their work, and general references to their lifestyle. It is useful to be aware of topics that are going to 'strike a chord' with the subject in order to encourage the unconscious mind to embrace the instruction, as well as help them relax and put them at ease. It is also important to be aware of what is likely to repel as well as patterns of speech and behaviour that will help relax. Subjects may be 'put off' by reference to body parts, or floating (if the subject is scared of heights). It is also important that the language and metaphors mean something to the person who will be using them. Standard metaphors will help most people. Personalised ones will be more specifically tailored to the problem at hand and because of this, will be more effective. Scripts can be personalised in many ways including, personalised language, identifying the subject's modalities, and identifying whether the subject has a preference for a permissive or authoritarian style of induction.

Neuro -Linguistic Programming(NLP) - Modalities (Representational Systems)

The neuro-linguistic programming model of communication states that conversational language reflects a favoured sense for processing information. This could be visual, auditory, kinaesthetic (including olfactory and gustatory), or even auditory digital. Auditory digitals will display characteristics' of the other modalities but also favour process and logic. This modality will also have a lot of internal dialogue and will listen to their 'inner voice', this can be a useful metaphor for induction. This sensory preference with be recognisable in many ways, particularly in body language, behaviour, speech, and the language used to describe things. Individuals will find it easier to build internal representations in their preferred modality, some recalling or building events in pictures, some in sounds, other relax through recounting feelings they have experienced.

Modalities can also become apparent through an individual's breathing patterns. Another way an induction can be personalised is through pacing and leading. Through pacing and leading the therapist can further build rapport with the subject. Matching or pacing the speed of speech to the subjects breathing at the beginning of the induction, then as the subject begins to follow the speed of speech the therapist can begin to lead, by further slowing the speed of speech, the subjects breathing can be slowed and deepened, inducing deeper relaxation.

Identifying and using the modality favoured by the subject, can aid relaxation and help the therapist build rapport with the subject more quickly. The link between enhanced relaxation and the 'primary representational system' was identified as long ago as 1981 as the following excerpt from the American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis shows:-

'The newly-emerging and rapidly growing neuro-linguistic programming model of communication states that conversational language reflects a favoured sense for processing information, the "primary representational system," (PRS). Using similar language structures while interacting is thought to increase rapport and influence. This study tested that assumption. Thirty subjects were exposed to three different hypnotic inductions varying in sensory language structure according to major representational systems. Subjects were evaluated by EMG for relaxation obtained from compatible and non-compatible inductions. Subjects objectively obtained greatest relaxation when experiencing hypnotic inductions containing predicates corresponding to their PRS. Matching PRS predicates increases the relaxation level of subjects exposed to matching and nonmatching hypnotic inductions. Identifying and matching PRS language structures appears to enhance rapport and influence.' Michael D Yapko Ph.D.

NLP highlights that people see the world and react to it very differently. For example, some individuals are visual, some auditory and the rest kinaesthetic, and therefore process and react to information in accordance to our sensory preferences (or primary representational

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