Since the dawn of the world’s most ancient civilisations, we have been conscious of the wonderous connection between language, the ideas that it creates and our physical health and wellbeing. This realisation can be traced back as far as 1500BC in the Papyrus Ebers and other examples of archaeological evidence. History has demonstrated without question that there is a strong relationship between our ideas and the physiological response of our body. Hence the term ‘ideodynamic’ was coined.
Erickson and Rossi (1981) recognised four key stages in the evolution of ideodynamic communication and healing:
Stage one: The ancient and medieval periods of prophecy, divination and magic.
Stage two: The beginning of hypnosis and the early theories of the Chevreul Pendulum and ideomotor movement in the 1800s.
Stage three: Behaviourism and the clinical rediscovery of ideodynamic movement and signalling in the 1900s.
Stage four: The psychobiology of ideodynamic healing in hypnosis.
You will meet the concept of ideodynamic healing during the hypnosis segment of your Enhanced NLP Coach Practitioner Certification Training when you learn how to work with the Chevreul Pendulum. You will use the pendulum as a biofeedback device which facilitates communication with your unconscious mind. Within this process, you will unconsciously make the link between language and ideas with physical health and wellbeing. At the Master Coach level you will learn how to begin to control physical processes by utilising the pendulum in an analogue rather than digital manner. It won’t come as a surprise to you to learn that there is so much more we can do with ideodynamic healing in hypnosis.
Making full use of permissive, non-authoritarian hypnotic techniques, we can introduce ideodynamic signalling to enhance the hypnotic experience. For example, imagine if the root cause of a hypnotherapy client’s presenting problem is non-linguistic, there are no words that the client can find to articulate the root cause of their problem, it is unspeakable. When might this happen? The inability to language the root cause of a problem can occur when the root cause was prior to the client’s sophisticated linguistic development, before the age of two. Loss of linguistic structure can also occur with selective traumatic amnesia, for example when the client suffers a trauma and the unconscious mind withdraws available memory of the event in order to protect the client on a daily basis, enabling them to be able to function normally. In these situations, a hypnotic regression to recover the root cause and therefore resolve the problem would not provide any fruitful results. In fact, the client may begin to create scenarios in their imagination in order to please the hypnotherapist and be seen as compliant with the process.
Using ideodynamic signalling to gently uncover the root cause, in a way that is acceptable to the client is an effective means of having the client gather unconsciously held information that will assist them in solving their presenting problem. In this instance, finger signalling is extremely useful. Finger signals are set up in a similar manner to the pendulum. The hypnotherapist asks for a finger signal for ‘yes’ and a finger signal for ‘no’. Importantly, when working in this way, we also set up a signal for ‘I’m not ready to answer that consciously, yet.’ If the client is not yet ready to respond to the requests of the hypnotherapist in connection to their problem, then they have an option to delay the procedure and receive more coaching and reframing until they are totally ready to proceed. When the relevant information is received by the client, they are able to realise the source of their problem and find the solution within themselves, there is no requirement for suggestion to come from the hypnotherapist, the client becomes self coaching.
The very nature of permissive hypnotherapy is that the client finds their solutions inside rather than them coming form an external source, i.e. the hypnotherapist through direct suggestion. This is a much safer and productive route to personal healing.
Ideodynamic healing is a fascinating addition to the hypnosis knowledge base and I know that you would love to know more. So, to get you there, we have included a segment of Ideodynamic healing in hypnosis within our Clinical Hypnosis Training. If you would like to register your place and take your Hypnosis skills to a whole new level then please call the office to apply. To qualify, you must already have studied Hypnosis at Practitioner level. You can do this by first joining our Enhanced NLP Coach Practitioner Certification Training.