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Welcome to the Work Smart Hypnosis Podcast with Jason Lynette, your professional resource for hypnosis training and outstanding business success. Here’s your host, Jason Lynette. Hello and welcome. It’s Jason Lynette here once again with an outstanding hypnosis conversation. For you to listen, to, learn from, and enjoy.
Though this is a conversation that some of you might have already heard before as early in the week of the release of this. This was actually done as a webinar featuring Terry Stokes. Though the feedback has been outstanding, we’ve decided to share it here in this podcast format, just the same. Terry Stokes is a legend in the stage hypnosis industry.
There are many outstanding full-time performers that are there that really can credit their success to the learning that they’ve received From Terry Stokes, he is somebody who is known for his originality, his approach to crafting original routines, his very laid back natural style. And at one point he had the longest running show in Las Vegas.
So with that in mind, let’s jump right into this. This is done in preview of a training event that’s gonna be happening in Las Vegas in May, 2017. Learn more over at Terry Stokes live. Dot com. In the meantime, let’s jump right in. This is session number 106, Terry Stokes on Stage Hypnosis Secrets.
All right, hello and welcome everybody. It’s Jason Lynette here for a very, very special, uh, online workshop here, here today with Terry Stokes. Terry, how are you? I’m better than I. Good to see you this morning. Good to see you. Good to see you as well. Uh, this is Stage Hypnosis Secrets with Terry Stokes.
We’ve got the upcoming live training coming up in Las Vegas on May 16th and 17th. This is better. Your Best with Terry Stokes, and we’re gonna get into the details of that. Presentation, that live training event a little bit later in this program here today, though, uh, the, the fun of this one is that I didn’t have to work so hard, uh, because as soon as I mention to everybody who’s here, uh, who was gonna be with me here today, the questions were rolling in already, and, uh, I am prepared.
I don’t have to work so hard here. . Uh, so needless to say, Terry, we’re gonna go through every single one of these in vivid detail. I hope you have about seven hours. Sound good? Works for me. And I’ll give a bit of a brief introduction, a bit of an overview. And then Terry, I’d love to, uh, bounce over to you in a few moments just to elaborate on some of these details.
Uh, what I’m excited. Uh, spending time with you here today about is the whole concept of originality in stage hypnosis, the originality in terms of developing your own character, developing your own stage, presence, and especially in, in a profession, which at one point I was hideously guilty of this, of doing a program where it was the same five or six routines that.
Everybody else was doing. Are you there? Uh, you, you’ve locked up on me. I don’t know if Better mind The Wonders of technology. It may come in and out, but the, the replays will have all the details for us. Uh, Terry at one point was, uh, voted as Las Vegas Entertainer of the Year. And at one point had the longest running stage hypnosis show in Las Vegas history.
Uh, he’s the author of four books as well as 37 different audio and video products. And, uh, Terry, would you give a little bit more of your story for those of you that are, are brand new to you, perhaps? Uh, I fell in love with hypnosis when I was in college. I went to see a gentleman by the name of Jack.
Doing a show in Atlanta, Georgia. It was during spring break and I was, so at first I didn’t believe it, like, like most people, the first time they see it. And I went back night after night and finally the last night was spring break. I volunteered to be in a show and at the end of the show I was on the pool table.
Of the club with my pants around my ankles and I thought, you know what? This is real. Uh, I fell in love with it. It became my life’s passion, University of Georgia. I changed my major, uh, and when I got outta school, I went, went into business with Jackberry, actually at the Atlanta He Mercy Institute, and did therapy for a few years.
Um, after about two years of doing therapy, I was telling a weight control class one. If you’re not happy doing what you’re doing, that’s part of your problem. Need to do what makes you happy. And I went back to my office and I thought, if that’s such good advice myself, thank, And what originally made me excited about hypnosis was a show.
So I went to Jack and I asked him to teach me a show and he, he mocked At first, he said, No, because I do my show. And he said, If I teach, I’m afraid you’ll try to be me. And. Weeks of talking to him, he finally got a promise in me that I would always do my own material. I would never do his stuff. He said, I, he said, I’m gonna give you three bits to start with.
And he, uh, 55 years later, I’m proud to say with, um, with very few exceptions, I’ve never done anybody else’s material. And those are exceptions are. I once approached Anthony Cools, who was doing a bit that I thought was so funny. I said, Anthony, my routines or any, any, any of them that you want, if you’ll gimme your permission to use this that you wrote.
And he did. He’s a very gracious and nice man. Uh, and I approached someone else and asked them if I could do their bid, and they said, Oh, it doesn’t matter. I stole it from someone else. That, that I love, but I’ve never done mm-hmm. because it’s, it’s not mine. I, I’ve always felt that if it’s not yours, if you don’t write it, um, it’s, how can you call it your show?
So, for years and years, my, my biggest bitch about our business has been that people don’t write their own material. And they, they, they, they do, everyone does everyone else’s stuff. So this year I decided, actually, I was at a, at a motivation class. It occurred to me, I started doing some selfly. Well, if I’m so unhappy about that, I should do something about it.
And then I realize that most people have never been taught how to write material. They, they, uh, they go to a class, they learn how to do a show, they memorize it. Uh, and they don’t really understand what makes it funny. And, and looking at your, the, where you got your questions from, uh, I saw someone, uh, and I never met the gentleman, but I’ve seen a lot of his writings and he seems to be very knowledge.
But someone ask, uh, a question was, do as many shows as you possibly can, and that’s better than any training you can get. And I thought about that. I’ve seen people do really bad shows, but they practice it so well. They do a bad show really, really well. Hmm. And that’s, that’s not, uh, that’s not making your show any better.
It’s just making what you’re doing. Smoother. And I said all of that to say this. That’s the reason, uh, that we’ve decided to do this better. Your best better, your best. The reason for the name better, your best. I’ve had several people say, Why would you call it that? Because I don’t think anybody that I’ve ever met goes out and triess to do less than their best ever.
Every time that you walk on stage, It’s in your mind that you’re going to do the best job that you possibly can, and I’m sure everyone does, does that, or they at least try to do it even when they’re having a bad night. Uh, the problem is most of us don’t know how good our best can be, and that’s why we, we call it better, your best to take what you already have.
And make it as good as it can possibly be. Well, it goes back to that phrase that many people would use the statement that, uh, practice makes, uh, perfect and no practice only makes permanent. So out of all these years of doing programs, what’s your favorite part of, uh, this came from Debbie a uh, Debbie afi.
Uh, what’s your favorite part of doing shows these days? Uh, you know, that is actually a difficult. The Diff Now I’m doing family shows. I’m, I, I’m opening theaters around the country and we’re, we’re doing the family shows. I’m, I’m loving seeing the, the grandparents, the parents and the kids all sitting in a room, all being able to enjoy the same kind of show.
Most shows that the families go to. The parents sit there bored while the kids laugh, or the, or the parents have a good time and the kids are sitting there thinking, Oh God, I can’t believe I, my folks made me do this. Our show. Your show. All of us in the business, we have a show that everybody can enjoy together.
Uh, the entire family said that would probably be one of my favorite parts of it. Now you bring up the theme of writing, and it’s even going back to some of the, you know, classic comedy formats of looking at even like the Warner Brothers cartoons, that there was humor inside of it that the kids would laugh at.
And there were jokes that the parents were laughing at differently to look at. Uh, you can tell I was raised on cartoons, uh, to look at Rocky and Bullwinkle that, that, to watch it at a later age. Suddenly it’s like, Oh, wow. They’re really going there with that joke. Now I understand it. The, you know, the conference that you and I were just at.
Uh, if you recall, one of the things that was discussed over and over by, uh, almost every speaker was, Should you do adult material or should you do family material? And people were going back and forth over that. Should you do an adult show or should you do a family show? Why not just learn how to do a show so that no matter who your audience is, If it’s, if it’s people that wanna see adult material, if you understand what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, and you can write material on the spot, it doesn’t matter what arena you’re thrown into, you can pull a show off.
And that, that was, that was one of my, that was one of the things that, uh, made me more confident in the program that we’re putting at out right now because, If you learn to learn a family show, then you think that’s the only kind there should be if you learned an adult show. Well, that’s, I don’t, I don’t like kids in the audience.
I don’t, I’m not a kid’s performer. Well, you’re an entertainer. You should be able to entertain any crowd. And it’s that statement too, that even in the comedy world, they’ll see someone who’s working clean and assume if press they could do the other show, yet they won’t often go that opposite direction.
Exactly. Well, Bill Cosby used used to say, you know, if you, if you have to get vul. To, to get a laugh and then you’re really not that, uh, hey, this was a question that actually popped up from several people. Uh, you know, the theme of writing new routines. Uh, how is it, what’s kind of your process of testing it out?
Is there sort of a, let’s call it an incubation phase of really workshopping it on your own and then it’s put in What’s kind of your journey in terms of how you decide what goes in and what sticks? Yesterday we were doing a mastermind. Uh, here in Fort Walton Beach and there’s, there were five of us sitting.
And we were talking about how you come up with ideas for material. We picked random objects and started talking about ’em. When we came up, uh, with the process that I teach and about minutes, we came up with nine brand new routines that no one had ever done. Somebody came up with some ideas that had seen before and we immediately eliminated those.
We talked about ’em, got rid of all the complications. Most people try to make their bits way too complicated for an audience to follow or for or for a volunteer to. We got ’em down to the simplicity, and last night we put three of those bits in the show. Uh, one of them worked perfectly. Two of them were refine today.
So you, you, you start with the concept, You whi it down to where you think it’s going to work. Then you try it, you figure out why it doesn’t, why it’s not getting the response that you wanted and redo it. See, one, one of the problems that I have and the, the pardon my bitching again here, but with people just doing other people’s material.
I, I was showing clips from other people’s shows and a lot of the clips that I showed that people were doing my material, the thing that bothered me the most about it was they, by, they saw an idea, they thought it was funny, and they thought they copied it, but they missed what actually made the bit funny.
Mm-hmm. , they, they, they missed two or three words in the setup that made it funny. They didn’t understand that the setup needs to be almost as funny as the bit itself, and they. And the, uh, a lot of your, some of your viewers have probably said, Oh, I saw a bit once I tried it, it didn’t work with my crowd.
Mm-hmm. , it’s because you didn’t understand what, what was funny about the dead in the first place. And it could be a, a word, it could be an aside, it could be a look or a gesture that makes the routine work. And if you miss that, that’s why when you write your own, you understand why it’s funny and you can make it work for an adult.
You can make it work for a family show. Are you familiar with the comedian Emo Phillips? Yeah, I saw him live recently and they actually did a q and a after their show, and I think he has the credit of being one of the most ripped off comedians out there. And I got to ask him, what’s your favorite joke that people tell of yours?
That people get wrong. And his joke was, uh, I lent a friend of mine $10,000 for plastic surgery. Now I don’t know what he looks like. And he actually told the story of seeing someone tell that joke, but leave out the element about the plastic surgery. I lent a friend of mine $10,000 for surgery and now I don’t know what he looks like and there’s no laugh.
Yeah. Because it was that missing element where, again, from the, the, from the mindset of understanding what makes it funny and, uh, Knowing, You know, I, I came from a background in theater and it warmed my heart when I was watching one of your videos the other day, and there you were quoting, uh, Music Man to kick it off.
Uh, let, let’s kind of bring it over to the hypnosis side of things. So, so outside of the writing, uh, what is often your criteria when you’re actually doing the presentation? When you’re doing the program, what’s your mental process in terms of deciding who you keep on stage with you and who you let go of?
I have to back up a minute to Yes. To. I worked in a lot of the shows that I was looking at. Yes. Um, a lot of people that had two and three rows of chairs and they had tons of people on stage. And if you pick your volunteers properly, I mean, I, I don’t agree with Come on up, be my guest. Let’s fill up all the chairs.
Cause you’re going to get all of the same type people going to get people from the same group. I, if you pick your people properly, I take eight people on stage and I usually keep six or seven. Uh, with six or seven, I can, I can make a good show. I sell, believe it or not, I sell just as many videos doing that cause of, of the, of the way that we do it.
Uh, but the, the people that I keep, I want someone left on my stage that represents people in the audience. That’s why, and I don’t say, come up and be my guest, because I’m willing to get all young people that can push the old folks out the way. No, I love that insight of especially making sure that the, the people on stage match the profile of the audience.
I think the same panel that you and I were on the other, uh, about couple of weeks back, uh, I had done a, uh, high school somewhere in central Maryland, and uh, I had a photo of it with permission on a website. And the first thing that a teacher said is she looked at, it was, Oh, all white kids. Hm. That there’s something to be said about, uh, you know, which I, I hate to have to think that way at times, but it’s the perception of the audience.
So if they all came from the same group of people. Well, you mentioned your story of first seeing a stage hypnosis show. Uh, mine was, someone came to my college and did a show and he did the come on up and who rushed the stage? But most of my friends, who at the time were all theater majors, so it became this right reality where the audience is now checked out because they’re going, they’re all actors.
This is fake, except I’m watching the same experience and having a different response going, Wow, my friends are not that good of actors. This is real. Uh, I’m curious about this. Let’s kind of transition here with another question. Uh, what’s something that happened during a program and that, that really surprised you?
Is there a story that stands out of. Doing a show where something turned out a different way than you expected, uh, that’s what the, your funniest routines come from there, uh, come from that happening. Uh, there’s usually something that surprises me in every show. The one that, uh, my most embarrassing moment on stage was I was three weeks into the business and I was at a little night club in Atlanta, Georgia, and I had a, I was doing a number missing routine out of, directly out of.
I think it’s, uh, hypnotism. And I didn’t, I hadn’t looked at my people that I was doing with. I just saw a girl, Okay, I’m gonna do that. And I was, whatever number that, and she counted and I said, Okay, put your, put your hands up in count. She put her hands up. She had two fingers on each hand, which kind I was just toto, totally flabbergasted.
I had no idea where to go from there. The lady had a toe of four fingers and, uh, so her numbers really were missing. That was stunning. But it, but it taught me a huge lesson. To make sure it’s like the old attorney thing. Don’t have to ask a question unless you’re fairly sure what the answer’s going to be.
Don’t put anyone or ask a question unless you’re ready to help with the answer or respond to whatever answer you get, and don’t put anyone in any situation ever that could cause them true personal embarrassment. Uh, that was, uh, a huge lesson. It was started stammering for a few minutes and, and then regained my composure.
Uh, but there are all kinds of things that happen with a bit, with a routine that I’m not expecting. And many times what actually happens is funer than what I intended to happen. I love it. I love it. No, it’s where especially some of the best bits will come from the accident. Um, and I’m sure times you’ve worked to, uh, somehow have that accident happen again.
Uh, yeah. And, and it never works as well the second time. never ever does. Um, but again, if you take every, every idea that happens, everything that happens in a show, a perfect example, just couple years ago was in Mexico, uh, doing a show and, uh, at a resort, everyone there spoke, all the guests, spoke English, the staff spoke very broken English.
I had a my people on stage, and I was at one end working with one person, and I looked. And there was a waitress at the other end, You want beer? She had been told by her boss to go in and get a drink order from everyone in the room. She had already gotten it from the audience. So now she had walked up on stage and she was waking up my volunteer , get their drink order.
That was so funny that, uh, we, I made it a bit and the show every night. I mean, that, that broke me up so much and I, I literally, or I really could not go on the show for a couple minutes. So we implemented that and made that a part of the show every night. Uh, and it, I made it work well because I was able to get the, um, the producer of the show who spoke for really good Spanish to talk with the staff and convinced them that every, that, when I wanted them to do that, and he would tell ’em when to do it, to go wake people up and they would get much better tips.
So I, so I talk with the audience. So all of a sudden now the staff is wanting to be a part of my show cuz I’m getting the bigger tips. And normally in a situation like that, the people don’t. because they’re, you know, it’s an all inclusive resort or something like that. So all of a sudden now the staff is getting tips and people are fighting to be able to work in my showroom.
I love it. It’s something that just happened, uh, and it, it was never as funny. The second time it was always a funny bit and it was a highlight of the show, but it was, it was never as funny as it was the first time. I looked down there and I saw the lady with Troy trying to get her drink water outstanding.
And this question came from, uh, Jimmy G up in Canada, all. Uh, warming up cold audiences that he was basically saying that, uh, he, he’s discovering, as he put it, how to hypnotize distracted millennials, Uh, , . Any thoughts on that? Well, yeah, uh, couple of things actually. Uh, There’s no, it, it is so easy to say, Oh, tonight I had a bad audience.
Mm-hmm. . And once you say that and you give yourself an excuse, then it’s easy to go back and do it a second time. Find that three outta five or three outta seven of your shows ended up being bad audience is, I had a, I had a club in, uh, Reno a few years ago that, uh, I, I ran in a hotel and I had one waitress that came over and said, Why do you always.
See the people who don’t tip in my section, and it was like she thought we were interviewing people to make sure they weren’t going to tip and we put them in her section. It never occurred to her that she was giving bad service and that’s not what she was getting. Good tips. My answer to him would be, yes, I’m sure there are cold audiences.
Yes, I’m sure they are distracted, but. You’re expecting them, you’re expecting an audience to conform to your idea of what’s interesting and what’s funny. Instead, you have to look at that audience and make your bit what’s funny to them. A good example, last night, I, for this now, I, one of the bits that we tried last night, it wasn’t as funny as it should be because I didn’t understand it.
The, is it What’s me n or what’s Me? It’s a, it’s a dance that, that’s like, Oh yeah, the uh, the Watch Me web, Watch me Na. Watch me n that’s it. Yeah. It, And then I had it written, written down cuz I, but we, we had, we had a lot of, uh, high school and college kids in there last night and when I did the bit, the reaction was, Oh, Liz man is the old guy even know about that.
But the bit went over well, when you have a memorized show, you’re expecting the audience to conform to you. That’s not their job. It’s your job to read the audience and do what they want. If I could tell you a quick story, uh, years ago I was invited to Hong Kong and I was the first, uh, English speaking yeman to ever go there.
I, uh, that my, my big concern was the language barrier, and I was told that more people speak English in Hong Kong than in California. Well, it turns out that was right, but when I, when I started doing my show the first night, we were sold out second night, we had about three fourths of the rooms. Third night, it was about half a room.
My crowds, instead of getting bigger, We’re getting smaller and none of the bits were getting the reaction I wanted, and I’m thinking, well get it. And I said, I don’t really think we’re going to work here. I don’t know if this tour is, uh, the way we’re going right now. In, in two weeks we’ll have two people a night.
He said, What about, I suggest first that you spend a weekend not working and go to the movies or go to a comedy show and what’s, what People are laughing at the. Was just out. You mentioned Steve Martin earlier. The movie had just come out and I went and I watched, sat in the theater. It was one of my favorite movies.
And I noticed that what they laughed at, I didn’t think was funny. What I, when a lot of times when I was laughing is stuff I was the only person in the theater laughing, and it occurred to me that I’m trying to make this culture fit, my standards of humor. So I changed my bits just to with. An example of what I did, I was, at the time, I had just written a bit and I was doing it.
It was going over well where I wouldn’t make a big guy, a six year old little girl. And he had found Mommy’s person. He was going through mommy’s person. He would find all the wonderful things they would make mommy so pretty when she went out at night, the eyes shadow, the mascara of the lipstick. And the effect was the guy would eventually have makeup all over his face and then I would have him do it to someone else.
Says, Well, I changed a bit just by saying, Well, it occurred to me. And that culture, it would be unthinkable for a child to take mommy’s purse. It would be too disrespectful and go through mommy’s purse. So I said, Mommy’s been teaching you how to use makeup, and she would be so happy and so proud if you had practiced all on your own and gotten really good at it.
And I gave him the purse. All of a sudden, the bit worked because I took out the one thing that was making it offensive to them, which. The child was plundering through mommy’s Steph. That was too disrespectful by changing it and by going through all of my bits and changing the routines to fit them, all of a sudden we were held over there for 18, uh, actually 20, 26 weeks.
We started off four weeks and held over for 26. So the, uh, to answer that question, I, I tend to go on and on about things. No, I love that. I love that. Uh, look, look at your audience and figure out how to, how to change your material to fit their, to, to fit what they’re looking for. Go. What kind of shows do they go to?
What do they get involved in? If they don’t write the type of stuff you’re doing, they’re going to sit there and, and play with their cell phone. Mm-hmm. , it’s not their fault, it’s your fault. Outstanding. Outstanding. I’m sure uh, the cat juggling worked for everybody in the jerk. Right. Yeah, with a few bits, it’s going to grab everyone again, if you haven’t seen the movie, go check that out.
Uh, once again, this training that Terry’s referenced, it’s called Better Your Best. It’s gonna be out in Las Vegas on, uh, it’s Tuesday and Wednesday, uh, May 16th and 17th, which is perfect timing as many of us are, uh, busy with the grad school season, with the prom party season. I’m actually, uh, myself going to be doing a program at about three in the morning.
Uh, napping for a little bit, then jumping on the plan and heading out there myself. Uh, it’s gonna be at Katherine Hickman’s Hypnosis Training Center in Las Vegas and rooms nearby over at the South Point Hotel. You can check out all the details [email protected]. We’ll be sending out those, uh, details by email after this event.
Too. Uh, I, I’ll share Terry a question that popped up a couple of times here. Um, which for this, what I won’t reference who it came from. That was several people though. I wanna, I wanna change it from the negative into the positive that there were several folks who basically expressed a concern. With, uh, the number of hypnosis training courses that are popping up and flooding the market with people willing to do programs at a very low dollar.
Uh, I I see that as being a real strength of your program though, because it’s teaching the originality, teaching the stage presence, the crafting of your own material. Uh, what, what are your thoughts on that? Are we really entering into a crowded marketplace? A month ago, I would’ve been one of the people sending that.
Actually three months ago, I would’ve been one of the people sending that question in. Uh, because I see people, could he cookie cutter hypnotist, they’re all doing the same thing. They’re doing, uh, they’re being handed the script saying, being told to memorize the script, Do this. There have been classes like that for years, but people have suddenly discovered that there’s, there’s a lot of money in doing that.
And my original program was I wanted, uh, I was going to charge a lot more for it than I’m charging, but then I thought, Wait a minute, I’m actually trying to solve a problem here. Something that I think is wrong with our industry. Which is everybody being exactly the same. I, I mentioned in the video that I sent to you that the way it is now, if you sing one hypnosis show, you sing them all.
And that’s very unfortunate. Imagine if every time you went to see a band, they all played exactly the same songs. Well, there wouldn’t be bands anymore. So I, I would not just teach anyone how to do a course. I’ve had people ask, I won’t mention any names, but, um, the, the handful of people that I have trained all have made six figure incomes with what I’ve taught them.
Uh, some of ’em in the fair industry, some of them in the, uh, college market, but there’s, there’s only been a handful of people. So I’ve been very, very, very careful about who I taught and to be somebody that I really believed could go out and, and make a mark on the industry. Now, there. Literally hundreds and hundreds, maybe possibly thousands of people out trying to do shows.
Well, I’ve seen this happen. A couple say I’ve been doing this for 55 years. There’ve been a couple of times that our industry almost died out completely because, and again, I’m not gonna mention the name, but a few years ago there was a course that taught everybody, I think it was 4 95. And people were coming from all over the world to take this, this program to learn to be a stage iist.
And I still run into people today. So yeah, I’m a qualified stage iist because I took such and such course like 25 years ago. But what happened was the industry died out because people didn’t want a hypnotist anymore. Uh, you, you went to see some, you talked with a buyer and they said, No, no, we tried to hit just, it doesn’t work with our crowd.
Well, of course it would’ve worked with their crowd, but they. A guy who didn’t know what he was doing, he tried to do his cookie cutter show. So to answer your question, I agree with what they’re saying and I was one of the people complaining loudest about it. But then it occurred to Laney over the years has done not one bit of good.
Why don’t I actually try to fix the problem if they’re going to be out there anyway? A good hypnotist, a good hypnosis show is good for everyone’s business. When I started in the fair business, there was. Ben Vander made and Ben was getting ready to retire. We made the hypnosis business so popular in the fair industry that every, there are now more hypnotists in the fair industry than than hot dog vendors.
But it’s because all of a sudden people were coming to the fair not to see the headline Act, but to see the hypnotist. Now, I’m told that where I used to pull in some of the fairs that I worked and I turned over to some other people that I was drawing five and 7,000 people a. They’ve now moved them down to venues where they have three and 400 people a show.
Well, in a few years, fairs are gonna quit using hypnotist altogether cause of that every, they’re all the same. Uh, possibly we can fix that by making everybody better, better than they are now, and better being the best they can be at what they’re doing. So I agree with what they say, but instead of just complaining about it, I decided to try to.
I love it. I love it. There there’s a theme. I’d love to hear your thoughts on that. You see any good concert, you see any good, uh, play any good production, and there’s a balance of, let’s call it texture in the inside of the program, um, that I can reference. Uh, there, there have been times where I’ve seen a couple of shows, one after the other in different venues, and.
It’s the, Okay, I’m gonna play the big loud song. Everyone’s gonna get up and dance. I’m gonna play the big loud song. Everybody’s gonna get up and dance. And it’s basically the same routine over and over. As you’re, as you’re crafting your program, how much thought are you giving to, let’s call it the texture of the program as the hypnotist one.
One of my other problems with the cloud of equipment to sit is they are the stars of the show. The stars. You have no business being the stars. You’re stars are the people in the. And that’s why I don’t think you should lay your stars on the floor. You don’t. There’s a lot of things we will talk about in the class, but as a hypnotist, you should be the director, like the director of a movie.
You’ve seen the directors before do this. Mm-hmm. , where they’re framing the shot. Right. Well, why do they, That’s what it’s going to look like to the camera and what it’s going to look like to the people in the. If you’ve got three rows of people in the back row, can’t be seen by the people who are on a lower level.
The camera can’t see ’em, which means the people can’t see ’em, which means even subconsciously, they’re irritated by it. But imagine going to see a movie and it’s all panoramic shots. The movie’s boring. If it’s all dialogue shots, the movie’s boring. If it’s all action scenes, the movie is boring and exhausting.
As the director, it is your job to make a master. Of you, you’ve got some panoramic shots, which are your group skits. You’ve got some, uh, individual shots. If, if it’s all panoramic, your group skits and that’s all you’re doing. It looks like eventually after about three bits, it looks like mass chaos. People don’t know where to where to look.
As the director, it’s your job. To train your audience and have them looking where you want them to look. That’s why you shift over and you do a group skit right there. You don’t want your audience looking at that end of the stage when you’re doing something on this end of the stage, as the director, you frame every shot and you have to be thinking about like this.
What is the audience seeing, what’s the camera seeing, which is one of the reasons why when you’re doing a bit and you’re doing conversation, that you move from different sides so that people on the left side of the room can, can see the reaction that the people on the right side of the room just saw.
So in front and laying out a program, and I, I never think about what I’m going to do until I walk on the stage. I, I will not think about it. I don’t want to know. I, I, because I get my best ideas from looking at people in the audience, but in the back of my mind, I know. Creating a movie, and I’m the director, which means I’m in control.
I I Sometimes you feed them the lines. Well, you, you don’t depend on your actors to write their own scripts, . Um, so you’ve, and you say, Okay, I need, I want a panoramic view to begin with, and then I wanna focus in on my stars, and then I want a comedy conversation, and then I want another panoramic view so that all of a sudden, instead of just watching one thing and you get tired of watching it, you’re watching a masterpiece unfold right in front of you.
That’s the way a good. Even. Even your pre-talk, you remember the Star Wars movie where the titles were rolling. That was basically the pre-talk. It set up the premise so that the rest of the MO you would accept and believe the rest of the movie had that pre-talk or had that scrolling gone on for another minute and a half.
The movie probably would not have been nearly successful because most of the people would’ve been. Two board from watching all of those type, it was just enough to grab your attention to make it believable, Not enough. It didn’t go into all the credits and, and, and all the education and, and, and who Dorothy Vader was just enough to make the story believable.
So how do I craft the show? I think of myself as. Of the director of a masterpiece that I’m creating that night. I love it. I love it. So excited to be there at this event. Once again, you can head over to Terry Stokes live.com to see all the details. It’s gonna be Tuesday and Wednesday in Las Vegas, May 16th and 17th.
Details for the hotel details of, uh, this is being hosted at, uh, Catherine Hicklin. Hypnosis training center. Uh, there’s uh, a mix of people who have already signed up. Some of them are well seasoned hypnotist who have been, uh, honestly have sent me the message saying, I’ve been waiting for Terry to finally do a class like this.
We also have some folks that are on the newer side of things and just now getting into doing shows. They’ve got experience on the hypnotherapy side, kind of similar to how you started out. And then they’re looking to make that transition. What, uh, what benefit would you say, um, would be there for the, for the, let’s call them the beginner.
They already have some hypnosis training, but now they’re looking at learning how to do the stage show and they’re looking at this upcoming event. The benefit will be, Getting it won’t, will not be nearly as hard to get them to forget all the BS that they’ve learned over the years. Uh, . It, it’ll, once you’ve learned how to do something wrong and, and it’s not working, and you’re just stagnant and you’re doing the same thing over and over again.
It’s a habit. And as shipments as we know about habits, don’t we, they’re hard to get rid of. Mm-hmm. . Well, the newbie is gonna come and they, they’ll take what we say to heart, they’re going to learn it the right way the first time. That’s so true. I can reference back to some of my original training and it, it was here was the show that I started out with, and as soon as I learned something new, as soon as I had crafted a new routine to put in there, even in the format of working with clients here in my office.
It’s so easy to fall back on the old habits. It’s so easy to fall back on. Just what comes easy as opposed to really putting something new out there and having that confidence. What, what advice can you give to people? Uh, this one popped up from a few folks about, uh, who was the, Deborah asked this one.
How is the hypnotist certain and confident that the program is actually going to work before you even pull up the volunteers? May I tell you a story? Ah, I love it. Uh, I, I tell a lot of. One of the first shows that I ever did was in Macon, Georgia, and it was in the basement of a nightclub, and I had booked two shows that night.
And, uh, Jack had told me that I was good, that he thought I could be good. And I went in and I was married at the time and my knees were knocking so loud the audience couldn’t hear me talk . I mean, I, I was literally shaking. Uh, and I went back and I got polite applause because I mean, they, they could see that I’m, this had to be my second show, maybe it might have been my first show.
And I went down to what was my dressing room, which was a closet. And I literally, because I, I had poured everything in this, I wanted this so much, and I, I, I was really ready to just start weeping and my wife came in and she said, Terry, You’ve got to be the dumbest son of a bitch I’ve ever seen in my entire life.
You help hundreds of people every year. You give them the confidence to go out and do what they want to do themselves, yet you’re too stupid to use it on yourself. I sat down and I used self hypnosis and I told myself that every time my hand touched the microphone, I would have all the poison confidence of Dean Martin, who was my, has always been my idol, and I would have the confidence in the PO of Dean Martin.
I went back out and did my second show when I, my hand grabbed the microphone. Well, that second show, I got a standing ovation, and it’s not because I was that good, it was because they saw the improvement that had happened in one hour. Now believe if you believe in what you’re doing, use it on yourself. I had to be, 30 years later, I was doing a television interview, and you know how they’d come in and they’d pin the lapel mics on?
I’d always made a point of grabbing the bite myself and pinning it on. Well, this particular time I. In conversation and someone just came over and pinned the mic on me and I forgot to touch the microphone. I was stammering during the interview. Fortunately it was taped and I was able to say, Can we start over?
I started stammering and stuttering just like I did at that first show, cuz I had not done the one thing that just, which was touching a microphone. I used to carry a little microphone about this big on my key chain. After that, uh, I would take the, when I, when I would go in, I would grab that microphone and then put it away.
Now you can call it the superstition, but for me it worked. Um, the one another thing Ted peeve that I have about our industry is so many hypnotists say, Well, no, I can’t be hypnotized. Well, do you not know what you’re doing? I mean, you tell every people that everyone can be enot. Have you never been in a show?
Well, no. I don’t wanna be in a show. I’m afraid I’d be in, If you have never been hypnotized in someone’s show, you have no business doing it because how can you possibly know as the host of this party and as the director of the party and as the director? The greatest director started off as actors. If you don’t know what the people on that stage are feeling and what they’re experiencing, you have no business directing.
Anytime. If I’m someplace and no one and there’s a Heman system, they don’t know who I am, I will always get in the show because you need to remind yourself what it feels like to be one of those people. Okay. I’ll step down off my soapbox. No, I love that. That was actually, uh, an honest turning point for me many years ago that I was kind of the part-time person still maintaining my old job.
And I had volunteered for another hypnotist show. He did a program at a high school. It wasn’t promoted that well, and uh, ended up, I think, with more people on stage than there were in the audience. So the first thought was, Yeah, I’ll go up there. And suddenly I was doing the things that were being suggested and then I was hearing them.
So, you know, back to a Dave Alman school of thought, the, the bypassing of the critical faculties of the mind, right? It was that moment of going, Oh, that’s what this is. Mm-hmm. and you know, from the hypnotherapy side of things, Oh, that’s right. We’re retraining a new automatic response. And from the stage hypnosis side of things, that experience where to really highlight where someone on stage says something absolutely hilarious, they make a really unique choice and it suddenly, It is bringing that show to even greater levels and to be able to watch that person in that moment and really tell it’s a genuine response, and be able to gauge who you pick for these individual solo routines.
I think that’s probably some of the best advice out there, uh, to, to just get up there and experience it for yourself. Mm-hmm. , I’m, you know, I’m looking as forward to this class. I think some of the people I’ve talked to. Because I’m, you never stop learning in this business. And, and, uh, for example, yesterday I picked up two routines, some stuff that I’d never thought of that will go in the show.
Uh, so just like when, when you were talking about you were in this show, how much you learn? I’m expecting to learn a lot myself from this class. Um, and I, I’m hoping everyone gets as much out of it as I do. Cause if they do, it’ll be well worth it if you learn. My thinking is if I get one new idea, one new bit, that’s gonna make my show that much.
Which kind of brings one of the, one of the bonuses that you’ve offered inside of this. Again, details [email protected] that, uh, you had volunteered that you would as a bonus, uh, review and help fix people’s shows who are attending. Yeah. Tell us about that. That’s, uh, well, I wanna see your best work after you, after you go out and I wanna see a video of what you did and I wanna see of what you can do now.
And then I, I’d like to be able to sit down and watch the video and not tear it apart, but to go through and say, What if you had done it this way, you think you would’ve gotten a better response from the audience? You think you would’ve gotten a bigger laugh, You think the person would’ve responded better to the suggestion, had you done it this way or worded it this way?
Uh, or instead of making that a group skill, what if you had made it just two people doing it that way? You got the focus of the audience that they know what they’re looking at. They know that to laugh at a certain point. So I wanna be able to, I wanna take videos over the next few. after the class, I’m gonna ask everyone to send me a video of what they consider to be their best work.
And I’d like to try to even make that better, uh, not by saying I, and I, I don’t mean to sound arrogant in doing this, but please understand, I have been doing this for 55, oh, probably 55 years. I have done, uh, for a lot of those years. When I was in the fair industry, I was doing three shows a day in front of three to 5,000 people per show.
When I was doing clubs, I was doing two and three. If you add all that, I’ve done a lot of shows into surviving this business as long as I have, you have to pick up a few things. So again, I don’t mean to sound arrogant, but I, I promise you, I’ve tried it the way that you’re, that you’re doing it right now and I’ve tried it this way and I picked the one that works best.
Let me share that with you. Outstanding. And speaking of sharing, there’s a really cool bonus here of, uh, they resell rights to the key. Tell us, tell us a little bit more about the key. Years ago I did a, a, uh, I was in my twenties. I took a. I joined a program called Dare to Be Great. It was, uh, Glen w Turner’s, uh, motivation program.
And one of the things that I learned in that program was, well, not one of the things that I, I attribute my success in this industry to, the things I learned in that program Dare to Be Great, was actually the 4runner of Tony Robinson’s program. It was the first truly great success motivation program. Uh, and I, I was, I became an adventure for instructor in that program.
One of the things that bothered me years later, I saw so many people go through the program and not that they would get excited for a while, but they wouldn’t live the principles that they learned. They would get jacked up and then a few weeks later they were back to the old thing. And I was, It always bothered me.
Why did it work for me? It worked for a few people. It should, I mean, if the principles are true, it should work for everyone. And I was talking to a weight control class one. And the answer hit me. The one thing that I had learned that, that I used when I was practicing the principles that I learned in Dare to Be Great, I programmed them into my head with self hypnosis.
I used hypnosis, so the key program, and I, Mr. Turner’s retired now. This is how I feel about taking other people’s material. I contacted Mr. Turner. We’d since become actually good friends, but I asked for his permiss. To take the Dare to Be Great course and add hypnosis to it. And that program is called The Key.
And the reason I called it the key is I felt that’s what was the only thing that was missing and Dare to Be Great was the key program. So the key is six hours of video that I want you to use. Uh, but also I started adding things to it that I thought other hyp images needed, especially the newies you need.
Product. A good part of your income is gonna be product sales. To go into a studio nowadays is very expensive. So I’ve included, I’ve added to the key, a book called Understanding Hypnosis, which has actual scripts for what your main product should be. Weight control, stop smoking, stress management, if you don’t want to, if you don’t have access to a studio.
I also licensed you with the purchase. By going to this class, you can take any of my 33 different titles and I, you can sell those without paying me any royalties. I’m giving you the rights to sell them. You can put your name on it as, as done by Terry Stokes. Uh, and every, everyone just told me that’s insane.
You’re letting people sell your products without royalties. The point is I want the people that are starting into business and that don’t have the tools that they need to be successful. If they’re successful, then they’re going, It’s good for my business. It’s good for everybody’s business. If, if, if they’re not successful, if they’re pulling up in front of their, the place that they’re working in a beat up car or in a wagon pool by a horse, and they’re getting out in a, If they’re not making money, then, oh, I guess hypnosis is not.
Which actually, when I think about it, that might be a good thing that might get some of the people outta the business. Now, I’m kidding. . Uh, I won’t, I, I truly wanna see people be successful in it. So I’m offering, you can take any of my books and say, uh, you can add your name authored by you and Terry Stokes.
Uh, and so anyway, the key program, or 33 different audio tapes, uh, four hours of video called Best of Stok. That’s the funniest things that I feel that have happened on my stage in the. 45 plus years. I say 45 cause I put the key out 10 years ago. Uh, it’s got, uh, six hours of the success motivation, which is to dare to be great program.
It’s got a past life regression segment, which isn’t an area hypnosis that a lot of people don’t work with, but it’s one of the most fascinating areas of hypnosis. Uh, and it’s got a special segment for kids programs for. Getting better grades in school and for teenagers. So with this program, you, you get not only a copy of the key, and I don’t actually, I don’t have one here.
This picture’s over on the website . Okay? But you get a key, but you have the rights to everything and I’ll let you use that. That’s outstanding. So once again, this event is gonna be Tuesday and Wednesday, May 16th and 17th in Las Vegas. Head over to Terry Stokes live.com to check out all the details. Uh, affordable to fly to, very affordable to stay at.
Uh, I actually looked at the SOUTHPOINT website just before we jumped on. I was seeing room rates in the low sixties, uh, which used Catherine’s Place average. Oh yeah. Oh yeah. And you, you’ve gotta see Catherine’s, uh, Hypnosis Training Center that she’s got parents. All your meals are included during the day as well.
Your breakfast, your snacks, your lunch. She knows how to class it up for a training. Yeah, it is a, Well, as, as you know, she is a classy, classy lady. Yeah. Her, her training facility, uh, reflects that. Absolutely. You gotta see this. So we’re gonna wrap up in a couple of moments here and, uh, again, I see some, uh, action coming in over on the website once again.
Terry Stokes live.com space is limited. So as you’re looking at that sign up early, the bonuses, even the fact of getting your program reviewed. I love the fact that even for the newbies, uh, you gave them a wonderful hypnotic suggestion that they will be going out there doing their show in the first couple of months.
Uh, very clever of you, uh, tell you a quick story and then I’d love to. Um, there’s something of, uh, your experience that kind of mirrors it, that honestly, I’m someone who kind of similar to you, I’ve done a little bit in different parts of hypnosis, clearly not to the same level that you have. Uh, but I’ve was the stage hypnotist.
I’ve been the hypnotherapist, I’ve been the instructor a and there was an honest moment a couple of years back that I was about to leave behind the shows. I was about to leave behind the performance side because I wanted to be taken seriously as the instructor and as the hypnotherapist. And I’m working at a college in Michigan at the time, and the, the woman who had arranged everything, the program’s over big audience, big attendance, big, uh, you know, wonderful applause at the end.
But I’m kind of in my own head going, I don’t want to do this anymore. And she’s then coming over and she’s in tears. and my first thought is, What, what the hell did I do wrong? And it’s her going, Thank you so much. I haven’t seen my father laugh like that in years. Uh, so a couple of people were asking if there was ever a moment of let, let’s call it a personal challenge, that being able to be there on the stage, being able to share that experience with the audience.
Really revitalized exactly why it is that we have this great program to share. I’d like to actually share two stories with you, if I might. Absolutely. The first is a, a similar thing. I as, because I had done therapy before I started looking at the people coming in, I honestly believe that I helped more people in one day doing a show, and I helped the months as a therapist make a thousand people or even 500 or 200 people.
Forget for an hour, an hour and a half that they have any problems. If I can make them laugh at themselves, laugh at their neighbors, laugh at the world that they live in and smile, that is the best therapy there is. As a therapist, one of the things you try to get people to do is let go of their problems and realize the joy of the world.
Well, if I can get anyone to do that for an hour of their life, they could, There could be. The story I wanted to tell you was a few years ago at the Arizona State Fair, uh, that that had bleachers and. A lady that had been coming to see my show, the huge fan and at Also Must was a Barbecue. Two great, Love the barbecue, and one was the, uh, show she had a heart attack and was in and had open heart surgery.
She, and, but she kept telling her daughter, Well, I, I, I wanna kind of cut to this. They, the, the year after her surgery, they moved the barbecue stand to the other end of the fairgrounds. So she went in, got her seat, and then went to get her barbecue and found out they’d moved the barbecue stand. So she went running to the other end of the fairgrounds, ran back, got her seat, and just as we started, the show stood up and fell over dead.
Thing going around with the fairgrounds was, Oh, I hear, I hear you. Killing him over, over to your stage. Well, I, I was, I was torn up about this until about a month later. I got a letter from her daughter and her daughter wanted to thank me. She said, My mother kept telling her doctors she had to be out of the hospital in time, in, in time to, for the fair cuz she had to go see Terry Stokes, the doctors when she got outta the hospital said she didn’t have that long anyway, the surgery had not gone that.
But her daughter was thinking, because she said, my mother’s last moment was doing exactly what she had been wanting to do. She died totally happy because she was sitting there and I don’t know if you remembered or not, but as you were walking through the crowd, you stopped and said hello to her. But these apparent, you’d seen her there before.
If that one thing made. This daughter losing her mother a little bit easier if she was able to say, My mom at least died happy. She died doing what she wanted to do, not so much that the, that the mother did that, but it was able to ease the daughter’s pain a little bit. At that moment, I realized what I’m doing had some value because if it affected her this way, I know it affected somebody else that way too.
So it, um, it had value. So something that that made it mean something to. That’s the best example I can give you. Beautiful, beautiful. So looking forward to hanging out with you once again. Again, it’s gonna be May 16th and 17th in Las Vegas. Definitely event you wanna be there in the room to experience.
Head over to Terry Stokes live.com for all the details. Payment plans are available. That way you can spread out the investment and jump into this outstanding training. Terry, thank you so much for spending time with us here today. Jason, thank you so much. Absolutely more fun. Okay,
Jason Lynette back here once again, proud to have shared the stage with Terry during this webinar and this podcast session. And once again, head over to Terry Stokes live.com to learn more about his upcoming better your best training, Terry Stokes live.com. Thanks for listening to the Work Smart Hypnosis Podcast and work smart hypnosis.com.