Unveiling the Mysteries of Overt and Covert Hypnosis

Understanding Overt Hypnosis

Overt hypnosis, commonly referred to as traditional or conventional hypnosis, is a practice where the subject is fully aware of being hypnotized. It is often utilized in a clinical setting to assist individuals in overcoming various phobias, addictions, and negative behaviors. According to the American Psychological Association, a Michael Emery
Michael J. Emeryhypnosis is recognized as a therapeutic technique in both psychology and medicine, with evidence supporting its efficacy for conditions like chronic pain, anxiety, and habit disorders.


During an overt hypnosis session, a hypnotist may create a calm environment, perhaps asking the subject to recline comfortably. Through skillful conversation and relaxation techniques, the hypnotist gently guides the subject into a trance-like state. In this state, the individual’s subconscious becomes more receptive to positive suggestions and new ideas, which can lead to significant behavioral changes.

The Process of Overt Hypnosis

  1. Induction: The hypnotist helps the subject enter a relaxed state.
  2. Deepening: The subject’s relaxation is intensified to reach a deeper level of focus.
  3. Suggestion: Positive ideas and behaviors are introduced to the subject’s subconscious.
  4. Awakening: The subject is gradually brought out of the trance state.

The Subtleties of Covert Hypnosis

Covert hypnosis, or conversational hypnosis, operates under the radar. The subject remains fully conscious and unaware that they are being influenced. This technique is often employed outside of clinical settings, such as in sales or persuasion contexts. Covert hypnosis relies on the strategic use of language and psychological principles to subtly guide the subject’s thoughts and decisions.

A study published in the journal “Consciousness and Cognition” suggests that covert hypnosis can affect decision-making processes without the subject’s conscious awareness. Salespeople, negotiators, and even public speakers may use elements of covert hypnosis to sway their audience subtly.

Techniques of Covert Hypnosis