Ok, ok… Many, many of you have asked me about it… because I often refer in this blog to the psychological shenanigans in much of TV’s reality shows, you all knew I was watching Susan Boyle on Britain’s Got Talent last Saturday night, didn’t you?

I have had lots of messages from people asking me what i thought. Let me tell you:


If you did not see her, or you do not know what I am talking about, let me explain in some depth and why I think she is the best hypnotist, most hypnotic person and hypnosis inducer in the UK right now…

If you choose, you can go see her clip from the TV show “Britains Got talent” — you’ll see a very unassuming lady from a Scottish village… Sadly, she is judged entirely on her appearance and manner when she strolls in and comes on stage… Simon Cowell looks upon her with a snear… Piers Morgan even admits that he was totally surprised and stunned — he even tells her afterwards that no-one was taking her seriously when she first came on stage! That man!? How on earth he gets to judge UK talent is a discussion for another day…

The point is, this gorgeous woman puts on a singing display that is a joy to hear… Her unassuming, honest, pure manner wins over our hearts… Katie and I had wobbly chins watching it live and we loved her… This was the ultimate underdog winning the day. I think we should all celebrate Susan Boyle.

What a hypnotic effect that entire process had on so many millions of people though, eh?

Emotions move us, don’t they? The very word — emotion — derived from the Latin, literally means “to move.” The ancients believed that emotions move behaviour; in modern times we say they motivate behaviour. Emotions get us doing things by sending powerful chemical signals to the muscles and organs of the body.

So with Susan Boyle, we experience a rapid change in emotions brought about by a cocktail of her beautiful voice and lack of initial expectation and a gorgeous person coming to the fore.

The only behaviours that emotions do not motivate are habits, such as tying your shoes or biting your nails or flopping down on your living room sofa without stopping to look. Because habits are processed in the brain in short-hand codes that consume little mental energy, no emotions are necessary to motivate habituated behaviour — they run on automatic pilot. Which perhaps is indicative of the fact that so many people habitually watched this lady walking on to stage and judged her unfairly until her talent was unveiled as she sung.

Piers Morgan is habitually a prat and so his habit was not transformed by emotion at all… hahaha… I am his number one fan I think…

Emotions, mostly subtle or unconscious, prepare us to do almost everything else.

Feelings are the conscious and most misunderstood component of emotions, in my experience and opinion.

Feelings are complex, they are seemingly always changing, i can remember an episode of Red Dwarf when Kryten (a mechanoid) becomes a human for a couple of days and he says that he finds it hard to get control of human feelings, one minute he is happy and excited and the next he is down and depressed… This is how it is for many of us.

Feelings are subject to moods, like a depression caused by work pressure or uplifting delight caused by a star being born on a TV reality show… Feelings are also subject to sensations, such as warmth, cold, pleasure, pain, comfort and  discomfort… Feelings are also subject to physiological states; things like hunger and tiredness for example.

So all these can feel like emotions, and that is why people often give psychological and relationship meaning to anything that feels uncomfortable.

In the mammalian organism, hahaha… That’s us by the way… Feelings are not ends in themselves but a means of getting our attention, so we’ll act on the motivation of the present emotion.

For instance, if you’re interested in something but don’t approach it, the usually unconscious emotion of interest starts to feel like anticipation, excitement, a nagging hunch, or anxiety.

If you have argued and then ignored someone you love or are very close to and don’t approach to kiss and make up, the usually unconscious emotion of guilt might begin to feel like impatience, frustration, anxiety, or depression.

When we act on the basic motivation of emotions, we are usually aware of little or no feelings. That’s how you can get interested in something, look up at the clock, and notice that several hours have passed, during which you were largely unaware of your feelings.

So maybe this is partly why Susan Boyle has had such a mesmerising and hypnotic effect upon us all… We are just not paying much attention to our feelings when we have the TV on… We habitually make conscious decisions about aspects of the show we are watching, form a habitual trance and let the TV deliver emotions to us… Having been unaware of our feelings and quite dismissive when she walked on to the stage… The contrast of the wonderful feelings that we started to notice, evoked an emotional response within us and as the audience confirmed this by cheering and applaudly wildly and more entusiastically, we felt more of that ourselves… it became a full blown emotional affair!

Susan Boyle — I applaud you. You are a truly brilliant hypnosis inducer, with a hypnotic voice and I hope you go on to do great things… Or rather, even greater things 🙂