Instant Hypnosis - The Handshake Interrupt


The following example of instant hypnosis or rapid induction is a really cool pattern that is quite difficult to get right, mainly because you need to be completely congruent. The idea is simple, break the process (in this case a handshake) in the middle and provide a situation which the client will have no obvious response to. This creates the confusion ‘moment’, that you will then take advantage of by filling with hypnotic suggestions.

Here is a general outline for instant Hypnosis:

Reach out to shake hands, and just as you are about to take the clients right hand with your right hand, reach out with your left hand and place it around the clients wrist (on the outside) gripping their wrist between finger and thumb.

Lift their hand and place it in front of their face (showing them their own palm). Then start with the suggestions:

Look at your palm (you could point at it with your right hand).

And notice the changing focus of your eyes – they will become aware of their eyes refocusing at this point on the near palm as opposed to focusing on you when they were expecting to shake hands.

As you close your eyes and begin to relax all the way down with each breath.

Now this will not work exactly with everyone. It works best with people who are expecting to enter a trance state with you at some point, as they are much more likely to simply comply with your commands.

Trying this kind of instant hypnosis on complete strangers may get you into a few sticky situations, so be careful, and like all hypnosis skills practice, practice, practice!

It's interesting to look for other opportunities to use interrupt techniques. Any behavior which you can interrupt may work. Passing someone the salt is a good variation, as is passing someone a contract or the pen to sign it with – but you wouldn't do that would you?

One technique that works well with interrupts is the vague touch. For example, if you start the handshake, but don’t quite give your hand, or lead someone by the hand, but make very ambiguous and unpredictable movements that the client is expected to follow, the client will become confused and this can easily lead into a form of instant hypnosis.

In fact, this can make quite an interesting rapid induction and a fun exercise – sit opposite your client, ask them to close their eyes, place your palms forwards against theirs (so that you could both push each other back) and ask them to follow.

Start to move your hands individually around, keep the movements slow and ambiguous, changing direction often. The longer you keep the process going, the better they will get at following – and the deeper they will go.