What Is The Difference Between Hypnosis And Meditation? Hypnosis vs Meditation (Guided Meditation)

What Is The Difference Between Hypnosis And Meditation? Hypnosis vs Meditation (Guided Meditation)


In the intricate dance of the human mind, two practices—hypnosis and meditation—often stand out as both mysterious and intriguing. But how often have you paused to discern the intricate steps that distinguish one from the other? Are they siblings, sharing a core essence, or distant cousins, only faintly echoing each other’s rhythms? As our fast-paced world pulls us in endless directions, understanding these practices isn’t just a scholarly pursuit; it’s an urgent need. Delving into the depths of hypnosis and meditation, and their nuanced cousin, guided meditation, can be the key to unlocking enhanced mental well-being and clarity. Buckle up as we embark on a fascinating journey to uncover the subtle differences and profound intersections of these mind-altering practices.

In recent years, meditation has become more and more popular and people all over the world are coming to realise the positive benefits that this practice can bring. In some cases, you may feel as though you are in a hypnotic state when you practice a guided meditation. However, it is important to note that there are clear differences between a guided meditation and a hypnosis session. Most notably, a guided mindfulness meditation is designed to help a person relax and quiet the mind, whereas hypnotherapy is designed to help the participant change certain aspects of their life. Many people try hypnosis to tackle problems such as weight loss or phobias. In this article, we are going to be answering the question of the differences between hypnosis and meditation and looking at the goal of each of these popular disciplines.

What Is The Difference Between Hypnosis And Guided Meditation?

According to hypnosis expert, Kelley Woods, the main difference between meditation and hypnosis is that meditation is a way for an individual to quiet the mind. In contrast, when you see a hypnotherapist, they will work with you to use your own thoughts to change how you think about things. This enables the hypnotist to help people to focus on the something that they want to happen while using their thoughts to help the person alter how they think about any particular challenge. Another key difference between hypnosis an meditation is that the latter requires a person to develop a practice that stays with the throughout their entire life. You simply cannot do just one meditation session and hope that your mind will remain clear for the rest of your life; this is something that requires dedication in many ways. You will need to spend time each day doing meditations and will need to remain consistent with this. However, a lot of people who find that meditation is too time-consuming, too difficult or is not producing fast enough results, try hypnosis as a quicker way to reach their goal. Many would say that hypnosis is much like being asleep but with a degree of self awareness. Conversely, when we meditate, we may go into extremely relaxed states but we rest between sleep and wakefulness. According to another hypnosis expert, Richard Barker, while both a guided meditation and hypnotherapy place a lot of attention on relaxation, the latter comes with added suggestion. However, it may surprise you to learn that, while hypnosis is something that a lot of people turn to, there is much more scientific research to show the benefits of meditation. For anyone who wanted to access a method that has proven results, meditation is typically the way forward. But that is not to suggest that hypnosis is useless, far from this, a lot of people swear by self hypnosis and have notice positive results in many ways. It is merely that there has not yet been sufficient research in the field. That being said, there has been research conducted on how a hypnotist, or indeed, even self hypnosis can affect your brain activity.

How Do Meditation And Hypnosis Affect The Brain?

One of the things that is certain is that both a guided meditation and self hypnosis have the ability to physically affect the body; most notably, in the brain. The mind is an intricate and amazing system and something that people are learning is that, to an extent, we are able to control the mind through various techniques. Let’s start by considering hypnosis. There are now hundreds of hypnosis downloads allowing an individual to take part in self hypnosis from the comfort of their own home. But even if you do not feel comfortable with self hypnosis, there are many hypnotist sessions that you can attend where the hypnotist will use their years of experience to put you into a hypnotic state, which is a similar experience to what many would call a trance. According to research, someone who is in a trance-like state after using a self hypnosis technique or working with a hypnotist would have an altered blood flow to the brain. Essentially the individual would enter into a different function and this can have an incredible amount of power. The very definition of hypnosis therapy is to get the participant into a trance state where they can focus their awareness on a particular issue without worrying about what is going on around them. Someone in this trance would then have much greater control over their body and feel much less self-conscious than if they were to be in their regular state. But what is even more interesting is that your imagination can have an impact on whether you are a suitable hypnosis candidate. Studies have shown that a subject may be more susceptible to the power of hypnosis if they are more trusting of others and if they use their imagination more intensely than others. This type of person is the ideal subject for both self hypnosis and working with a hypnotist. You have likely seen the ‘celebrity hypnotists’ in the media, controlling a participant with a process that almost seems magical. They will use certain stimuli to control the interaction as they take their subject into an altered state of consciousness. Often, when hypnotism is done this way, it is for entertainment purposes, and the hypnotist will click his fingers and announce ‘sleep’ before demanding that the participant does some wacky act. But true hypnosis, for therapeutic reasons, does not do this. While this process does work with the mind, and can alter the blood flow, directing it to one particular area of the head, meditation has the ability to alter the brain waves. During meditation, one would close the eyes and place their awareness on the breath, aiming for an experience of deep relaxation and a quiet mind. Everything about meditation is based around your mind and while our states of consciousness can be altered, there is no suggestion that attempts to influence the mind and how we think. Often, a guided meditation will involve using the imagination as the meditation leader guides us with words and images. As we place our attention on this, there is a proven shift in the brain waves which move to a higher frequency. Certain parts of the mind are affected and this enables you to access different parts of the meditation experience. For example, when the frontal lobe is activated, you are able to relax.

What Is Hypnosis Meditation?

Considering everything we have looked at, it would be easy to assume that meditation and hypnosis are two entirely different things, and to a degree, they are. However, you will often hear about hypnosis meditation which is essentially just a form of self hypnosis and many experts will tell you that meditation is another way of accessing a hypnotic state. It is for this reason that many people consider themselves to be able to get into this sort of state through guided meditation. However, some experts would say that the absolute difference between meditation and hypnosis is that hypnosis require the person to work under the assistance of someone who has completed hypnotherapy training and who can guide them through the process. Nonetheless, more and more people are using guided meditation as a way of hypnotising themselves. But the question that often comes up is whether this is safe. There may be times that this type of treatment is not safe; in particular, there are some types of mental illness that would make hypnosis unsuitable. In addition to this, according to the Mayo Clinic page there are some possible side effects to this technique and some people may experience false memories or strong emotions. For this reason, you may prefer to work with a professional rather than performing self-hypnosis since they will be able to guide you through the session with appropriate words and assistance.

What is a Hypnotic State?

A hypnotic state is a trance-like condition in which a person is highly responsive to suggestions and can experience an altered sense of reality. This state is achieved through the process of hypnosis, which involves inducing a deep relaxation and focused attention. During hypnosis, the conscious mind is relaxed, allowing the subconscious mind to become more receptive to new ideas and beliefs. It is important to note that a hypnotic state is not the same as sleep; instead, it is an altered state of consciousness that can be used for therapeutic purposes. In this state, individuals are more open to positive suggestions, allowing them to make positive changes in their thoughts, behaviors, and attitudes. The depth of the hypnotic state can vary, with some individuals experiencing a light trance while others may enter a deep state of hypnosis. Overall, a hypnotic state is a powerful tool that can be used to tap into the subconscious mind and improve one’s overall well-being.

What Is A Similarity Between Hypnosis And Meditation?

Whether you are interesting in doing a guided meditation or want to experiment with hypnotic states, the thing that makes hypnosis and meditation similar is the things that they can treat. Regardless of which method you use, you will be able to benefit yourself in similar ways. Both hypnosis and meditation are known to have stress relieving effects and can help to manage such conditions as anxiety, depression and addiction. Furthermore, as we have discovered, both of these practices put a great deal of attention on relaxation. While being in a hypnotic state has other aspects, this is a key similarity. While you may focus on the difference between these two practices, it has also been noted that both meditation and hypnosis have the ability to lower the heart rate which is not only good for your health but is also another factor that allows you to relax during this type of activity.


Q: What is the difference between hypnosis and meditation?

A: Hypnosis and meditation, although share some similarities, are two different practices. Hypnosis is a state of focused attention and concentration, where the individual is guided to access their subconscious mind and make positive changes. On the other hand, meditation is a practice where the individual trains their mind to focus on the present moment, usually through various techniques like mindfulness or visualization.

Q: How does hypnosis differ from meditation?

A: The main difference between the two is in their purpose and technique. Hypnosis is often used as a therapeutic tool, while meditation is typically used for relaxation and self-discovery. Hypnosis aims to induce a hypnotic trance and access the subconscious mind, while meditation aims to achieve a meditative state of deep relaxation and awareness.

Q: Can hypnosis be considered a form of meditation?

A: While there are some similarities between hypnosis and meditation, they can be considered as separate practices. Hypnosis utilizes specific techniques to induce a hypnotic trance and work with the subconscious mind, while meditation focuses on training the mind to be present and aware in the current moment.

Q: Are there any significant differences between hypnosis and meditation?

A: Yes, there are significant differences between the two. Hypnosis involves guidance from a hypnotist or self-hypnosis techniques, while meditation can be practiced independently. In hypnosis, the goal is often to make positive changes or resolve issues through accessing the subconscious mind, whereas meditation aims to achieve a state of inner peace and mindfulness.

Q: How can hypnosis help us?

A: Hypnosis can be helpful in various ways. It can be used to overcome fears and phobias, manage stress and anxiety, improve confidence and motivation, and even address certain health issues like chronic pain or smoking cessation. Hypnosis taps into the power of the subconscious mind to create positive change.

Q: How can meditation help us?

A: Meditation has numerous benefits for both the body and mind. It can help reduce stress, improve mental clarity and focus, enhance emotional well-being, promote relaxation, and increase self-awareness. Regular meditation practice can also lead to improved overall health and a sense of inner peace.

Q: Can meditation be used as a form of self-hypnosis?

A: While meditation and self-hypnosis may share some similarities, they are not the same practice. Self-hypnosis uses specific techniques to guide oneself into a hypnotic state and access the subconscious mind, whereas meditation focuses on present moment awareness and relaxation.

Q: What are the similarities and differences between hypnosis and meditation?

A: Both hypnosis and meditation aim to induce a state of relaxation and focus. However, hypnosis is more directed and often guided by a professional or through self-hypnosis techniques, while meditation allows for a broader exploration and self-discovery. Additionally, hypnosis works with the subconscious mind, while meditation focuses on mindfulness and awareness.

Q: Can meditation and hypnosis be used interchangeably?

A: While meditation and hypnosis share some similarities, they cannot be used interchangeably. They have different techniques, purposes, and goals. While meditation primarily focuses on relaxation and present moment awareness, hypnosis is more targeted towards accessing the subconscious mind and making positive changes.

Q: What are the differences between the effects of hypnosis and meditation on the brain?

A: Both hypnosis and meditation have been found to have positive effects on the brain. However, the specific effects may differ. Hypnosis has been shown to have a calming effect on the brain, activating the parasympathetic nervous system and reducing stress. Meditation, on the other hand, has been found to increase activity in certain areas of the brain associated with attention, memory, and emotional regulation.

Q: What is better hypnosis or meditation?

Hypnosis and meditation are two practices that have gained popularity for their ability to promote relaxation and personal growth. While they share some similarities, they also have distinct differences. Hypnosis involves the induction of a trance-like state where individuals are more open to suggestions and guidance from a hypnotist. It is commonly used to address specific issues like smoking cessation or weight loss. On the other hand, meditation is a practice that involves focusing one’s attention and achieving a state of mindfulness, often through deep breathing and repetition of mantras. It aims to calm the mind, reduce stress, and improve overall well-being. Both hypnosis and meditation have their own benefits and can be valuable tools for self-improvement. Hypnosis may be more suitable for those who prefer a guided experience and have specific goals they want to achieve, while meditation offers a more self-directed approach for cultivating mindfulness and inner peace. Ultimately, the choice between hypnosis and meditation depends on individual preferences and goals.

Q: What is the difference between mindfulness and hypnosis?

Mindfulness and hypnosis are two distinct practices. Mindfulness involves being fully present in the moment and aware of one’s thoughts and feelings without judgment. Hypnosis, on the other hand, is a state of deep relaxation and focused attention where one is highly suggestible to the instructions of a hypnotherapist. While mindfulness promotes self-awareness, hypnosis aims to induce trance-like states for therapeutic purposes.

Q: Does hypnosis have the same benefits as meditation?

Hypnosis and meditation both have their own unique benefits, but they are not the same. While meditation focuses on calming the mind and increasing mindfulness, hypnosis is used to induce a deep state of relaxation and suggestibility. Hypnosis can be beneficial for working through specific issues or changing behaviors, whereas meditation has a more general focus on overall well-being.

Q: Is guided meditation just hypnosis?

Guided meditation and hypnosis are not the same thing, although they have some similarities. While both involve relaxation techniques and focus on subconsciousness, hypnosis is typically used to uncover repressed memories or change certain habits, while guided meditation is more focused on mindfulness and self-discovery.


There is no denying that meditating is good for the soul and that this state of mindfulness and relaxation has a world of benefits. However, there is another state that is often compared to meditation; hypnosis. But is there a difference or are these do these ways go hand in hand with working with the mind? A meditative state and a hypnotic state are similar in some ways but there are differences. Most notably, the two interact very differently with the brain causing a change in frequency and altered blood flow respectively. Meditating is primarily used to relax, whereas hypnosis is typically used to help the participant work through problems in a safe and focused way.

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