Mindful meditation is an incredible tool to help you train your mind. But what is the difference between this and hypnosis, and is one better than the other?
I think it’s more accurate to say that one can complement the other. Hypnosis and self-hypnosis are great ways to ease into the practice of meditation, because they are easier to do.
What’s The Difference?
Both practises are essentially exercises in training the mind, but hypnosis works on training the subconscious mind, whereas meditation is a conscious concentration exercise.
Self-hypnosis and hypnosis are easier because when you hear the voice of your clinical hypnotherapist (be it in person or via a hypnosis download), your mind can wander off freely and your subconscious will still absorb everything that is being said. When you’re meditating, you are paying close attention to one particular object such as:
- A mantra;
- The breath;
- A candle flame
Each time your mind wanders off (and it does this many times), you have to bring your mind back to the object of your concentration. That’s hard work! This might seem like a pointless exercise, but let’s look at how it can help you in your daily life:
Sonia – Can You Hypnotise Me To Make Me More Mindful?
One of my hypnotherapy clients was struggling very badly with intrusive thoughts around not being good enough that were causing a deep depression. She wanted me to hypnotize her to stop getting lost in those thoughts.
I told her the only way she could stop getting lost in thoughts was by practising meditation. Personally I have had a lot of hypnotherapy and often use self-hypnosis downloads as part of my commitment to daily relaxation.
But in my experience nothing helps more for those intrusive thoughts than meditation. But who’s got time to meditate? I do, or rather I make time – and so would you if you could see how much it helps.
The Trance Of Negative Thought Patterns
It’s not the thoughts themselves that are the problem, but rather the stories we tell ourselves about those thoughts. For example, if the ‘inner critic’ inside you starts talking you might hear the thought: ‘you’re not good enough’. If you haven’t trained your mind you might actually believe this thought is true, rather than just recognising it for what it is: a thought.
Then that thought takes you off on a train-ride full of other equally destructive thoughts, such as: ‘you’ll never be good enough. You’re completely hopeless. What about the time you….’ And so it goes on.
A person who practises daily meditation is (sometimes) able to catch that thought before it runs away into the negative story. She can say ‘oh look, there’s the inner critic again’. Of course, she won’t always catch it right away. She might get caught up in the story sometimes and then at some point she will awaken from the trance and think: ‘oh – there I go again, getting lost in my thoughts’.
The point is that each time you do this – each time you awaken from the trance, you strengthen your mindfulness muscles. Hypnosis and mindful meditation are two completely different kettles of fish – both equally helpful in their own way. If you would like to know more about how to meditate contact me via my contact page here.