There’s a common theme in popular culture in which a hypnotist hypnotizes someone by doing nothing more than staring into their eyes. As it turns out, once you understand how hypnosis works, this is easy to do.
So how do you hypnotize someone with your eyes? It’s done by sequentially building hypnotic anchors to take your subject on a journey from meeting you through to agreement, rapport, and eventually all the way into hypnosis. In this article, we’ll cover exactly how to do that using only your eyes, without your subject necessarily even knowing you’ve done anything.
How does hypnosis work?
Before we can uncover how to hypnotize someone with your eyes, it’s important to have an understanding of the features of the human brain that allow hypnosis to work.
I’ve written about this in depth elsewhere, so here I’ll just give a quick overview.
For someone to enter into a state of hypnosis, it’s necessary that their conscious mind is occupied enough that their conscious alerting system doesn’t fire.
There are two broad ways that this can happen.
First, we can engage their attention with things that aren’t hypnosis. This is how many regular inductions work.
And second, we can shape the way that we present material to them so that the risk of triggering their conscious alerting system is minimized.
In practice, almost all hypnosis involves some combination of these.
If you’d like to know more about how that works, you might like to check out my article on How Hypnosis Works.
How agreement and rapport lead to hypnosis
The first part of virtually any hypnotic process is establishing rapport.
This is not much more than allowing our hypnosis subject to feel comfortable with us.
The more comfortable they are, the easier hypnosis becomes.
What a lot of people don’t appreciate is that there’s not really a distinct state of rapport or of hypnosis. In reality, there is a continuum of states that range from our subject being totally disengaged with us, through to our subject being in deep hypnosis.
This means that we can lead someone into hypnosis by doing nothing more than building up rapport with them. Once they feel comfortable enough, their conscious alerting system will be largely offline for all but the most nefarious purposes.
If we think of this in terms of a sliding scale from disagreement through to deep hypnosis, it’s quite easy to see that we can move through stages to guide someone into hypnosis.
We start off with building agreement, because this is extremely easy to do. Really nothing more is required than allowing ourselves to take on our hypnotic subject’s perspectives for a time.
The more we build agreement, the more rapport we will tend to establish. This is because rapport happens when we’re in-sync with someone, and if we’re agreeing with them, that synchronization will necessarily happen.
Naturally, it’s important that we’re authentic when we do this. People can spot fake rapport a mile off.
Finally, if we build enough agreement and enough rapport, our subject will eventually let down their guard and will start to experience the beginnings of hypnosis.
If you’d like to know more about how that works, you might enjoy my article on How to Use Agreement to Build Rapport Even If You’re an Introvert and Hate Small Talk.
How to build agreement and rapport with your eyes
So how do we build agreement and rapport with our eyes?
It’s actually very easy, and you probably already do most of it automatically.
If that’s the case, all that’s needed is to start being more intentional with the timing and intensity.
The key lies in repurposing some unconscious anchors that we all have.
How to use hypnotic anchors to build agreement and rapport
If we restrict ourselves to only using our eyes, we are limited to three classes of things we can do.
First, it’s possible to smile using only your eyes. This takes a little practice to get right, but once you can do it, garnering agreement becomes a lot easier.
To practice, look at yourself in a mirror, and allow yourself to feel happy and content. Your hypnosis will be helped along if you allow your full face to smile, but if you’re dead-set on only using your eyes, all that’s required is a little dedicated practice.
Once you’ve achieved this, all you have to do to start to move someone into agreement is smile with your eyes.
Next, we can adjust the timing of our blinks. If we always blink when someone is in agreement, their brain will start to unconsciously associate our blinks with agreement.
As someone progresses further towards hypnosis, we can also make our blinks longer, slower and more deliberate. This sends a signal to them that tells their brain that their eyes are becoming heavy, without us saying a word. Don’t do this one too early on, or they will know you’re up to something!
Finally, we can anchor just about any state we’d like to the direction of our gaze. To do this, look at the bridge of someone’s nose for most of a conversation. When they agree with something, glance into their right eye. When they disagree with something, glance into their left eye.
After a little while, the associations will be made, and it becomes possible to make it easier for someone to agree by doing nothing more than looking into their right eye.
Naturally, there are lots of other places we can look. Every single one of them can be anchored to a distinct state we’d like our subject to access on demand. All we have to do is wait for them to go into that state, then look in the direction we’d like to cause them to return to that state.
How to use hypnotic anchors to hypnotize someone with your eyes
So how do we move our subject from agreement and rapport all the way into hypnosis, using only our eyes?
The key is to do things in sequence.
At every point along the way, we want to be moving them a little further towards hypnosis.
If we take jumps that are too big, they will pop out. That’s ok though. You’ll see what to do about this at the end of the process.
With a little practice, it’s possible to exploit your subject popping out of hypnosis, and use it to fractionate and deepen their hypnotic state.
Step 1: Smile with your eyes
Start off by smiling with your eyes. This helps your subject to lower their guard. And as already mentioned, it starts moving them towards agreement and rapport.
Step 2: Link your blinking to your subject agreeing
As your subject is speaking, start to blink whenever they agree with something. Allow your blinks to become slightly longer as they move more deeply into agreement.
They will tend to go into hypnosis more quickly if you gently nod at the same time as your agreement blinks.
Step 3: Link your subject’s states to the direction of your gaze
Each time your subject enters a state you’d like to be able to call up on demand, look in a specific direction. I’ve found that it’s very helpful to anchor one eye to agreement and the other eye to disagreement.
When you’re starting out, glance into their right eye every time they agree with something, and their left eye every time they disagree.
Step 4: Link trance states with their eyes
Once you can see your subject lighting up a bit when you look into their right eye, it’s time to anchor in actual trance states.
To do this, lengthen your blinks slightly. So long as you are subtle enough, this will usually cause the subject to move further towards hypnosis. Then, when you see them entering into trance, look directly into their right eye and allow yourself to smile.
This modifies all of the anchors so that now they will start to associate agreement with going into hypnosis.
Naturally, when you see them coming out of trance, look into their left eye.
Step 5: Repeat as needed
After running through this process once, keep on doing it.
The more you build these anchors like this, the easier it will become to hypnotize someone with your eyes.
Step 6: Use fractionation to deepen your subject’s hypnosis with your eyes
Once your subject has entered into hypnosis, the next thing to do is to start to intensify the state.
This is now relatively easy since you’ve anchored their right eye to agreement and trance, and their left eye to disagreement and non-trance.
All you have to do to deepen their hypnosis at this point is look into their right eye and notice them going into hypnosis for a bit, then look into their left eye to bring them out.
Each time you do this, they will tend to become better at going into hypnosis on demand.
When I do this, responsive hypnosis subjects tend to be thoroughly fractionated after a few rounds.
How fast can you hypnotize someone with your eyes?
At this point, you might be wondering how quickly someone will go into trance when you hypnotize them with this method.
And naturally, the answer is unknowable. It’s possible to move exceptional subjects into relatively deep hypnotic trances within a few minutes using only this method…
Most people are not exceptional hypnosis subjects.
In practical terms, this method can be quite slow. But it’s also more-or-less completely covert, when it’s done right.
When I hypnotize people with my eyes like this, I tend to do so in conjunction with a lot of other things at the same time.
So it’s probably most helpful to think of it as one more tool that you can deploy to help guide your subjects into hypnosis.
The best thing to do is to experiment with it on a range of different people. When you do this, you’ll quickly discover which kinds of people are most susceptible to this form of hypnosis.
How to become exquisite at using hypnotic anchors
In this article, we’ve talked about how to hypnotize someone by anchoring things you can do with your eyes to different states you’d like them to access.
Anchoring is a huge topic, so I can’t really do it justice in an article like this.
In fact, it’s so huge that it would be easy to write entire books about it.
You can see where this is going, right?
If you’ve enjoyed the process in this article, or if you’d like to know more about how anchoring works, you might enjoy my book Artful Hypnotic Anchoring.
I’ve designed it with the intent of making it the shortest possible introduction to take someone from not even knowing what an anchor is, to becoming exquisite with understanding and using them.
Inside the book, I cover what anchoring really is, the exact steps to take to create an anchor, and why anchors degrade over time and what to do to prevent this, along with a host of other topics related to anchoring. I even go over how to hypnotize someone by reading a list to them!
As I mentioned, I’ve designed this book from the ground up with the intention of making it the fastest possible introduction to anchoring.
So if you’d like to become exquisite with creating and using anchors to supercharge your hypnosis, go check out Artful Hypnotic Anchoring right now!