Last updated: 18 December 2015
Like a frame for a picture, hypnotic frames are the space in which we view things. These frames are how we put things into context and make sense of the world around us.
There are frames that would be hard to shift in other people’s minds. For example:
Can you imagine trying to convince someone that a pair of shoes were really for wearing on their hands?
However, frames can be shifted.
In the west, it is common to make assumptions about marriage when you see someone wearing a ring on the fourth finger of their left hand. But isn’t it possible that it is only decoration and not a wedding ring?
In Asia, wedding rings are often not worn at all and in parts of Europe they are traditionally worn on the right hand.
By inserting these other ideas into the mind of a subject, you have inserted doubt about the context of what they have seen and successfully begun to shift their frame.
In situations like this, you can begin to play with other people’s frames. When you can begin to try and shift the way they think that they see the world, you can make them see the world the way you want them to see it.
This is a powerful hypnotic tool for influencing others to come around to your point of view or believe what you want them to believe.
If you can influence those around you strongly enough to change the way they see the world, imagine what you are capable of in negotiations and other delicate conversations.
You’d be practically unstoppable.
And that is why learning what frames are, how and why you have them and how you can frame, shift frame, de-frame and reframe the beliefs and views of those around you is such an important step for anyone interested in harnessing the power of hypnosis to create, lead and maintain the life you want.
People tend to think of reality as a “black-and-white” factual kind of thing. In fact, reality is defined by our perception of the world around us, which is almost wholly the product of frames.
When you learn to control other people’s frames, you will have learned to control reality as they see it.
That’s why frames are important.
Where do we get our frames?
People’s frames are informed by their environment, upbringing, beliefs, experiences and whole slew of other factors.
When you imagine what the “perfect vacation” would be, it’s likely nothing like what your next door neighbor, your co-worker or even your closest friend would describe.
You have been building and informing the frames for everything in your life since birth.
We each have our own frames about what everything from a “family dinner” to a “nice sweater” should look like.
Our frames also inform all of our experiences. When you say to someone, “Hey, let’s go to an amusement park this weekend!” Both of you have a frame for what that trip would look like, what might happen during the day and how the park would appear. That is also a frame.
Having a frame allows us to expect and accept that we will have a certain kind of experience on a certain kind of outing. Not only does this allow us to have expectations, but it also allows you to actually make that happen. By expecting to have a certain kind of experience, we are also facilitating having that experience. That is also framing.
A frame is what we expect to happen when we do a certain thing or go to a certain place. They tell us not only what to expect, but how to act and react to the situations around us.
So what’s the use of these?
Frames are shorthand ways for us to make sense of the world. They contain all the information you have about a given idea, place or circumstance and insert all the information and context you have been given into the frame.
So, what are some simple ways for influencing other people’s frames?
1) Use an authoritative voice.
People are often hesitant to doubt an authoritative voice that speaks clearly and firmly expresses their point of view or desire. The more authority you can present and speak with, the more listening people will do to you and the more doubt they will place in their own assumptions.
If you can present yourself in this way, you will have far more success in shifting the frames of those around you.
2) Reframe Their Point of View
Reframing is a term used to describe influencing your subject so that they view a situation, event, time, place, item or situation in a new way. The way you want them to see it.
As you get better at this technique, you may find that you can even influence people to disregard a belief they had in the past or even believe ideas that run counter to the facts. This is often done by inserting doubt in what they have stated as their point of view and then encouraging them to think collaboratively with you about other possibilities.
3) Speak in Positives
Hypnotic framing works far better if you speak in positives and avoid negative words. Use words such as “right,” “do,” “can” and “good.” Studies have shown that subjects react far better to a reinforcement of positive behaviors followed by gentle suggestions rather than outright correction.
To take steps forward, people often need to feel that they are working toward an aspirational goal, not away from a negative point. It is not very motivating to move away from something, but it is very motivating to feel that you are taking steps toward something positive.
Positive framing is the term used to describe speaking positively and being inspirational, aspirational and encouraging others to move toward something. You can induce this technique by beginning by telling people what they are doing right.
Negative framing is the reverse. It is done by telling people what they are doing wrong.
Though a minority of people do find this inspiring and helpful in taking steps forward, most people will simply take it as a challenge and defend their beliefs in a more strong and aggressive manner. This will make your attempt to influence them even harder.
Here’s a great video clip from a famous BBC Comedy called “Yes, Prime Minister” that combines Framing with using a “Yes Set” ladder…