Grace Smith on Making Hypnosis Mainstream – And Why it’s the Next Billion-Dollar Industry – Business Lunch with Roland Frasier

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Key Takeaways

  • Hypnotherapy allows someone to get into a completely relaxed (AKA theta brainwave) state where they become open to suggestions (but only those they want to absorb)
    • While in this state the brain is able to form new neural connections 
  • “I call hypnosis meditation with a goal”
    • “Hypnosis, because of the way it’s portrayed in the movies, looks like it’s mind control. It couldn’t be further from the truth. If you don’t want the result, you don’t experience the result.”
  • Just how effective is hypnotherapy?
    • 600 sessions of psychotherapy (which takes ~10 years to complete) results in an average improvement of 38% 
    • 6 sessions of hypnotherapy results in an average improvement of 93%
  • Hypnotherapy will become a billion-dollar industry
  • You cannot change habits or beliefs (which live in the subconscious) using conscious means – you HAVE to do it by accessing the subconscious (and hypnotherapy is the most effective way to do so)

Intro

A Bit of Background

  • Grace used to work in sales in New York City when she was in her early 20s 
    • At the time – “Partying was my coping mechanism for stress”
  • When she was 24, Grace picked up an interest in health & wellness and decide to quit smoking
    • NOTHING was working and Grace was left frustrated
      • “Someone suggested hypnosis. I didn’t think it’d work, but I went and in one session I never wanted to smoke again and quit. I was fascinated.”
  • That fascination led her deeper – she next overcame a “debilitating” stage fright with hypnosis
  • Eventually, still in her sales position, Grace ended up getting certified as a hypnotherapist

The Client That Changed Grace’s Life

  • Work as a part-time hypnotherapist, Grace recalls working with a man who had become both paralyzed and severely depressed (the man was a peacekeeping worker with the United Nations who, while in Syria, came face to face with the firing of a bazooka)
    • Grace worked her magic to cure the man’s paralysis in his left arm. Right then, she knew she was on to something.
      • “Me with this part-time hypnotherapy gig, how do I go back to this glorified sales job that everybody thought was so cool and convince myself to enter into this world that no one knows anything about and tends to be the butt of a joke? Once I saw him break through his paralysis, I had no other option. There was no way I could sleep at night without moving this forward.”
        • (Grace mentioned later in the interview that the man now walks without a cane)
  • Grace went on to launch her hypnotherapy business on Living Social and sold 952 sessions in just 24 hours!
    • She completed 1,000 sessions during her first year of business making her one of the most experienced hypnotherapists right out of the gate

Becoming a Hypnotherapist

  • Can anyone be a hypnotherapist?
    • Right now, yes – some courses are only a weekend long
      • “I think it’s just morally apprehensive. You’re working with people’s subconscious minds.”
      • Grace is currently working to change the certification process and increase regulation
  • Grace started her own hypnotherapy school, the Grace Space Hypnotherapy School (which is only for women at the moment)
    • She calls it the “most robust education you can receive”
    • Certification through Grace’s school involves completing 24 weeks of online modules in addition to 2 in-person sessions with Grace
      • Students must also complete a minimum of 20 practice sessions before meeting with Grace in person

How does hypnotherapy work?

  • At its core, it’s all about identifying what you’re afraid of, or the habit you’re trying to change, in addition to what you want instead
    • By accessing the theta brainwave state, you visualize the above and BOOM… We explain:
      • Most people try to make changes in a stressed out (AKA beta brainwave) state
        • “But when you’re in this state, when cortisol’s pumping through your body, you’re in your least malleable state and least open to suggestion. None of the energy that it takes to create new neural connections in the brain is available to you because it’s primed to help you runway and survive.”
      • Hypnosis allows one to get into a completely relaxed (AKA theta brainwave) state where they become open to suggestions (but only those they want to absorb)
        • While in this state the brain is able to form new neural connections 
  • When someone visualizes something from the beta brainwave state, the part of the brain that lights up is the part of the brain associated with imagining something
    • When you’re in the theta brain wave state, the part of the brain that lights up is the same area activated when that specific action/visualization is performed
  • “I call hypnosis meditation with a goal”
    • “Hypnosis, because of the way it’s portrayed in the movies, looks like it’s mind control. It couldn’t be further from the truth. If you don’t want the result, you don’t experience the result.”

What can hypnosis do?

  • Beginner hypnotherapists may be able to help someone:
    • Stop biting their nails
    • Stop wetting the bed
    • Feel more confident on stage
    • Quit consuming sugar
  • More advanced hypnotherapists can tackle more severe issues (like depression)

Just how effective is hypnotherapy?

  • Grace recalls a study which found:
    • 600 sessions of psychotherapy (which takes ~10 years to complete) resulted in an average improvement of 38% 
    • 6 sessions of hypnotherapy resulted in an average of 93% improvement

What’s the hardest thing about doing hypnosis?

  • “The hardest thing about doing hypnosis is that people don’t understand what it is”
  • Many people don’t take what Grace does seriously
    • “To start watching people transform their lives and overcome the deepest forms of suffering and THAT be your job, to help facilitate their transformation… and yet I go to a party and tell somebody what I do and they hold up their fingers like an ‘X’ in front of my face… It’s very challenging to wake up and do it over and over again and not be taken seriously.”
      • “That’s the hardest part of the job, getting my ego beaten up and being misunderstood”

An Exercise Which Immediately Drops Your Stress Level

  • The below is probably best listened to (~18:40). Grace’s voice is in a league of its own. I could hardly type this out without sinking into a deep state of relaxation.
    • “Close your eyes and take a deep breath, already beginning to relax both mind and body”
    • “Relax the top of your head. Relax your forehead, smoothing out any creases.”
    • “Relax the tiny muscles next to your eyes”
    • “Relax your jaw, letting it hang loose”
    • “As you create that space in your jaw, send a message to the rest of your body that it’s safe for you to relax”
    • “Relax your shoulders. Relax your arms all the way through to the fingertips,”
    • “Relax your torso, breathing easily, releasing your stomach”
    • “And relax your legs all the way out through the bottom of the feet while repeating in your mind, ‘I am safe. I am calm. I choose to be here.'”
    • “You realize now your eyelids are wonderfully and deeply relaxed. Your eyelids are so wonderfully, deeply relaxed that they just want to stay closed. No matter how hard you try to open them, they just want to stay closed and it’s alright. Give it a good try and when you’re absolutely sure they just don’t want to open, think of a color you love in your mind.”
    • “Now imagine that color flowing in through the top of your head, all the way through your body, out the bottom of your feet, down into the center of the Earth, that color relaxing you, that color releasing you, that color taking you all the way down.
    • “One last time repeating in your mind, ‘I am safe. I am calm. I choose to be here.'”

What lies ahead for hypnotherapy?

  • “I have no doubt that hypnosis will be mainstream and will become a billion-dollar industry. It’s more effective than meditation at changing lives, it’s more effective than yoga at changing lives, it’s more effective than psychotherapy at changing lives and all 3 of those are billion-dollar industries.”
    • The challenge: Hypnosis has a PR issue (an understanding about what it truly is)
      • (Grace has a TV show in the works which she hopes will help this)

Wrapping Up

  • “If you’re trying to make a change in your life to an aspect that lives in the subconscious mind: any habit, any belief, any emotional response… they all live in your subconscious. If you’re using conscious means to try to change them, you won’t. It’s like vacuuming inside your living room trying to clean up the bottom of the ocean. You’re just not going to ever reach it. If you want to transform a habit, belief, or emotional response you HAVE to do it by accessing the subconscious and hypnotherapy is the most effective non-invasive way to do that.”

Additional Notes

  • Grace Space Hypnosis just crossed 7-figures in revenue
    • “It feels like it took a lifetime to get here and simultaneously that we’re at the very beginning. There’s so much more to come.”
  • Grace works with quite a few Olympic athletes 
  • Induction is the term for the hypnotic technique that brings you into the theta brainwave state
  • Grace and her team of 12 full-time hypnotherapists offers private hypnotherapy sessions through her website (which all take place over the phone – Grace says it’s more effective than in person)
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