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FAQ 2017-07-09T14:41:23+00:00

About Hypnosis

There are nearly as many definitions of hypnosis as there are hypnotists. Here’s mine:

Hypnosis is a communication process that brings about a highly focused state of mind in which a person becomes receptive to suggestion.

Sounds simple, doesn’t it?

Being in hypnosis is a perfectly natural thing. Every single one of us goes into trance states every day. If you’ve ever been so absorbed in watching a movie that two hours go by in what seems like an instant, you’ve been in hypnosis. If you’ve ever driven to a familiar place and gotten there without remembering exactly what happened along the way, you’ve been in hypnosis. Every day when you make the transition from being awake to being asleep, and again when you go from sleeping to awake, you pass through a state of hypnosis.

No really. Even in these theoretically enlightened times the entertainment industry still clings to a slew of ideas about hypnosis that, while they may make for good drama, just aren’t true. For instance:

Hypnosis is not sleep
A person in hypnosis may look asleep because their body is very relaxed and still, but the person is fully aware of everything happening around them and can respond to people and events if they choose to. It’s very common for people to emerge from deep hypnosis and say, “I didn’t feel hypnotized; I heard everything you said.”
Hypnosis is not fake
In 2004 a research team in the UK discovered that people in hypnosis showed increased activity in multiple areas of the brain including the left frontal lobe and the anterior cingulate gyrus. This proves that hypnosis is not just social compliance or a folk tale, but an actual state of consciousness with unique and identifiable characteristics. If you’re curious, feel free to read the article on
Hypnosis is not mind control
When you are in hypnosis, you are in complete control of your mind and your body. Every suggestion that a hypnotist gives to a client in hypnosis is examined by a part of the mind called the hidden observer. If the suggestion isn’t compatible with your personal ethics, or seems dangerous or unpleasant, the hidden observer throws it out. It doesn’t matter how deeply into hypnosis you go or how often they repeat a suggestion; hypnosis can never compel you to do anything against your will. If it could, hypnotists would be ruling the world right now.
Hypnosis is not dangerous
In over 2,500 years of use, nobody has ever gotten stuck in hypnosis or been harmed by spending time in hypnosis.

And finally, perhaps the biggest myth of them all:

Hypnosis is not something that someone else does to you
Almost everyone who reads about hypnosis has heard the expression all hypnosis is self hypnosis. That’s not just propaganda put out by hypnotists to make people feel safe, it’s the truth. You cannot be compelled into hypnosis, and once there you cannot be compelled to stay there; you have to want it and you have to allow it to happen. It’s your mind, after all. All any hypnotist can do is provide an environment that makes it easier for you to enter hypnosis and then help you to get there. Once you’ve experienced hypnosis yourself you won’t even need anyone else’s help to get back into trance whenever and wherever you choose.
No. Hypnosis can’t make anyone do anything. What it can do is help you to rewire your mind so that the changes you want to have happen do happen. But you’ve got to want those changes, and you have to want them for yourself. Someone who wants to quit smoking, for instance, because their spouse is nagging them to do it is not necessarily someone who truly wants to do it. That makes a huge difference.
That was commonly believed 50 years ago or more, but doesn’t really hold true. Hypnosis, as has been mentioned, is a perfectly natural state that we all enter, perhaps without realizing it, every day. So in reality everybody has at least some experience at going into hypnosis.  In fact, there are really only three kinds of people who cannot be hypnotized at all:

  1. People who, because of physical/biological brain damage or disease, are unable to focus;
  2. People who are very intoxicated or in a similar drug-induced altered state, and therefore can’t focus;
  3. People who don’t want to be hypnotized.

Everyone we’ve met who “can’t be hypnotized” falls into that third category.  They may consciously think they want to try being hypnotized, but they invariably jerk themselves out of trance just as they start to slip into it.  And that’s fine; it is, as has been mentioned already, your mind.

Absolutely. No matter how you may see it portrayed in movies and television, hypnosis is actually a completely natural state in which you are in complete control. You can refuse any suggestion, no matter how deeply hypnotized you may be, and you can always choose to come out of hypnosis and end the session at any time.

About NLP

Neurolinguistic Programming, or NLP, is a set of tools for learning how a person makes decisions and then helping them to make better ones.  It is very similar to hypnosis in that NLP communicates with the subconscious mind, but most NLP work is done without any kind of formal trance induction.
That depends on the individual. NLP is governed by the same limitations as hypnosis: it can’t compel anyone to do something that is against their personal beliefs and morals, and it won’t work for anyone who doesn’t want it to work. Some people, for reasons of their own, are more receptive to NLP techniques than they are to traditional hypnotic inductions and suggestions.
Absolutely! Both of our hypnotists are also trained practitioners of NLP; Michael is a Master Practitioner and Trainer of NLP. We generally combine NLP techniques with hypnosis because taking an integrated approach allows us to give each client tools they can use to most easily and naturally reach their goals

About Our Practice

YES!  Michael Raugh originally trained and certified with the International Medical and Dental Hypnotherapy Association (IMDHA) in 2003 and became certified with the National Guild of Hypnotists at the same time.  He was Board Certified by NGH in 2013 and became a Certified Instructor in 2014.  Michael also earned his Master Practitioner and Trainer of Neurolinguistic Programming certificates from the National Federation of Neurolinguistic Programming in 2014.

Ian Raugh was trained and certified with the National Guild of Hypnotists in 2014, though he has been studying hypnotism informally since 2010.

We like to think so. Michael Raugh has been on the NGH Convention faculty every year since the 2012 convention and gets extremely positive feedback for his informative, practical seminars and workshops. Ian is new to NGH as a certified hypnotist but has been to every convention since 2010.
Yes, we do.  We know that some hypnotists use recordings for some or all of their sessions, and we acknowledge that some clients are successful with a generic, recorded approach.  However, we prefer to take an interactive, client-centered approach to our sessions.  We use no recordings and we never read from scripts; everything we do with you during your sessions is based on your input and our experience.
We use a client-centered approach, so fees vary depending on what it is you’re seeking to accomplish. We will generally quote you a fee during a free phone consultation, during which we discuss your goals and develop an idea of how to help you reach them. You will always know the fee amount prior to scheduling any sessions.

For some issues the quoted fee may be for a program, which includes one or more sessions and follow-up activities, rather than a specific number of clock hours. You will always know what the program includes and what will be expected of you before you commit to the program.

As non-medical lay hypnotists, our services fall outside the categories used by health insurance providers. We will happily provide you with a detailed receipt that you can use to file for reimbursement from your insurance provider, but whether they will do that, and by how much, is up to the insurance provider.
Yes, of course. In fact, we generally won’t accept a client without doing a free consultation first. The consultation is important because it gives you an opportunity to evaluate us while we learn about your goals and determine whether we believe we can help you achieve them. The free consultation is almost always done by phone.
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