Host: Joining us now is Mark Patrick. He is a hypnotist and I did make sure before we brought him on. You cannot hypnotize me over the phone, is that correct, Mark?
Mark: Well, I can actually can, but I didn’t want you let you know that.
Host: Oh. Maybe you did already let me know that and I don’t remember. Anyway. So, thanks for coming on the program. We appreciate it and if the name sounds familiar it’s because Mark is coming to town, he’s been –he’s had some adds on the station here about the seminar that you do and one for is smoking cessation and one is weight loss.
And I was kind of interested in how this works. I’ve seen some hypnotists before years ago. And so, I’m kind of curious how the process works, but first I want to let folks know. If you are interested in attending and you want to quit smoking we’ll do this one first. First caller right now, 240-9962, will get a free pass in for the smoking cessation seminar. And that one is at 8 P.M. on Thursday at the Crown Plaza here in Asheville. So, first caller gets into the smoking cessation class at 240-9962 or 1-800-570WWNC.
So, Mark let me ask you first off how did you get started in the field of hypnotism?
Mark: Well, I think I was involved in health and fitness long before I ever got involved in hypnosis. When I was seven years old my grandmother was diagnosed with diabetes and actually, very quickly afterwards she had both of her legs amputated. So, I was always intrigued by how something like that could happen. So, it’s been something I’ve done my whole life. Helping people when it comes to things like that.
I mean, I’ve been doing this for 17 years. I’ve been certified for that period of time and then we developed our own extremely unique techniques that nobody that I know is using right now currently.
Host: This isn’t a new concept? To basically train your mind. To train the mind to break habits.
Mark: Oh, everybody. See, there’s so many misconceptions on hypnosis. Our biggest misconception is what you see on TV or in a stage hypnosis show where you see people barking, clucking, out of control, doing silly things.
We actually –here’s how simple hypnosis is. We go into hypnosis every single day of our lives. Every time you drive in your car for a long distance and you zone out and you don’t remember the last 30, 40, 50 miles you go into a state of hypnosis called “highway hypnosis”. When you read. All of a sudden you’re on a page or you’re reading a chapter and half way through you say to yourself, “I have no idea what I was just reading.”
Host: All the time.
Mark: You actually went to a light state of hypnosis. When you go to bed at night there’s a state of consciousness you go into called an alpha state right before you fall asleep. That’s classified as a state of hypnosis. So, if you want to know how it feels that’s kind of how it feels. It’s a wonderful, relaxed state of awareness.
Host: All right. And so, you said you started off with an interest in health issues and helping people deal with health issues and that led you to this hypnosis route.
I guess I’m curious how did you decide this is the key, this is the way forward?
Mark: Actually I didn’t decide. It was a friend of mine who actually got involved in doing hypnosis and then he told me about it and I went and got certified and he said this would be something you would love to do. I love traveling and I love working with people all the time. And you never get tired of the success you see in this thing. When somebody emails you or calls and says that they stopped smoking after they were smoking for 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 years or loses weight after being on so many different diets. It’s a cool experience. It really is.
Host: Yeah. And I got to admit the time I saw hypnosis in person was collage. Some hypnotist came to the collage campus, did a show and did pretty much what you’re talking. What you were talking about you know, the clucking of –you know, guy walking around that thinks he’s a chicken. That sort of thing.
And I guess I always wondered is that a put on? Is that really happening? Do you know?
Mark: Here’s the key thing with stage hypnosis is there is a certain percentage of people that you’ve probably heard may or may not be able to hypnotized. For stage hypnosis it comes down to this.
You’ll work a large amounts of people, maybe a 100, 200 people. Out of that you’ll find five or ten people that want to follow instructions and suggestions and they will go into stage hypnosis where they’ll do things, but they want to do that. But they are already willing and able. One of the things you can’t do under hypnosis and most people know this, you can’t make somebody do something they don’t want to consciously do.
Mark: Let me tell you about smoking for a second.
Mark: If you would love to talk about that. Smokers will tell you this. They love to smoke even though they know it’s killing them. You see these commercials on TV where they have people pass –I mean, as crazy as it sounds half dead with you know, coughing lungs. To me, those commercials do nothing for smokers other than just stress them out and make them want to smoke even more.
So, here is what we do. Every smoker, but as crazy as this sounds they were hypnotized to smoke long before they ever picked up their first cigarette. There was a series of events that took place in their lives that gave them pleasure towards smoking.
So, what we’re going to do during hypnosis session is this is we’re going to put them in a relaxed state and we’re going to take them back in all the scenes that they smoke right now. Cup of coffee in the morning, break at work, driving, stressful situation, a cocktail if they have cocktail and they smoke. And then we’re going to put them back in those scenes under hypnosis and they’re going to see themselves as a non-smoker.
And when we bring them out of hypnosis they’re going to act like other non-smokers. You know, non-smokers go around smokers, they tolerate it, they can drink if that’s what they choose to do and not want to smoke, they get their cup of coffee. We’re going to put that image back in their mind and we’re going to take out that pleasure association that they have which is actually perceived pleasure and then put back in this what they already know consciously it’s a filthy disgusting habit that’s killing them dead. But, we keep it all positive.
Host: Well, it’s interesting you used that filthy disgusting habit, because? I smoke for 17 years almost and when I –and I quite many, you know many times. Especially when I finally did quite, end up quitting it took a couple of times, but that was one of the things I kept saying to myself. I would use it as a form –a mantra or something, but a way to train the brain. As a way for me to say, “This is a filthy disgusting habit. I don’t want to do it anymore.” every time I wanted one that’s what I would say.
And it’s amazing how it works, but also how amazing you get hooked into sort of the ritual of the smoking. It’s the act itself and the things you associate with it. And it’s like I’d walk out the door and the very first thing I would do is pat my pockets looking for the pack of cigarettes. Unconsciously doing it.
Mark: Absolutely. Those are all triggers and we’re going to work on all those scenes and triggers during the hypnosis session. You know, the craziest thing is this. The number one way to stop smoking is a heart attack. The number two most effective clinically studied way to stop smoking is hypnosis.
Mark: And I’m not saying to kind of get anybody stressed out. I’m just saying hypnosis flat out works. Everybody who has come to a hypnosis session already knows somebody who stopped using it. So, that’s a no brainer.
Host: So, yeah. I would imagine the referrals that you get once somebody does it and it works that that person becomes sort of a lead generator as a referral.
Mark: It does, yeah. We do get a lot of people saying, “When are you coming back?” And we always come back to markets sometimes two, three times a years as much as we can get that.
Mark Patrick: Imagine this. You walk out of our seminar and now you feel great, you have all the pleasure association towards becoming and remaining a non-smoker. Everything pleasure, that gives you real pleasure in you life, you’re in control around other smokers, you can do all the activities and you have an image now of yourself as a non-smoker. And you will act and attract those habits an behaviors of a non-smoker automatically. Which means you don’t need any willpower.
Host: So, this is –I remember a long time ago I was in high school and I had a teacher, an English teacher and she quit smoking using hypnosis. This was 1991, ’92 timeframe. And she –so, what you’re explaining is a different approach. It sounds like it’s the one she explained was, as I remember it, was that there was an association built in, you know think of the worst smell you can smell, you can think of and then it became an association every time she smelled cigarette smoke it smelled like cat urine to her.
Mark: Well, that's exactly what –that’s the technique and we do use that technique. It’s called aversion therapy.
Mark: Aversion therapy is where you associate something incredibly repulsive to the act of pleasure in your lives. So, with smoke you might associate –I don’t want to get into the full details of it something really nasty towards the cigarette or actually maybe chewing on a cigarette itself and the paper unraveling in your mouth and tobacco you know, going to the roof of your mouth touching your tongue. And the taste of that is very repulsive.
Host: Oh, yeah.
Mark: We found after doing this for many –I told you I would hypnotize you on the phone. We found about 25 to 35% of our audience needs that and responds to that. In other words, during hypnosis they taste that actual feeling. They respond to it. They get almost to the point of being sick.
Mark: The other 60-65% don’t respond to it, don’t need it. We just focus on that as pleasure associations and painting that picture in their mind of themselves as a non-smoker.
Host: Yeah. Is this-
Mark: So, we do use that technique. I’ve been trained by some of the best back in the day, you know 20 years ago that was the technique everybody used and yeah.
Host: So, there are different approaches in the entire seminar in this way. You cover whatever triggers people need.
Host: Gotcha. So, is this –when people talk about power of suggestion, is that what this is essentially?
Mark: Your mind responds to images and emotions, not logic. Logically we shouldn’t smoke.
Mark: But, images and emotions all tie to that it responds to.
Mark: And it doesn’t know the difference between reality or fantasy subconsciously.
Host: Do people in your private life –like a doctor always gets asked for free medical advice. Do people –like, does your family and friends, do they ask you, “Hey, could you break me off a habit real quick” or something like that. Do you get that?
Mark: Oh, absolutely. I mean, we get questions on that all the time.
Host: You go to the family reunion, they’re like, “Hey, Mark. Can you come over here? I got this habit I need you to break me off real fast.”
All right. So, that’s the smoking, that’s the smoking side. Is there anything else on the smoking side you want to hit before we go over to the weight loss?
Mark: Here is I always suggest. The number one thing everybody has in common who comes to the programs and they say, “What does it do to be successful?” It’s okay to be curious or even a little bit skeptical, but come with an open mind and come with this attitude, “You know what? I’ve been smoking a long time. I want to get this thing kicked. I want to stop smoking. And this thing is going to help me. I’m going to put my best foot forward.” That’s it. Just come with a willingness to want to stop smoking and we’ll take care of the rest.
Host: All right. So, weight loss then. Is it essentially the same –so, the weight loss seminar is at different time. This is an earlier seminar. It’s at 5:30. And again, this is both on Thursday. Both of these seminars occur on Thursday. They each run about two hours. So, from 5:30 to 7:30 is the weight loss one and then 8 P.M. to 10 P.M. is going to be the stop smoking portion. Thursday, Asheville Crown Plaza. And 5:30 is the weight loss seminar. So, explain then. Is it sort of the same mechanics with food that you approach like with cigarettes?
Mark: A little different. Here is the thing that works with weight loss. And I don’t want to get again, too crazy technical, but when we peel away all our conscious layers deep down inside we all have what’s called an image or a identity of our self. And whatever that identity is it was shaped for us when we were growing up. We reinforce this identity with our self-talk.
So, if we’re going out there and saying this, “I hate exercise. I’m not motivated. I’m a couch potato. I’m lazy. I’m carboholic. I’m a sugar junkie.” or any of those here’s what happens. Now we decide to go on a diet. With all the best intentions, conscious effort and what happens is we go on a diet and we end up losing maybe a little bit weight, but we always gain all the weight back and go back to the old habits and behaviors and patterns.
And we sit there and scratch our heads and, “Why did that happen?” Here is why. As crazy as this may sound one of the strongest human traits that you and I have is to be consistent with our own image of our self or identity of our self. Even if it kills us. Look at drug addicts. You get people who are addicted to drugs they go into rehab. Best intentions, get out, they’re clean physically. What happens? How many times we hear the stories, they get out of the clinic and they’re back on drugs within six month not because of willpower, not because they didn’t want to. Because their image of themselves is a drug user.
So, what we’re going to do under hypnosis is this. This is a little different than the smoking. We’re going to have them see themselves six months from now under hypnosis as a slimmer healthier person who’s eating better, who’s maybe walking more. Whatever it is we’re going to have them paint that image of themselves and actually almost feel it as if they were really a real life experience of themselves at that weight. Then here is what happens after you bring them out of hypnosis.
Next thing they know –let’s say they’re going out in a buffet and normally in the past they would overeat. Next thing you know, they’re choosing healthier food choices. They notice themselves maybe drinking more water. Basically what I’m getting at is they’ll find themselves doing these behaviors automatically and not even being aware of some of those behaviors and you know, the weight starts coming off.
Host: Yeah. It really is a matter of breaking a habit, but also, believing that the new habits you adopt are part of you. I quit drinking sodas probably, I don’t know 15 years ago and it wasn’t even anything kind of a conscious thing, but now, I don’t consider myself to be a soda drinker. I just don’t. And I have no desire.
Mark: What happens is your thought, your mantra like you said that, you nailed it. Your self-talk. People don’t realize it. That’s hypnosis. That’s self hypnosis. Whatever you tell yourself, your subconscious takes all information literally. Well, I don’t tell myself it, I think it. That’s still a form of hypnosis. So, we’re going to teach some of that stuff during the program. We’re also going to go through a couple of hormones that get out of sync for people when it comes to weight loss as they get into their 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s.
So, I mean we’ve got a great program. We get people losing 40, 50, 60, 80, 90 pounds. I mean, my best client lost a 110 pounds in four and a half months in this thing.
Host: Just from that?
Host: And adopting then behaviors he then associates with himself.
Mark: Exactly. Their images change. If you –you know, I’ve studied this thing forever. Especially when it comes to weight. And there’s a 5% of people who we know lose weight and keep it off. And there is 95% who gain it back. We studied with our clients and other people that I know that are very well respected in this industry and we studied the successful behaviors of the 5%-ers and we teach some of that stuff in our seminar as much as we possibly can.
But, the key thing is we use hypnosis as tool so that they find themselves wanting to do these things.
Host: Yeah. By the way, Jason in Southwest Asheville he says he’s going to stop smoking with you Mark Patrick. Eight o’clock tomorrow, the Crown Plaza. That’s when the event is. The first one, 5:30 weight loss. Eight o’clock is to stop smoking and it’s at the Crown Plaza. MarkPatrickSeminars.com is the website. We will now take the first caller at 240-9962. We’ll give them a free pass to your weight loss session, the weight loss seminar 5:30 tomorrow.
Is there anything else Mark you want to add here that you think is important or interesting folks should know before we let you go?
Mark: No. I think we’ve covered everything. Absolutely.
Host: All right. MarkPatrickSeminars. com is the website. Again, it’s all tomorrow at the Crown Plaza and the first weight loss session 5:30, to stop smoking one at 8 P.M. It is $49,99 by the way if you don’t win the tickets here, but good luck to those calling in. Mark Patrick, best of luck on the seminar. We appreciate you making some time for us today.
Mark: Thanks for having me on.
Host: Sure. Take care.