When I interviewed at the Hypnosis Motivation Institute, I felt like I had come home. After years of having my compassion treated as a threat by abusive managers, it was welcomed as an asset to be celebrated.
The program is a significant investment. Everybody thinks that as a software developer I should be rich, but after a tumultuous divorce, several brief stints of unemployment, and nearly $30,000 spent producing and marketing my message of healing, the $10,000 tuition was nearly a third of my net worth.
So while I enjoyed the first month of classes, I was still nervous about whether this was finally going to give me the avenue that I was seeking.
I am drawn frequently into healing experiences, most often on the floor when I am dancing. Those environments also produce hostility though, most often from men whose sexual aggression is rejected by women that are relieved to find their prayers for kindness answered in my presence.
As I explained it to HMI’s education director, I was seeking a modality that would allow me to bring people into that space of healing in a controlled fashion. He understood, affirming that “hypnosis is a framework on which you can build many kinds of practice.”
I found confirmation this Saturday under surprising circumstances.
I went in to get a hair cut before yoga, and found myself stranded on the bench at Supercuts as stylist after stylist took a break. I was called to the chair by a younger woman, dressed severely, her long, dark mop of hair punctuated by a blue splash over the right eye.
After she had gotten started, she asked what I had done with the beginning of my day. I related that I had been working on hypnotherapy classes. She followed up with “What’s that all about?”
While we were given scripted responses in the first series of classes, they weren’t possible in the context (sitting shrouded in a sheet). So I began to ad-lib, stating that hypnosis enabled the client to access the full capabilities of their mind when trying to modify behaviors.
She broke in “But what if someone doesn’t want to confront the past?”
“Well, they don’t have to; you can choose to move forward. Hypnosis establishes a state of relaxation and clarity that allows you to remember what it is like to feel well and in control. When you go back to life, you can then clearly perceive what is pleasant and unpleasant, no longer obscured by the anxieties and stress of your habitual life.”
She was skeptical, and concluded the conversation with a dismissive comment.
But as she continued her craft, trimming the right side of my head, I had this sudden thought “She’s really open to me right now.” Extending my focus toward her heart, I took it gently and poured love into it.
She didn’t react. But ten minutes later, she pulled out the steamed towel and began to clean the nape of my neck with a gratitude that penetrated deeply into the skin. After thanking her, I walked toward the register and one of her elder peers called out, “Thank you!”
And I realized that just knowledge of the theory of hypnosis had brought me the means I was looking for, even before mastery of the techniques of therapeutic practice.
I’m on the right path.