Overcoming Failed Hypnosis

This week’s free hypnosis training lesson is about milking what works.



***Let’s Review***

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***Bypassing Failure***

First, it should be understood that you have only failed when you give up.

Much like dieting, people tend to view hitting a snag with what they’re doing as a failure.

Truth is, you’ve only failed once you’ve made the decision to stop trying to make something work.

Thus, you haven’t actually failed if none of your volunteers react to your initial command.

Due to everyone being different, different people perceive and react to the same things in their own way. So the trick is to figure out what works for them.

Once you’ve done this, you’ve successfully made the routine work and managed to bypass your [nonexistent] failure.




The trick to accomplishing the above so that you’re able to make something out of a simple command, is to find and focus on a somnambulist.

Up-to-date, I’ve never had a stage show where there wasn’t at least one somnambulist sitting among the other volunteers.

As discussed in numerous past posts, a somnambulist will react to most (if not all) your commands to some degree.

If you’re lucky, you’ll have a several to choose from. However, this brings up an additional thought.

  1. You must educate your audience well enough that they understand what hypnosis is and are comfortable with you providing them the experience.
  2. You must successfully get them from their Beta state of consciousness (and likely physical state of tension) to at least Alpha or Theta consciousness and physically relaxed (enabling them to enter a somnambulistic state.

While I do believe one’s ability to (or failure to) relax heavily depends on the hypnotists attention to detail and skills, stage hypnosis is like a relationship…

  1. You and the volunteer must be willing to help each other out
  2. If the volunteer is mentally fighting you, they’re sabotaging themselves
  3. You should be sure to explain point one to them before attempting to induce them to ensure point 2 is avoided
  4. You must be attentive to their needs and, if they’re body language seems off compared to others’, make a point of concentrating on what they make sure they can better enjoy and immerse themselves in this experience

Once you’ve managed to hypnotize your volunteers and spot your somnambulist(s), keep an eye on them.

There may come a time when it seems one of your commands fails to take effect. If this happens, focus on your somnambulist.

Reinforce your command, encourage them that whatever reaction they have will more than suffice (since they may still be somewhat self conscious) and cheer them on once they react (as they often will given a few moments).

Take this week’s below demonstration for example, while it seemed none of the boys were reacting, the somnambulist acted on an idea last minute which generated positive reactions.


This week’s video demonstration shows how somnambulists can “save a routine”



When a routine seems to “fail”, just remember, it’s not over (and you haven’t failed) until you decide it’s over.

Try rewording your hypnotic command, encourage your volunteers to act upon their creative thoughts and always be sure to know who you’re somnambulist(s) are in case things seem to slow down and/or get “rough”.

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