There are literally thousands of books on hypnosis out there – but you don’t have the time to read them all. So here you find my personal, hand-selected recommendation of hypnosis books. If you want to learn hypnosis, these books can be a great place to improve your hypnotic skills and gain a better understanding of hypnotism.
I divided the recommended books into two sections: general hypnosis books, and books that are specifically about conversational hypnosis (scroll down for those).
Even though there are plenty of new hypnosis books coming out every month, one of the best books for those who want to learn hypnosis and improve their hypnotic skills is the Handbook of Hypnotic Suggestions and Metaphors.
This is the book that you want to have near your desk – because every time when you want to craft a great hypnotic trance, are looking for hypnotic suggestions, you’ll get plenty of ideas here. There are also highly effective exercises that train your mind to become fluent in the language of hypnosis.
Written by one of the great masters of hypnosis, this is a standard book for hypnotists around the world. Get “Hypnotherapy” by Dave Elman on Amazon
Conversational Hypnosis Books
My Voice Will Go With You by Milton H. Erickson is a great book if you are interested in conversational hypnosis. First of all, it was Erickson who invented conversational hypnosis. This book is a collection of hypnotic stories that he told patients, edited and commented by a student of him (Sidney Rosen).
It’s also very easy to read, because basically it’s masterful hypnotic storytelling. But despite being easy to read, it’s a great learning resource, and your mind will learn a lot about how the hypnotic process works and how to embed hypnotic suggestions into conversations and stories. The learning happens on both a conscious and unconscious level – as with all learning, the more effort you invest in it, the more you gain from it, but even from cursory reading conversational hypnosis skills will be installed into your subconscious mind.
Even though the hypnotic stories and conversations in this book are for therapeutic use, you can apply them in other contexts as well, be it personal or professional, sales, business, social persuasion or other goals.
Tranceformations by Richard Bandler and John Grinder is another great book on conversational hypnosis. It’s basically a transcription of a hypnosis workshop the two founders of neurolinguistic programming (NLP) did decades ago, but they used hypnotic language patterns all throughout their workshop. When you read this book out loud, you will not just learn a lot about hypnosis, but you will in fact experience hypnotic trance states just from reading the words. The book is out of print, but you can still pick up a copy. (Note: there is another, new book by Richard Bandler called “Guide to Trance-Formations” – note that this is NOT the book we recommend).
Conversational Hypnosis: A Manual of Indirect Suggestion by Carol Summer is another very old book. But even though there are lots of new, fancy-looking, marketing-hyped books, these classics actually provide the best learning experience – maybe because they were written by people whose main intention was to teach you how to hypnotize, and not to write a bestseller in order to promote their high-priced workshops and DVD sets.
If you want to practice hypnotic language patterns and become really good at them, this book is an absolute must-read.