Choosing Between Meditation and HypnosisI am often asked “what are the differences between meditation and hypnosis?” and “how do I know which will work best for me?” I have been studying, teaching as well as applying these methods for mental and physical health, personal awareness and creativity in my daily life for well over two decades.
While meditation and hypnosis have many similarities in terms of the process that is used to achieve a relaxed state of mind, they may have distinct differences in terms of the therapeutic outcome. Meditation is primarily used to quiet the mind where hypnosis is used to program the mind. Both meditation and hypnosis use comparable relaxation techniques to achieve the natural physical and mental relaxation response, but after that their similarities begin to show distinct differences.
Meditation seeks to place you in a state of “quiet mind”, helping you to create a blank slate where you can release all of your cares and concerns. Meditation helps you recharge and rejuvenate and it helps you ease away stress and anxiety.
While hypnosis can certainly do all of those things, it has a greater purpose, and that is to help you reprogram your subconscious mind. A professional hypnotist uses techniques that help you move out of your conscious mind, and into your subconscious mind. Your subconscious mind is recording everything with “thought” that you have experienced in your life through all of your senses, sight, sound, touch, taste and smell to include any and all of the emotional responses to those life experiences. These recorded thoughts then become part of your belief system where they are played out to create your reality. In other words, your thoughts create your reality. So when you are able to change your thoughts through hypnotic suggestions you are then able to change your reality. You can become free of old habits and create new habits. You can update old files with new information. You can change your emotional responses to life events to be less stressful creating a much healthier life for yourself. Self hypnosis blends together both of the techniques that are used in Hypnosis and Mediation into a wonderful tool that, when properly learned, can be life transforming.
Most of you live your lives in constant need of distraction. You may use noise such as music or the television to create that distraction by filling in the gaps created by silence because silence somehow feels unwanted. It is no wonder so many of you suffer from stress and anxiety, because as a result of your constant distracting you never get a free moment to turn your mind off from all the relentless noise. Between television, radio, cell phones and Internet your mind is always preoccupied. Silence has become such an abnormality that in a way you have developed a sense of fear of the silence. As a result, you are stressed out and anxious nearly every moment of every day.
Meditation is a very powerful tool that can help you in many ways because it helps you turn your mind down and quiet your thoughts. Creativity and other kinds of processes flow much better in a relaxed state of mind much like an Internet connection that has a maximum capacity of 1000 users and only one user on that Internet connection. Your information would flow faster and with fewer errors and disruptions. Meditation offers you a very powerful reprieve from a world full of distraction by helping you clear away your unwanted “users”. Just spending a few precious moments a day in silence watching your breath can be a life altering experience because it gives you time to contemplate and reflect, helping you ease away stress and tension.
So you may be wondering how or why you would choose one over another. Here are a few tips. If your goal is to simply relax and turn your mind off or rejuvenate and reset your stress and anxiety levels to a much healthier level meditation offers the perfect means. Hypnosis, on the other hand, is very useful if you want to quickly overcome old habits that you have been struggling with for a while like smoking or weight loss. Hypnosis is also a wonderful tool for overcoming fears, stress, anxiety and phobias and is a very gentle, natural process as well. And of course if you want it all, having the patience to learn self-hypnosis would be the way to go.
About the author: William L Molitor BCH, CI, is a Board Certified Hypnotist, Hypnosis Instructor, Hypnotherapist, and the Director of the Tri-State Hypnosis Center, a full service Hypnosis Center as well as an training center for Hypnosis and Advanced Hypnotherapy training and certification located in Cincinnati Ohio. He is certified by and is a member of the National Guild of Hypnotists (NGH). For information about hypnosis or to contact William Molitor call (513) 943-1444 or email Doris@tri-statehypnosis.com