The other day I was chatting to someone who asked me whether you can learn hypnosis online. Naturally, I’ve decided to write an article about it!
So is it possible to learn hypnosis online? Yes, you can learn hypnosis online! And it’s easy to do. How do I know? It’s how I first learnt hypnosis. In this article I’ll go over why it’s possible to learn hypnosis online, and how to get started with it.
What’s needed to learn hypnosis?
In order to see why it’s not only possible, but easy, to learn hypnosis online, we need to go over what’s needed to learn hypnosis.
Hypnosis is an interesting subject.
In many subjects, you need to do large amounts of work before you can get any kind of results, let alone begin to charge people for your services. Hypnosis is quite unique in that it’s possible to learn how to hypnotize someone in a few short hours, and get some simple results.
And since it’s hypnosis, these simple results tend to be very impressive to everyone other than hypnotists.
Being able to help someone feel totally relaxed, or even stop them from freaking out, are valuable skills to have.
Now, mastering hypnosis is a different matter. To date I’ve spent well over 20000 hours learning everything I can about hypnosis, developing theories, and running experiments on willing live subjects. And most of that was practical, hands-on experience.
And here’s the thing: Once you know how to hypnotize someone, and can get some kind of results, you’ve got a framework that you can use to bootstrap becoming better at it.
So what do you need in order to learn hypnosis?
First, you need a reason to do so. We human beings don’t tend to do much of anything unless we have a reason. So take a moment and think about why you want to learn hypnosis.
It doesn’t matter what that reason is: Just that it motivates you to put in the necessary effort.
Second, you need a clear set of instructions to follow. Hypnosis is often made out to be complicated, and the truth is that it can be. At the core though, the things that make hypnosis work are a very short list of simple principles. Later on in this article we’ll go over where you can find instructions.
Third, you need to set aside some time to actually do it. As with all things in life, if you’re unwilling to put in the effort, you won’t get the results. The good news is that the effort required to get started with hypnosis is tiny.
And fourth, you need people on whom to practice. These days, it’s easy to find people in abundance who want to be hypnotized. You just have to know where to look.
If you have a look through those four things, you’ll notice that learning online has no impact on any of them. If anything, some of them are easier to do online.
As a result, it can be just as easy to learn hypnosis online as it is at an in-person training.
So what are the different places that we can learn hypnosis online?
When I was starting out, I read digital copies of books, and got tips from a series of random blog posts. Then I moved on to audio courses, video courses, and finally in-person trainings. It was tough, because many of the materials I found early on were missing all sorts of important information.
For example, one online training I completed early on could be summarized with something like set your intent, go into hypnosis, hypnotize your subject, tell them to change, and bring them out. And to be fair, now that I’m a hypnotist, that’s exactly what I do. At the time though, it wasn’t very useful, because I didn’t know how to do any of those things other than go into hypnosis myself.
These days there is lots of material available. It’s really just a matter of picking someone whose content you like, and working through their courses.
If you want to learn hypnosis online, I suggest starting with a blog like this one you’re reading right now. Then you can move on to books, online audio and online video courses.
In the event that you prefer audio or video, you can jump straight to those. If you’re reading this rather than watching a video, chances are high that, like me, you prefer to learn stuff by reading.
You will find that a lot of hypnotists claim that it’s impossible to learn hypnosis online. All I can say about that is that I’ve done it, and I know a lot of other hypnotists who have too.
I strongly suspect that if someone claims you cannot learn hypnosis online, one of two things will be true. Either they are terrified of technology, or they don’t know what hypnosis actually is.
Effectiveness of hypnosis in different media
Naturally, if you want to learn hypnosis online, a lot of the time you’re going to want to hypnotize people online too.
As with learning hypnosis online, don’t let anyone tell you that you cannot hypnotize someone online. Out of the thousands of people that I’ve hypnotized, only a few hundred have been in-person.
Not all methods of online hypnosis are equal though, so in this section we’ll go over the benefits of each of the online media, ranked from least effective to most effective.
Effective hypnosis requires feedback from the hypnosis subject to the hypnotist. With a recording, this can never happen. The end result of this is that in order for recordings to work, the hypnosis subject must take on some of the responsibilities of the hypnotist.
Since most hypnosis subjects are not hypnotists, and many recordings don’t come with instructions on exactly how to have an experience of hypnosis, hypnosis recordings are the least effective form of online hypnosis.
The huge benefit of hypnosis recordings is that once they’re created, they require no further input from the hypnotist. When supplied with suitable instructions, hypnosis recordings can be effective if you play them daily for 30 to 90 days.
They’re also fantastic for things like helping someone to relax in the moment, or taking them on a guided meditation journey.
Live hypnosis via text message
Next up we have live hypnosis via text message. This can be a text chat with someone on programs like Skype, Zoom, IRC or even the SMS text message service on your phone.
Unlike recordings, with text message hypnosis, the hypnotist can have feedback from their hypnosis subject. And with many subjects it’s possible to induce quite deep trance states using nothing more than a text conversation.
The big problem with hypnosis via text message is that the hypnotist is reliant on their subject truthfully describing what’s going on.
After hypnotizing a few people by text, you start to get a feel for how people tend to respond, so you can make educated guesses. If everyone you talk to normally responds instantly, and then someone seems distracted, or has significant delays in their responses, you can generally tell that they’re not focused solely on the hypnosis.
As an example, a few years back I chatted to someone who claimed she couldn’t be hypnotized. We tried a couple of things in text that raised my suspicions. So I got her onto a call. It was immediately apparent that the reason she was having trouble was that her partner and friend were in the room and a very loud television was playing. When she moved to another room, suddenly she had no problem going into hypnosis.
Now, even though I had asked her to find somewhere quiet where she wouldn’t be disturbed, she was blanking out the background noise in the room, while still being severely affected by it. It simply hadn’t occurred to her that the noise was having that effect.
This happens because most people are absolutely shocking at making observations and measurements. Which is why so much time is spent in the lab when you’re training to become a scientist.
Where I’ve found text hypnosis to be brilliant is with such things as helping people through simple problems. Maybe they’re freaking out a little and can’t hop onto a call right now. Sometimes they just need to be distracted.
That said, with the right subject, it’s quite possible to take them all the way to full visual hallucinations with nothing more than text based hypnosis.
Live hypnosis via phone or online audio call
When you can actually speak to someone, and hear their responses, suddenly you have a whole lot more feedback to work with. With a little training, it’s possible to hear the nuances in their tone of voice, and how and where they pause.
Not only that, but because they no longer have to be looking at a screen, you can have them close their eyes, and you can also do things like stick their hands in place.
Simply put, with an audio call not only do you have a whole lot more feedback than with text, but your subject can easily do things that are impossible when they have to type and read a screen.
For most subjects who respond normally, an audio call will give a skilled hypnotist more than enough feedback to do pretty much anything it’s possible to do with hypnosis.
The main issue with hypnosis via a live voice call is that some subjects are extremely quiet. With these ones, you can end up being left wondering exactly what’s going on. Especially when they drop into deep hypnosis.
Live hypnosis via online video call
As you might expect, the pinnacle of online hypnosis is the online video call.
When we hypnotize someone in an online video call, we generally have just as much feedback as we do when hypnotizing people in-person. The result of this is that we can achieve almost anything that we can achieve with in-person hypnosis.
The only real exceptions I’ve come across are things that require physical contact, such as the various physical shock inductions. There are so many ways to induce hypnosis that don’t involve physical contact that this isn’t a limitation at all.
There are a few minor issues with online video calls that it’s important to think about.
First, not everyone has an environment that they’re happy for people to see online. This is not so much of an issue any more since video conferencing software like Zoom typically allows participants to remove and replace their background.
Second, some people aren’t very adept at getting the technology to work on their end.
Third, if they want to lie down for the hypnosis session, it can be problematic for them to position the camera so that you can clearly see their face in order to judge their depth of hypnosis.
And finally, some people still live in areas where their internet isn’t fast enough to establish a decent bi-directional video stream. In these cases, the best option is usually to switch back to audio.
None of these issues are difficult to overcome.
Overall, the most effective medium for online hypnosis is a one-on-one video call.
How to learn hypnosis online
Hopefully it’s clear by now that it’s not only possible, but easy to learn hypnosis online.
So where do you get started?
I’ve written a few articles for just that purpose!
If you’d like to start with some simple text-based hypnosis, check out my article How to Hypnotize Someone in Text.
If you’d like more of an introduction to hypnosis, you might prefer to start with my article How to Hypnotize Someone Easily.
Rather than becoming overwhelmed with possibilities, the thing to do is pick just one thing that sounds like it might be interesting. Then take the time to fully absorb it. Read the article, and try out any instructions to discover what happens.
Explore outwards from there. Most of the articles on this site have links to other articles with more details, so you can explore the things you’re more interested in first, and then delve deeper.
And naturally, a quick search around the web will turn out a wide range of options.
As you make your way through the various articles and materials, you will find that you’ll make the most progress if you test everything as you go.
One of the very first things I was ever taught in physics class was to challenge everything. This is as true in hypnosis as it is in physics.
And the truth is that people have a lot of misconceptions about hypnosis. These misconceptions are so wide-spread that even some hypnotists suffer from them!
To help you bypass them, I’ve written a series of articles about that too: Myths and Misconceptions about Hypnosis.
Where to find hypnosis subjects
One thing that I’ve had a lot of beginner hypnotists tell me is that they have trouble finding people who are willing to let them hypnotize them.
I’ve always found this odd, since it’s incredibly easy to find people who want to be hypnotized.
Finding hypnosis subjects in general
In our Western society, when we meet someone new, there’s a bit of a getting-to-know-you pattern that we tend to follow. It typically goes something like: Hi! What’s your name? What do you do?
Only with a few more words to make it a lot less like an interrogation.
When you’re a hypnotist, and you tell someone that you’re a hypnotist at the appropriate point in the conversation, one of three things tends to happen
- They are absolutely horrified and think that you’re in league with the devil. This one is terribly amusing, because the only reason they think that is that they’re already hypnotized. If you’re just starting out, it’s generally best to move on to the next person.
- They think hypnosis is fake. Depending on whether this is because they are terrified of it, or don’t know what hypnosis is, these ones can actually make excellent subjects once you’ve talked them around. In my article Myths and Misconceptions about Hypnosis I go over the common reasons people come to believe hypnosis is not real. Once again, if you’re a beginner, it’s best to just move on to the next person.
- They’re interested in hypnosis. These ones are brilliant, because you’re suddenly the most interesting person they’ve met all day. Possibly all year. And a lot of the time, they’ll jump at the chance to have an experience of hypnosis if it’s appropriate and you offer in the right way.
If they are enthusiastic about hypnosis, most people will volunteer if you say something like It sounds like you’re really interested in that… would you like a tiny experience to give you an idea of what it’s like?
If they’re a little uncertain, you can add stuff on the end like it’s not actual hypnosis, just something similar to give you a taste of what the real thing’s like.
Play around with the way that you make the offer, and you’ll quickly discover what works for you.
In short: you can find hypnosis subjects everywhere.
I’ve hypnotized people at work.
I’ve hypnotized people at small gatherings.
I’ve hypnotized people at work functions.
I’ve even hypnotized random strangers in the street.
And people trying to use shady sales tactics on me.
And of course, I’ve hypnotized people online.
So where do you find people online?
Finding hypnosis subjects online
Once again: just about everywhere.
On your favorite social media platform, you’ll find potential hypnosis subjects in just about any group. After getting to know the people in the group, just mention that you’re a hypnotist when the topic of what you do comes up. Quite often this results in a few DMs from people.
If you want to hypnotize people via text, a quick hunt through IRC chat rooms will usually find someone who puts their hand up.
You can even jump onto one-to-one chat services, add hypnosis as an interest, and be automatically supplied with a stream of people who are doing the same as you, wanting to be hypnotized, or wanting to talk about hypnosis.
The truth is that there is no shortage of people who want to be hypnotized online. All you have to do is make the offer, and willing subjects tend to appear.
You can learn hypnosis online
We’ve covered a lot in this article, so let’s sum it up.
First, we went over how it’s easy to learn hypnosis online. There are lots of ways you can do this, including reading and following the instructions in blogs like this one you’re reading right now, books, online audio and video courses, and even live online trainings.
Then, we covered the various media you can use to hypnotize people online. All you have to do is choose the one that’s appropriate for the task at hand.
Next, we went over how to get started with learning hypnosis online. Simply pick an article, work your way through it trying everything out, then explore outwards from there.
And finally, we covered off where to find subjects so that you can use hypnosis on someone. In short: Everywhere.
If you’d like a little more help with getting people onboard, while simultaneously guiding them through the first stage of hypnosis, you might like to read my article How to Use Agreement to Build Rapport Even If You’re an Introvert and Hate Small Talk next.