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Juice ‘em up

By on October 18, 2014

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that is part of your brain’s reward system.

Said another way, dopamine is a chemical that your brain uses to motivate you to do things. The way it motivates you is by making you feel good when you do what your brain wants you to do.

There is good dopamine and bad dopamine.  Very often when a client comes to see you for hypnosis it is because they have fallen victim to their own bad dopamine, dopamine which has rewarded them for smoking cigarettes, eating unhealthy foods, gambling, or for simply feeling miserable.

Fortunately we, as hypnotists, have the opportunity to redirect our hypnosis client’s dopamine in more positive directions. We can turn it into good dopamine. The way we do this, at least in the hypnosis office, is by rewarding the clients when they do something good, such as making a positive change. We reward them by congratulating them, telling them they have done a good job, and most of all by smiling at them!  My co-author Melissa Tiers and I talk about this at length in our book Keeping the Brain in Mind.

When we, as the hypnotist, the expert in hypnosis, smile at the client and tell them they have done a fantastic job they feel good. When they feel good their brain releases dopamine, and this dopamine makes it feel even better. This lets them know that they should do more of what they just did.

A simple way to use this principle is when you are ending the trance. At the end of the formal trance, when you have just brought client back into the room, they are still actually in trance and susceptible to suggestion. It takes a few seconds for them to return to normal waking consciousness and anything you say in this window of opportunity can have a powerful effect on your client, positive or negative.

Sometimes, in a hypnosis class, a student will bring their partner out of trance and say something like, “That wasn’t very good, was it?” This is a direct suggestion to the ‘client’ that the students just gave them a ‘bad’ trance!

Fortunately the opposite it is also true. When your client comes out of trance you have a brief opportunity to congratulate them on the wonderful piece of change work that they just did, and also to place a posthypnotic suggestion that the changes they have made will continue as they walk out of your office.

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