Monday, March 13, 2017

Mental Block, Mental Overload

Photo by Rick Hustead

Some people are great at sports. Some people are wonderful painters or sculptors. Some people are fabulous wordsmiths. Regardless of their expertise, almost everyone experiences that horrifying moment of “choking” on the playing field or unable to harness that muse to create another masterpiece. When we hear the term “writer’s block,” it is common to imagine that the person suffering this very painful and stressful condition has no ideas for a subject to write about. But this is not always the case, as Carrie Ann Golden explained in her blog titled, “Sometimes Having Too Many Creative Ideas Hurt.”1 Indeed, in this situation having too many creative inspirations can be equally paralyzing as we feel we do not have enough resources/skills/opportunities to express every idea that has come to us. Believe it or not, this situation is actually a direct path to, and example of, being in hypnosis.

According to Hypnosis Motivation Institute founder John Kappas, Ph.D., the state of hypnosis occurs when an overload of message units disorganizes the inhibitory process (Critical Mind), triggering the fight/flight response and creating a hyper-suggestible state that provides access to the subconscious mind. This deluge of message units comes from the environment, the body, the conscious mind or the subconscious mind. We “escape” from this overload by going into hypnosis. Although hypnosis is generally perceived as a very comfortable and relaxing physical state, it is common—and even necessary—to experience some anxiety on the way to expressing the creative ideas bottled up inside.

To help a client overcome Writer’s Block or a similar creative obstruction, the first thing I must often do is de-hypnotize the person. This is a necessary step to release any previous subconscious mental scripts the person has created or follows regarding why he or she cannot or will not commit to one of those ideas. Sometimes the individual needs to learn how to allow the creative process to evolve and even be willing to discard an idea or plan that doesn’t seem so feasible or practical in the long run. Other times, the key to creative success lies in helping the person give himself or herself permission to pursue the topic that is most inspiring and motivational.

During hypnosis, I provide relevant suggestions to help my client organize and express these idea(s) creatively. Someone whose block is created by an overload of ideas may also appreciate the hypnotic suggestion that there is plenty of room in the subconscious mind to file and store inspirations for future projects. At the end of the session, once the client has returned to a fully alert and aware state I teach the individual how to count out of hypnosis to prevent this kind of overload during the creative process.


1 Golden, Carrie Ann. “Sometimes Having Too Many Creative Ideas Hurt.” Scriggler. © 2013-2017


Sara R. Fogan, C.Ht. is a certified hypnotherapist based in Southern California. She graduated with honors from the Hypnosis Motivation Institute in 2005. For more information about Calminsense Hypnotherapy® and to set up an appointment, please visit
© 2017