What is self-hypnosis? 6 Key points for Using self-hypnosis to change the Unconscious mind

It is very common that we struggle and struggle to change something about ourselves, but it never happens. The harder we try, more frustrated we become. At the end, we give up trying. 


What we need is to understand the majority of our behaviour comes from the unconscious mind. But we mostly try to make changes consciously, through effort. It doesn’t work. We need a way to communicate with the unconscious mind. So how can that be done?


Hypnosis is one way to directly touch the unconscious mind. And when hypnosis is done by oneself, on oneself it is self-hypnosis. Self hypnosis can do wonders if you get it right.  This post explores how hypnosis works, and gives an easy method to start using practical self-hypnosis right away!

1.) Use the right mind for change

Your conscious mind can solve 2+2=4, or 264+2474 =? with some effort. But it cannot do anything to get rid of your addictions or to lift your mood when you are feeling bad.

  • “I want to quit smoking”

  • “I want to get over my heart-break”

  • “I want to feel less lonely”

  • “I want to go to the next level in my career”

  • “I want to manage my anger”

These are the most ordinary problems, but they exist in the unconscious mind. You cannot solve them by trying to control them consciously. Lasting changes in your feelings, behaviour, and habit patterns can only take place if the unconscious mind is influenced with proper suggestions.

Self-hypnosis is one such method to directly give suggestions to your unconscious mind. When suggestions for positive and desired changes are planted in your unconscious mind repeatedly, they replace the old negative habit patterns/beliefs with new ones.

2.) Hypnosis is natural

First, understand that hyosis is not some magic or mystical science. It is the most ordinary experience. Hypnotic trance is so common that it has happened to you so many times in your life. Some common examples that I can think of:

  • We tend to easily believe things said by parents or friends because emotions of love and trust create a highly receptive mind. Even if what they say is negative or false, you are deeply affected by it.
  • They may say, “you are not good enough”. You deny it consciously, but your unconscious mind has taken the suggestion and it has already become a belief. And now, as you go on comparing yourself to others, this belief becomes stronger every day.
  • By looking at wealthy people, you feel envy so many times that you have created a certain aversion towards wealth itself. It created beliefs like, “money is the root of all evil” And now it is blocking you from believing that you can be wealthy too.
  • Simplest one, in a happy mood you tend to say ‘yes’ more than you would normally do.

The idea of hypnosis is to create a highly receptive mind, where hypnotic suggestions can be implanted for positive change. It is very easy to do. Read caption for simple self-hypnosis method. Unconscious mind doesn’t know difference between positive and negative.

3.) Method of self-hypnosis

When your body is deeply relaxed, the mind becomes receptive to hypnotic suggestions. Also, the critical thinking mind is put at rest so that it doesn’t interfere in the process of implanting suggestions. In this situation, it becomes easy to make all kinds of impossible changes that you wish to make in yourself. Here is a simple 4-step method to practice self-hypnosis that you can start right away.

  • 𝐅𝐢𝐧𝐝 𝐚 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐟𝐨𝐫𝐭𝐚𝐛𝐥𝐞 𝐪𝐮𝐢𝐞𝐭 𝐩𝐥𝐚𝐜𝐞 to sit back or lie down. Set a time for the intended trance experience. 15 minutes is good enough.
  • 𝐑𝐞𝐥𝐚𝐱 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐛𝐨𝐝𝐲. Use progressive relaxation and deep breathing. More relaxed you are, more receptive the mind becomes. More relaxed you are, conscious mind goes to rest, not bothering with the process. Count slowly from 5…4…3…2…1. You can use ‘Alpha waves’ music in the background. It instantly creates a relaxed state of mind.
  • 𝐑𝐞𝐩𝐞𝐚𝐭 𝐡𝐲𝐩𝐧𝐨𝐭𝐢𝐜 𝐬𝐮𝐠𝐠𝐞𝐬𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬- It can be affirmations, visualizations or both. Will cover about hypnotic suggestions in next post.
  • 𝐆𝐫𝐚𝐝𝐮𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐲 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐞 𝐨𝐮𝐭 𝐨𝐟 𝐭𝐫𝐚𝐧𝐜𝐞.- Once you feel you are done, slowly start becoming aware of the room around count from 1…2…3…4…5 becoming more aware with each count.

This is very basic method and we are not trained hypnotists. But this works. Simple things usually work and solve most of our problems. 

4.) Using Hypnotic suggestions

Affirmations and visualization are two most effective types of hypnotic suggestions. More senses and feelings you involve, quicker the suggestion will slip into your unconscious mind. Keep in mind these things while using suggestions.

    • Less is more. Use Simple, sharp, clear, specific, and unambiguous statements. Unconscious mind doesn’t like confusion and complications. It is very simple like a child.
    • Affirm with conviction. Mean what you say and say what you mean. Dry statements will not do anything. Juice is in the feelings! 
    • Use present tense: Use  ‘I am calm and peaceful’ and not ‘I will be calm and peaceful’ Use positive tone: ‘I am a non-smoker’ and ‘I am confident’. NEVER EVER use suggestions like ‘I don’t smoke’ or ‘I am not nervous’ unless you want to ruin your life.
    • Repeat: Repetition really works wonders! Don’t underestimate the power of repetition! I repeat. Don’t underestimate the power of repetition.
    • Be consistent- It usually takes 21 days to replace a habit or form a new belief. Your conscious mind will be bored in 2-3 days but force yourself to work on one clear goal for 21 days minimum.

‘Feelings and involvement of all senses’ is the key. When you are in trance, you really should not be aware of anything around you. You should be lost in the world that you create, being the ideal self that you want yourself to be. ‘Living the ideal future right now’ is the key to attracting the ideal future. 

In other words, trance can be used to achieve anything you want right now..Inside your mind. And your mind can’t tell whether it is a reality or just a vivid imagination.

5.) Best time for practice

The idea is to pick a time when the conscious mind’s activity is at its lowest and there is least resistance in direct communication with the unconscious mind.

  • Immediately after waking up. – conscious mind is barely active so doesn’t interfere with hypnotic suggestions. 

  • Right before going to sleep – Conscious mind is tired by the end of the day so it would be less capable of interfering with the hypnotic suggestions.

Although practice of self-hypnosis can be done anytime, these two times are the best. 10 minutes session twice a day is enough. Doing it too much doesn’t help. It is not a race. Doing it too less may not be strong enough. So with a bit of experiment, you can find out what works for you. But maintain consistency.

6.) Keys to successful self-hypnosis

Finally, here are a few extra things to keep in mind:

  • Sow the seed and then don’t interfere–  Enjoy your life. Don’t keep digging the earth to regularly check whether your seed is growing or not, it ruins the seed.
  • Be consistent.– Tortoise and hare go to race. Tortoise wins. Bet on the tortoise. Pick up one goal/suggestion and use it for minimum 21 days straight.
  • You can’t control the results. The point is that changes happen unconsciously so any way you can’t control results. You can only observe them as they happen.
  • Feelings rule – fill yourself with the emotions you want and intensify it. Make the visualization bold, colourful and live the dream during trance.
  • Don’t rush – Unconscious mind has its own pace. Have patience. Remember, bet on tortoise and not the hare.


This post concludes most of what you need to know about starting self-hypnosis practice. Of course, if these posts got you curious, you can always search for more information. But keep the process simple. Understand how the change happens and create your own method.

I would like to share one very interesting book about hypnosis. The book ‘My voice will go with you’  It is about a hypnotist (Milton Erickson) who used stories to influence the unconscious mind in his hypnotherapy sessions.

As a reader, you may not understand much of it, but nevertheless you may learn a thing or two about how the unconscious mind works and how it connects stories. So if you enjoy reading about unconscious mind, then this book is a good read!


Find me on Instagram @sarthak2700, for everyday content related to psychology, personality development, and spirituality. 

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