Under hypnosis there is a feeling of relaxation and concentration, but the subject (the person being hypnotised) is still aware of what is happening. There is usually an altered sense of time (it may appear afterwards that a long time has elapsed where only a few minutes have passed, or that it was brief whereas, in fact, it took a long time), a lowering of blood pressure and a change of brain rhythm from the usual beta state of consciousness to alpha, or theta. These are slower brain brain rhythms than are experienced in the usual conscious state.
If you have ever watched a movie, you have been hypnotised. Whilst you are watching the movie you stay conscious enough for your body to sit upright on the chair and continue to breathe. At the same time your mind is on something completely different. What’s more, whilst watching the movie you accept, without question, events that you would probably be extremely skeptical about in real life.
Hypnosis can be more real than any movie!
Hypnotherapy is therapy performed with the client, at least some of the time, under hypnosis. It is therapy and hypnosis is a tool for a job: the job is to resolve an issue that the client has presented with. Hypnotherapy often incorporates other therapies along with hypnosis.
The short answer to this is no. You are aware under hypnosis and I sometimes tell my clients that if I say anything they don’t like they will be able to ignore it or even simply get up. Often the point of hypnotherapy is to get clients to do something they feel they are incapable of doing, or reluctant to do. For instance to take more exercise, and suggestions are given to this effect. However, in this case it is something that they really want to do but find that they are unable to remove the barriers in their mind.
Almost certainly. Some people are able to be hypnotised to a greater degree than others, and practice makes perfect. If you do meditation or relaxation exercises than this helps, but anyone can be hypnotised to some extent.
Strange as it may seem, it is quite common for someone to be hypnotised but not know it. I’ve had clients who have stopped smoking after one session but will tell me that theyt were convinced that they weren’t hypnotised. Hypnosis is an altered state and sometimes a person has to become familiar with that state in order to appreciate it.