When “Fred” came for a hypnosis session to help him get ready to have his kidney removed he did not realize just how dramatic the results would be.
Since unconscious minds think in dreamlike images, stories, and analogies, metaphors and imagery are some of the most powerful tools of a hypnotherapist. Some of those images and metaphors can also make sense, or even seem obvious, to the conscious mind.
While Fred was in trance, I offered his unconscious mind the metaphor of making plumbing repairs as a way to encourage it to slow down his bleeding during surgery. It is an obvious move to turn off the water while working on the plumbing. It would be very hard to make the repairs with water gushing all over the place. This metaphor would be considered an indirect suggestion, technically speaking.
After offering Fred the metaphor, I gave Fred some direct suggestions about reducing bleeding during his surgery. His unconscious mind was directed to stop the blood flow to the areas being worked on during the surgery, letting only enough blood through to keep the tissues healthy. Once the repairs were complete, the circulation was to be restored to normal.
As a result of his hypnosis session, Fred’s surgery was about two hours shorter than planned, and he needed no blood transfusion during the procedure!