Posts Tagged ‘Hypnosis’

Paul McKenna – I Can Make You Thin

January 8, 2009

I was always pretty much indifferent when it came to hypnosis, until a friend started training to become a clinical hypnotherapist. When he told me about the training he was undergoing I enjoyed using words like ‘piffle’ and ‘mumbo jumbo’ as he recounted the details. He took it with good grace, and we agreed to disagree.

Then recently, I read Derren Brown’s Tricks of the Mind in which, in his signature style, he discusses the subject very frankly and gives an insight into the techniques involved. I tried a couple of the rudimentary examples he gives and found that, on a basic level, they work. As he recommended, I continued – purely out of curiosity – to read up on the subject, trying at all costs to avoid the more commercial end of the market. There are, after all, clearly hypnotists out there who are as interested in lining their pockets as they are concerned for helping people out.

Then I decided to give up smoking and got my hands on an eight minute mp3 of Paul McKenna which guaranteed it could help to cancel cravings. Essentially, in this little transmission, it simply forced you to create an association between the craving and something you personally find horrendous. I chose turds with all hairs sticking out. Seriously.

It worked, for a week. I’d never given up for more than 24 hours before this little revelation – and the only reason I got back on the smokes again was because a life-changing event happened the following week, making me lose focus. Impressed, I got hold of more of McKenna’s stuff (hiding it from everyone, as it’s all got a self-help stigma following it about like a nasty smell), but with all of his other programmes, possibly because I don’t need them, I found them overlong and cheese-ridden.

McKenna’s main problem is that his techniques are all grounded in proven clinical methodology, but these alone aren’t commercially viable. To get around that, he dresses one or two simple directives in so much marketing blabber (an easy bedfellow of the suggestive language of hypnosis), that it begins to feel like he’s not only trying to change a habit – he’s also trying to make you sign up to McKenna LTD.

I was surprised that Living TV wasn’t showing his ‘I Can Make You Thin’ on a subscription basis. Again, tuning in out of  curiosity,  you find more of the same.  If you want to lose weight (I don’t, particularly), this programme will probably help and save you the expense and hassle of Atkins style crash diets.

That said, it’ll cost you in other departments. In the one episode I’ve seen, one technique – the negative association craving-buster I mentioned before – was demonstrated over the course of an hour. This took around 10 minutes. The rest of the hour was concerned with testimonials, case studies and non-stop, advertising blather.

McKenna sells techniques that work very well, but his real strength is in selling himself. The show is like some weird, apolitical rally. It’s like you’ve walked into a bizarre, born again Christian sermon, in which only 5% of the content is actually discernible – the rest being a confusing spectrum of superficially pleasing waffle-bollocks.

I preferred it when he was making people cluck like chickens on ITV.

Paul McKenna – I Can Change Your Life

March 28, 2007


Once upon a time I sat like a festering turnip in front of the box and wound up on ITV3 watching ‘Paul McKenna – I Can Change Your Life’. ‘Change my life?’ I thought. Change your own fucking life, you sleazy lizard.

I was already aware of the psychological nature of his teachings – ‘Listen to the healing sounds of my wonderful voice. Surrender to my will and I will cure you of all your ills. I am Jesus. All hail me for I am the best’, that kind of thing. Anyway, in this show, old McKenna tries to cure a bunch of thickos, obsessive compulsives, and hopeless mentals.

I’m not going to lie, this really was utter shit that even disappointed my less-than-optimistic hopes of being vaguely entertained. Out of the three specimens analysed, only one stimulated my imagination enough to keep watching.

The organism in question was a middle aged woman who was fanatical about cleaning up. To be precise that’s all she did. She would wake up, rigorously clean the house for SIXTEEN HOURS, then go to sleep. What a life.

Needless to say, she had extreme obsessive compulsive disorder. Although it’s a psychological affliction, I couldn’t help thinking that this troubled vessel was just incomprehensibly stupid. I would even go as far as to say criminally insane. She was also an absolute twat in need of a good shake.

Eventually McKenna breezes onto the scene like some kind of hero, spouting some psycho-babble about imagining you’re standing next to waterfall and the like. Although in time his methods will probably succeed, I couldn’t help thinking that it would be quicker, easier and far more entertaining if Geoff Capes thundered in there and gripped her by the neck, yelling “Look, you worthless tit, stop being retarded, or I’ll rip your spine out, make you eat it, and then knock your fuckin’ head off this planet.

Soon, she confesses to McKenna that to her, “Being unclean is the end of the world”.

I absorbed the absurdity of this statement, but was soon swept away by another thought that came stampeding to the forefront of my consciousness: Your house may be outlandishly clean, and well done for that, but you still look like something Walt Disney forgot to draw, you droopy bitch.

What does it matter how clean you try to keep yourself when your head closely resembles a spud? A question she’s obviously never bothered asking herself.

As well as looking as though she’d just escaped from cell block H after having head-butted every warden in the place to death, spud-head also turns out to be a stuck up, narrow minded bint as well. In one scene, she goes into a charity shop and moans that everyone in there looks dodgy and dirty. She then complained that the clothes were dirty because they were second hand. Her main concern seemed to be that someone else may have sweated in them at some point. She stands grimacing, whingeing that she doesn’t even want to touch them. Then she does touch one and immediately leaves the shop and practically scrapes half the skin off her hand with a wet-wipe.

In the end, McKenna’s relentless ear-bending seemed to pay off, and spud-head finally got it through her thick skull that she needed to stop being a cunt now.

I came away from this having learned two things. The first thing being that I would very much like to do the gene pool a service and vaporise the spud-headed lunatic, and also that never again will I fritter away an hour of my precious life watching Paul McKenna.