Nobody owes you a living…

The Bottom Line.

FACE IT, nobody owes you a living.
What you achieve, or fail to achieve in your lifetime,
Is directly related to what you do, or fail to do.
No one chooses his parents or childhood,
But you can choose your own direction.
Everyone has problems and obstacles to overcome,
But that, too, is relative to each individual.

You can change anything in your life
If you want to badly enough.
Excuses are for losers! Those who take responsibility for their actions
Are the real winners in life.
Winners meet life’s challenges head on
Knowing there are no guarantees, and give it all they’ve got
And never think it’s too late or too early to begin.

Time plays no favourites
And will pass whether you act or not.
Take control of your LIFE
Dare to Dream and take risks…….
If you aren’t willing to work for your goals
Don’t expect others to.

Written by Keith Kennedy (I think).

Be happy,


Watford Hypnotherapy

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NHS Drug Free Hernia Operation (Only Hypnosis) – Big Thanks.

Yesterday (18th December 2012) a para-umbilical hernia repair was carried out at Watford General Hospital as part of the normal NHS routine. The thing that made this different was that it was me being operated on and I didn’t have any drugs. No general or local anaesthetic. The only pain medication was my mind because I used self-hypnosis.

I want to say now a massive thanks to my GP, the consultant & his team and all the NHS staff at Watford General Hospital for their help and care. It took a while to get the i’s dotted and t’s crossed but once we got in there it went fantastically well. Many of the staff said it was amazing and within seconds of the procedure being completed I was talking with the staff about who lost the sweepstake, who thought it wouldn’t happen? Some didn’t think it would be possible, some did.

Again, massive thanks to the staff involved, particularly those in theatre, who acted like seasoned pros even though this was the first time this had been done, using hypnosis only, for all of us!

I’ll write more fully about this over the next few days but big thanks and big love to all who made this possible.

Be happy,


p.s. Even though I write this less than 36 hours after having the op, I’ve been round the shops for a walk, eaten normally, had no pain killers and feel good.

Pain management Hypnosis

NHS should offer hypnosis as standard says new report

Hypnosis should become a standard technique on the NHS to treat a range of conditions according to a new report.

The hypnosis and psychosomatic medicine section of the Royal Society of Medicine says the technique can be used to relieve pain and treat stress related conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome.

See the BBC article here.

Jacky Owens, the president of the RSM’s Hypnosis Section, said: ‘Conditions such as depression, pain and irritable bowel syndrome affect millions of people in the UK and a great cost to the NHS. But hypnosis can often work where other treatments have been unsuccessful.’

Ms Owens, a qualified nurse who uses hypnosis in her work with cancer patients added: ‘If doctors were able to refer patients to properly trained hypnotherapists, it would save a cash-strapped NHS a great deal of money.’

This is really good news as there have been more clinical studies carried out using hypnotherapy than any other complimentary treatment. Let’s hope those that see hypnotherapy as a help to cope with sometimes difficult treatments choose hypnosis. Maybe one day it will be a first line intervention even!

Be happy,


Properly Trained Hypnotherapist

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Nescafe Hypnotist – Brilliant TV Advert

This is a delightful TV advert that us finger snappers will really appreciate. It works on so many levels when you consider the product and the message. I’d actually say that it’s one of the best ads I’ve seen and certainly one of the very few that blatantly uses hypnosis as its basis.

Would you put it on a par with the Old Spice “The man your man could smell like” advert?

Be happy,


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The Strange Powers of the Placebo Effect

The placebo effect is mighty powerful and this clip gives a great insight into why it is. The placebo can only work if there is a belief in its power to do so, which means the placebo effect and beliefs go hand in hand.

As a hypnotherapist, my version of the placebo is words, or at least sometimes it is. Some people who come to see me want ME to do the work to MAKE them change. When that is the case does it mean that my “words” have acted as a placebo?

Dylan Evans wrote a book Placebo – The Belief Effect which looks into the healing powers of the mind.

I see the effects of beliefs, both negative and positive, and the effect they can have on people every time I see a client. Placebos, when appropriate, can only be good can’t they?

Be happy,


Hypnotherapy placebo

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Jack Dee – Hypnotherapy Cured Depression

British comedian Jack Dee recently discussed in The Daily Telegraph about how he overcame depression using hypnotherapy. “I was on various anti-depressants, but not for long – I didn’t function very well on them. I felt sort of flattened out. Plus I found another way…” He trails off. And that was? “Hypnotherapy.”

Hang on. Airy-fairy hypnotherapy? “It’s very good. I mean it’s only really talking. I always think of it as being a bit like a brain massage. It just sort of resets you. Sometimes you have to switch the computer on and turn it back off again. I try and do it once a month and no more, because you can end up depending on things. I don’t want to come off stage and think I did a good gig just because I was wearing red socks. Life would become intolerable.”

Read the full Daily Telegraph article here.

I love the idea of hypnotherapy being a “brain massage” and, effectively, that’s what it is. When I work with my clients we always deal with the essential work first and then we get to the optional stage which, of course, is optional. A once a month visit falls in to that category, optional, but the benefits can be tremendous.

If you want to invest in yourself for a change, give me a call.

Be happy,


Hypnotherapy for depression

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Grateful teens face less risk of mental health problems

Teens often times forget how fortunate they are for having simple things and now a new study is suggesting that teens who are grateful can improve their mental health and as gratitude increases, so do life satisfaction, happiness, positive attitudes, hope and even academic performance.

Read the article here

“Gratefulness allows us to understand what matters most to us and translate that to a broader goal,” said Bono.

Be happy and grateful for the things you sometimes take for granted,


Hypnosis in Watford

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Pessimistic French rediscover their prophet of positive thinking, Emile Coue.

The notoriously gloomy French are turning to their bastion of optimism, Emile Coue, to pull themselves out of their economic funk.

Every hypnotherapist out there will know of Emile Coue. His belief in the healing effect of willpower originated by accident. He had run out of medicine, gave a patient a bottle of water instead, and told him it would cure him. And it did. In the face of scepticism from the medical profession, he treated maladies ranging from diabetes to stammering.

Read the Telegraph article here

According to the article “Émile Coué, high priest of positive thinking, the man who coined the mantra “Every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better’, is making a comeback.”

Us hypnotherpists know that his art form never went anywhere, we’ve been helping people get better and better every day regardless.

Be happy,


Hypnotherapy in Harley Street

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Hypnosis is no laughing matter – The Observer July 2012

Long derided as a tool of quacks and comedians, the science of suggestibility is enjoying a revival as a clinical tool.

In recent years, hypnosis has seen something of a rebirth, and neuroscience studies using the technique are now regularly published in some of the most respected scientific journals.

Neuroimaging has also proved key in answering the question of whether hypnotised people are pretending to experience the effects. When people are asked to fake hypnosis, to the point where observers cannot tell the difference between them and the genuinely hypnotised people, the two groups are clearly distinguishable by their brain activity.

Read the article here

Be happy,


Clinical Hypnosis in Watford

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Olympian Michael Johnson talks about handling pressure.

Sports Performance Hypnosis & Hypnotherapy is what I do. It makes the visualisation process that Michael Johnson talks about very quick and powerful, in fact it’s probably the fastest way to increase your mental performance. So how does it work?

In a nutshell, we are creatures of belief and habit. Our conscious mind doesn’t do very much and takes a fair while to grasp new “things”. If you don’t believe me do this simple test now. Say the alphabet out loud from A to Z as quickly as you can. It should take you around 3 or 4 seconds. Now, say the alphabet out loud again this time starting at Z down to A i.e backwards. You probably didn’t even get four letters out in the same time.

Once we’ve done something enough times our subconscious mind takes the workload off of the conscious mind and it becomes a habit or belief, we don’t even have to think about it.

The aim of Sports Hypnotherapy & Hypnosis is to get those positive, wanted, beneficial habits and beliefs in as quickly as possible. It becomes the most normal thing in the world to perform at your peak. If you still doubt this, ask a boxer or goalkeeper about the concept of muscle memory or how they react so quickly.

Michael Johnson on video talking about pressure.

Mental pressure does not exist, it’s just a concept. All “pressure” is is the words and actions of others, the envioronment at that moment, the self-talk and how you react to it. Simple. Learn to master your thoughts and you improve your performance.

I’ve helped, and am helping, sports men and women, weekend warriors and pro’s, improve their ability to perform at their peak when it matters. From bowls to bodybuilding, from horse riding to hockey, golf to gymnastics, football to fighting arts, your mindset must have a direct influence on your performance.

If you want or need a hand that could help you perform even better and reach new levels of success, performance, recognition or enjoyment, please feel free to give me a call on 01923 243 500.

Be happy,


Hertfordshire Hypnotherapy



Eddie Nestor Hypnotherapy with Dave Sabat on BBC Radio London

Eddie Nestor recently invited me on his BBC Radio London Rum Shop Show to talk about the power of the mind, hypnotherapy & hypnosis and how it could help him overcome his “petrified” nerves about completing The London Marathon 2012. We had a great chat and you can listen to the broadcast on the following link:

BBC London 94.9 The Rum Shop 13/04/12

You can follow Eddie’s progress on Twitter #runeddierun or Eddie’s Facebook event page: “Run Eddie Run”  and help by donating through his Virgin Money Giving Fundraising page or by texting “ACLT EDDIE” to 70300 to donate £3.

Run Eddie, Run, your left knee will be fine!

Be happy,


Radio Hypnotherapy


Watch Hypnosurgery of a live hernia operation.

Hypnosurgery Live. A live television broadcast in Britain (April 2006) demonstrates the latent power and potential of the human mind. A man has a hernia repaired in his stomach without the use of any pain removing drugs whatsoever.

For many, many years hypnosis has been used to help people have surgical procedures carried out without the use of any chemical anaesthesia, from birthing to heart surgery. This programme showed the procedure being carried out live.

Hypnosurgery live

Hypnosis as a tool for pain management can be incredibly successful as shown in this fabulous broadcast.

Be happy,


Hernia Surgery Hypnotherapy

Manchester United midfielder Darren Fletcher turns to hypnosis.

Darren Fletcher, the Manchester United midfielder, has revealed that he has tried “everything under the sun”, including hypnotherapy, in his attempt to recover from a chronic bowel condition.

Telegraph article here

I wish him every success. The mind/body connection has been used for thousands of years to help improve our mental and physical health and hypnotherapy is the quickest way to access and boost our immune systems without using drugs.

Be happy,


Football Hypnotherapy

Not the usual New Year’s Resolution – No1

Listen, son: I am saying this as you lie asleep, one little paw crumpled under your cheek and the blond curls stickily wet on your damp forehead. I have stolen into your room alone. Just a few minutes ago, as I sat reading my paper in the library, a stifling wave of remorse swept over me. Guiltily I came to your bedside.

There are the things I was thinking, son: I had been cross to you. I scolded you as you were dressing for school because you gave your face merely a dab with a towel. I took you to task for not cleaning your shoes. I called out angrily when you threw some of your things on the floor.

At breakfast I found fault, too. You spilled things. You gulped down your food. You put your elbows on the table. You spread butter too thick on your bread. And as you started off to play and I made for my train, you turned and waved a hand and called, “Goodbye, Daddy!” and I frowned, and said in reply, “Hold your shoulders back!”

Then it began all over again in the late afternoon. As I came up the road I spied you, down on your knees, playing marbles. There were holes in your stockings. I humiliated you before your boyfriends by marching you ahead of me to the house. Stockings were expensive and if you had to buy them you would be more careful! Imagine that, son, from a father!

Do you remember, later, when I was reading in the library, how you came in timidly, with a sort of hurt look in your eyes? When I glanced up over my paper, impatient at the interruption, you hesitated at the door. “What is it you want?” I snapped.

You said nothing, but ran across in one tempestuous plunge, and threw your arms around my neck and kissed me, and your small arms tightened with an affection that God had set blooming in your heart and which even neglect could not wither. And then you were gone, pattering up the stairs.

Well, son, it was shortly afterwards that my paper slipped from my hands and a terrible sickening fear came over me. What has habit been doing to me? The habit of finding fault, of reprimanding – this was my reward to you for being a boy. It was not that I did not love you; it was that I expected too much of youth. I was measuring you by the yardstick of my own years.

And there was so much that was good and fine and true in your character. The little heart of you was as big as the dawn itself over the wide hills. This was shown by your spontaneous impulse to rush in and kiss me good night. Nothing else matters tonight, son. I have come to your bedside in the darkness, and I have knelt there, ashamed!

It is feeble atonement; I know you would not understand these things if I told them to you during your waking hours. But tomorrow I will be a real daddy! I will chum with you, and suffer when you suffer, and laugh when you laugh. I will bite my tongue when impatient words come. I will keep saying as if it were a ritual: “He is nothing but a boy – a little boy!”

I am afraid I have visualised you as a man. Yet as I see you now, son, crumpled and weary in your cot, I see that you are still a baby. Yesterday you were in your mother’s arms, your head on her shoulder. I have asked too much, too much, yet given too little of myself. Promise me, as I teach you to have the manners of a man, that you will remind me how to have the loving spirit of a child.

Father Forgets by W. Livingston Larned condensed as in Readers Digest.

“Once I did bad and that I heard ever, Twice I did good but that I heard never.”

Be happy,


London Hypnotherapy

Football Goalkeeper Motivation CD’s – Order Now to Enter The Free Prize Draw.

OK, let’s start from scratch. At the start of last season, professional football goalkeeper Richard Lee was way down the pecking order at Brentford FC in the goalie’s position but finished the season with a Player of the Season award and much praise for his cup heroics and his penalty saving skills. He subsequently cemented his position as No1 choice goalkeeper and earned a new contract.

What helped him turn his performances around?

He changed his mind-set and realised what a powerful influence belief and expectation has on his performances. Was this the only reason? No. Was it a massive part in turning around his performances? Yes.

How did Richard change his outlook which resulted in many, many “Man of the Match” awards? He began working with me and I showed him how to change his beliefs, outlook, expectations and mind-set.

Now, anyone that knows Richard knows that he is a model professional and genuine all-round good bloke. Speaking together recently Richard suggested that we find a way to help other goalies improve their game as well. We’ve done it.

What we’ve come up with is a seven track double CD (mp3) Goalkeeper Motivation Set including many of the techniques and methods that Richard uses himself and which have helped him improve his performances.

If you want to sit in front of me for a one-on-one session lasting 90 minutes your investment would be £180.

If you want to talk on Skype with me for 90 minutes your investment would be £180.

The investment you make in buying this 7 track CD (mp3) which contains over 90 minutes of goalkeeper motivation recordings is only £15.

But, and there is a catch, we want your help. After you have listened to it, please send us your feedback. How did it help you? What else would you like on future sets? How did your match day performances improve? That’s it, that’s the deal. We help you by asking for the small investment of £15 + £1.95 p&p (how much did your gloves and kit cost?) and you help us by sending in your feedback.

Order now by calling the GK Icon office on 020 8736 4087 & asking for the Goalkeeper Motivation Set 1 for £15 + £1.95 p&p.

Call it sports psychology, creative visualisation, sports motivation or positive thinking, these mp3 format recordings could work for you!

And, you’ll like this, anyone ordering before Monday 19th December gets entered into a free draw where Five Winners will be picked, each receiving a free 30 minute phone or Skype session with me or Richard at an agreed time in January.

Order now, this offer won’t last forever, so order now by calling GK Icon on 020 8736 4087.

Be happy


** Remember, to have a chance of being a prize winner, call 020 8736 4087 and ask for the Goalkeeper Motivation Set 1 before 19th December 2011. Do it today!

** Like it, share it, tweet it and spread the word!

Hypnosis shown to improve the quality of life for dementia sufferers.

A scientist at the University of Liverpool has found that hypnosis can slow down the impacts of dementia and improve quality of life for those living with the condition.

See the article

Dr Dan Nightingale, co-author of the research and leading dementia consultant at the Abacus Clinic in Newark, added: ‘Evidence to date has shown that we can enhance the quality of life for people living with dementia through the correct use of hypnosis. We have now developed a course for clinicians who wish to incorporate hypnosis into health care plans.’

Be happy,


London Hypnosis

Hypnotist arrested after using witchcraft on 41 children.

There are numerous misconceptions about hypnosis & hypnotherapy and what they really are. Sometimes I hold my head in my hands and say to myself “Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear” when I see some stories in the news.

This is one of those stories.

Hypnotist arrested after using witchcraft on children.

Please believe me when I say that not all hypnotists claim to be magicians or wizards although some people with questionable beliefs would question this?

Be happy,


Hypnotherapy in Watford

Derren Brown “The Assassin” Explained – How did he do it?

Using hypnosis, can a member of the public be hypnotised into killing a celebrity? Is it possible to programme somebody to kill, and without them realising it?

1) The show begins with details of the assassination of Robert Kennedy and the claim by Sirhan Sirhan that he has no memory of it. The conspiracy theory that Sirhan was “hypnotised” to carry out the assassination is mentioned.

2) Derren then explains that he is going to give a demonstration of hypnosis to an audience of people who have applied to be on his show and that they have not been prepared in any way. He goes on to say that none of them are aware that he is looking for a perfect candidate that he can programme to carry out an assassination of a celebrity at a public event. Ok, seems reasonable so far, but the most important cornerstone of this episode is the statement “an audience of people who have applied to be on the show“. Every stage hypnotist will tell you, or maybe some won’t, that the success of any stage hypnosis show is that the hypnotist must have volunteers. Without volunteers there is no show, or at best a very poor one. All I will say about the selection process for any of Derren’s TV shows is that it is world class, is kept highly secret, and means that not only does the audience consist entirely of willing volunteers but virtually all of them have been selected based on certain personality traits. Every other stage hypnotist on this planet could only dream of performing in front of such a skillfully crafted audience of willing volunteers.

3) We then have several minutes of simple stage hypnosis routines, hands stuck together, forgetting your name & handshake “shock” induction, with very good explanations of some of the phenomena of hypnosis. This is for the benefit of the live audience and the viewers to amplify the belief that Mr Brown does indeed have the hypnotic power to make anyone do anything. A casual voice over from Derren states that all that is going on is as a result of suggestion (Mr Brown does not believe that the state of hypnosis actually exists, in his book he claims that hypnosis is simply compliance after suggestion), and that the whole routine of an induction cannot be shown on TV just in case some members of the watching TV public might go under and cannot be brought out. Hmmmm, this casual little remark has a massive impact in expectation and belief of the viewers that Derren himself would have to personally remove you from your “trance” if you got stuck there. Believe me, no-one could ever get stuck in a trance but the thought that it could happen sets up the rest of the show.

4) During the continuing demonstrations of stage hypnosis another casual voice over mentions the “expectation” of his audience to follow his instructions “because that it was they are supposed to do”. This somewhat casual remark is in fact a massive part of the success of his shows. People simply do things because Derren tells them to do it. For the gamblers out there, it is virtually a 1/100 shot, maybe even “no offers”, that every single selected member of his audience is familiar with his previous shows where people are selected to do things and not remember doing them and that every volunteer is more than familiar with the powers of Derren Brown. What Derren is doing is looking for total compliance from his selected candidate.

5) Four members of his audience are selected, stage hypnosis 101, and shown some hydrochloric acid being poured over a dummies head. They are then “put” in hypnosis, handed a glass full of acid, and given a suggestion that they will throw the acid in someones face when they see a blue and white polka dot handkerchief. They are then “emerged”. The acid has been switched for water, without the candidates (notice how he uses the word “candidate” – Manchurian Candidate anyone?) knowledge. Moments later the four candidates are casually shown a blue and white polka dot handkerchief and all four of them throw the “acid” in someone else’s face. Wow. This is the first “Wow” moment. But is it really that much of a wow as we think? Imagine you are stood in the middle of a stage on a TV set, in front of an audience watching your every move and Derren Brown gives the order, via an anchor or trigger (the blue & white polka dot hanky) to throw the contents of a glass in someone else face. My first thought would be, even if it was acid, “Derren told me to do it, I’ve got 200 witnesses”! Deep down, each of the four subjects must have either known that it was not acid or been aware of the “Derren told me to do it” escape clause. Ask yourself this, would a TV company and the UK’s most famous stage hypnotist/mentalist ask you to throw acid in someones face, really? Derren states that this was to see whether people are playing along or in hypnosis. For the purpose of “The Assassin” there is no difference. This act also gives permission for the subjects to do things that are dangerous, it sets the first precedent for a permissive dangerous act (notice no-one stopped them) and really tests their compliance.

6) Now we have two candidates and they are given an “ice-plunge”test. With hypnotic suggestion, both are able to stay in the icy water for longer, how hypnosis could be used as a very powerful analgesic is discussed, and one candidate is chosen, Chris. Chris is them immersed fully in the icy water after being hypnotised with suggestions to benefit him and a very good and welcome example of the mind/body connection, and how hypnosis could work incredibly well with pain management, is shown. No skulduggery there at all Mr Brown, I like it! (Mr Brown, you naused up on taking your hand of the rail the second time – Chris didn’t warm up despite the previous suggestion that when you took your hand of the rail he and Alex would).

7) Ring-tone!

8) The academics that are consulted state that no-one could be made to kill someone else unless they were predisposed to doing it.

9) Cameras follow Chris around, which is highly unnatural and again adds to the acceptability of the show, and Chris’s family are interviewed. Chris is subconsciously placed on an even bigger stage.

10) The soundtrack to “The Bourne Identity” is played in the background to promote danger and anticipation amongst the viewers.

11) The anticipation and credibility of the show is re-inforced with further mention that Sirhan Sirhan was as gentle as a lamb and further reference is made to alleged CIA mind-control, brainwashing techniques.

12) The “Marksman Mode” is introduced where Chris is taken to a shooting range and taught to shoot a gun. He is then given hypnotic suggestions to improve his performance with a trigger or anchor, which he does. Again, no skulduggery from Mr Brown there, just a good demonstration of sports hypnosis (I do this week in week out with my clients). The anchor or trigger to going into “Marksman Mode” is a ring-tone which reminds Chris to simply bring his finger to his forehead, another anchor or trigger, where he enters the shooting state “Marksman Mode”. Notice the suggestion given “almost like a personality within you”. This implies dissociation, it won’t really be Chris firing the gun, clever stuff DB. “It wasn’t me, my marksman mode personality made me do it”.

13) Chris is brought to a warehouse (expensively lit up with a vast array of TV crew present no doubt) and given a red water-pistol to fire at a target when DB creates the “Marksman Mode” state with the ring-tone. So, it’s OK to fire a red water-pistol with dye in it when Derren is there and the trigger/anchor is re-inforced.

14) The concept of spontaneous amnesia is introduced to help with programming the assassin. Amnesia is a very real phenomenon of hypnosis and sometimes occurs without suggestion, sometimes with. Derren asks “Do you remember the last time you had amnesia?” Classic stuff, with a sub-titled explanation on the TV. The blue and white polka dot anchor is re-introduced, remember that it is already there to give Chris permission to do dangerous stuff, with the additional suggestion that it will also create total amnesia, Chris will simply forget everything that happens while in a state induced by the blue and white polka dot pattern. A little bit of stage hypnosis is shown for entertainment when Chris removes his shoe and doesn’t know that he’s done it. More importantly, this is also to reinforce compliance and the amnesia or dissociation effect with Chris.

15) Dun, Dun, Duuuuuh! Things are hotting up now as Chris is taken to a restaurant and is “unaware” that he is being filmed. I have no reason to disbelieve this. We are told that people in the restaurant (stooges) have been told that something will happen but not to react. Chris is with Derren and some of the production team or Derren’s friends seated at a table. An innocuous question, almost inaudible, “What’s the most outrageous thing you’ve ever done?” is asked of Chris by Derren (classic stuff again) as Chris describes excitedly an adrenalin pumping moment which he describes as petrifying. Notice how as Derren asks the question he makes a point of shuffling his glass and moving it towards Chris to remind him subconsciously that he threw a glass of acid in someone’s face at Derren’s request when the “polka dot” trigger was introduced. I’ve got to say that what is going on is perfect and Derren Brown is displaying the absolute skill and professionalism that makes him a master of his craft. Chris states that the thought of doing a bungee jump was much worse than actually doing it and I tip my hat to Mr Brown for not jumping out of his chair with glee at Chris’s perfect unscripted response. Next Derren asks for the wine list which, when opened and turned to face Chris, is simply a blue and white polka dot pattern. The ring-tone trigger is played immediately, Chris takes a moment and then brings his finger to his forehead, he’s in “Marksman Mode”. Derren then passes Chris a silver box and says “I need you to open that so you can take the gun out”. Throughout this process so far, the other dinner companions have remained virtually motionless and silent, which is highly unnatural and because they don’t react to anything going on it gives implicit permission for Chris to continue. Chris takes the gun (the red water-pistol) out and is told by Derren “and your target is the guy sat almost behind me…..” Chris then stands up, aims, and fires the water-pistol at the targets back. None of the other diners react in any way which again reinforces the implicit permission for Chris to behave this way. Chris sits down, puts the water-pistol on the table and then Derren puts the water-pistol away. Chris is then told he can wake up whenever he is ready. The silent and motionless diners then start to act normally again. So, the polka dot trigger, ring-tone trigger, “Marksman Mode” state, implicit permission to continue by an audience which ignores Chris’s behaviour and the act of actually shooting someone in the back is achieved! “Dry run” is not only a success but has reinforced every previous suggestion and trigger.

16) Chris is subjected to a lie-detector test to see if he truly has no recollection of shooting someone with a water-pistol in the restaurant. I can only assume now that the questions asked of Chris in the run-up to being asked the only truly relevant question were meticulously thought out, it appears from the snippet we were shown that many questions were asked to produce “no” answers, some of them like “did you throw a custard pie in someones face yesterday?” The fact that the “water-pistol” question was asked 20 minutes into the test with loads of leading bizarre questions beforehand may have played a part but the expert in charge of the test declared that Chris showed signs of being truthful when he answered that he did not shoot a water pistol at someone in a restaurant, he passed the test. My only logical, Sherlock Holmes like, conclusion from this is that the lie detector test was taken before the restaurant incident. If not, anyone whose husband, wife or partner is demanding to know your whereabouts on the previous weekend when you rolled through the front door several hours later than you should have done, please give me a call.

17) The big one, here we go! The target is revealed as Stephen Fry, who is in on the plot. Chris is given a ruse as to why he is in the theatre to watch Stephen Fry, he has been told that the will be speaking with him after the show, and is unaware that he is being filmed. Chris is told that Derren can’t make it and is given the silver box that previously contained the water-pistol and told to give it to Derren after the show and to keep hold of it, not to lose it. Chris is shown a gun inside and told that the gun contains three bullets. Stephen Fry has fake blood packets inserted in his jacket just in case Chris actually fires the gun. We are told that none of the theatre audience has any clue about what is going on, except some firearms experts and security, who are sitting with Chris who does not actually know about them. Stephen appears on stage and begins talking about language. Seventeen minutes in to his talk, Mr Fry says “In our culture we keep certain words in a special place in our brain” and at exactly the same time a woman dressed in a blue and white polka dot dress takes a seat immediately in front of Chris. Chris begins to go into the already familiar “state” and the ring-tone trigger is played loudly by the lady in the state inducing dress. It seems to take forever but after about 20 seconds of pure suspense, Chris moves his finger to his head and goes into “Marksman Mode”. The “polka” lady then turns to Chris and whispers “the target is Stephen Fry”. Chris sits there for what seems like ages whilst Mr Fry carries on his talk about language, loudly saying”….which words are permissible….” and “….which words are allowed…” Chris then takes out the gun and stands up! No-one sat near him takes a blind bit of notice. He then fires three times at Stephen Fry, who falls to the floor of the stage, and a smiling lady next to Chris whispers something in his ear and Chris flops into a deeper trance. The entire audience show no signs of panic or concern. Derren then enters the stage, Stephen gets up to a round of applause, and Mr Brown gives Stephen time to go and change his jacket and then he counts Chris awake with a 3 count where the performance carries on as if nothing had happened.

18) After the show Chris is interviewed and showed the footage of him shooting Stephen Fry. He has no knowledge or memory of the event but his actions are remembered after Derren gives him suggestions to do so.

19) Chris is given suggestions by Derren to remove any of the previous suggestions given to him, to revert to “normal”.

Wow, whether you refer to the techniques used in this programme as hypnosis, compliance, suggestion, belief, expectation, persuasion, manipulation or influence, this was truly superb, it was astonishingly glorious! Derren is a master of his trade without doubt.

I’ve written about 2800 words in this explanation, I could have written 28,000 so please forgive me if I haven’t specifically referred to every nuance and situation involved. All I can say is that the show was fantastic.

I wrote on some of my anti-social networking profiles about how my head was in my hands about this upcoming programme and how I hoped that Derren explained what was going on. This episode exceeded my expectations massively.

Many hypnotherapists out there think that what Derren does is bad, it creates a “wrong” impression of hypnosis but I will happily state that any good, skilled, professional hypnotherapist will not only know the difference between sleight of hand and suggestion, but will also be able to explain it and actually use some of the same techniques.

I say again that this programme was superb, it was glorious. Now, only one question really remains. If Derren Brown can, using the techniques discussed above, get a member of his audience to fire a gun at a celebrity… “Can an ordinary member of the public be programmed to kill a celebrity?”

Be happy,


Clinical Hypnotherapy

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