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How does hypnosis work? Two theories attempt to answer this question: One theory views hypnosis as dissociation and the other theory views it as the performance of a social role. According to the dissociation view, hypnosis is effectively a dissociated state of consciousness, much like our earlier example where you may drive to work, but you are only minimally aware of the process of driving because your attention is focused elsewhere. This theory is supported by Ernest Hilgard’s research into hypnosis and pain. In Hilgard’s experiments, he induced participants into a state of hypnosis, and placed their arms into ice water. Participants were told they would not feel pain, but they could press a button if they did; while they reported not feeling pain, they did, in fact, press the button, suggesting a dissociation of consciousness while in the hypnotic state (Hilgard&Hilgard, 1994).

Taking a different approach to explain hypnosis, the social-cognitive theory of hypnosis sees people in hypnotic states as performing the social role of a hypnotized person. As you will learn when you study social roles, people’s behavior can be shaped by their expectations of how they should act in a given situation. Some view a hypnotized person’s behavior not as an altered or dissociated state of consciousness, but as their fulfillment of the social expectations for that role.

Meditation

Meditation is the act of focusing on a single target (such as the breath or a repeated sound) to increase awareness of the moment. While hypnosis is generally achieved through the interaction of a therapist and the person being treated, an individual can perform meditation alone. Often, however, people wishing to learn to meditate receive some training in techniques to achieve a meditative state. A meditative state, as shown by EEG recordings of newly-practicing meditators, is not an altered state of consciousness per se; however, patterns of brain waves exhibited by expert meditators may represent a unique state of consciousness (Fell, Axmacher,&Haupt, 2010).

Although there are a number of different techniques in use, the central feature of all meditation is clearing the mind in order to achieve a state of relaxed awareness and focus (Chen et al., 2013; Lang et al., 2012). Mindfulness meditation has recently become popular. In the variation of meditation, the meditator’s attention is focused on some internal process or an external object (Zeidan, Grant, Brown, McHaffie,&Coghill, 2012).

Meditative techniques have their roots in religious practices ( [link] ), but their use has grown in popularity among practitioners of alternative medicine. Research indicates that meditation may help reduce blood pressure, and the American Heart Association suggests that meditation might be used in conjunction with more traditional treatments as a way to manage hypertension, although there is not sufficient data for a recommendation to be made (Brook et al., 2013). Like hypnosis, meditation also shows promise in stress management, sleep quality (Caldwell, Harrison, Adams, Quin,&Greeson, 2010), treatment of mood and anxiety disorders (Chen et al., 2013; Freeman et al., 2010; Vøllestad, Nielsen,&Nielsen, 2012), and pain management (Reiner, Tibi,&Lipsitz, 2013).

Photograph A shows a statue of Buddha with eyes closed and legs crisscrossed. Photograph B shows a person in a similar position.
(a) This is a statue of a meditating Buddha, representing one of the many religious traditions of which meditation plays a part. (b) People practicing meditation may experience an alternate state of consciousness. (credit a: modification of work by Jim Epler; credit b: modification of work by Caleb Roenigk)

Summary

Hypnosis is a focus on the self that involves suggested changes of behavior and experience. Meditation involves relaxed, yet focused, awareness. Both hypnotic and meditative states may involve altered states of consciousness that have potential application for the treatment of a variety of physical and psychological disorders.

Personal application question

Under what circumstances would you be willing to consider hypnosis and/or meditation as a treatment option? What kind of information would you need before you made a decision to use these techniques?

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Questions & Answers

Hi could anyone discuss self serving bias?
vishal Reply
what is self serving bias?
vishal
if you achieve something you are willing to take credit for that. If you don't achieve,you simply say it is because of external factors
Vamsi
I think simple and best example would be if we score good marks we say "I worked hard".If we don't get good marks we say "teacher didn't teach the lesson well".
Vamsi
is it universally applicable?
vishal
yes
Vamsi
kindly explain how
vishal
what does attribution means?
Vamsi Reply
I have the same doubt... As we can search for meaning... But not able to understand the concept
SNEHAL
yes
Vamsi
atttibution is a social cognitive function that allows us to give, to attribute, feelings of thoughts to somebody that's not ourself. for example I can say that my friend is feeling sad today for some reasons because I can consider that my friend is different than me. does it help ?
Perle
Thank you Perle.Can I get another example?
Vamsi
imagine you are walking in the street and you see someone smiling. you can think "oh this person looks happy"
Perle
basically it's the ability to understand that others are not you and they can have their own feelings or thoughts
Perle
Thank you so much.
Vamsi
wait wait. my last example is wrong. seeing someone smiling and think they're happy is the theory of mind, not attribution
Perle
Okay
Suman
Is this definition correct "basically it's the ability to understand that others are not you and they can have their own feelings or thoughts."
Vamsi
yup ☺
Perle
but social cognitive functions are tricky. theory of mind and attribution are quite close !
Perle
Then can you please give me another example.
Vamsi
two examples : someone always talks during a class, while others listen to the professor. the intern attribution that you can think of is : this person doesn't like school
Perle
now this time, all students talk during a class. the external attribution that you can think of is : the class is boring
Perle
attribution is nothing but just the process by which we human explain our behaviour
Agnieszka
like when I get good marks..i will attribute this to my performance and study
Agnieszka
Hi Perle could you help me with one question
vishal
Is Self serving bias universal in attribution process?
vishal
self serving bias is like the tendency to perceive ourselves in very righteous manner
Agnieszka
it's more on focussing on the need to maintain high self esteem
Agnieszka
the basics are clear I needed to know more on the universal applicability about the SSB (self serving bias)
vishal
vishal yup thats a good idea ...
ecstasy
please what arw the two main ways of controlling behaviour?
Gifty Reply
patience and meditation
ChandraKumar
any one ,what is bio psychological model
EXTRA
Bio psychological model means bio means body and psychological means mind so bio psychological model is studies mind and body relationships
Nilamani
daily prayers and daily affirmations and daily excercise
Alban
and what is health belief model?
EXTRA
what us psychology
Ndeh Reply
psychology is the study of mind. And also the study of human behavior.
Simisola
yeah
Oruta
thank you
Ndeh
Ok
Oruta
psychology is the systematic study of human and animal mind and its mental processes.
Christopher
psychology is the scientific study of the mind and behaviour...And it also includes the study of animals as well as humans.
kelson
Psychology is the scientific and systematic study of mental activities, behavior and cognitive process of organism to relationships between it's environment...
Nilamani
yes
Ahsan
What could be some short term and long terms goals one can have,in order to become an education psychologist?
Hibba Reply
hmmm
Maaruf
Short term: - contact a school psychologist and shadow them for a few days - study and keep up with college coursework - join psychology club/ groups Long term: - transfer to a 4 year university - choose wisely your graduate school - talk to graduates from those schools
Isela
thank you Isela Huerta :)
Hibba
how to recognize the person with psychological disorders?
Nawaz
Please keep in mind that it's not allowed to promote any social groups (whatsapp, facebook, etc...), exchange phone numbers, email addresses or ask for personal information on QuizOver's platform.
QuizOver Reply
I want to start psychology courses, which one would you suggest i do first, and why? Im about to move to a different place.
Amanda Reply
open university
rauhahenki
it goes in chronological order, so to speak
rauhahenki
thank you
Amanda
how is Coursera is this matter, what's the best MOOC source?
Suvigya
Could you recommend any online course that would be useful for the purpose. Open university such as?
Swati
post Graduation.... Diploma In Counseling
srikanth
Psychopharmacology
srikanth
Lot Of Courses.... in Which Side You Wanna Go In Particular?
srikanth
oh. well i wish to study before i go into college. counseling sounds good, people like to come to me for advise, and i am very detail oriented and love creative art stuff.
Amanda
@Swati have you tried Coursera
Suvigya
Child Counseling Abnormal Behaviors Addiction's - Rehabilitation Marriage Counseling and A lot More...
srikanth
Which University should I enroll for a Counseling Psychology.
Emmanuel
Yes, I've checked that. Are they good enough to start with? @suvigya
Swati
Yes, online university? Suggestions on that?
Swati
@srikanth i am in usa going to a different state/province. so online makes more sense. is it possible to be really good in more than one ☺
Amanda
yes i agree any suggestions for online university. or just where we can take courses/classes, partial university
Amanda
yah There is A lot of Certification Courses In ONLINE... And Distance Education..
srikanth
thank you for the responses
Amanda
can any 1 tell me how to how to joint indian army as Psychologist
Gaurav
can someone tell me which are some popular certification courses?
pavithra
For Psychologist
Gaurav
family Counselling. @Pavithra Nair..
srikanth
thanks
pavithra
hy
Jennifer
Any one knows where to find Free courses with certification in psychology?
Gian
It Depends On Place Where You Live In
srikanth
in Telangana Osmania University They Offered Different PG Diploma Courses They Collect Minimum Fee It's Too Low... 5k to 6k In Indian Currency
srikanth
Free online courses, without country bounds, do you know some?
Gian
what is motivation?
Shair Reply
The good feeling of wanting to go forward; to a dream, wish or making yourself a better present or future.
Amanda
it could be intrinsic( as mentioned above) as well as extrinsic( salary etc. ) sometimes extrinsic motivation is detrimental to intrinsic..such that it takes away the enjoyment or zeal of doing that thing
Avish
it is the reason for a particular behavior or action.
Champro
hello Everyone..... I Need Some Information.... I've Completed Msc. Psychology In Hyderabad... How Can I Be A Approved Psychologist?
srikanth Reply
haha
Amit
hay Buddy... if You Can Help Me Let Me Know...
srikanth
ask your university, they should know, or contact a psychologist and they might be able to help you. best of luck.
Mahmoud
thank you Mahmoud Al..
srikanth
Motivation results in
Cute Reply
progress to success
SK
peace I think I have bipolarity disorder I don't want to see a psychologist in this concern how can stop having swings in moods and depression?
Imen Reply
try to meditate
Mahmoud
Meditation in this aspect will worsen the condition. please contact a psychologist
ruchi
why exactly should we meditate!!?
sanskar
you need a cognitive behavioral therapist, meditation will worsen
Suvigya
just 2 sessions changed my bipolar habits and saved my relationship with family and my partner, it is life saving
Suvigya
What does chronic mean?
ThisKidOverHere Reply
Occurring over a period of time, at least 2 weeks or more
Wayne
chronic is human health condition/disease which decode diabetes,cancer etc.
SK
In thinking about the case of Candace described earlier, do you think that Candace benefitted or suffered as a result of consistently being passed on to the next grade?
LuRay Reply
what is a narcissist
Denise Reply
Can newborns develop bad traits
Denise
isnt narcissist a chronic liar?
Steph
I believe newborns can
Steph
newborns starts to develop habits from 6-10 months after birth so sometimes they make bad traits
Poorvi
dominating personality
Deepak
are narcissists chronic liar?
Deepak
I feel like we learn things over Time and then apply these traits (whether bad or good) in our daily lives,but since new born are still very small they can't yet (unless they reach around the toddler phase)
Hibba
narcissistic person is a that type of person who loves himself only very much.....if somebody tells them anything they become very angry....
ChandraKumar
Yes, It's correct
SRINIVASULU
please which is the best school to study masters in psychology?
Anastasia
at 6-10 months you are no longer a newborn. newborns, however, only have traits consistent with survival and comfort. good and bad then, are perceptive consequences of the onlooker. a newborn will cry when hungry, sleep when tired or overwhelmed; these are traits of dependance not good or bad
Thaddeus
narcissist are only chronic liars to themselves. they need to lie in order to feel in control/over and above any and everybody else.
Thaddeus
what is psychology?
Philip Reply
psychology is the study of mental processes and behaviour
Abdul
of human beings.
Abdul
psyche (mind)+ -ology (study of) hence means study of mind
Psyche also refers to soul. it is also used to be called study of soul. but this is old definition.
Abdul

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Source:  OpenStax, Psychology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 03, 2015 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11629/1.5
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