Well, that season is upon us, isn’t it?

My diary is filling up with Christmas celebrations that seem to start this week as we gather for what may well be the final hypnosis geek dinner of the year here in Bournemouth.

The TV advertisements are filled with roasted turkeys and nibbles to ensure anyone and everyone is giving in to temptation and needing to pop open the top button of our trousers following the gorging.

I think we all know what happens during the eating festive season, don’t we? The more we eat, the more comfortable we get eating more and the more hungry we seem to get to stuff our faces even more!

There is a rather simple and classic self-hypnosis process for helping anyone to maintain their ability to control their appetite and turn down any seeming ‘need’ to gorge and reign things in so that we don’t arrive in January looking like we borrowed our trousers from UK X-Factor reject Frankie Cocozza. (For those of you not familiar, google some images of him and his incredibly tight trousers and you’ll understand what I mean)

In a nutshell, you take yourself into hypnosis and imagine a dial, or a sliding switch of some sort that is representative of your appetite and your real hunger need (i.e. You probably are not as hungry as you think when faced with that fourth helping of figgy pudding and custard with a dollop of brandy butter for good measure) which you practice repeatedly with to develop a real sense of control and then you use it when out of hypnosis and when confronted with those situations and circumstances in order to turn down the perceived hunger and control your appetite, to put it back on the track where it should be.

Ideally, you want to get to the stage whereby you only eat when your hunger scale is truly signaling a 7 (10 = famished, would eat your own shoes and 0= stuffed beyond all recognition, like Mr Creosote in Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life) and that you really think about eating rather than just eating for the sake of it and without seeing how your appetite actually is.

We do tend to lose track of what our appetite actually is and when we re-learn how to gauge it well, it is a brilliant way to control your appetite and eating habits.

Here is how to do it in some basic steps:

Step One: Get yourself into a comfortable position and one whereby you are going to be undisturbed for the duration of this exercise. Make sure your feet are flat on the floor and hands are not touching each other.

Then in that position, hypnotise yourself.

You can do so by any means you desire or know of. You can use the process in my Science of self-hypnosis book, use the free audio we give away on this website to practice or have a look at the following articles as and when you need them; they are basic processes to help you simply open the door of your mind:

Heavy Arm Self-Hypnosis Induction Method
Using Eye Fixation for Self-Hypnosis
The Chiasson Self-Hypnosis Method
Hand to Face Self-Hypnosis Induction
Using Magnetic Hands for Self-Hypnosis
The Coin Drop Self-Hypnosis Induction

However, with this process, an induction is potentially too much activity, so I teach my clients how to adopt a hypnotic mindset and simply have a mindset that is positive and expectant. Again, to really understand the cognitive set of the hypnotic mindset, go grab a copy of my Science of self-hypnosis book where it is explained in simple but comprehensive terms.

Once you are hypnotised, move on to step two.

Step Two: You can spend a while deepening your hypnosis should you wish. Using any meanings you choose – the most simple and basic are to spend a couple of minutes imagining moving down stairs, being in a favourite place of relaxing your body bit by bit. Those with more practice using hypnosis will have other means – use what you prefer, keep focused on the session at hand (i.e. be careful not to drift off) and then move on to step three.

Step Three: Being to engage your imagination and create an image of a dial, a lever or a sliding swith of some kind that is on a box, or fixed on a wall of some kind – let it absolutely dominate your mind’s eye. Notice the colours, the materials that it is made out of and how it signals 0-10 to mark the varying degrees of your real hunger.

Notice where it is at right now – let it show you how hungry you really are at this time. Let your mind intelligently assist you with this, you’ll know how long ago it is since you last ate, you’ll know what you have eaten, you’ll know whether any hunger is real or just reacting to a recent bout of gluttony and wanting some more of that sensation!

Once you have really established the dial, got it detailed perfectly and seen where it is set – trusting that the level is accurate, then move on to the next step.

Step Four: Now turn the dial downwards a notch and notice how you notice the effects taking place within you. What sensation represents your appetite being lessened? Do you imagine a fullness or some kind? Do you imagine a colour within you, or do you just notice a sensory alteration within you somewhere?

Really study your response and make sure it feels as though you are affecting your appetite with the dial. You need to make sure you believe it and the more you do, the more effective it is going to be when you need to use it the most in those real-life scenarios.

Practice turning it down further and noticing how you can use your mind to alter your perceived appetite in a way that is healthy and helps you to be in control when you encounter those situations and circumstances where lots of food is on offer.  Tell yourself that the more you practice this, the better you become at being in control of your appetite.

You might even develop a powerful affirmation or positive cognition that accompanies this dial “I am in control of my eating” is one such simple statement. You can word it however you like and in the best way for you. Make sure it is something that really resonates well with you. Once you have affirmed that to yourself a couple of times with real meaning and conviction, move on to the next step.

Step Five: Now imagine yourself in a future situation, a circumstance where there is going to be lots of temptation to continue eating even if you are full, or to eat too much in the first instance. See the sights of that place, notice who else is there, hear the sounds, become aware of how you feel in that place. Get as much detail as possible and then notice that when the temptation presents itself, you turn down the dial on your appetite, you notice that you are not hungry enough to eat anymore, and you repeat your positive cognition to yourself in your head a couple of times to reinforce it.

Run through this future scenario a couple of times to make sure your mind has really mentally rehearsed how you are going to respond and then move on to the final step.

Step Six: Now you open your eyes, wiggle your finger and toes and go and practice your skills in real-life situations and notice how in control you really are.

Practice the six steps for a few days before you go and face temptation, to make sure you really get the process lodged into your mind.

Enjoy it and make sure you arrive in 2012 with trousers that fit you and you don’t behave like Mr Creosote at festive feed-ups! (nb. This video clip is not for the weak of stomach!)

Has this resonated with you in some way? Then these links might interest you:

1. Have poor eating habits held you back and/or are they still doing so now? Do you need to learn how to develop better eating habits?
Coaching with Adam Eason Or Hypnotherapy with Adam Eason
2. Would you like a satisfying and meaningful career as a hypnotherapist helping others develop better eating habits?
Adam Eason’s Anglo European training college.
3. Are you a hypnotherapist for whom nproblematic habits are negatively effecting the success of your business? Do you need to operate more effectively to fulfil your career ambitions?
Hypnotherapist Mentoring with Adam Eason.

Likewise, if you’d like to learn more about self-hypnosis, understand the evidence based principles of it from a scientific perspective and learn how to apply it to many areas of your life while having fun and in a safe environment and have the opportunity to test everything you learn, then come and join me for my one day seminar which does all that and more, have a read here: The Science of Self-Hypnosis Seminar.