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Science of Hypnosis – Deeper Dive FAQ

What's the Difference Between Hypnosis and Meditation? What's the same?

Hypnosis and meditation developed over the course of history and both sets of techniques access the same kind of mental processes that result in an altered state of mind where we become highly focused.

Both aim to concentrate your attention internally, to focus on the goals that you work towards and to reframe attitudes and beliefs about yourself and your environment in a specific way. But the largest difference between the two sets of techniques flow from the differences in expectations and goals, and how little or how much to focus on mindfulness or on suggestions for change. 

So in a sense what makes the techniques different depends on how you direct your attention, and what you expect to gain from your practice. 

Meditators expect fully that it would take them years to study and master the skill, with practice sessions running 20 to 60 minutes at a time, often attending retreats where they’d expect to meditate for hours daily. They seek to see reality in a different light, the truth as they can finally observe it, changing their lifestyle to fit their practice

Hypnosis subjects have a totally different expectation from their sessions. They want it as short and goal-oriented as possible, to fit their lifestyle. And they expect suggestion to change their beliefs and motivations so that they could have instant gratification of whatever outcome they’re working towards, like breaking habits, or managing pain. 

What remains quite similar is that both hypnosis and meditation arrest your attention and awareness. With hypnosis you take it to that step where you engage the language of your subconscious mind, in the shape and form of imagination exercises, to orient your mind towards a specific outcome.

 

It is for these reasons that it is not important what we call this process, as long as we use it for the intended purpose, the desired outcome, and by using the techniques that work.


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