#122 Bernhard Tewes: Self Hypnosis and The Hypnobox
Johnny Burke: Welcome to Closer to Venus. I’m Johnny Burke, and today’s guest is Bernhard Tewes, @bernhard.tewes.berlin.He is a practicing hypnotherapist, a member of the National Guild of Hypnotists and founder of the HypnoBox, an app which provides self-hypnosis sessions for mental and physical health issues. Today we’ll talk about his journey of becoming a hypnotherapist as well as his work in self-hypnosis. Bernhardt, welcome to the program.
Bernard Tewes: Thanks so much. I’m very happy to be here.
Johnny Burke: Excellent, excellent. So how did you learn about hypnosis? What was the journey like, and how did you eventually decide on being a hypnotherapist?
Bernard Tewes: Yes. Actually, I didn’t have any idea about hypnosis about 10 years ago. I was an event manager. I was in a burnout with depression, panic attacks, sleeping disorder, and I smoked like crazy. that time I was in charge of the whole events in Mercedes-Benz Museum and Stu Guard Germany. And that was a super stressful job. I couldn’t help it. I smoked like crazy, like 30 cigarettes. And after some time I felt that in my physical body I had a chronic infection. And I couldn’t brush my teeth anymore in the morning without puking. And that was the moment where I said, hey, I got to change something.
The first thing I did was like, stopping with willpower, exercising willpower. But every time I had stressful situations, I started smoking again. And I didn’t understand that, why can’t I control that? I was in control somehow, I thought of my life, but there were so many things right now where I started to rock bottom and I thought, Hey, what’s wrong?
Then randomly a hypnotherapist moved into my house, and we started talking and he taught me about hypnosis, what it is, what it’s not, that it has nothing to do with sleep, that you are still aware of everything and control. And it’s like the most fantastic tool for changing work existing at the moment.
And I say, oh, that’s very interesting. Let’s, let’s go with. And then we had a session two weeks later, and I never had the need to smoke again. It was 10 years ago. That was so fantastic for me that I said, hey, I want to learn that.
Johnny Burke: From what I’ve learned, smoking cigarettes is as addictive as heroin. The addiction is really that strong. I quit myself years ago. Luckily, I was able to do it by sheer willpower. But it took about a month before Ijust lost the urge to do that. So when we talk about hypnosis, state of trance, is there a difference?
Bernard Tewes: Yeah, you can. You can say, Hypnosis is the process that guides you into the trans. Yeah. And so it will lead you into the trance, but you can’t like train somebody, but you can hypnotize someone. That’s the guiding and the process going deeper. Because there are many ways to go into a trance, even through breath work. You can go into a trance through dancing, through regular movement. There are many ways actually to go into that. And hypnosis is a technique that guides you in the Yeah.
Johnny Burke: Is there any relationship between states of hypnosis and states where a medium becomes connected to the unseen? Is there any connection there?
Bernard Tewes: Definitely that that is only possible from my point of view. If you go in a sort of trance and then there is this gate to whatever, to channel or to get information, but it’s necessary for sure to go in a certain state to be able to do that. So you have to shift somehow some might learn it accidentally or randomly other, got a teacher or something. But definitely there must be ways to shift the state to go into that. Yeah?
Johnny Burke: Okay, so there are, as you say, gates are like portals
Bernard Tewes: Definitely
Johnny Burke: to those realms.
Bernard Tewes: I believe there are many ways or things that we don’t know that we don’t completely understand and that we can’t, of course not, not like proof or measure, it’s a lot about what people tell or in hypnotherapy what they experience there or how I experience things.
I also get into connection with my clients. So I sometimes have the picture in mind from them. They already have the pictures in mind from me. Sometimes I have the answer from them already. Somehow there, it’s quite fantastic what can happen there if both are in a trance.
Johnny Burke: So in that state then there seems to be a different connective mechanism of some sort where it’s obviously above the level of communication that we have in our civilian lives.
Bernard Tewes: Yeah, definitely. And I believe that there we have more senses than we, think, I believe in information fields, where we have information available, and our subconscious mind can be like an antenna to enter this for others going to.
different states, past lives, between lives, and That can be very interesting things happen. Yeah.
Johnny Burke: Very much so. Information fields: that also brings to mind the akashic records. Is there a connection with that or is that something completely different?
Bernard Tewes: what is akashic records? I am not sure if I get this in English, sorry……
Johnny Burke: The akashic records is apparently a book of past events, current and even events in the future. It comes up a lot when we talk about past lives and trance- like states and things like that. So what happens to the conscious mind when we enter hypnosis?
Bernard Tewes: Yeah, the conscious mind is actually still there. I call hypnosis focused concentration. The prefrontal cortex where the conscious thinking is taking place in the brain is shutting down more, but it’s still there. So they are asked of thoughts, might be still thoughts more in the background, but you’re still aware, you’re still in control. You can still answer. You can still talk. Yeah. And in the states of trance I’m working with, there are also very deep states of trance where there’s no activity at all. But I don’t normally work in these steps because it’s not so effective, as effective as I do in trance levels where the conscious mind is still there. That’s much more effective to work from my experience.
Johnny Burke: So the conscious mind is still there as a spectator or,
Bernard Tewes: Yeah. People are still able to, to decide that the whole value system is still there. But more as a spectator is a good thing. I explain that to my clients, ‘Hey, be more of a spectator of certain processes. ‘Yeah, we do certain processes where you just observe what is happening and that can be quite fascinating, because your conscious mind, that’s okay. Right now, my subconscious mind is in control of my body, and if I work with this life regression, past life regression. What we need is to have the unconscious information coming from here spontaneously, not from the conscious mind. That’s why when I work there, I train the people- let’s do spontaneous answers. The first impression that comes up, that’s the information that we work with.
Johnny Burke: On the subject of past life regression, because you did bring up past lives, a few moments ago and just now, life in between lives, are these types of sessions that you normally engage with your clients?
Bernard Tewes: Well, I work with regression. It’s one of my main tools. Mainly I work with this life regression. Cause from my experience, from my belief, most of the trauma comes from this life. There’s a lot happening in our childhood, but if it fits into the belief system of my clients and he’s believing in past lives and recognition, then it’s likely that they will go into this past lives.
If they think, ‘oh, this emotion, this trauma is so strong. It can’t come from this life; it must be something older. ‘And then, yeah, it can happen. Yeah. Doesn’t matter if, I believe that or not, doesn’t matter if it’s existing or not. Even if it were just a projection of the subconscious, it would have an effect on the healing process.
I experience very interesting things there, because I know it’s also interesting for listeners what’s happening there. So once I ended up in a past life with a client and he was a Viking King now, and he was definitely speaking a Nordic language.
Johnny Burke: Of course he was a Viking.
Bernard Tewes: Yeah, yeah,. So I don’t know how much projection is in there, you know? I don’t think if you work with an aboriginal in Australia, that he would become a Viking, that’s also interesting though, how culture or maybe TV shows, have an impression on how we might go also into past lives. Yeah. Or which lives that to choose. And I find that very, very interesting. But he was definitely speaking in another language that he wasn’t capable of speaking, an ancient Nordic language. It was very interesting, very interesting.
Bardo level, I went twice actually with clients into battle levels, they described that as a level of peace, of nothingness. Yeah, it was very interesting as well. But they could describe it, it was very clear. I’m between lives. And they could feel that very clearly where they are first a bit like, ‘oh, what is this?’ but then if we went into that, it was very clear.
Johnny Burke: they were not in a past life, but in between incarnations? I’ve heard some very interesting accounts of that space; soul contracts, soul families, also examples of people saying from direct experience that it’s almost like casting a movie, like casting a stage play. There’s all different types of events, good and bad. Did you or any of your clients witness anything like that?
Bernard Tewes: like in the levels in between or in past lives.
Johnny Burke: In between?
Bernard Tewes: In between? No, that was more like a very fluent state what they described. I can just tell what they described and that was like more energetic. what they told them. Hmm.
Johnny Burke: During any of these experiences, whether it was past lives or lives in between lives, were you able to get connected with them and experience it with them, with the client, or was the client just giving you a blow by blow of what happened?
Bernard Tewes: No, they’re really in this, if we go into this past life, we always check out what is happening there in this past life. What is the teaching in there? Why did he go into that? Why one client was a witch and she got burned in the end. That’s very dramatic. And she felt this whole anxiety very intensively. This anxiety she was actually suffering from in this life. So what we did was always like checking in the end, what is the teaching that this existence wants to give the existence of right now with it. What is important from that? And this is always a resource and a wisdom that this person can take with
Johnny Burke: And it seems to me that no matter who I talk to about this, whether it’s a past life memory or an in between life memory there definitely is a healing part of what goes on.
Bernard Tewes: Yeah.
Johnny Burke: And you brought up an interesting comment earlier where you said, it doesn’t matter if you believe in it or not, but if someone were to experience a past life, they may uncover an issue that is affecting them in this life.
Is that true?
Bernard Tewes: exactly, exactly. But I must say I had it once that a client didn’t believe in past lives at all. And because I always check it in the pre-talk, I check always, okay, what’s your belief system? So I read that and then she actually went into the past life, and that was super surprising for her. That was like something where she was like, okay, I was expecting everything, but not that. And that is very rare that people go into their past lives if they actually don’t believe in it. But it’s possible.
If this emotion is that strong, especially in Germany, I had several times that people were full of anxiety and they went into situations in German concentration camps actually now, which is for German what is the, the worst that can happen, would be Yeah end up in the concentration camp and, being related like what happened?
Johnny Burke: A concentration camp- there’s been some pretty heavy experiences with your clients from past life and in between life memories. but when we talk about hypnosis in our civilian lives, there seems to be a bit of a stigma. Maybe it’s due to pop culture movies and TV shows. What are your thoughts on that?
Bernard Tewes: Yeah, a lot of that is not helpful. Of course. I grew up with a Jungle book and the Jungle book the snake is hypnotizing Mok and he is all dizzy and stuff like that. We all sing to that, that is how we grow up. There are many other cartoons and also movies where this is used, even modern TV shows use it actually. If we talk about that, no, it’s not helpful at all because it puts a wrong light on hypnosis, and it brings in this idea, ‘oh, I’m completely out of control’ and I just got a code word and I’m going to go and murder someone, this is not how it goes.
The other thing is stage hypnosis. Where people run around like chicken or something. This is a form for hypnosis as well, and it’s actually working, but if a stage hypnotist is asking people on stage, they selected them before very clearly, who is highly suggestible here in this audience. Then they have 16 people on stage, then they do more exercises, and in the end, he’s only working with one or two people who are absolutely like going through all the exercises and like have green light, green light, green light and in the end, on stage it’s like a deal, a subconscious deal. Hey, I want this to work and then they do things which they normally wouldn’t do, but if they wouldn’t do that, they wouldn’t go on stage.
I think stage hypnosis is great to show what is possible from the subconscious mind, but it would be always cool if stage hypnotists was like, Hey, now they have them in that state, now give them something positive for their life. In Germany you have a few, stage hypnotists who do that. Yeah. Who combining, like Positive suggestions as well, and not just, hey, I make you walk like a chicken or copulate with a chair or something. That is not very helpful.
This is actually the state where the bouncer, the firewall that is protecting the subconscious from change is stepping aside. And so new ideas of thinking and behavior can sink in. And if this is up to your wish and will, this can like, boom- come to the ground and grow. The absolutely fascinating thing about the hypnotic state and, for change work absolutely fantastic. I think.
Johnny Burke: It seems to me that there’s definitely been an increase in people being interested in hypnosis of all types. I noticed that just from the people that inquire about being on the show and it seems to me that the stigma is decreasing slightly because it seems to be more legitimized. Would you agree?
Bernard Tewes: Absolutely, absolutely. The more people experience hypnosis and having positive effects, especially through hypnotherapy. Have a boom in Germany, in the US as well. More people realize, hey, this goes faster, this is more effective, I don’t want to talk two years on a sofa, two times a week about my issues. Many people are aware okay, now I’m, I’m aware of everything. I understood. Everything comes from childhood. Yes, or even earlier. But how to get this on the subconscious level where all the emotions are triggered, where the thoughts come up, where the behaviors are stored.
So the problems people have are not conscious problems. They are subconscious problems. Otherwise they would’ve changed that, so there is a mindset changing about that and you see that how meditation did that. And I see the same way for hypnosis as for meditation. Meditation in the past, only Buddhist monks were doing that. Meanwhile, wow, you’re not meditating what’s wrong with you? What’s your meditation technique? So, I think, and I believe hypnosis will become mainstream. And this is like my mission to bring that mainstream and to spread this message. If I do that through this, if I do that through Hypnobox, through my app, where I do a lot of educating also, this is, a very important thing. And I believe that’s how it will be.
Johnny Burke: I think it will eventually become mainstream if it hasn’t already. especially with meditation. You mentioned the hypnobox. I wanted to ask about how you are the developer of the hypno breathing method. How is that different from, say, Shamanic breathing techniques or maybe yogic breathing techniques?
Bernard Tewes: So the patterns or the breathing patterns are quite the same from some yogic and shamanic breathing techniques. So you inhale deeply breathing out. You change through breathing the ratio between oxygen and carbon dioxide in your blood. That brings you into trance quite quickly. What I do in hypno breathing is that I worked then with suggestions, with positive, hypnotic processes. So I use breathing actually as a trance induction, and that is the difference, and that is normally if you work with breathwork that is not happening. Maybe you put an intention before, but that you get like, really into processes like that is very rare what I experienced, when I did all my breathwork trainings all worked with gurus in India I think let’s combine that. Let’s use breathwork as an induction and then do the processes. That issomething very effective.
Johnny Burke: Right? So it’s not as simple as going to the app store and downloading the app and, and jumping right in. That person who’s interested in trying this out, they should prepare with a proper breathing method. So whether it’s yours or someone else’s.
Bernard Tewes: Yeah, we will in the future add some hypno breathing patterns and breath work into the app. We’re still in the recording phase because in hypno box we always put more and more content. Right now I do that online or one by one with people, especially with people who are very much in their head, for these people who have difficulties relaxing, breath work is a great induction.
Johnny Burke: What’s the difference between an app like this, like the Hypno Box app, and a live session with a therapist?
Bernard Tewes: A live session is generally deeper than in an app. You are more connected, of course. In an app you don’t do transformative processes. In an app, you make more positive suggestions, but not, hey, we go now into regression and solve that, thing because that is something that should be guided by a therapist.
So I tell my clients, okay, the big work, we are going to do here one by one and the fine tuning you can do with hypno box, with the app, with the daily work you do there. Like meditation, if you do that on a regular basis, have a great effect.
Johnny Burke: So, in other words, I can’t go into Viking world on my lunch break. If I want to do some work, some real work I need to be guided.
Bernard Tewes: It’s more likely that this happens, let’s say it like that. We have a shamanic session also in the Hypno Box where you can go into the underworld. Whatever you experience there is not moderated or guided. It’s always better if you go into that state to be guided, to have someone who’s helping you, who’s suggesting ‘ Hey, try this, try that’, get feedback, and then go into this whole thing because there are some points you can’t get over by your own, some transformative processes. You need guidance to help you to go through that door actually, otherwise we could solve everything by ourselves. That’s why we go to therapists, because they give us ideas about what is actually the next step to do to make this transformation, for example.
Johnny Burke: Speaking of doors you just mentioned the underworld, a few moments ago. What are the dangers of someone venturing out into different realms without proper protection practices? Which by the way, I hear from mediums, hypnotherapists, other intuitives, whatever they do, they always practice some form of protection because not all the beings out there have her best interests in mind.
Bernard Tewes: true. So what I experienced now, or we got feedback from Hypno Box, we, we have full through a very positive feedback . No one says Hey, this was dangerous for me and so on because it’s a natural state actually. If we go here into the states in hypnotherapy, and things might come up there, there are always ways how to deal with that from a therapeutic view now. Of course, I heard also of mediums who have problems like to protect themselves from,energies or something like that, that might be not have the best interest. It is nothing that is like I’m dealing with here on a day-by-day basis. Not at all.
Johnny Burke: Okay, so generally speaking, you’re saying that self-hypnosis with the app is generally safe. You don’t wander into dangerous waters, that’s been your experience so
Bernard Tewes: yeah, yeah. It’s a lifestyle app. It’s not a medical product. It’s not like something that you use, instead of therapy. It’s a support,
Johnny Burke: Do you think that, with extended use of an app like this and self-hypnosis in general, do you think that it primes the pump to be able to experience these states almost instantaneously. You could be walking down the street and you’d get a flash of a past life or parallel life, maybe enter through those doors, even if it’s just for a few moments. Do you think that’s possible, or is that actually common?
Bernard Tewes: Well, I never say with hypnosis, nothing is impossible. There are a lot of things possible, but from my experience if you’re healthy and you practice a lot with trance states, you are more even in control to decide, okay, now I’m going into that state now, and now I’m going out of this state so I can go into a deep hypnosis because I practice that many times. self-hypnosis- I have my anchors and go in there and out there as I wish to and on trance levels, which I also can control. That means the more I practice it, the more I feel and control of it. That’s why I would say, this is more unlikely to happen that you experienced that without, you have the intention to have that.
So for me, going into a trance has to do with the decision. Same as falling asleep, have the decision made, hey, I want to fall asleep. And then you will go into that state, huh? Hey, I want to go into a trance. I think shamans, as soon as they sit down, decide, hey, now go into my trance, eyes up, and there we go.
Johnny Burke: With self-hypnosis, do you suggest doing this a few times a week or is it daily or does it not matter?
Bernard Tewes: Well as well, same as meditation. In self-hypnosis, the more regularly you do things the better of course. What I do is actually I work with s hypnosis twice a day. So in the morning I do flow state hypnosis, which is a form of hypnosis where you go into trance through a regular movement. You can not only go into trance through relaxation, but you can also go into the trance through regular movements. So what I do is actually do that on the trampoline. Listening to Hypno box, and then I visualize my day, how my day should go, or I say, hey, solve that problem. I get many ideas during that, except that the relativity theory from Albert Einstein he made on the bicycle.
Oh many people say, hey, I had that idea on a toilet. Yeah. Why? Because they relax and suddenly, they go into a relaxation in the toilet trance and ideas come up. Others a shower, that’s quite interesting. That’s the thing I do in the morning and in the evening, I do a session for falling asleep and then I take the suggestions I hear with me in my sleep and that’s fantastic actually. So it can work during sleep. I sleep much better. And I especially take this one suggestion that is called tomorrow will be a great day, which sets the mindset already for the next day.
Johnny Burke: there are a lot of benefits. It sounds like it’s almost teaching the subconscious what you wanted to accomplish.
Bernard Tewes: Exactly, exactly. Many people ask about what’s the difference between meditation and hypnosis? in hypnosis, we really focus on the induction that we go into this Theta state. Brain waves more Theta less Beta in a meditation state, it’s better brain waves. In this state suggestion can more easily be absorbed off the subconscious. So if you work with mindfulness and meditation, it’s mainly about the quantity of thoughts. If you work with hypnosis, it’s more about the quality of thoughts.
Johnny Burke: Anything else that our listeners should know about this topic?
Bernard Tewes: I would definitely give it a shot, try it out. if it’s with a hypnotherapist, if it’s with hypno box this is something you can test for free and make an experience, because the change happens through the experience in the hypnosis as well.
That’s why hypnotherapy is so effective, because suddenly you’re in different state, you can experience things differently. You have more access to resources. You can see more pictures. Maybe everything is more vivid. You can also go into positive situations. They are not just past lives or something. Just like relive positive things, anchor that and use that as a resource for the future. So you can also reconnect them like a phobia with a positive emotion. And that is the powerful thing about that. So, if you haven’t tried it, give it a shot.
Johnny Burke: Excellent. Thanks for coming onto the show today, Bernhard, how can our listeners find you online?
Bernard Tewes: Sure, on our website of hypnobox.com and bernhard-tewes.com