I was sitting here earlier today talking to one of my friends about how to become an exquisite hypnotist. This particular friend is a software developer as well as a hypnotist, and the conversation turned to the three virtues of great programmers. This got me thinking about how these really do apply to hypnosis just as well as programming.
Many years ago, one of the most highly regarded programmers of all time came up with a short list of three simple virtues that someone needs in order to become a great programmer. The three virtues are laziness, impatience and hubris. And implausible though it may seem, these virtues are every bit as applicable to hypnosis as they are to programming. In this article, I’m going to cover how to apply each of these to become absolutely exquisite at hypnosis.
The Three Virtues of Great Programmers
If we want to become an exquisite hypnotist by applying the three virtues to hypnosis, it’s important to first appreciate how they apply to programming. As with everything else in life, when we’re writing code, there are some things that are more important than others. When we write code, it’s not uncommon to press against the limits of the system.
As you might expect, programmers have found many cunning tricks to work around this.
Back in the olden days, this would even include things like limited color palettes on displays. I still have memories of writing code that would change the color palette half way through a scan of the screen, creating the illusion of more colors.
Nowadays we are much more likely to run into these limitations when we’re coding massive data processing systems for analyzing corporate or scientific data, or building games that push the limits of the systems they are running on.
And this is the original source of the three virtues of great programmers. When a system has capacity limits, we get best results when we do stuff to work within those limits.
The Virtue of Laziness
So consider the virtue of laziness. Laziness in a great programmer encourages them to make their code work properly. It might take ten times as long to write it this way, but that is a tiny investment compared to what would otherwise be required to track down all the bugs.
And it works the other way as well. Laziness prevents us from making our code too perfect since that would be an enormous undertaking. The key point here is balance. There is a happy optimum that is somewhere in the middle between completely bug free and bug free enough.
The virtue of Laziness is about taking an optimally balanced approach to whatever we’re doing.
Laziness also tends to lead to us commenting our code properly. This reduces our future workload when we inevitably have to come back and modify it.
And once again, the key point is that we’re using laziness to optimize our workload per unit result.
The Virtue of Impatience
Next, consider impatience. Computer systems tend to be very resource-constrained for all but the simplest tasks. We don’t really like waiting for computers to do stuff for us. So impatience encourages us to write code that is efficient and makes the best use of the available resources. And once again, laziness guides us towards doing just the right amount of this.
The virtue of impatience is about designing things in such a way that limited resources are optimally utilized so that we’re not constantly waiting for them.
The Virtue of Hubris
Finally, there is hubris. It’s a simple truth that most people don’t like others to think they’re not good at stuff. So when we have hubris, we’re encouraged to write code in such a way that others will think it’s awesome. And the easiest way to do this is to put in the effort, both in developing ourselves, and in writing the code, to make it so.
Hubris happens when we make our stuff awesome.
So that’s the three virtues of great programmers. But how do we apply them to hypnosis?
How to Get More Done with Hypnosis by Being Lazy
When we’re hypnotizing someone, there is always a vast array of ways that we can get any particular thing done. As might be expected, not all of these ways are effective when applied by all hypnotists to all problems.
Now, pretty much every piece of changework that it’s possible to do is equivalent to an NLP technique known as collapse anchors. And most of the difference is in guiding your subject into doing it elegantly for a specific problem. This is where the laziness comes in.
Which method we choose typically comes down to two things.
First, our training courses tell us that specific techniques work with specific problems.
And second, our own personal experience will tend to guide us.
As an example, it is exceptionally rare for me to start a process and finish the same one.
Usually my unconscious mind will decide that with this particular subject, something else is going to work better. It will then automatically switch me to that something else half way through. Sometimes this happens many times in a single session.
So how do we apply laziness to becoming an exquisite hypnotist?
Well if there are multiple ways to do something, over time we figure out which ones tend to work the best. This results in us doing less work. Not only that, but when we constantly upskill ourselves, we gain skills that also reduce the amount of work that we have to do to help someone to experience any change they might desire.
When we take the approach of always considering what we can do to optimize both our hypnosis, and the results from it, we are utilizing the virtue of laziness.
The Importance of Impatience in Hypnosis
Now, just as with computer systems, human minds have significant resource constraints. We usually don’t want to have to spend hours waiting for the customer to finish processing some stuff. Especially if we can help them to see it instantly by simply framing things in a different way, or taking a slightly different approach.
Sometimes a totally different approach is needed, while other times all we have to do is change a single word.
When we pay attention to our impatience, we are encouraged to optimize the system so that we can get the results as quickly as possible. This not only has the benefit that our customer gets what they want faster, it also has the benefit that when it doesn’t work, we have more time to move on to the next thing.
When we strive to do things in such a way that we optimize the utilization of the resources of the mind we’re working with, we are drawing on the virtue of impatience.
Hubris is Your Friend
And of course, we cannot complete the analogy of the three virtues without including hubris. If you recall, this is where we basically want others to think that what we did was awesome.
So how do we do that?
Well… not to put too fine a point on it, the easiest way I know of to make people think that our hypnosis is awesome is to take steps to make it awesome.
The good news is that becoming an exquisite hypnotist like this doesn’t have to be a huge amount of work. Now, hypnosis is a huge field, so if one were to try to become expert at every part of it at once, it would take a very long time.
What we can do though is focus on just one tiny thing, and become exceptional at that.
Maybe we focus on pausing for just the right length of time. Or we spend some time becoming brilliant at monitoring our subjects’ trance states.
It can be anything at all.
Then, once we’ve mastered that first skill, move on to the next one, and the next, and the next.
Focus on just one tiny thing at a time, and become awesome at that.
Because the truth is that when you’re a hypnotist, if you’ve absolutely mastered even one hypnosis skill, everything you do in hypnosis will appear amazing to non-hypnotists. After that, becoming an expert in other skills is just icing on the cake.
The Three Virtues of Great Hypnotists
So that’s really all there is to it.
If we want to be an exquisite hypnotist, we can get there by using our laziness to always aim to do things in such a way that makes the least work for us, by using our impatience to guide us towards optimally utilizing the mind we’re working with, and by using hubris to make sure that we do stuff that people think is amazing.
If you’ve been paying attention, you may be noticing a common theme here: To become exquisite at hypnosis, after each session, ask yourself if there is a more efficient way to do the exact same steps.
To become exquisite at hypnosis, after each session, ask yourself if there was another way that might have worked better.
And to become exquisite at hypnosis, work on yourself and your own hypnosis skills to the point of absolute mastery, one at a time.
When you put all of these three virtues together, and you allow them to guide everything that you do, it is almost impossible to not become an exquisite hypnotist.
And as always, feel free to reach out to me if you are stuck or need help with anything.