What is hypnosis?

Hypnosis is “. . . a cooperative interaction in which the participant responds to the suggestions of the hypnotist” (“What is Hypnosis?”). What happens is when a person is hypnotized, their cerebral cortex is affected. “. . . Hypnotic subjects showed reduced activity in the left hemisphere of the cerebral cortex, while activity in the right hemisphere often increased” (HowStuffWorks.). The cerebral cortex is “the furrowed outer layer of gray matter in the cerebrum of the brain, associated with the higher brain functions, as voluntary movement, coordination of sensory information, learning and memory, and the expression of individuality” (“Cerebral Cortex”). In a psychological standard, being “left-brained” is more logical, analytical, and objective. Being “right-brained” is said to be more intuitive, thoughtful and subjective. When a person is in a hypnotic state of mind, there left side of their brain slows down in activity. They forget their logical and analytical thoughts. Then the activity in their right side of their brain increases. It allows their thoughts to be more creative and emotional. This is how they are hypnotized. While people are in a state of hypnosis, you can give them different suggestions that get activated after the trance by a trigger word.

Advice for how to hypnotize:
  1. Make them stare at any point at the wall tell them how its soothing and relaxing to look at that one point
  2. Tell them that as they stare at that point they getting more and more relaxed over and over again
  3. Tell them that as they stare at that point and that as they do their eyes are getting heavier and heavier
  4. Say that “the more you try to open your eyes the heavier they get until they are completely shut.”
  5. Say that they feel relaxation spreading from their feet to their legs to their thighs etc.
  6. Now that you have ran out of body parts say that their on a cloud or beach, just something relaxing and say something like “you find yourself on a beach you see the waves moving to your breathing and with every breath, every wave you are getting more and more relaxed into a state of deep sleep.”
  7. “Deeper and deeper. The beach fades away and you find yourself falling into a state of relaxation and sleep one the count of 3 where anything I say will become your reality and you will do as I say.”
  8. Get them into hypnosis by saying “one getting more and more relaxed, two into a deep, deep sleep, three” DO NOT clap/snap or make any loud noises and just let this thought set in for a while.
  9. Now do not make them do anything drastic as this will make them snap out of the trance.
  10. Do something simple and easy like; tell them that you are going to tie balloons on their wrist. When you tie them, their arm will rise say that you have attached the balloons
  11. Ok so now we need to bring them back, say when I count to three you will be fully awake and not remember anything that has happened. “ONE TWO THREE!!!” *clap hands loudly*
  12. You have successfully hypnotized someone!!!!!

*Individual results may vary*

Signs if they are hypnotized ("How To Hypnotize." How To Hypnotize.):
  • Fluttering of the eyelids
  • Increased redness or wetness of the eyes (upon opening them)
  • General relaxation and loosening of the muscles
  • "Flattening" of the facial muscles (they look very relaxed)
  • Waxy skin tonus (the person will begin to look more like a mannequin - this is very subtle)
  • Feelings of warmth or coolness or tingling sensations
  • It may take a slight effort for them to swallow
  • Changes in breathing rate and depth
  • Fingers, arms or legs twitching slightly

Question: Which group of people (race/sex) are the easiest to hypnotize (if possible)?

Hypothesis: Our group thinks that all people no matter what sex/race they are can be easily hypnotized if possible.

Data Table:
Male (Name and +/-)
Female (Name and +/-)
Tom B. (+)
Mary N. (+)
African American
Michael D. (+)
Asian/Indian (India)
Varsha K. (+)
Anthony C. (+)
Katalina C.



Works Cited
"Cerebral Cortex." Dictionary.com. Dictionary.com. Web. 21 May 2012.
<http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/cerebral cortex?s=t>.
"How To Hypnotize." How To Hypnotize. Web. 21 May 2012.
"How to Hypnotize People and Command Them." How To Hypnotize People Easily. Web. 21 May 2012.
"How to Hypnotize Someone." WikiHow. Web. 21 May 2012.
"How To Hypnotize Someone." YouTube. YouTube, 09 Mar. 2010. Web. 21 May 2012.
HowStuffWorks. Web. 21 May 2012.
"Hypnosis." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 21 May 2012. Web. 21 May 2012.
TNicoli. "The Dangers of Hypnosis - Is Hypnosis Dangerous?" YouTube. YouTube, 01 Oct. 2009. Web. 21 May 2012.
"What Is Hypnosis?" About.com Psychology. Web. 21 May 2012.