Paper Published in American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis

I am pleased to announce a recent publication of mine in the American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis. This paper, “Volitional and Nonvolitional Responses to Hypnotic Suggestions: Predictors and Subjective Experience”, examined participants subjective response rates to items on the Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility according to their objective response. Specifically, participants were asked to indicate whether they responded to each suggestion (e.g., arm heaviness), and, if there was a response, whether it happened automatically or deliberately. Then, they rated the realness of each experience using a Likert scale. Not surprisingly, responses that experienced automatically were perceived as more real than volitional response and no response. However, for some of the suggestions, such as the post-hypnotic response item, volitional responses were “more real” than no response, as if choosing to do the behavior may have been part compliance and part actual response to the suggestion. Of course, only so much can be made of this data, and further research would have to further examine the phenomenological experiences of participants, but it was an interesting an unexpected finding!

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