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This is the Work Smart Hypnosis Podcast. Session number 211, Howard Cooper ruins a magic trick. 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. Welcome back to the program to you and a welcome back to the program to Howard Cooper here on the program for the second time.
Uh, last time was back in December, 2017, episode number 142 for those of you keeping track and counting along for fun. And Howard comes to us out of the UK and just an amazing worker of a hypnotist as well as, Fellow Hypnosis podcaster. Check out his program, the Rapid Change Works podcast, as well as heading over to his website, Rapid change.works to learn about the programs that Howard mentions here inside of this conversation, and I’ll set this one up for you before we officially jump in, that there’s a moment that Howard does sometimes that’s the key phrase here.
Sometimes in his process, if the client raises the question, What do I do if this wears? What do I do if this stops working? And I’ve always been a firm believer in the mindset of show rather than tell. And admittedly, this is a moment that for years I’ve just been talking, I’ve just been telling them how, well, here’s why.
That’s not the case. And I think Howard has a really cool way of showing and demonstrating that mindset, whe which, whether this specific moment is within your skillset. Or not really Doesn’t matter, because you’ll see the way that we even talk about the metaphor of the magician at the back of the audience, there might be a way to do it by metaphor rather than just demonstration.
But then again, it’s a really cool moment when Howard explains this. So you’re gonna hear through this conversation what he’s been up to ever since, and I’d highly recommend head over to Rapid change.works and subscribe to his program. And for further online hypnosis training, check out hypnotic workers.com.
This is. Has passed to my hypnosis training library in a digital easy to digest format. Check that out [email protected]. And with that, let’s jump directly into this quick mini episode of a week. This is session number 211. Howard Cooper ruins a magic trick.
So we were chatting a little while ago and there was something that you told me the story of that you’ve put into, I believe it was your pre-talk, a bit of a, a bit of an experience that you then, uh, let’s phrase it this way, to kind of kick it off, to change the experience of it after they’ve had the experience.
How cryptic is that? Uh, I have no clue what you are even talking about. Exactly. An conversation we had. Yeah, so elaborate on that then. . Well, I do, you know what it’s, I, it’s not something that I do in the pre-talk so much as it’s a moment. Well, but you can do it in the pre-talk, but it developed from a moment that I often had with people.
If anyone said towards the end or any point during a session like, , does this stuff last? Yeah. Like will it be a lasting change? And rather than just kind of try and persuade them with words, I like to give them an experience where they suddenly go, Oh, of course, of course it’s gonna last. How could it not?
Um, so what I do is I show them a magic trick and I’ve. For those of you who have heard my past, uh, conversation with Jason in the, uh, the podcast series that we talked about, my background as a magician, and, uh, I interweave a particular effect where I essentially hold up my hands in front of them. Well, you’ve already caught on an effect, so we know it’s better than a magic trick.
Absolutely, yes. It’s not just an. Yeah, . I do, I do effects and um, yeah, so it’s all essentially, I have my hands up in front of them for normally about a minute, and I just sort of like keep them there. And there’s this really funny moment where they look about uncomfortable going, like, there’s this lunatic looking at me with his hand in the air.
Why, What do I have to do? And I’ll just kind of hold it and hold their gaze and for a minute I’ll reach forward and I’ll just pull out a red handkerchief from my hands and they always go, Oh. Cuz they get shocked as to where that came from. Yeah. At which point they think it’s all a bit, It’s like, why am I here?
What am I doing here? What’s this all about? But I’ll say to them like, Do you know how I did? And just to re just to recap that, so you’re sitting there for a few moments with empty hands. Hmm. Totally empty. And you’re holding that to the moment where it’s a few seconds too long, and then from bare hands, you’re then producing a little red handkerchief.
Yeah. The only thing I would say is that I’m holding it far longer. Okay. For the little tick, I, I want them to have that moment of like really squirming in their seat going, What on earth is going on? And cuz even that takes them out, that kind of known pattern of what to expect. But even for the, uh, for the quality of the sorry effect, uh, for the quality of that, it’s very clear that your hands are empty, but then suddenly magic happens and there’s a little red hanky.
Absolutely. And uh, they normally go, Oh, they, they giggle, they laugh, They like fall back on their chair, uh, on the chair and. It’s a funny moment, and I’ll say, Do you know how I did that? And they’ll go, Uh, no. And this is where I’m now going to become the, uh, probably get death threats from magicians all around the world, as I reveal the true secret of, uh, this.
And I, but I, I do this to my clients and I’ll say It’s a fake thumb. And I pull off and I show them I got this like fake thumb. But the best thing about this fake thumb that I use, uh, Like it’s really fake. Mm-hmm. , like, it doesn’t, it barely matches the color of my skin. It, it like hangs over cause I got really slim thumbs and this thing is like too big for me, so it hangs over.
But the funny thing is, is, and, and all that happens is the hanky gets stuffed in there and it, and you stick your thumb in it. But here’s the thing, when you just hold your hands up to establish that they’re empty and you didn’t tell ’em about fake. , they’re not processing it. Their, their attention is not drawn on that, and they genuinely do not see it.
Mm-hmm. . But the moment I say to them, Hey, look, it’s a fake thumb, and look how terrible it looks. It doesn’t even match my skin tone. Look, it doesn’t even match the size of my thumb. And they go, Oh my God. It doesn’t, I like, how did I not see that? And I’ll say, Well, I’ll try and fool you again and watch what happens.
And I’ll go through the same thing again. And they start laughing. I go, Why are you laughing? They go, Because all I can see is a fake thumb. How could I ever be taken in. And I’ll say, and that’s exactly right. Once you have that piece of information, you’ve been told something new that you didn’t have before, how could you ever be fooled by it again?
And that’s what we’re gonna do now. We’re gonna give you some new information. And once you have it, like your brain has that, you can’t go back to how things were, I always say to them, like, if I tried to do this trick for you in three weeks time, would you still be, would you then be fooled by it or would you say, Well, you know, three weeks ago, I, I kind of forgot.
They’re like, No, you could do it in five years time or 10 years time. I’m still. gonna know that it was a fake thumb . So it gives them that experience of going, Oh yeah, it, And I’m often of the belief that sometimes with this kind of stuff, like the argument doesn’t have to necessarily make perfect sense.
Mm-hmm. , it just has to feel like it does enough for them to buy in. Yeah. You know, of all things, there’s a, there’s a comedian who does a political show over here by the name of Bill Mar, and I think I’ve brought him up here before, just for the reason of, there’s one routine that he does on his TV show, which is called, I don’t know if this is a fact, but it sure sounds like it’s true,
Yep. Yeah. And there’s something in that moment of, you know, the correlation of, and I have to say, I reached out to you originally with the phrasing that, Hey Howard, I wanna do an episode called Howard Cooper ruins a magic trick. Cause I think that’s a really great moment. Um, which, which mine has been for years.
If I taught you a new word, you know, here, here’s a funny story of a time I had to look up what the curly part at the end of a staircase is. To find out that it’s called alo. And now I know that, which was a much longer story, but there you are. Rubing a magic trick and driving the home, driving the point home a whole lot better.
Well, it, it, it, it’s, it’s the Thank you so much. I have to tell you, it was the only time I’ve ever been on Amazon going out of my way to buy something that got work. Really terrible reviews. Nice . Cause I was looking and like people were going super realistic and it, it really matches skin tone. And I was like, Nope.
Not, not the point. I want one that, that really makes the point clear. Um, the other thing that I do sometimes, and it’s the same, the same kind of thing, but I’ll often take them into that story where, I’ll go. Have you ever been like really involved in a TV show? Like super, Like just waiting, desperate for the next episode or finale to come out and on the day it comes out, you can’t watch it.
You’re not there live to see it. So you tell everyone, if you see it before me, don’t ruin it for me. Don’t tell me don’t, don’t give it away. And on your, you know, the last day. You know, you manage to go almost the whole day and just five minutes before you, uh, you watch it live, you check your mail or whatever, and someone sends you what happens and the main character dies.
Oh no, how could it be? And it’s ruined. Like you can’t go back to not knowing. So that’s another way I’ll often skin the cat, uh, with that kind of thing, where if they can really, if they’re a TV B and they get very involved in that, they go, Oh yeah, I know what that’s like. . They often, uh, they often relate to that too.
But no, the magic trick is, is cool. I like ruining magic. What can I say, ? No, I share that, uh, using that theme, it’s actually something that I, I have modeled since you told me about that. Um, but in the context of just more conversation, I do like the visceral experience of actually doing it, but explaining that the real reason the magician doesn’t do the trick again.
Is not that you might figure it out the second time, which is part of it. Perhaps it’s more so that you now know the end of the trick. That by nature of most magic tricks, there’s a surprise at the end of it. So if here’s the magician on stage and they’re handcuffed and put into a male sack, which is the thing that you know, you do, and uh, they’re trying to escape, and then suddenly the bag co collapses to the floor and it’s empty.
And now magician is in the back of the audience blowing a whistle. You turn around and look and go, Oh, there they are. You know, how would you watch the trick a second time? You’d be sorry. How would you watch the effect a second time? You’d be looking in the back of the audience going, Oh, there they are.
Yep. Waiting for that revelation. So let, let me ask you this. If, if someone had a follow up question on that, and let’s put this into the context of, let’s say fear of flying. How, how would you just unpack the metaphor if you really had to? Um, I don’t think I’ve ever had a follow up. About that. Beautiful.
They kind of just go, Yeah, that makes sense. You know, I mean, ultimately the, the way I often start my sessions or talk to people is around saying, Well listen, I’m gonna invite you to take everything that you think you know about this issue and just kind of totally put it to one side. Because if the solution to this issue lay in what you already knew, you wouldn’t be here.
Beautiful. And they kind of nod. Um, and therefore, the best way I know how to help you see something. It’s for me to give you information that you haven’t got before. Now, if I combine that with the visceral feeling that they get of the thumb tip, that’s the technical term, by the way. I’m so sorry.
Magicians, . Um, but the, the fake thumb. And they have that visceral experience of, Wow, now I’ve seen something new. It can never go back. Well, there’s enough dots, I think, unconsciously for them to join, which. I explain my job is now in relation to flying or anxiety or whatever the problem is to help you see something new.
And once you see it, that has the domino knock on effect of changing everything. So once you’ve set those pieces up, people tend not to have kind of, you know, those, uh, further questions. Awesome, Awesome. So then is there a specific context where you’ve been using this or is it kind of the uh, just one more thing if necessary.
It, it’s a, for me, it’s a one more thing if necessary. Yeah. Or if I feel like. If they’ve raised concerns about like, is this stuff permanent or Right. You know, they come, I mean, I had someone a few weeks ago and they were like, Well, you know, I’m, I’m looking forward to today. I, I know it can be effective, but my friend said that they did hypnotherapy and it only lasted for four weeks.
You know, so I, they’re kind of coming already with some ideas that I, that aren’t necessarily helpful to them. Right. So I wanna do everything I can do before we set about helping them, uh, to, for me it’s about setting the frame and, and expectation correctly to make sure that they know that it, it can change.
But more than that, once they see something differently, it’s done. Right. Yeah. It’s locked in. It’s this idea as well of, you know, I see a lot of people, you know, handing out, you know, recordings. You know, now you have to, now we’ve done the hypnosis. You have to listen to the recording every night for the next seven weeks.
It’s, it puts the idea it’s not done. Mm-hmm. , you know, um, and there are method, there are times where I think those sorts of follow ups are useful. You know, I wanna do what I can ahead of time to make sure that it, it’s, it, it’s as most streamlined as it can be. The change. Right. Well, I mean, you mentioned just setting the frame of something that it’s, you know, in terms of how we produce something of that nature, how we share it, if that’s gonna be part of the process.
That, uh, who was that? There’s an old story of Jerry K. That, and whether the details of the story are factually accurate or not, I’m not sure, but I love the premise of it that he’d go, Oh, I had them a stop smoking audio cassette after the, which dates the story? I give them a stop smoking audio cassette.
After the session, and as I handed to him, I tell them, Look, you’re not gonna need this, but here you go. Anyway. Yeah. And, and the teaching of that moment, he would talk about how, oh, it was a blank audio cassette. That was my check to see if it worked. Which, um, , whether or not that part was again, uh, tall tale or fact.
But it’s where if, if I am gonna share some sort of audio with a client, you know, it’s gonna be, here’s a technique and the more you make use of this technique, the less you’re going to need it. So rather than, again, I, I found something with that context of, you know, if you ever give somebody the premise as to here’s why it’s not going to work.
Yeah. You know, Oh, you have to listen to this with headphones because it’s in stereo and as soon as the person, you know, doesn’t have headphones, Oh, it’s not going to work. Because, Yeah. Although I, I will share a funny story about years ago when I used to do the, the recordings for people and some, someone rang me and said, uh, I, I, Your, your recording was, I, I didn’t get on with it at all.
I was like, Why not? They said, Well, I kept kind of zoning out, so to make sure I didn’t zone out, I set an alarm to go off every two minutes , so, so that I could make sure I was fully conscious as listen, listened, and I’ve had no benefits. Um, yeah, that, that was, that was fun. But, but going back to something you.
You just said, I have a kind of a framing of, uh, something that’s quite similar. Well, I’ll often talk about the example of being in a room, like imagine, I’ll say. Imagine if you were in a room with a TV and it turned on too loud. It was just like blaring offensively loud level a hundred, top of the scale.
You know, what would you do? You wouldn’t freak out, would you like? You’d just reach forward and take the remote control and turn it down. That’s it. However, you watch someone in a room with the tv, it goes on too loud, level a hundred blaring, and you’ve taken the batteries out the remote, you’ll watch them start freaking out.
Ah, ah, how do I shut down? Quick, Quick, What do I do? What do I do? The interesting thing is not that it’s too loud, that’s the problem, it’s that they feel like they have no control. So sometimes I’ll do a session where I’ll say, I’m gonna give you a bunch of tools. These are like your remote control, but the fact that you have it sitting in front of you means you’ll never need to use it.
Hmm. Nice. You know, and then I’ll reinforce that as we go through. Like, this is another thing that you won’t need. But knowing it means that it’s sitting there, the safety of the remote with the full batteries in. Yeah. So you’re trying to suggest to me that somehow metaphor is actually a useful tool for us.
Well, I wouldn’t say that, but that does remind me of a story about my friend John . Uh, listen, I think metaphor and evoking states through conversation. That’s where it’s all done. I mean, you had a really nice point earlier about, uh, And that, you know, you don’t do the effect the second time cuz they know where to look and at that point they can track it.
That that’s a lot for me, how I work. I think a lot of magic effects the trickery, sneaky little bit that the magician does, happens well before the person knows to look out for it. Right. And it’s the same with, uh, you know, client work that I do. I wanna put all the seeds in ahead of time, the framing, the ideas, the suggestions, where it’s going, the fact that it’s possible so that by the time we do an inverted commas of the hypnosis, it’s kind of all done already.
Mm-hmm. , they can’t resist it cuz they don’t know where to look. I’m already at the back of the auditor. Waiting to come on and they didn’t know what’s the principle that in sales that we should not be asking for the sale until we’re already certain we’ve already got it. That’s when we make that pivot and the mindset in the session that I’m not going to officially go close your eyes, follow my instructions until I know that that that change, that effect is firmly in motion.
I mean, even to look at hypnotic phenomenon, I’m not going to say, try to bend your arm until I already see that we’ve already got that magical result. Absolutely. Yeah. Absolutely. And that’s not how it used to. I mean, years and years ago, I, I was thinking at some point of preparing a talk to share, uh, called something along the cringeworthy moments of my life, as a therapist, just because I think there’s a lot of people out there who see, you know, some amazing top, uh, hypnotherapist and trainers, but it almost feels like they’ve never had the very human moments of where, you know, you totally screw up or totally.
Cock up or something goes wrong and No, no. I think we’ve all had them and it’s quite, I think we need one of those stories now. Howard. Uh, okay. Yes. Well, I I walked into that one, didn’t I? Jason , I, I remember doing, there was a time at which I used to do arm catay towards the end of a session, and I dunno why you used to do this.
Looking back, I, I do cringe. Here’s the cringeworthy. where I, you could have had an amazing session with someone. Done some really good work. And then foolishly, I would manage to tie every possible good thing that we’d have covered during that session to whether or not I could get arm catay. So not even stacking the odds in my favor, lifting the arm up.
You know, so you’ve got GRA and lifting it over their head. So you got gravity working, get to you? No, literally stone cold on their lap doing nothing. Can I get it to rise up? You know, so your handball rise up now only at the speed and rate. You can integrate all of these positive changes. News flash, if this thing doesn’t come up.
Now we’ve created a complex equivalence between the last hour and a half is totally wasted. Just kidding, . Yeah, exactly. So I remember with, with one gentleman, you know, and it was like, I thought, Okay, it is going, Nothing’s happening. I’m doing everything I can, I’m, I’m timing my suggestions on his in breath so that as he breathes in maybe that the, the, the physiological feeling of it rising will encourage it to go up.
The lifting, the drifting, the words, the nonverbal communication. I’m throwing everything. I got to this thing and it’s stuck not moving anywhere. And, uh, I was not utilizing particularly well at this stage. We’re talking about 17 years ago now, and, um, I’m looking at my watch thinking I’ve got someone else coming in 15 minutes, so I’m there bashing away.
It’s lifting, it’s gonna rise. And the more it, it’ll go to the speed and rate please, , you know, and, and I’m sure he could hear the pleading, you know, beginning sort of, I’m looking at my watch, 10 minutes to go. And five minutes, four minutes. Three minutes. I know they’re gonna be waiting outside in a moment for the next thing.
This hand is still just laying like a limp fish on his lap. Nothing’s happening. And before I can even do anything else, he suddenly, like, peaks at me, opens his eyes, peaks at me, and goes, Nice try. Oh. And I’m just, and that was the moment. And I thought, there’s gotta be, there’s gotta be a better way of doing this of, uh, So, yeah, that, that was one of those cringy moments.
But you know, for me, as long as you take those moments and then you go, Right, let’s reflect on it. What can I do differently next time? How can I make sure that I don’t back myself into a corner like that? Right. I mean, if anything, put all this suggestion after, once that thing is already moved. Yeah, yeah.
Absolutely. Get the movement and if it doesn’t go for heaviness, utilize it. Yeah. Utilize something. They don’t know where you’re going. Exactly. You know, um, so, you know, I, I think sometimes, you know, it, it doesn’t matter, like making some make mistakes now and then making some, having some cockups, some screwups, you know, as long as you can look back and laugh at them and then like not do it again.
I think like do something different next time that’s more effective. You know, that’s the difference. Well, before we wrap this up, uh, you were on the program a couple of years ago. Uh, what have you been up to since? What have I been up to since? So more podcast. Uh, so more conversations with leading therapists and Agents of Change.
Um, I created, uh, Rapid Change Works, uh, so that’s Rapid change.works has an online training portal now, so I’ve been putting on live events now, uh, to name a few. Yugen, Rasmusson, Felix, Eco Marcus, to name a few. Um, but we’ve, we’ve been very good at filming the material and putting it out in, uh, in an online format so that in easily digestible bite size chunks, you can go online and go through the material.
I wanted to find a way of, um, having material that you could go through at that kind of pace. I think, you know, we’ve all been guilty in the past of buying the, you know, the 17 DVD box set, watching the. You know, three hours and then never doing the rest of it. Um, but yeah, this, this seems to be a very nice way of integrating online training, cuz there’s also comments underneath each lesson as well.
Oh, nice. Uh, so there’s, there’s a growing community of people who can get support from going through it. So look, you’re not, you’re not stranger to the online training world, but I think it’s a really, really cool format so people can certainly check that out. Um, but yeah, I, I’m really just getting focused on getting.
Uh, and doing as much change work as I can, helping people. I’ve become agony uncle in a local press that covers, uh, it’s 12 papers that cover my local areas. That’s been very good for lead generation and various magazines as well. Getting myself out and about, making myself known so that people with issues can, uh, come and find me.
Outstanding. And before we wrap it up, any final thoughts to share, uh, in terms of setting the frame for change? Um, no. I mean, I, I think people, Well, do you know what, One thing I would say is we mustn’t assume that if someone turns up because for a change work session, that actually they’re ready or wanting to change.
Um, and that sometimes, you know, I think we can leap into change work too early before we’ve dotted the eyes and crossed the Ts and they’re not really on board yet. So, yeah, I mean, I can elaborate more if you’d like. Yeah. So what, what, what, what do you typically do in that situation then? What’s your guidance on that, let’s say?
Well, so, so for me, one of the things that’ll often start with is just a really nice open question. Why? What would you like to change today? And they’ll normally tell me, and I’ll, I’ll something, I’ll say something along the lines of, Would it be okay for this change to happen today? And they all say this to me.
They all say yes. Everyone apart from the way they say yes, tells you a lot. Yes. So someone that goes Absolutely sign me up, I’m ready is very different from someone who goes, Yeah, . And that’s someone who. There’s internal resistance. There’s something inside of them that, for me, it’s like an alarm. Be that if I jump into close your eyes, let’s make this happen.
But there’s this little seed of doubt somewhere in, in their mind. I, I, I tend to think it’s, it’s never quite as effective. Whereas if I can guide them through conversation through metaphor to uncover any internal resistance there is, help them look at it a different way. And finally, if I turn around to them and say, Listen, so like bear bearing in mind all this stuff that we’ve just been talking about, is it okay now for you to have this change today?
And they go, You know what? Thinking about Absolutely. Yes. Then I know I’m. For me, I, I call it clearing, clearing the space for change. Nice. So I wanna clear the space for change before I kind of do it. And I think that’s a big difference between how, how I work now, uh, in the last sort of six, seven years versus how I used to be Before.
I was very much like, Okay, do this, do that, do the other, We’re gonna change it, Do, do, do, do, do. And now it’s like, I wanna make sure that there’s the space, you have the internal head space and, and the mindset where you’re ready for this.
Jason Lynette here, and once again, thank you so much for interacting with this program, for sharing it on your social media streams and leaving your reviews online. Once again, head over to Rapid change.works. To check out Howard’s content, subscribe to his phenomenal podcast over on your favorite.
Podcasting app and uh, resource. And once again, check out hypnotic workers.com for the all access pass to my hypnosis training library. I’m Jason Lyte CX time. Thanks for listening to the Work Smart Hypnosis podcast and work smart hypnosis.com.