Used in conjunction with improvements to sleep hygiene, hypnosis is effective in improving the quality of sleep. Hypnosis can be used to uncover reasons for the insomnia dealing with subconscious fears and anxieties. Hypnotic suggestions can be used to help the insomniac to have an easy, normal sleep.
Tape the suggestions and play it back while you lie in bed. Make sure that nothing disturbs you as you go through the self- hypnosis routine. Initially, it may take you as long as 20 minutes or more to go into a hypnotic state. However, with practice, it will happen much more rapidly.
Make Your Own Sleep Tape
It is impossible to go into hypnosis while reading instructions. Buy a tape or make a tape. If you are making your own tape, read the instructions on to a tape in a slow, relaxed voice. Make sure that you put enough, appropriate pauses. Play the tape when you go to bed. Use appropriate relaxing, background music to complement the therapy.
Those who are mentally unstable or who have a history of psychiatric problems should seek professional advice before undertaking self-hypnosis.
How to Induce Self-Hypnosis
- Lie down with your legs slightly apart and your hands not touching.
Take a deep breath and release it slowly.
Be aware of any tension in your toes. Clench them tight and release them, imagining them lengthening and relaxing.
Work up through the muscles of your feet, calves, and thighs, tensing and releasing them so that they feel soft and heavy.
Focus on your breathing. Keep it slow and regular.
Tell yourself that every time you breathe out, you will feel more and more relaxed.
- Tense and release the muscles
in the lower back and abdomen
in your chest
in your shoulders
through the upper arms
in the forearms
in the hands, and
in the fingers.
Let tension flow out through your fingertips.
- Tense and relax your neck muscles.
Imagine the tension in your face being smoothed out by gentle fingertips.
Then let the tension flow from your scalp.
- Continue to breathe slowly and deeply.
As you release each breath, become aware of the drops of tension gently tickling out of your body.
Tell yourself that you have nothing to do but relax.
Think only of the breath moving in and out of your body.
- Without lifting your head, fix your eyes on a spot on the ceiling.
Roll your eyes back as if you were looking for your eyebrows. Keeping your gaze fixed on the spot on the ceiling, take four long, deep breaths.
Inhale and hold for a count of ten, and, as you exhale, tell yourself to 'sleep now'.
Repeat four times, holding your breath progressively longer.
- Allow a floating sensation to flow through your body and picture ten steps in front of you.
Look down the steps into a beautiful garden below.
See, smell, and sense the garden. Walk down the steps counting backward from ten to one with each step. As you walk down each step, tell yourself that you feel more and more relaxed. Tell yourself that when you take the final step, you will be deeply relaxed.
- Find a place in your garden where you would like to fall asleep.
Tell yourself, 'I am moving into deep and restful steep.'
Focus on a positive image of yourself dozing peacefully.
Lie still and relaxed and keep breathing steadily.
- You may fall asleep during the exercise or soon afterward. If not, let yourself,
'On the count of one, I will return to full awareness.
On the count of two, I will feel relaxed.
On the count of three, I will wake feeling relaxed and ready to enjoy restorative steep.'
Count to three, open your eyes, stretch, take a long deep breath, and settle down to sleep.
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