The intake process is listening to the client’s Conscious Mind. But while you’re listening, their Subconscious Mind is watching you. While you listen, validate the client’s Story. Acknowledge how hard it’s been for them. Accept where they’re at. Show that you won’t judge them – that you’re not a threat.
When you validate how much pain a person is feeling you are speaking directly to their Subconscious Mind. That’s where the pain is coming from. It’s coming out of the Feeling Part of the Mind.
We are not a culture that takes feelings very seriously. If you want the Subconscious Mind to trust you, you need to show that you’re someone who will listen to how the client feels.
Our profession is too quick to toss out the therapeutic value of giving the client permission to speak before diving into the hypnosis. We don’t want to be accused of practicing “talk therapy”. And for good reason.
Talk alone won’t solve the problem.
Telling the same Story over and over again may give temporary relief. But it doesn’t change anything. It discharges some of the energy in the Story. But the person still has the problem. And the energy just builds back up again.
You can help a person release the charge around the Story. You can then help them to change the Story in a way that changes everything. But to do that, you need the cooperation of both the Conscious and Subconscious levels of Mind. You can get this during the intake process.
Gaining the client’s full cooperation happens during the intake process. The intake is your opportunity to prove to both the Conscious and Subconscious Minds that you can be trusted to facilitate the process. It’s a way to earn their trust and cooperation so that they’ll let you guide the process.
While you’re conducting the intake process your attitude needs to be easy-going and non-judgmental. Make it more of a conversation than an interview. It’s about getting to know each other, not drilling the client for information. It’s about showing that you care. You’re not a threat. You’re here to help. This allows the Subconscious Mind to feel safe and relax.
When the Subconscious relaxes it’s like the family dog that just loves you. You can break into the house and it will welcome you in. Then show you where the bones are buried. I hope you can appreciate how much easier this can make things for you.
The intake isn’t merely an interview. It’s an interactive process where you’re communicating with both the Conscious and Subconscious levels of Mind. Listening to the Conscious Mind is not wasting time. It’s investing time in establishing a relationship before you start offering suggestions. And that’s the basis of everything we do – suggestion.
Hypnosis happens through suggestion. Regression happens through suggestion. Everything you do in a session is based in suggestion. And the client is always deciding, either consciously or unconsciously, whether or not to accept your suggestions.
Being strategic with your intake process allows you to gather up the information you need to guide the process effectively. And it’s a way to make it safe for your client to accept your suggestions.
I think that’s time well-wasted. Don’t you?