This is a question that I get asked a lot, and frankly, because there has never been an agreeable definition of exactly what “Hypnosis” is and exactly what “Trance” is, I can only share my opinions.
So, what are my opinions?
Well, I believe that “Trance” is simply an altered state of consciousness that can be reached through many different experiences in many different forms. The terms we give to the two most common forms of trance include, “Downtime Trance” and “Up-time Trance” (sometimes known as “Waking Trance”).
In order to better understand, here are some examples of the two generic kinds of trance.
Some of the most common examples of a “Downtime Trance” include;
Driving long distances
Missing your off ramp while driving
Just before falling asleep
Getting caught up in a good book
Enjoying a good movie
Experiencing portions of a live hypnosis training
Becoming absorbed in a project of task
Listening to an instructor speak
Watching television, browsing the internet, listening to the radio while driving(advertisers take HUGE advantage of all of these by the way)
And of course much more
Some of the most common examples of an “Uptime Trance” include;
Driving fast while weaving in/out of lanes (not that we recommend it!)
Being the conductor of an orchestra
And of course much more
When you are experiencing a “Downtime Trance”, your brainwave activity has most likely altered from what we call a “Beta Brainwave” (Which simply means that you are experiencing a standard waking consciousness), and has transitioned into either an “Alpha Brainwave” (which is basically a light to medium trance) or a “Theta Brainwave” (which is basically a medium to deep form of trance) which allows you to more easily recognize and focus on what’s happening *inside* yourself.
And when you are experiencing an “Up-time trance” your brainwave activity has most likely altered from a standard “Beta Brainwave” to either a “High Beta Brainwave” or a “Gamma Brainwave” which allows you to more easily focus on what’s happening *outside* yourself.
I know some of these terms might seem a little jargonistic, but hang in there. It’ll all make sense very soon.
Very simply put, the answer to the question, “What’s The Difference Between Hypnosis And Trance?”, is…
Hypnosis is simply the intentional usage of these different kinds of trance as a tool for helping ourselves and or others achieve our goals in life.