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  • Writer's pictureJanice dirksen

What’s the difference between Hypnosis and Guided Meditation?

As a hypnotist who enjoys a morning guided meditation practice, I often get asked about the difference between hypnosis and guided meditation. While there are similarities between the two practices, there are also some key differences between hypnosis and meditation.

Hypnosis and guided meditation are similar in that they both create a relaxed state of mind, and hypnosis often uses guided meditation to induce a trance like state. Both practices aim to create a positive change in mindset, but the path to achieving this change is different. Guided meditation is great for nurturing awareness and presence in the moment, while hypnosis helps you achieve a specific goal, such as eliminating bad habits or improving performance in important areas of life. By using hypnosis, you can benefit from both the relaxation of guided meditation and achieve a desired behavioral change.

Hypnosis is a state of deep relaxation and focus during which the hypnotist makes helpful suggestions. The ultimate goal of hypnosis is to create a positive change in behavior through suggestions, visualizations, and exploring memories, deeply rooted fears, and limiting beliefs. By unlocking the underlying reason for your behavior, hypnosis can create desired changes in ways that cannot be changed during wakefulness.

During hypnosis, the conscious part of the mind becomes very relaxed and can be bypassed, so that you can communicate with the unconscious (or subconscious) part. The unconscious part of the mind is the part that holds all of your learned behavior patterns, including the limiting beliefs that are holding you back from change.

Guided meditation, on the other hand, is a type of meditation practice led by someone, in person or via audio or video, with the goal to help develop self-awareness and living in the present moment. This leads to mental clarity, calm, and stability. Many beginners find using guided meditation easier to focus and relax since the mind, when left to its own device, has a tendency to wander at will, AKA MONKEY MIND. And yes I suffer from chronic monkey mind.

Both guided meditation and hypnosis share similarities such as a reduction in the symptoms of stress, an improvement in attention span, a decrease in anxiety, and better sleep quality. The differences between meditation and hypnosis are:

  • Hypnosis is meditation, but meditation may not be hypnosis. Virtually every hypnosis session is a meditation, but guided meditation practice is not a hypnosis session.

  • Hypnosis is used intentionally to make a change in behavior, while guided meditation may over time change behavior but that’s not what it’s designed to do. Hypnosis is used to alter certain parts of your behaviors, fears, beliefs, or thought patterns for the better.

  • Hypnosis is active and meditation is passive. Meditation is passive and encourages you to sit or lay and detach from your thoughts. Hypnosis is active and may require the client to recall memories, envision scenarios, or explore certain beliefs.

If you have any further questions on how hypnosis can help you or where to find useful guided meditations please contact me at to schedule a FREE ½ Zoom consultation.

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