Monday, July 28, 2014

NGH Certification Update

My first NGH certification class is a go.  We have enough people committed that I can go ahead and invest time and energy into planning the 100-hour class, getting my WebEx account set up and tested, and all the other background preparations.

People who contacted me about the class received a draft syllabus over the weekend.  We'll be covering a lot of material on hypnosis, hypnoanalysis, NLP, practice building, ethics and standards ... and a bunch of other miscellaneous things to boot.

There are still slots available, so if you're interested in becoming a certified professional hypnotist email me for the latest details.

Monday, July 21, 2014

MEEHU Recap: Sunday

It was a long, long Saturday at MEEHU and a short Saturday night.  That was unusual for me -- usually Dani and I go off by ourselves, play with each other, and turn in before the party even slows down (meaning, while it's still Saturday night).  This year I stayed up late and played with people, so Sunday morning I was as zombified as everyone else.  A common bond.  ;^)

We had breakfast, during which I was playfully cajoled into doing a little hypno-bondage and a slow freeze on people sitting nearby.  Then a large segment of us trooped into the first classroom to see Dr. Cunning Linguist, a nationally-known teacher of hypnosis and NLP, present on Erotic NLP.  Dr. CL is new to the community (but not to the topic), and he was his usual engaging, humorous self.  The class covered some of the basics of NLP and included a couple of enlightening demos, but he didn't really address the erotic applications until the very end.  People enjoyed the presentation, but there was some honest feedback buzz about the lack of erotic content.  I made mental notes for my own class, which had been moved to Sunday afternoon.

After Dr. CL I had a free period -- well, a period in which I wasn't teaching.  I had some people looking for one-on-one time to ask questions or get pointers, so I spent the period doing that.  Lunch time on the schedule was noon and the menu was lasagna; I don't eat pasta these days, so I figured I'd slip out and grab a Culver's burger while I was in the Midwest.

Fortunately I ran into Mephki on my way out.  She stopped me and said that because of equipment issues in the kitchen, the 1pm classes were all being moved to noon -- meaning now -- and lunch would be at 1.  Being Dr. Mephki, she also asked me if I had eaten and when I admitted I hadn't she brought me a bowl of nice, pasta-free chicken breast.  (Thank you again, Mephki!)

And so I shifted gears and taught Confusion Inductions.  I tranced the room using Terence Watts' From Five to Nine, which NEEHU-goers quickly labeled the "office supplies" induction.  Then Lady Mesmer was kind enough to volunteer for me to demonstrate a rapid confusion induction using a pair of Chinese meditation balls.  For the finale, I pulled out something I had discovered on my bookshelf a week or so before and found too fascinating not to use for this class:  The Mystifying Induction, from Handbook of Hypnotic Inductions by Gafner and Benson (ISBN 0-393-70324-X).  I've had this book for a decade plus and had totally forgotten about this delightfully, almost sadistically, confusing induction.  I delivered it from an outline and notes and dropped my volunteer plus several audience members.

During the rescheduled lunch time I went over my outline for a new class, "Subtle Suggestion."   It's about why and how to combine NLP and hypnosis for scenes.  As I was finishing up, I overheard Felix Krull asking my neighbor SweetGasp to come join his panel on remote hypnosis, as several people who had planned to be there on the panel were unavailable.  SweetGasp had not had lunch yet and, thanks to Mephki, I had, so I took Gasp's place to give her a chance to get food.  With Felix leading and my voice starting to fade out (not in a good way), I let Spiral Turqoise, MissIsis, and Rose_Spells do the majority of the talking.

Next came the highlight of my teaching day:  Subtle Suggestion.  To my absolute delight, one of my favorite trance play partners was right there in front; her presence meant the demo I wanted to do would very likely work exactly as I had hoped.

NLP makes heavy use of anchors -- the ability to elicit an emotional state and then tie it to an unrelated touch, gesture, object, word, or whatever so that when that item/gesture is repeated later the emotional state comes back automatically.  So I used my introduction to elicit a state of arousal, desire, lust, and pleasure, and anchored that state to myself and to the empty chair in front of me.  Then, as I explained how NLP works and why one might use it in conjunction with conventional erotic hypnosis, I manufactured as many opportunities as I could to use words like pleasure, arousal, erotic, desire, and such.  Each time I said one of those key words, I tapped the back of the empty chair.  I watched my front row and I could tell that several of them were showing signs of interest in the chair.  I chose the most responsive one and had her come sit in the chair.  From my vantage point behind the chair I couldn't see her face when she sat down, but I did see her shudder.  All that anchoring was doing exactly what I wanted.  All it took was a few indirect suggestions to induce a good, strong orgasm.

As my demo volunteer started to orgasm, I instinctively did what I always do in demos like that -- I put my hands on her upper arms to make sure she didn't fall over.  And it occurred to me that this is also a powerful way to create an anchor, which created what we like to call a Teachable Moment.  I let my volunteer finish her orgasm and recover for a minute, then I explained to the class that when someone experiences a powerful emotional state, an innocent touch as that emotion peaks can become an anchor that triggers the emotional state when used.  And I placed my hands on her upper arms again.  She shuddered and moaned all over again, right on cue, and I gave her another orgasm.  (And in the process held her up, as I always do, until she gasped out, "Will you please take your hands off my shoulders!?" -- she couldn't stop coming while I was inadvertently still firing the anchor.  So I moved my hands to the tops of her shoulders instead until she was steady in the chair again.)

I actually hadn't prepared enough material -- we finished up 20 minutes early, so I did some general Q&A and then it was time for the final class of the day, "All the Way Down."  This is the class I first did at NEEHU 5, about taking someone ridiculously deep and why that can be awesome.  Since Dani was not at the con I recruited a demo bottom from the San Francisco contingent.  The class was smaller than the others, which helped because my projected speaking voice was pretty much shot; all I had left was the hypno-voice, which doesn't carry well.  My volunteer performed admirably, going into the Esdaile state with ease and coming out again on cue (not something one can always take for granted when people go into that state because it feels so good).

There was a general plan to have a group dinner at a steak and seafood house up the street.  In the interim, I did some coaching and observing with another hypnotist and their demo bottom (really more observing than coaching -- the hypnotist knew what he was doing and just lacks confidence).  We had a lovely dinner and came back for an unscheduled, informal Sunday night play party while we still had exclusive access to the floor.  I did a couple of one-on-one sessions, one light-hearted and fun, the other a heavy impact hypno-flogging scene with multiple concurrent sensory illusions going along with it.  At one point my scene partner panted, "Are you sure you're not a sadist?"  I told her I'm not, but I can play one for a short scene.  ;^)

I wandered down to the Rainbow Room, where a game of Hypnotic Truth or Dare was in progress.  Lee Allure goaded me (okay, it took very little goading!) into taking a turn or two, then we retired to a private place for an extended friendly talk, something we almost never get to do when we're in EEHU mode.  Come to think of it, parts of that talk are kind of hazy ... she may have exercised the blanket consent I've given her to play with my mind during down times.

With all the extracurricular play and the need to pack, I got exactly 2 hours of sleep Sunday night before it was time to get up and go catch a plane home.  During the flight, I amused myself by compiling a few meaningless statistics:

  • Classes/panels presented/joined:  10
  • Private non-erotic hypnosis sessions done:  5
  • Consultations:  2
  • Copies of Mind Play sold:  12
  • Hypnotic play dates:  6
  • Casual hypno-encounters (short trances between classes):  17 estimated
That's not counting the people I hypnotized during classes for demo purposes.  No wonder my voice is shot.  But it was SOOOOOOO worth it!

Only 2 months until WEEHU!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

MEEHU Recap: Saturday

For my first time at any EEHU, I was still up at the end of the play party.  Then I took the time to write yesterday's recap post, which made for a very short night.  Still, I managed to wake spontaneously 15 minutes before the alarm was set to go off; I took that as a cosmic nudge.

Downstairs in the breakfast area, the MEEHUvians were stirring.  I grabbed some eggs and made the rounds, saying good mornings and catching up with people.  Some time after 8 the meeting room was opened for us and, thanks to a misunderstanding with the hotel staff, the actual, intended MEEHU breakfast was served.  Oops!

Then started a very long, busy, happy day.  The room was packed for Erotic Hypnosis 101, and I was delighted to see a majority of the faces were people I didn't know or recognize -- newbies!!  I just love seeing the proof that this community is still growing.

During the 101 class it hit me that while I'd arranged to have a box of print copies of Mind Play shipped ahead for sale, there was no central vending table at MEEHU -- people were vending from their own rooms.  Which was fine, except that I wasn't going to be in mine 90 percent of the time.  SweetGasp saved me by very kindly adding my books to her vending area.  I so owe her a thank-you gift.

After the 101 we segued into Your Hypnotic Self.  Same room, many of the same people as 101.  It was substantially the same as the online class I presented in May on Hypbook, but I added a dash of NLP to help switches make the transition between top and bottom headspaces.

A free period at noon gave me an opportunity to wander and mingle with the people who weren't in classes.   I chatted with a few people and then slipped into Sleepingirl and Lady Mesmer's subjects roundtable to offer moral support.  I was joined by Dr. Cunning Linguist, who was getting to know the community.

At lunchtime I found Lee Allure and we plotted our afternoon session on dual inductions.  Then it was time for a mentored trance workshop.  Something like 40 people gathered to participate, but only one of them -- my friend Rita -- was an experienced hypnotist.  We, did some general questions and answers and then Rita helped me move through the group advising and coaching.  I ran into a group of people who had not actually had their first trances, either giving or receiving, yet so Rita ended up doing a lot of the circulating while I worked with the first-timers, teaching them the simple hand-drop induction.  The workshop went incredibly fast; I was actually about to start an induction on another first-timer when HypnoMaestro came in to point out that time was almost up and we needed to clear the room for the next class.  I gave the couple I was about to work with a virtual rain-check and moved on to my favorite class, Kinky Human Tricks.

Kinky Human Tricks is like a mini improv show; every time I do the class it is new and different, depending on the volunteers I get and the mood of the room.  This room was packed -- there were people standing in the doorway -- and the people playful, which is an awesome combination.  I started with my favorite "PLEAsuuuuuuuure!" trigger using a volunteer, and while I was establishing and exercising that trigger someone else, on whom I'd demonstrated that trigger at NEEHU, started writing too.  Her subconscious had apparently decided that it would be fun to re-activate the old trigger that had ended with NEEHU.  Spontaneous things like that are SO much fun!

We did some puppet play, using a teddy bear provided by Daja to control a pair of volunteer puppets, and moved into memory play.  A round of Pop Quiz led to Daja coming up to demonstrate the Blank trigger and the hypnotic teleport.  I love doing demos with Daja; her natural playful brattiness brings out mischievous side and we play off each other so well.  It's exhilarating and fun every time we do it.

Autumn HypnoTy made the supreme sacrifice of volunteering for the demonstration of my (in)famous Five-Point Palm Exploding Orgasm Technique.  Which was good, because I'd owed her a hypnotic orgasm at NEEHU and didn't get a chance to make good on it.  We can now mark that one Paid in Full.  ;^)

When KHT ended, there was an extended break before the next classes, which gave me some time to work with.  Daja brought someone to see me who wanted to try a confusion induction and asked me to do the honors; of course I was happy to do it.  Then I ran into my raincheck couple from earlier and took care of them, too.  Finally, I grabbed the NovaPro and took it to the Rainbow Room, where HypnosisEnthusiast was finishing up his hypno-improv workshop.  We set up the machine in DreamElf's room, and I gave her some instruction on how to use it and a sample "ride" of her own first, but I had play dates and really couldn't spend the evening babysitting the Nova Pro.

By the time I was finished, it was well into dinner time.  I grabbed some of Mephki's delicious pork ribs (no, not Mephki's actual ribs, you pervs!) and actually found Mephki herself in the lounge area eating.  Mephki is so busy at an EEHU that finding her sitting still is almost as common as a legitimate Bigfoot sighting, so I happily plotzed down near her so I could catch up with her.   We were joined by MissIsis and Dr. Cunning Linguist, which made for a delightful and relaxing dinner group.

The play party had already started, but I owed my love Dani a phone call so I was late to the party.  I had a couple of tentative "let's do something together" arrangements, one of which never came to be, and in the process ended up doing several more impromptu scenes with people, some coaching for a new hypnotist working with an experienced bottom, and then dropping in on DreamElf to find a hypnotic free-for-all in progress as a half-dozen people rapidly dropped, triggered, and messed with each other in a delightfully chaotic fashion.    She put the Nova Pro to very good use, which gave me a nice, warm, happy feeling.

I popped into the Red Room because I thought I'd seen Lee Allure there, but I was mistaken; the lady I found there looked sufficiently like Lee at a distance, but was one of the many first-timers at MEEHU.  And as it happened, she had not been hypnotized by anyone yet and really wanted to experience it.  Of course we took of that, and then talked about setting up a possible visit to Iowa to do a group class for them.  That would be fun to do.

At this point I'd been running nonstop for about 17 hours, talking for most of that either to a group or in hypnotizing individuals.  My voice was starting to go, and my body wanted to drop.  I said goodnight to the die-hard folks still wandering the hall and, now that this post is done, I'm going to finally let myself go to sleep.

A happy, contented, holy-crap-did-I-hypnotize-a-lot-of-people-today sleep.


Saturday, July 19, 2014

MEEHU Recap, part 1

The first MEEHU easily measured up to the NEEHUs and WEEHU before it.  It was exciting, it was exhausting, it was intense, it was fun.  There were ups and downs, but thankfully far more ups than downs.


Flew in to Midway in the mid afternoon.  MEEHU actually had activities scheduled for daytime Friday and I had promised to be on hand early.  The trip was a little bit of a bummer because, for the first EEHU ever, my sweet Dani was not with me.  She had to miss this one for work reasons, breaking her record of perfect EEHU attendance stretching all the way back to NEEHU 1.  

I met up with Setsudo at Midway.  We were supposed to also meet a friend of mine from Abu Dabi, but her flight was severely delayed -- as in, about 3 hours delayed.  We drove to the hotel and she ended up taking a cab later.

We arrived just in time to meet up with a large group of fellow attendees and join them for dinner at a nearby German restaurant.  Great food, authentic German music -- including, at one point, an Alp horn (huge wooden horn; you may see one and think "Riiiiiiiicolaaaaaaaaaaa!") -- and, as you'd expect from this group, awesome company.  I got to meet some people whom I'd only known online and reconnect with old friends.  It was a great start.


The hotel provided breakfast after a fashion.  People filed down, more now than there were for dinner.  My friend Rita was there, recovered from her flight ordeal, and I enjoyed introducing her around and seeing her connect with people I like and admire.  Then, a rare treat for me, an opportunity to attend the first unofficial class of the weekend, led by HypnoMaestro.  We riffed with hypnosis, played with hypnotic strawberries and Nutella, until it was time for lunch.

A large number of the group went out to lunch in Naperville, which is about 20 minutes away.  Things took a bit longer than expected, as can happen when 25 people converge on one spot and the staff isn't expecting it.  My 1:30 class, "The Art of Teaching Hypnosis," didn't actually have an audience until about 2:25.  So we did a compressed version of it so that we could hand over the room to Spiral Turquoise on time.

Turq led a very interesting discussion on the subjects of modeling consent and the relative merits of using pre-screened, pre-negotiated demo bottoms for demonstrations vs. picking volunteers on the fly.  There are, as you might expect, pros and cons to each and in the end the conclusion, as so often happens with hypnosis, was "it depends on the circumstances."  But talking about those circumstances, and having different experiences and ideas come out, was highly valuable.

I started to go to the Mentored Trance Practice to help out as a mentor, but part way up the hallway I encountered someone who was in a visibly agitated state.  She was having an anxiety incident and needed care, so I took her into a nearby room, sat her down in a comfy chair, and went into hypnotherapist mode until she felt better.

In between all this, a plot was formed.  Miss Sasha, an old friend of HypnoMaestro's and someone I'd met a couple of years ago, was at her first EEHU and had an idea for a role-playing scene she wanted to do.  She needed two men she felt comfortable enough with to describe the scene, and she chose me and LeadPrism.  The scenario sounded fun and interesting -- an interrogation scene, with Prism and myself as the interrogators.  We went out for dinner to discuss and negotiate details.

We got back to the hotel just in time for HypnosisEnthusiast's stage show.  Eighty people packed into the room for the show, which was up to HE's usual standards of quality and fun.   And, to makes things that much better, Sasha was in the show.  So when it ended she was highly fractionated; Prism and I took advantage of this to hypnotically waylay her (with prior consent) and do the interrogation scene.

That scene blew my mind, in the best ways.  It was my first experience co-topping with a male, and his first as well.  We played off each other quite successfully, with me as Bad Cop and Prism as Worse Cop.  We had a list of Sasha's hot buttons, pressed them all plus discovered a couple of new ones, and the result was a scene that left us all very happy.

After the scene and aftercare I was going to join people in the social space, when I encountered Confessor_K in the hallway.  We'd talked the night before at dinner about hypnotic amnesia; she was interested in experiencing that.  So we ducked into my room, leaving the door open, and had some fun with memory play.  K is amazingly talented, and took to short-term amnesia easily.  We had a great time playing Pop Quiz, teleporting her around the room, and causing my shirt to change colors spontaneously.  It wasn't an illusion -- I actually had several shirts of the same style but different colors; I simply froze K's mind in mid sentence, changed my shirt, moving my pen and glasses to the pocket, returned to my original position and unfroze her.  To K it appeared as if my shirt kept changing color.

We did ultimately join the larger gathering in the social space for a bit and then I called it a night.  A freakin' AWESOME night.  ;^)