"There are only two ways to live your life.
One is as though nothing is a miracle.
The other is as though everything is a miracle."
— Albert Einstein
Merely thinking about some things or, perversely, trying not to think about such things, can elicit an alteration of your level of arousal and alter a range of state-dependent phenomena including your motivation, percpetion, and response tendency.
This section of the course is designed to enhance your ability to purposely shift your attention from the most salient to the most meaningful stimulus. This ability is particularly valid when failure to make the shift would promote self-sabotage. The hypnotic tools described below will give you opportunities to explore what happens when you focus your attention according to specific protocols.
Self-soothing — the ability to calm this creature you inhabit — is an important skill to develop. There are many approaches to coping with stressful conditions. Hypnotic inductions are presented first because they provide a more goal-directed path to self-soothing than the meditation strategies described in the next section.
Each of the audio files listed below provide a pathway to an altered state of consciousness. Don't expect anything weird or unusual to happen; just do your best to follow the instructions, and see if you can get absorbed in the process. Don't worry about what is supposed to happen, your task is to simply do what the scripts say and notice what happens when you do. If your mind wanders, that is natural. Please don't scold or distract yourself; instead gently guide your attention back to the content of the script.
- First Induction - This script offers a path from Being Mode Meditation to Doing Mode Hypnotic methods.
- Sleep Induction - One kind of altered state of consciousness is hypnotic sleep. This script offers a path to a somnambulistic state
- Visual Imagery Induction - This lengthy induction (about 25 minutes) emphasizes the visual modality. For example, you will use your imagination to create visual images that influence your psychological state. In principle, hypnotic imagery can be used to produce any psychological state including anger and sexual arousal. However, as is the case here, visual imagery of a penny drifting down through a calm and peaceful lake is used, to elicit a calm and relaxed state. Accessing the visual memory of learning the letters of the alphabet can elicit the confidence of mastering a task that seemed difficult at the time. The more vivid and detailed you can make the imagery, the greater will be trance forming power of your imagination. .
- Progressive relaxation - Rather than using your imagination to create visual images, this exercise guides you through the creation of relaxing feelings as experienced by different parts of your body. When you have only a few minutes to calm the creature so you have greater access to your Abstract Processing System, this is a good method.
Our goal as always is to create a subjective reality that promotes health and heroism, as well as outcomes that are in accord with your core motives and values. The next section is designed to strengthen your ability to evoke these subjective realities, even in the face of stressors and temptations that would influence you to defect.