Automatic drawing as hypnotherapy
This is an unusual way of using hypnosis to explore your own unconscious mind. Automatic drawing hypnotherapy is fun and creative. Sometimes you get nothing much from it. Oftentimes what you draw will surprise you and give you an insight into what is happening in your unconscious mind.
Decide where you want to do the drawing. You will need something to draw with, a pencil, a ballpoint pen, a crayon – it really doesn't matter, whatever you feel comfortable with. And then you need something to draw on. This can be a notebook, some printer paper, a whiteboard, – again, whatever you feel comfortable with and is readily available.
Most people like to be sitting when you do the drawing, but you can also do standing up. I will assume you are sitting down. Get yourself comfortable in the seat. Get your paper on your lap or on the tabletop or whatever, ready to use.
First get yourself grounded
Now get yourself grounded. Take three breaths slowly and deeply. Consciously tense and release all of your muscles. Start with your facial muscles, then your neck muscles, then your shoulders, and then your arms. Just tense and release them and allow them to feel heavy and soft and relaxed. Do the same with all the other major muscle groups. Tense and release your chest, your waist, your hips, your legs.
When you feel that your body is heavy and relaxed in your breathing gently, focus your attention on your feet. Just imagine all that weight going into your feet. Imagine your own power and awareness going out through your feet into the ground, like the roots of a tree. Take a few moments and really become aware of the connection between your body and the ground beneath your feet. Then imagine each of your problems, issues, worries, beginning to drain away. Draining out through your feet. Allow each one to let go from wherever they are and flow out of your body through your feet and into the earth below.
Start the automatic drawing hypnotherapy
When you feel you are really relaxed, when there is no noise in your mind, when it has all drained out of you, then you can start drawing. Allow your mind to choose where on the paper you want to place the pen or pencil. Don't force it, or think about it, just allow that you hand decide where to start.
Then, start moving the pencil in whatever way seems right to you. You're basically doodling thoughtlessly. Look at the paper, watching as the pen moves, and just being curious as to what it wants to do next. You might find yourself drawing straight lines like a fan, or drawing circles. You might find yourself shading in things, thickening lines, or filling spaces with dots. Some lines might just be tiny strokes, some will be long and sweeping. All of these should be automatic, something produced by your mind. You might keep drawing continuously, or your mind might want to lift the pen and start doodling somewhere else. All you have to do is be curious about what your hand wants to do next. Just let it happen, and be an observer.
Using automatic drawing as hypnotherapy
As you watch the page will begin to fill up with your random doodles, circles, lines and curves, boxes or whatever. And even while your hand is drawing them you will begin to recognise in those doodles areas that look like faces or arms or sunsets or something else.
Don't try to interfere, just allow your hand to keep moving, making loops and lines, expressing whatever it wants to express.
At some point you will know that it's time to stop. Stay in your relaxed state and just absorb whatever your hand has created. Parts of the drawing will suggest things to you. Close your eyes and allow your mind to expand on those things. You can also turn the page on its side and see what that suggests. Keep doing that until you feel that you have extracted whatever meaning the automatic drawing might be trying to tell you.
He is highly regarded in the hypnotherapy community. He is Vice President of the New Zealand Association of Professional Hypnotherapists (NZAPH).
He is regularly consulted for advice by other hypnotherapists around the world. He is known for the quality of his published scripts. He presents at international conferences and has published on hypnosis and advanced hypnotherapy.
He lives in Wellington New Zealand with his wife Trish and a cat called Parsnip.