Hypnosis is not like sleep nor like loosing control, in fact more like the opposite. While the body achieves a deep state of relaxation (which, from the outside may resemble
sleep of loss of control, because of the relaxation of most visible musculature) the mind stays alert, hears everything that is being said and has the power to come out of this state whenever you want to.
The specific experience of hypnosis can be described as a state between sleep and awake. This experience takes place naturally along our daily life. Clear examples of this experience are the hypnodontic and hypnogoguic moments, those in which you gain conscience at the moment of waking up, or loose consciousness just before falling asleep, respectively. Any moments of deep absorption or relaxation during which you have experienced slightly modified states of consciousness fall within the description of hypnotic moments. For example, when fully focusing on reading a book, watching a film, even driving a vehicle with maximum concentration. When allowing your body to relax deeply, maybe taking a moment of relaxation during holidays. In those situations it is not strange that you may notice a change in our perception of time, maybe experiencing time passing really fast, or incredibly slowly. It is also possible that you may feel your body floating, or even loose awareness of some part of your body, all these odd sensations although curiously pleasant. Sometimes during these moments it is possible that you may recover memories of things or events you did not remember for a long time, events that perhaps you thought you had forgotten. An extensive list of phenomenon procured by the hypnotic state exists, amongst them the ones above mentioned. In many occasions, even though you may be aware of such phenomenons, you may deliberately decide to remain in that state since, although peculiar, the sensations you perceive may prove very pleasant. An important characteristic of these experiences is that, whenever you want, you are able to leave them behind and return to your normal state of awareness.
One of the most interesting things about the hypnotic state, specially from a therapeutic point of view, is that it allows you access to parts of your mind which are not normally accessible to you. These are parts belonging to your subconscious, all what is found in your brain but to which you do not normally have conscious access to. Your subconscious contains everything you have learnt throughout your life, your skills, knowledge and memories. Your subconscious also contains all the beliefs, opinions and attitudes you have been accumulating and feeding throughout the years, everything which helps you (or, in some occasions, limits us) to define yourself at a particular moment of your life. Here are included all the beliefs and thoughts you have been developing about yourself and the world around you.
Hypnosis offers a natural and effective method for getting in touch with your subconscious, your inner mind, the container of many of your problems but, at the same time, an important source of potential, power and knowledge.