Saturday, July 25, 2009

Hypnosis Safety II

I know I already posted about safety when viewing hypnosis videos on YouTube, but I think it's serious enough that I'm going to embed this here. The audio isn't the best, (I'll probably re-record it soon) but the info is important.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Problem Solved

The DNS changes are still percolating, but percolating they are. is finally accessible again.

To celebrate, I've got a link to my updated induction file. I'm looking into hosting at least the free files locally to make them more easily accessible, but I'm wanting to get a feel for the bandwidth requirements first.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Running a site can be Difficult

iHypnoU has been down quite a while, and it's bothering me a lot.

Not because I'm losing money - nothing is for sale just yet.

Honestly, I'm embarassed.

In the middle of moving to my apartment, I've stopped focusing so much on the website, and I didn't notice it was down until my traffic started dropping.

Even when the web host is up, the site has been down. I'm not quite sure what it means, but in an effort to fix it, I've moved to a new host. The only issue now is getting ahold of the guy who can change my nameservers.

I've learned my lesson, I guess, in that it's important to have full control, or at least really direct supervision, over the really important stuff.


While registering a new domain name yesterday, I browsed through one of the many bargain bins of recently expired names. In the process, I noticed there were a lot of hypnosis related domains up for grabs, especially those targeting our lovely neighbor-to-the-north, Canada.

One of the first things you do before you enter a marketplace with a new venture is scope out the competition. As far as hypnosis goes, there is a lot. The next thing you do, if you want to be successful, is figure out how you can differentiate yourself to get ahead of the pack.

At, we are looking to differentiate ourselves by providing real hypnosis and hypnosis information. We aren’t pushing any new-age ideas; we aren’t offering rubbish hypnosis sessions for ‘attracting good luck’ or money, and when our instruction materials come out, we won’t be teaching you how to mind control your boss for raises or get any woman to sleep with you.

It’s no surprise that so many of these domains are up for grabs. Many of them were probably owned by one person, and online hypnosis sites selling bunk information, like bad hypnotherapy practices, go out of business quickly.

Know that, despite our website being down at the moment thanks to our horrible (and now former) web host, we are still here and still working hard. Our first pay file, for helping with sleep troubles, is finished will be out the door soon.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Microphone Review – Alesis USB Mic

Seeing as how I’m recording hypnosis .mp3 files, having a good microphone is important. The only issue is, I value my mobility, and my primary computer, like many Americans these days, is a laptop. In making the switch to a laptop, I gave up a lot of things, like the plethora of inputs and a good soundcard that having pci or pci-e slots can offer.

To top it all off, ever since I had my motherboard replaced last year (Hooray for extended warranties with in-home service) my sound jacks have both been very noisy.

Where does that leave someone looking to get good sound quality?

I was faced with two options. One is to buy either an external sound card or mixer that hooks into my laptop via USB. The other is to skip the middle man and buy a USB microphone.

Given that I don’t need the finest control or quality, and I’m buying from a value perspective, I went with a USB microphone. This allows me a much easier set up if I’m recording a session elsewhere, and at a price range of $50-$150 is much cheaper than buying a USB-XLR interface or some other mixer box.

If you’re wondering what kind of benefit you’ll see over using a cheap headset or desktop mic, you’ll probably be quite impressed after some fiddling with levels and microphone positioning. I bought an Alesis USB mic - a condenser microphone with a cardioid pickup pattern.

The condenser part means that it is essentially a big capacitor, and vibrations strike one of the capacitor’s plates, the change in distance changes the capacitance of the system, which is measured to create a signal. This is different from a dynamic microphone, which relies on a diaphragm moving within a magnetic field to create an electric current (The opposite of a speaker). Typically, a condenser microphone will give a better reproduction than a dynamic mic. Many of the small microphones in electronics are electret mics, a special kind of condenser, but on average their sound quality usually suffers (due to size and expense) in comparison to a larger mic.

The cardioid pattern means that it picks up sound best when it comes from in front of one side of the microphone. This allows some leeway in background noise.

If you need the best quality sound reproduction, there are much better options with correspondingly higher costs, but for quality that is just ‘okay’ I don’t think you’ll go wrong with the Alesis USB microphone. It retails in the US for $99.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Tying Things Together

One of the first things most people learn about hypnosis, whether they realize it or not, is the concept of tying two effects or stimuli together, and how it makes the hypnotist job much easier.

Even hokey depictions of hypnosis on TV usually get this one right: by tying a stimulus to a response or vice versa, the hypnotist has an easier time wording suggestions and creating an agreement snowball.

Agreement, as a noun, is how I like to describe the condition where an expectation, created by either the hypnotist or the subject, matches up to what the subject actually experiences. This convergence of expectation and reality seems to almost acquire a life of it’s own over time, leading to a situation where the subject’s mind will work to create agreement without effort from the hypnotist.

One of the key tools to generate this agreement is to tie something the subject is experiencing or doing to some effect, establishing a cause and effect relationship. Even better, is when this relationship can be looped back on itself.

The classic example, is in the Eye Lock, or Eye Catalepsy – it goes by many names, but it’s often used as a test and convincer. One of the commonly used suggestions: “The harder you try to open your eyes, the harder it becomes to open them.” By tying increased effort to increased difficulty, a subject accepting and following the suggestion will keep their eyes closed, never reaching the requisite effort level.

The big overlooked use of these relationships, however, is in the induction itself. Some hypnotists might throw ‘and’ or ‘as’ into their inductions to simply make them flow better, but they generate cause and effect relationships that help the trance.

For example, you can take something that you and the subject both know the subject is experiencing - perhaps her eyes are blinking or his body is sinking into the chair – and tie it to some effect you’d like to see, such as a warm relaxation washing over her or a feeling of calm contentment sinking in.

This secondary effect can and should be more internal, or harder to define and prove than the one it’s linked to, because in most cases you’re trying to shift the subject’s focus towards the internal, and because these are effects that you’ll never be 100% sure about just by saying they are there. Tying them to the first effect helps generate that agreement and rapport that the hypnotist needs, as any hint of that secondary effect can be noticed and enhanced by the subject, building credibility.

There are even additional benefits, as linking together sensory information helps with pacing and leading, and is one of the most direct methods for shifting state of consciousness.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Session Length

I see a lot of hypnotists bragging online, especially on YouTube, about how fast they are. Many of them are simply using the same instant induction techniques used by most every hypnotist; some are just showing videos of using what is essentially a re-induction trigger. Regardless, there seems to be a concept that faster is better.

On the opposite side of the spectrum, I’ve noticed that my sessions tend to run short compared to many. Maybe I’m incredibly lucky in that all my usual subjects are quick to enter trance, or maybe I’m just rushing through things. Maybe it’s because other hypnotist think that a longer session is necessary to achieve results, or to make people feel like it’s worth the price. With an in-person therapy session, a one-hour length is probably the minimum necessary to account for talks on both sides and any potential slip in scheduling, but how many people have an hour or more to listen to a recording, especially on a daily basis?

It’s a common question subjects pose, though: how long will it take to hypnotize me, and how long will it take to see results.

The answer, like most things in hypnosis, is “It depends.”

There are a lot of factors that go into how long it takes to hypnotize someone: experience in being hypnotized, what the goals of the session are, and how eager the subject is all play a role, among others. In the same way, how long a session must last – and how many sessions, depend on a lot of the same factors.

Personally, I prefer to have shorter sessions, and more of them. While a single long session can give more time to bring ‘deeper’ trances, depth isn’t always the important thing. I think that in many cases, a quick 20 minute session, held often with content shifting slowly with time, can bring more effective change.