The Resources Induction


On November 19, 2013,  Jane Parsons-Fein presented an induction she uses with most of the clients she works with in the early stages of hypnotherapy. She uses it at an appropriate time geared to the client's experiential history. She calls it "The Resources Induction" and it is based upon an early description that Ernest Rossi wrote on indirect suggestion (Hypnotherapy, pg. 9; Erickson and Rossi; Irvington Publishers Inc., 1979).  The following is part of the quote:

Direct suggestion is based primarily, if unwittingly, upon the assumption that whatever develops in hypnosis derives from the suggestions given. It implies that the therapist has the miraculous power of effecting therapeutic changes in the patient, and disregards the fact that therapy results from an inner resynthesis of the patient's behavior achieved by the patient himself. It is true that direct suggestion can effect an alteration in the patient's behavior and result in a symptomatic cure, at least temporarily. However, such a "cure" is simply a response to the suggestion and does not entail that reassociation and reorganization of ideas, understandings and memories so essential for an actual cure. It is this experience of reassociating and reorganizing his own experiential life that eventuates in a cure, not the manifestation of responsive behavior which can, at best, satisfy only the observer.

The example given is glove anesthesia: Instead of telling the patient, "Let your right hand feel numb", you say, "Do you remember that time you held that snowball, and the hand felt that strange tingling affected by the coldness and then a kind of new feeling or no feeling?" And then give the suggestion for the feeling of numbness.

In this induction there are a number of memories of experiential learning of achievement, pleasure, wonder, excitement, laughter and love that are evoked by the trigger of a clasping of hands in the non-habitual handclasp (if your habitual hand clasp is left fingers over right, then your non-habitual handclasp is right fingers over left). This can then be elaborated in future sessions when these early resources can be evoked in specific treatment situations. The handclasp becomes an anchor for a shift of consciousness that can add a new dimension to work with a problematic memory.

It can be "refreshed" periodically and the client can consistently be re-inducted by using this non-habitual handclasp whenever they need it.