How to Become a Hypnotist

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Hypnotists are people who use hypnosis to induce unconscious behavior.[1] A college degree is not required to become a hypnotist, unless the practitioner wants to become a licensed psychotherapist.

Hypnotherapists who practice as mental health counselors are required to obtain a master’s degree in either counseling or psychology. Hypnotherapists work with patients who have PTSD, mental illness, depression, or a history of traumatic injury. They work in hospitals, for the military, at government agencies and for police departments.[2]

Wikimedia Commons
Education High school diploma or GED; some professions may require a master or doctorate’s degree[3]
Starting pay $8.74 per hour[4]
Median pay $15.58 per hour[4]
10 yr growth 6.9%[4]
Related professions Therapist, hypnotherapist, counselor
Author Selena Robinson

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Hypnotist Job Overview

Hypnotists use hypnosis to trigger forgotten memories, make people do or say things unconsciously, and treat mental illnesses. They work in hospitals with mentally ill and trauma victim patients, with veterans suffering from PTSD or at comedy performances. Some hypnotists receive advanced degrees in counseling or psychology so they can practice as a mental health therapist. Medical doctors may even use hypnosis to treat severe pain when prescriptions do not provide pain relief.[2]

Hypnotist Vs. Hypnotherapist

While hypnotists and hypnotherapists both use hypnosis in their practice, there is a distinct difference between the two. Hypnotists use hypnosis as a means to induce a certain behavior or recover lost memories. They often practice outside of the medical and mental health professions. Some hypnotists own their own business and/or work in conjunction with a mystic or astronomer.[5]

Hypnotherapists usually hold advanced master’s and doctorate’s degrees in mental health counseling or psychology. Some are medical doctors. They use hypnosis as part of the treatment plan and practice inside the mental health and medical industry.[2]

Hypnotist Education

Hypnotists are not required to earn a high school diploma or GED. Libraries, career centers, vocational schools, and online programs such as Penn Foster provide GED materials and classes.[6] If hypnotists decide to go into the mental health or medical industry, they are required to earn an advanced master's or doctorate’s degree in mental health counseling or psychology.[2]

Hypnotist Training and Certification

Professional hypnotist and hypnotherapist associations provide conventions, seminars and online training to help hypnotists specialize in a specific field or continue their education. For example, the National Guild of Hypnotists offers DVD rentals and seminars for continuing hypnotist education.[7] The Southwest Institute of Healing Arts also offers an online certification program in hypnotherapy.[8]

Hypnosis Demonstration

A hypnotist places a volunteer into a hypnotic state.

Also See: How to Become a Massage Therapist, How to Become a Substance Abuse Counselor, How to Become a Pilates Instructor, How to Become a Hypnotherapist, How to Become a Doctor


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