Acknowledgement Part 6: Troubleshooting “Drilling Down To Bedrock”

A few points in regards to the last protocol “Drilling Down To Bedrock”.

Firstly, when you ask ‘why’ you often get “I don’t know” as an answer. The way you deal with this is simple, you treat it like any interruption. You Go Meta in it and you do Acknowledgement for that (“I wish I would know, ofc I wish I would know, who wouldn’t?! And I acknowledge the fact that I don’t know”) and then you get back to asking again “Why”.

If you once again get “I don’t know” you just do the same thing again. Acknowledge it and go back to asking “why”. Sometimes you need to do this a few times before you get anywhere.

Sometimes after doing this 5 times or so you still have the “I don’t know”. In that case you check to see if the question of ‘why’ seems irrelevant or foolish to you. Much like the question “why did Jim in Kansas eat bacon for breakfast today?”. Ya simply don’t care! In that case, you have hit Rock Bottom and you can once again start working up the chain using “of course”.

Secondly, sometimes when you ask ‘why’ you get more then one answer. What do you do then?

In that case you set each answer as the starting point of a new branch to work down. Like a mind-map or tree. Then you pick one of them, go down it till you hit Rock Bottom, and then you work down the other one. It can be very useful to fully map out and explore all the bits, if you have a lot of stuff to map, then map it!

In the next post I hope to talk some theory about what’s happening when we use the Drilling Down To Rock Bottom Protocol, which will help flesh out some of it for your practice.

As always, comments and questions welcome.


Acknowledgement Part 5: Drilling Down To Bedrock

So we have learned The Basic Protocol and we have learned how to Go Meta when doing Acknowledgement.

Now it’s time to learn another protocol. It’s called “Drilling Down To Bedrock”.

Here is the theoretical bit. Say you have acknowledged something and it’s now fully accepted as part of your reality. It’s still possible for the pain and suffering to ‘come back’.

How? Well if there is a reality that causes the issue and you haven’t acknowledged *that*, you will constantly have the issues come back.

For example. What if you didn’t get a bonus at work. So you do Acknowledgement and now you have accepted it. Excellent.

But you haven’t acknowledged the fact that your boss hates you, well then the next time you think about it, it will regenerate! After all, if the boss doesn’t hate you, then you SHOULD get a bonus…

And so when A causes B, and you still haven’t accepted A, then B will get regenerated over and over again.

If you haven’t accepted that you have no skills then the ‘I wish I had a job’ will keep coming back.

If you haven’t accepted that the Feds took all your money, then the ‘I wish I had my private jet’ will keep coming back.

Makes sense?

Good. This is why we have the ‘Drilling Down To Bedrock’ protocol.

Here is how you do it. Immediately after you Acknowledge a wish and reality you ask ‘why’. Then you take the answer to that and do an Acknowledgement on that.


I wish I would have a job, of course I wish I would have a job, who wouldn’t?! And I acknowledge the fact that I don’t have a job.

Why? Because I have no skills.

I wish I had skills, etc…

Simple enough?

Now I’m sure you’re wondering, when do you stop?! Can’t you ask ‘why’ to each answer?!

Ah. So here’s the thing. At a certain point the answer you ‘why’ will be something that you don’t wish away. So in the example above lets say you went:

No job —> no skills —> didn’t go to school —> had a newborn baby…

At that point the words ‘I wish I didn’t have a newborn baby’ might not be true. We call this Rock Bottom.

Essentially you have reached a point where the reality that underlies your suffering is something you *don’t* wish wasn’t true.

Once you hit rock bottom you run the chain in reverse.

So you say ‘I had a newborn baby and so of course I didn’t go to school and so of course I have no skills and so of course I have no job.

And then you’re done.

In summary: Do Acknowledgement, then ask why, then do Acknowledgement on that, keep going till you hot Rock Bottom. Then start from Rock Bottom and go up the chain using ‘Of Course’ to go from step to step.

If in the middle you notice some stuff getting in the way, just take a momentary detour and Go Meta on it. Then get right back to Drilling.

Do one in the comments and feel free to ask any questions if you get stuck.


A Tip For Working with General Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

When working with clients who suffer from GAD (general anxiety disorder) I have often found that they present with ‘my anxiety just happens, it’s not about anything specific…’. In the past this was quite the barrier for me to work with, and after some time and experience with those clients I have notice some interesting things. I’ll give you two of them here, and you can let me know in the comments what you think.

1. In the intake, even with GAD clients, I have always been able to notice some triggers that make the anxiety worse or add to it. While I don’t find the ultimate trigger for everything (which is what the client is looking for), I do find something that does something. I will often start with that, and once I open those up, more often then not the rest starts to open as well.

2. When I don’t know the triggers, I check for the idea that this that there are no specific triggers and the anxiety ‘just happens’ is itself quite anxiety provoking. That idea has so far always been on the mark. Now that I have identified that global trigger, I open it up by acknowledging the positive intent behind that anxiety (more often then not it’s ‘try to figure it out so I can know why it happens so I can fix it’). Once the client clearly sees that benefit, they let it go, and that bit of anxiety is gone.

At that point I have found that the rest becomes explorable as well. And there’s a simple explanation. The anxiety of ‘just happens’ creates the tight hold on ‘I need to completely figure this out’ which makes it that the client automatically rejects anything that isn’t a full blown perfect explanation for everything, which presents as ‘I don’t know what my triggers are’. Opening up the ‘just happens’ now opens the space for us to pinpoint and pick apart the triggers as well.

What do you think? Let me know in the comments section.


NLP’s Fatal Flaw

Hypnosis, NLP, EFT, TFT, 3d mind…

All those beautiful ‘magical’ therapies.

They all have something in common.

A fatal flaw.

A deadly paradox.

It’s always there. Always lurking below the surface. Poking its head up from time to time, only to be quickly misdirected and shifted aside.

It comes up for the practitioners. Especially the ones who get long term feedback from clients. When they dare ask the unaskable questions, they are quickly taught to get in line.

And so what delicious flaw is it that I speak of?

It’s quite simple. The one thing those therapies have in common is the core belief that problems are simply ‘mistakes’. Things that truly don’t belong, shouldn’t be there, and are therefore easily removed.

It might be with a swish pattern, a direct suggestion, a release of energy, a collapsing of anchors.

The core premise being that change is quick and easy. There is no need to work or suffer. That to assume that any change needs hard work or suffering puts one into the category of the evil psychologists and therapists (or The-Rapists as many will quip).

Well whats wrong with that! What’s so terrible about that premise! After all, I had a friend with a phobia, we did the fast phobia sure, and 4 minutes later he was standing on the roof! No pain, plenty of gain!

Well here’s the thing. While it’s certainly true that you can make change without pain. Even significant change. The idea that ALL change is easy and painless is dead wrong (and harmful).

Here’s a simple way to prove it to your next NLP trainer. Ask him why he’s overweight, or why he smokes, or why he bites his nails, or why he gets angry, or why he has any bad habits, emotions, or behaviors at all.

And he will answer that he is human and isn’t perfect.

But what does that really mean? If all change is easy and painless, then why not? Why not take an hour, and zap em all away? Why have any problem more than once in your lifetime? Why once any issue ever comes up for the first time, don’t you simply run the magical process and rid yourself of it forever and ever?

And to that, the answer is simple. While there is a lot of things you can change that is simple and easy, there are many things that will be quite difficult to change.

This makes a lot of sense as well. Sometimes the problems we have are simply the product of a larger dysfunctional system. While simple phobias are almost always an isolated pattern, things like OCD, GAD, depression, and other issues can often be part of a global stable system of dysfunction (quite often they aren’t as well and are fixed easily). If it is a whole system that supports the problem, then a simple 6 step reframe won’t do the trick.

To solve these problems you often need to do a specific piece and then let the rest of the system ‘catch up’ and fall into a new order before you can know which bit to shift next.

A good example is building an idea and a product. While some businesses and ideas can be built big straight off the bat, in some industries you need to start with one bit, let the market shape itself around that bit, then evolve the next bit, wait for the market, and so on. The internet as it is now could not have been built in one shot 20 years ago. There are simply too many supporting factors that make it possible (the amount of people with computers, the mindset of society in regards to the web, the people trained in creating content, the users trained in consuming that content, the advertisers and their mind set, and a million other things) that were not there 20 years ago. The only way for the web to be as it is today is because it evolved step by step.

The truth is, you knew this already. You knew that your NLP trainer wasn’t perfect or God. It’s simply that you never put two and two together. That your NLP trainer not being perfect clearly leads to the idea that not all change is simple or easy. That sometimes change needs to be done step by step with the system reorganizing itself at each point. That sometimes the middle steps aren’t pleasant and that’s where many people flee back to the safety of the old system.

If you actually work with clients in the real world and follow up with them long term, you will see this truth as well. Not all future pacing is foolproof. Not all clients stay ‘fixed’. People change, and then change back.

And if your NLP trainer denies that, well then ask him why he isn’t perfect!

Ah. So now here’s your big question.

But hold on. One second here Joe. Don’t you do brief therapy as well? Don’t you get your clients out the door in 1-5 sessions?

But how? What if it’s a difficult issue? What if it needs longer than that.

It’s a good question. And the answer has 2 parts.

Firstly, there is almost always some change you can make instantly. I have yet to find the client that I couldn’t make some sort of instant impact.

Which leads to the second bit. And that is, when I identify a system-wide issue with my client, my goal of therapy is to train him to take himself through those steps all by himself. That although he might not be all ‘fixed’ when he leaves my office, he does know how to move forward and most importantly, he has learned to ‘sit’ in the middle step of a system wide change even thought it may be uncomfortable.

When my client ‘gets it’, I know I’m done.

Your thoughts?

PS I teach all this (and more) on my online supervision course. I will have the recording for sale soon enough. If you would like to be put on a notification list (and get a chance at the early bird discount), simply sign up here.

Skype Conference Call Recording

So the Skype call went quite well. We had a very distinguished audience and a couple of really good questions.

As there were technical difficulties and some people couldn’t get on the call, I have decided to release the recoding of the call for free to ya’ll. Enjoy and comment if you have anything to ask or add.

Here are all the clips from the call…


What is Hypnosis?

Context and Expectation

How Inductions Work

Indirect and Covert Hypnosis

Hypnosculpture and Win E

Instant Inductions and Nonverbal Inductions Explained

IM and Street Hypnosis

Triggering Models

Difficult and Analytical Subjects

Imagination and Stories

Answering the Questions

Emotion and Cognitive Dissonance

Hypnosis Doesn’t Exist

If you found these ideas useful, you might be interested in joining my online supervision group.

Skype Conference Call

I recently put a few dots together and collected a whole lot of information ‘under one roof’. I’m going to be doing a free conference call on skype on Wed Jan 5th at 3:30PM EST and I’m going to be giving it all over…

You probably already know a lot of this information… and at the same time you might have not put it all together as a cohesive whole. That will be my goal.

Here are some of the issues I’m addressing.

What is hypnosis?

What is an induction?

How do instant inductions work?

We always hear the experts say “tell them whats going to happen when you say sleep… or else they don’t know what to do…” Isn’t that cheating/faking hypnosis?

Can you hypnotize someone who has never heard of hypnosis?

I always hear about ‘being confident’ and being ‘The Hypnotist’. What does that have to do with my subject going under?

I hear alot about compliance and getting the subject to listen to you. What does that have to do with hypnosis? Isn’t that just compliance?

Why is the pretalk so important? Why can’t we just zap them under?

I have heard ‘inductions aren’t magic spells’, if they aren’t that what are they?

I have heard that inductions are rituals… What does that mean?

You can add me on skype at joe.10000 and IM me if you want to join.

This is all free as I haven’t yet gotten savvy enough at the internet marketing thing to figure out how to sign you up for a never-ending email newsletter…

Looking forward to seeing ya’ll.


Here are a few questions a fellow named Swoop posted on a a forum, and here are my responses and ideas.

1. Do you believe that expectancy is important when hypnotising?


2. If so, what active measures do you take to increase your subjects expectancy?

I tell them whats going to happen.
I tell them about the thousands I’ve tranced.
I zap someone in front of them.
I tell them that someone with their unique qualities (it’s rather easy to find out what someone thinks is special about them rather quickly, just ask “so what are you especially good at?”) is especially good for trance.
I explain trance in a way that makes sense to them and fits with their experience. I use examples from their own life (driving on the highway, daydreaming, not seeing the milk in the fridge…).
I use magnetic hands to show them that it “works”.
I tell them after they pass magnetic hands that it’s the hardest part to do and if they can do that then trance is 100 times simpler.
I believe.
I believe some more.
I add on some belief on top of that.

3. Is expectancy the main determinant of the success or failure of hypnosis? Or is the subjects innate ‘hypnotizability’ level more important? Are they both important?

One of the main main things. One might say that high hypnotizables can generate high levels of expectancy very quickly. I would rather have a 20% somnambulist with medium expectancy over an analytical with high expectancy. Once you get to super high expectancy, you already have trance.

4. If you believe that expectancy is highly important, how stable do you believe expectancy is? Does it depend more on the subjects preconceived notions and experiences with hypnosis? Or does it more depend on the skill of the hypnotist in the current hypnosis session? If a subject was to fail the current suggestion, how does this affect future expectancy?

Here is a key rule. The subjects subjective experience is king. Into this category goes past experience.
If we want to create a powerful expectancy, we must create a powerful subjective experience.
How do we do that? First of all we must believe 1000%. This creates a strong experience in our subject of knowing it will work. It’s not a rational thing, its a subjective thing. Ever heard me talk about being THE HYPNOTIST?
This is also why having the subject see you trance someone is so powerful. It’s a subjective experience for the subject, having them see with their very own eyes that it works.
The third way we do this is by doing exercises with them and then framing them properly. This is why magnetic hands done right is so very powerful.

Happy trancing!

Turning Nothing Into Something

So I was hypnotizing a friend the other day and I was working on name amnesia. I gave him the suggestion, woke him, and asked for his name.

He opens his eyes….. and he actually WAS able to say his name after a second. Big problem!!

But remember, if you are THE HYPNOTIST then everything always works and we use whatever we get to plow on. So what did I do?

I pointed out to him that it did take him a full second to remember his name, and showed him how everyone else remembered their names right away without a seconds delay.

Once he realized that and agreed, I told him that 2 seconds are just 1 plus 1 seconds, and if he drew a blank for one second then he could draw a blank for 1 plus one seconds. So I tested it, and it took him 2 seconds! Then we doubled that. And tested. And doubled that. And tested. And doubled that and tested. So it took him 16 SECONDS to remember his name!!

And we now had name amnesia!

The point is, even if it doesn’t “work” MAKE BELIEVE IT DID and grab any little tiny part of it that worked and then double that effect. And double that……

Remember, be THE HYPNOTIST!

Happy Trancing!

Being The Hypnotist…. The Magical 10 Minute Confidence Maker

One of the most important things you want to have as a hypnotist is the attitude that you are The Hypnotist. That you can hypnotize anyone anywhere at anytime. I once heard someone tell a hypnotist “I am not easy to hypnotize”. The immediate answer was a laugh and “EVERYONE is easy to hypnotize”. You have to have an attitude that you have done this a million times before, there is no question it will work, and there is no possibility of failure.

Once you are The Hypnotist everything you do is exponentially more powerful.

But hey! How are you supposed to feel like The Hypnotist if you have never hypnotized before?

The short answer is…. fake it till you make it. But that can be a bit hard when your insides feel like mushed jelly and you are scared to death.

So here is a powerful method that I used back when I was a beginner and trying to get that magical attitude.

Take a deep breath and relax, let yourself relax completely.

Then close your eyes and picture yourself doing something that you are totally confident about. I used a very simple example, that when I drive to work every day I know where my office is. If someone asked me “you sure?” I would look at him like he was crazy and go “hell yeah”.

I KNOW I will find my office. I’m 1000% certain. A visitor wouldn’t be so certain that they know where to get off the highway and will be able to turn at the right  place. I do know. Clear. Sure. Certain. Confident. 1 Million Percent. Think of an example that works for you. I’m SURE you have one.

Then notice how it looks, sounds, feels, and what happens to your body when you imaging those thoughts and feelings. By me it happened to be a low steady powerful sound, a feeling of thick honey spreading in my lower chest, and a narrowing of my vision until I had the thing in sight like a laser beam. I also leaned an tiny bit forward and expelled our air through my nose. Hey, that’s how confidence feels and exists for me. Everyone has their own exact personalized version.

OK, now that you have that, squeeze your fist and see everything get cranked up a notch. So I squeezed my fist, and made the sound more powerful, deeper, felt the honey get thicker, bigger, expelled air more forcefully….. I cranked everything up. The harder I squeezed, the more I cranked it up. Harder and harder, more and more confident. Within a minute I was squeezing like hell and feeling that the most confident I’ve ever felt. Then I let go and let the confidence linger in me. I imagined that I had just filled myself up with confidence, and that even after I stopped pouring it in it was still there. And I squeezed again, and again, and again. Bam Bam BAM.

Now every time I squeeze like hell I get an absurd boost of confidence. It’s automatic.

Then I saw myself going over to do hypnosis. I felt high, flaky, and shaky. The opposite of confidence. I change the picture to look like the confident one. Low, strong, deep, honey….. and I squeezed and let the confidence grow and spread.

Rinse and repeat.


The whole thing took 10 minutes total. Yep that’s all it was. 🙂

Good luck, try it NOW, and drop us a comment when you are done to tell us how it went!