Is it possible to enhance your senses (or even add new ones) through hypnosis? It sounds like I’m talking about superpowers – many heroes and villains have eagle eyes and lupine hearing. In a way, I am. But it’s not a superpower if it’s real. This is about sharpening your perception. And maybe even expanding it.
This sounds like science fiction. So much of what I’m alluding to seems to leave reality behind. If you asked most people if mind training could enhance their senses, they’d say no. Maybe you’re sceptical too.
In that case, let’s start with sensible, no-nonsense techniques that you can begin to use right now.
You can enhance all of your senses through four simple approaches. The first is to pay attention. Your nervous system receives more information than you can hope to consciously process. Most is deleted or ignored. By focusing on what you perceive, you bring more of it into your awareness. You notice more, remember more and process things faster.
The second technique is to practice your two modes of perception. One mode is tight, focused, narrow and effortful. Most people read with this mode, as they focus on each word and ignore everything else. The other mode is open, wide and relaxed – like how you’d watch waves rolling in on a peaceful beach.
For example, with sight, the focused mode uses the centre of your field of vision. The open mode uses your peripheral vision. For hearing, imagine you’re at a party. Focused listening involves hearing only the words of the person you’re in conversation with. Open listening is where you hear the crowd as a whole, letting all discussions envelope you.
Each mode has its uses. To enhance your senses, practice and develop both. Most people have well-developed focused perception. It’s what schools teach most and it’s how you pay attention in a distracting world. If you often feel overwhelmed by your environment, try developing your focused perception.
But if you want to see connections, experience the world holistically and engage your unconscious resources, then you’ll want to engage open perception more often. Listen to sounds as they overlap and notice the peripheries of your vision. Do this with taste, touch and smell, too.
This is a softer way of sensing reality. You engage peripheral vision by relaxing your focus. It takes time to learn to pay attention and relax, but it’s the only way to develop this. Don’t mistake a difficult skill for one that requires effort. The harder you try to open your perceptions, the harder it becomes.
The third way to enhance your senses is by looking after yourself. Get enough sleep and your senses grow sharper. Get enough vitamins and the world grows clearer.
And the fourth way to sharpen your perceptions is through hypnosis. In a trance state, imagine your filters dropping. Allow information to pour into your mind. Focus and relax as you plug into the data stream of reality.
Your unconscious controls your perception. It filters out the vast majority of what information you receive. Access this process. Learn to first understand it, then control it. It’s like opening the gates of reality.
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