☀️ SUMMER SALE on Hypnotherapy eCourses – SAVE up to 95%

Are you looking for something new to learn through the summer?

Here, you can save up to 95% on these 16 courses of mine (further details below – all courses $9.99 USD/£9.99 GBP or equivalent Udemy currency conversion and taxes) which I have developed to help people to learn hypnosis and hypnotherapy and develop your skills and abilities as a therapeutic practitioner. You can click the links below to be taken straight to the individual courses on Udemy with discounts applied, or read down the page for course descriptions. You can also bookmark this email if you would like to follow the links and benefit from the discounts at some time in the future:

Have you ever wanted to be able to hypnotise anyone? Would you like to know how to do hypnosis without needing hypnosis scripts? Are you new to hypnosis, perhaps with no experience and wondering where to start? If you answer yes to any of these questions then this introduction to hypnosis course may well be for you. Building on my free Learn Hypnosis in an Hour course How to do Hypnosis teaches you what you need to know to be able to hypnotise anyone without the need for hypnosis scripts, this course is the next step up from my ‘Learn Hypnosis In An Hour course giving more detail and focusing more on developing your ability to do unscripted hypnosis. Access The Course Here Saving 85%

The How to do Rapid Hypnotic Inductions course will teach you twenty hypnotic inductions (twelve rapid hypnotic inductions which can all be used to hypnotise people in under 60 seconds plus an additional eight hypnotic inductions which take anywhere from a few seconds to a couple of minutes to induce hypnosis). Learn how the inductions are done and the principles behind them. Learn about attention, confusion, and interrupting patterns. Learn about confidence, and the role that context plays to make the inductions more effective. Access The Course Here Saving 93%

The How to Write Hypnotherapy Scripts course teaches you how to write your own hypnotherapy scripts. The course is structured to give you the information you need to definitely know before you start writing scripts first, then the information about how to write and structure your scripts. Following this you will learn about gathering relevant client information. Then there is a section of hypnotherapy scripts samples to help give you ideas and more examples of hypnotherapy scripts, including a script which was written for a genuine client. Access The Course Here Saving 93%

The Self Hypnosis for Personal Development course is about how self hypnosis can be used to help with personal development and for overcoming problems. This course is also about how self hypnosis can be useful for clients in counselling or therapy. This course covers: What self hypnosis is, Uses of self hypnosis, How to make your own audio tracks, How self hypnosis can be integrated into counselling and therapy, Therapeutic techniques, Structured inductions, How to develop your own inductions, How to re-induce hypnosis and set up self hypnosis triggers. This course is also ideal for those new to doing hypnosis who would like some structured hypnotic inductions they can do with clients. Access The Course Here Saving 93%

The Conversational Hypnotherapy course isn’t the same as many courses on conversational hypnosis. My view is that many courses over-complicate how to do conversational hypnosis. This course helps you get a good grounding to build on by learning what hypnosis is, what trance is, the main theories about what hypnosis is and a brief history about hypnosis, and the different ways trance and hypnosis get induced. The course includes a number of hypnosis demonstrations. Access The Course Here Saving 95%

The Ericksonian Hypnotherapy course teaches you about the history of hypnosis, through to the work of Milton H Erickson and how to do Ericksonian Hypnotherapy. By the end you will know how to do hypnotherapy without the need for structured hypnotic inductions, without the need for hypnotherapy scripts, and without the need to just do ‘suggestion therapy’ hypnotherapy. You will know how to work with clients as unique, individual human being, and tailor what you do to each person as an individual. Access The Course Here Saving 95%

The Self Publishing Made Easy course is great for hypnotherapists and coaches looking to generate additional income by writing books and ebooks. The course teaches you how to find a niche market to write about, and how to judge the popularity of that niche, what research to carry out before writing your book, how to create and layout your manuscripts for print and ebook publishing, how to publish print-on-demand books with Lulu Publishing, how to publish print-on-demand books with Amazon’s CreateSpace publishing platform, the benefits and disadvantages between Lulu Publishing and CreateSpace, how to publish Kindle ebooks with Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing platform, how to market your book, and ways to increase book sales, and more. Access The Course Here Saving 95%

The Solution Focused Therapy course teaches you about the history of solution focused therapy, I then start with the big picture and hone in on the specifics. So you will learn why solution focused therapy is useful, what the benefits are of using a solution focused approach, and the therapeutic direction of using a solution focused approach. I will also share my views about doing solution focused therapy, based on over 20 years of working with a wide range of people using this approach. My opinion differs from many other solution focused practitioners and trainers around some areas due to my knowledge of the work of Milton Erickson and my experiences with hypnosis. I then share various techniques and talk about pre-session change as something to kick-start success and empowerment right from the first session, and the power of scaling, I also talk about best hopes, which is about establishing what the client wants from therapy, and exceptions, which are those times when the clients problem didn’t exist but they would have expected it to exist, or when it did happen, yet they would have expected it not to happen, and when it just doesn’t happen. Exceptions are where solutions and insights to the clients problem, and the pattern of the problem can be found. Access The Course Here Saving 85%

The Introduction to Mindfulness Meditation course teaches you what mindfulness meditation is and how it works, how to prepare to experience mindfulness meditation and what the benefits of mindfulness meditation are to your health, wellbeing and success. The course also includes four guided mindfulness meditations: Re-centring Mindfulness Meditation, Body Awareness Mindfulness Meditation, Multi-Sensory Moment Mindfulness Meditation, Master Your Awareness Mindfulness Meditation. Access The Course Here Saving 85%

The Introduction to Effective Parenting of Children and Teens course teaches you parenting styles and skills. If you work with families, children, or within parenting support services, or you have an interest in understanding parenting styles and what works when parenting children and teens, then this course is likely to be helpful to you. This course is based on two decades of experience I have had working with children and teens with challenging behaviour, ADHD, and Autism including helping to set up a therapeutic children’s home and carrying out parenting research with a Youth Offending Service around reducing youth crime and antisocial behaviour by teaching parents the skills and knowledge taught in this course to help them change how they parent, and working with parents and families through one-to-one support and group work. I also have Autism myself, which has helped give me a different perspective and a deeper understanding of those I have worked with. This course teaches what is known about effective parenting. I have taught everything in this course to parents, and to professionals who work with families. This course teaches what is felt to be the best approaches to effective parenting. What is taught here works with children and teens from those who behave well, to those who display violence and aggression, those with ADHD, and those on the autistic spectrum. Access The Course Here Saving 85%

The Smoking Cessation course teaches you what information to have on your referral form, how to decide what to charge and different ideas around payment plans, insurance and data protection (based on UK laws and rules), what you need to consider around whether to set up offering single session treatments, multiple sessions, or group work – either a course of group sessions, or a single day course, what information you need from a client before you decide whether to work with them, how to increase the effectiveness of your coaching by setting tasks for the client before they come for their first session, evidence-based approaches to helping people quit smoking, a selection of additional techniques which can be used to help smoker’s to quit smoking, a brief overview of the four main therapeutic approaches to helping people beat addictions – motivational interviewing, solution focused therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy, and hypnosis and the structure of what needs to be covered to best help someone quit. The course is structured chronologically so that you can imagine how the process would unfold, from what you need to consider before you see a client, to having first contact with the client, and what you expect of them prior to the first session, then through evidence-based practice around helping people achieve success with quitting smoking, and on to introducing different therapeutic approaches which are helpful to use when working with smokers, before covering the information you will need to address with clients to give yourself the best chance of helping them achieve lasting success, and finally additional techniques you can use with clients to help them stop smoking. Access The Course Here Saving 95%

The Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) course is a comprehensive introduction to the topic of CBT. It teaches CBT therapy skills which can help to treat anxiety and depression and a variety of other problems presented in counselling and psychotherapy like anger, addiction, self-esteem and confidence. This course is ideal for counsellors, NLP practitioners, hypnotherapists and life coaches who want to add CBT to their toolbox of skills and techniques and for those who would like to use these skills for self-help. The course includes an 80 page downloadable PDF workbook of the slides and space for taking notes on the lectures, a downloadable PDF supporting materials document which contains blank copies of all of the various documents covered throughout this course. This CBT course covers how to use cognitive behavioural therapy to treat anxiety, depression, addictions, low confidence and self-esteem, anger and sleep difficulties. Through this CBT course you will learn what CBT is, what the benefits are of doing CBT, the principles of CBT, how to identify problems and find solutions, how to identify the key thoughts, feelings, beliefs and behaviours to work on, how to tackle faulty thinking styles, how to challenge unhelpful beliefs and create helpful beliefs, how clients use metaphor and how to use metaphors therapeutically and relaxation and mindfulness skills. Access The Course Here Saving 95%

How To Tell Stories That Heal teaches you how to tell therapeutic stories. Most people don’t notice how prevalent metaphor use is when we communicate. In therapy clients will be communicating in metaphors to the therapist. These metaphors and other information the client shares can be used to develop healing stories which can be told to the client to help them move forward and overcome their problems. In this course you will learn how to identify metaphors, patterns and content that clients share, how to use this information to create therapeutic stories and metaphors and my process for presenting stories and metaphors to clients that I find most effective. I also include a free copy of my Hypnotherapy Training Tool (RRP £49.99 GBP) which you can download and use to practice creating therapeutic stories for clients with various problems and a video of a live client session taken from a training course where I demonstrate gathering information, finding metaphors and content for my story before presenting my therapeutic story as the sole therapeutic intervention with this client. The demonstration includes the clients reaction which shows the impact this one story had on them when created and delivered using the approach outlined in this course. Access The Course Here Saving 89%

Treating PTSD, Trauma and Phobias With The Rewind Technique. In this course you will learn how to treat phobias, post-traumatic stress disorder and the trauma underlying many problems (like depression, anxiety and addictions) often in a single session using the power of the rewind technique. The rewind technique is a fast, effective process for neutralising phobias, post-traumatic stress disorder and trauma rapidly. It is a technique which I feel should be in the toolbox of all psychological therapists and coaches. To aid your learning there are additional notes and I have included 12 of my self-hypnosis PTSD and phobia treatment mp3’s that you can use yourself or listen to as examples of using the rewind technique to treat different phobias and PTSD. Access The Course Here Saving 93%

Understanding and Treating Depression is a course for counsellors, hypnotherapists, and other professionals working with clients who may have depression. The course can also be taken by those interested in gaining a greater understanding about depression for personal development or learning. This course contains a 54-page PDF of extensive course notes and a document listing recommended reading and links to articles to supplement the information covered. On this course you will learn: what depression is and the symptoms of depression, what causes and maintains depression and how to treat depression. Access The Course Here Saving 93%

In this Understanding and Working With Autistic Client’s in Therapy course I share the different challenges and traits autistic people have and how these can manifest and impact on the problem the client is presenting with, how they can manifest and impact on the therapy and how you can work with the client and present your therapy to get the best results. You will also have an idea of the kinds of things which clients may say and do that could lead to you as a therapist to feel that the client could be autistic. This isn’t a course teaching you how to do therapy or coaching, the expectation is that you are already trained to do therapy or coaching if you are working as a therapist or coach. This course teaches you about the traits, challenges and strengths of autistic clients and how the client being autistic can impact on their life and on how they respond in therapy to give you ideas about understanding autistic clients better and have ideas and insights for how you can best help them. The course doesn’t teach you how to ‘treat’ autism as autism isn’t something you can cure. Autistic people are born autistic and can’t be ‘cured’ of autism, but I am open about my own personal experiences within the course and share my own examples and examples of experiences of people I have worked with to illustrate what behaviours others might see and what is going on for the autistic person in that moment, and what things can help the autistic person, like what skills they might need to be taught to reduce the impact of certain challenges the client may have on the presenting problem. Access The Course Here Saving 89%

All the best

Dan

I try to be very active in all of my training courses to help students with any questions they may have to get the most out of the training, and I try to respond within 24 hours to questions.

New Autism Course For Therapists, Coaches & Those Interested In Understanding What It Is Like To Be Autistic

It is World Autism Awareness Week 2019 from Monday 1st April. As a pre-WAAW2019 I wanted to tell you some exciting news. This is so new it isn’t even on my site on the courses page yet. I wanted you to be among the first to know about a new course I have created ‘Understanding and Working With Autistic Client’s in Therapy‘ which you can access here for just $9.99 USD (or equivalent price based on exchange rate and taxes for your country).

As well as having over 20 years of experience working with autistic individuals of all ages and working within a variety of contexts from care homes for adults, care homes for children and teens, to working with families, couples and individuals in private practice, I am also autistic, so this isn’t just a course by an autism professional about working with autistic clients. It is course from someone who can share their own lived experience of being autistic as well as professional experience with autistic clients.

Between 1 in 68 and 1 in 100 people are autistic depending on what data you look at. Many autistic adults are undiagnosed and may not even realise they could be autistic. Any counsellor, psychological therapist or coach in full-time practice is likely to encounter diagnosed and undiagnosed autistic clients. It could be that the client doesn’t realise that they are autistic. Most counselling, therapy and coaching training doesn’t cover autism, so the therapist also may not realise that the client could be autistic, yet knowledge of this could lead to better outcomes for that client and greater awareness of what support and guidance would be helpful.

This course may also be of interest to those who don’t do psychological therapy or coaching but who want to know more about how autism presents and what the world is like for autistic people and how autism can impact on problems people have and better understanding behaviours that you observe. This course focuses more on working with autistic adults rather than on working with autistic children but includes examples involving behaviours of autistic children and teens and includes a PDF of my autobiography which gives a frank description and insight at all ages of being autistic and shares my professional views as well as personal insights.

You can join the course here for just $9.99 USD (or equivalent exchange rate and taxes for your country) or follow the link to learn more and sample the first 30 or so minutes of video lectures.

Included with this course are:

  • 11 PDF supporting documents totalling over 18,000 words of additional content
  • A PDF of my autobiography ‘Look Into My Eyes’ about being autistic which is over 68,500 words
  • A PDF Sussex Hypnotherapy Centre certificate of completion which you can print out for Continued Professional Development on completion of the course

In this Understanding and Working With Autistic Client’s in Therapy course I share the different challenges and traits autistic people have and how these can manifest and impact on the problem the client is presenting with, how they can manifest and impact on the therapy and how you can work with the client and present your therapy to get the best results. You will also have an idea of the kinds of things which clients may say and do that could lead to you as a therapist to feel that the client could be autistic.

This isn’t a course teaching you how to do therapy or coaching, the expectation is that you are already trained to do therapy or coaching if you are working as a therapist or coach. This course teaches you about the traits, challenges and strengths of autistic clients and how the client being autistic can impact on their life and on how they respond in therapy to give you ideas about understanding autistic clients better and have ideas and insights for how you can best help them.

The course doesn’t teach you how to ‘treat’ autism as autism isn’t something you can cure. Autistic people are born autistic and can’t be ‘cured’ of the autism, but I am open about my own personal experiences within the course and share my own examples and examples of experiences of people I have worked with to illustrate what behaviours others might see and what is going on for the autistic person in that moment, and what things can help the autistic person, like what skills they might need to be taught to reduce the impact of certain challenges the client may have on the presenting problem.

Throughout this course you can ask any questions you may have and I will answer them as best I can. I am happy to be open and answer questions from my personal perspective as an autistic individual, or from a psychological therapist perspective.

You can follow this link to check out the first 30 minutes or so of video lectures for free and find out more about the course.

What you’ll learn

  • Learn about what autism is and the thoughts around what causes autism
  • Understand autistic traits, challenges and strengths and how these can relate to a client’s presenting problem and in therapy
  • Learn ways you can interact with autistic clients and what you can do to help and support the client therapeutically

Are there any course requirements or prerequisites?

  • To get the most out of this course you will ideally already be working as a psychological therapist or with people in a support, coaching or therapeutic capacity where knowledge of autistic clients would be helpful
  • If you want to print off the resources you will require a printer

Who this course is for:

  • Counsellors and psychological therapists, hypnotherapists and coaches who work may encounter diagnosed and undiagnosed autistic clients
  • This course isn’t for those who are looking for training in how to treat autism itself, there are ideas around helping autistic people with challenges they face by being autistic, but autism itself isn’t curable

Published My 30th Book!

I haven’t blogged in about a month because I have been busy finishing my latest two books.

The first of these books is my 30th book which is a milestone I’m proud to have reached.

As readers of my blog will know, my main focus is as an autism advocate sharing my experiences as an autistic individual and as someone who has spent much of my working life supporting other autistic people, their families, friends and other involved professionals.

One thing I am always keen to point out is that although being autistic has many challenges, we also have many strengths and being autistic isn’t a barrier to success.

Some people need support or guidance, or perhaps education around learning certain skills or learning to use skills they have and perhaps traits they didn’t think of as skills, but autistic people are as capable as anyone else at achieving things.

I remember about 20 years ago I had quit a job because of changes they were making to the workplace. A few months later they asked me to return. I went and met with the manager to talk to them about their proposal for me returning. I shared about what I wanted to achieve in the future – I was about 20 at the time. The manager told me that I should forget those dreams, I’m the type of person who will only ever be a member of staff, not someone who can achieve anything with my life – so I left and never took their proposal for returning to the job.

This wasn’t the only time I had this kind of reaction. I had many people tell me to forget these ideas of achieving things, especially when I would repeatedly fail. Something about me is that I rarely give up when I am trying to achieve something. If something fails I analyse what I could do differently and try again. If I decide I want to do something I do it, and often over-do it. My wife has regularly commented on how I could have set an easier target and everyone else would still be happy. An example of this was deciding to do 40 bedtime story videos on my YouTube channel across 40 days for my 40th birthday. This was a lot of work, it had a negative impact on my channel (I lost subscribers, rates of new subscribers halved, video views dropped by about a third), but I committed to doing this, it took me hundreds of hours to make the videos and upload them etc., to YouTube, but I had made a commitment and wasn’t going to break the commitment. One year I entered National Novel Writing Month. Because I worried that I would lose interest in the novel I was writing across the month I decided to write the 50,000 word novel in a week.

Anyway, I went off topic a bit there! But, what I was just trying to emphasise is that being autistic doesn’t mean you can’t do things and be successful. You may struggle with somethings, for example, I would love to be more successful as an author, I would love to have a talent agent who could support me and represent me, I would love to have a more successful YouTube channel to raise awareness of autism and mental health, but I really struggle with making phone calls, with being social enough to engage with others. I’ve been to official YouTube networking events (even whole day events) and come away annoyed with myself for failing to manage to talk to anyone. I have never managed to interest people in collaborations etc, but I then attend the next YouTube event, I approach the next talent agency and I continue trying whatever I can to push towards what I would like to achieve and continue to work hard everyday despite the continued presence of the urge to sit alone in the woods…

These two books are part of a new ten volume series of books I’m writing called Hypnotherapy Revealed Book one is Introduction to Hypnotherapy (http://smarturl.it/22y8sl) Book two is The Ericksonian Approach (http://smarturl.it/4oakl9)

Both are available in paperback and kindle ebook from the Amazon websites. You can find details for them on my Hypnotherapy Books page here on my website.

I have also recently contributed to friend and colleague Dr David Lewis’s book (we run The Mind Changers together) Triumph of the Will? (out this week on Amazon in paperback and Kindle) Which is about the impact of two men who used hypnosis with Hitler, one treated him for hysterical blindness and his hypnotic approach accidentally set Hitler on a new path, and the other taught Hitler hypnosis influence skills. I have written a blog post for Dr David Lewis which is on the books website.

Although I have finished working on these two latest books just two months after I finished working on my Bedtime Stories for Grown-ups book (you can learn more about that book on my Storytelling Books page) I still have much more I am working on…

Books I am currently working on are:

  • Volume three of my ‘Hypnotherapy Revealed’ series ‘Hypnotherapy Trance Scripts’
  • ‘Wellbeing for YouTuber’s and Digital Entrepreneurs’
  • Third book in my series of stories to help children relax and sleep (11 stories in each book) ‘Sleepy Rhyming Tales’
  • A book with Dr David Lewis (working title) ‘There Are No Problems, Only Solutions’ which is a self-help book

Until next time…

All the best

Dan

Influence of My Wife & Best Friend – Extract from ‘Look Into My Eyes’

The biggest influence in my life has been my wife. A clear sign of this was when I gave my speech at our wedding. I wasn’t nervous through the wedding, as everything was planned and should have carried out as planned. Some bits that were likely to ruin the plans were getting me frustrated and angry, but it was nothing I wasn’t prepared for. The speech, however, definitely didn’t go as planned. When it came to me doing my speech, I had practiced it a couple of times just to make sure I was able to do it just glancing at the notes I had written down. I didn’t expect any kind of reaction with my speech – my job was to thank everyone for coming, thank the caterers, and thank my wife for marrying me, before telling her how much I love her and saying a bit about how we met. What confused me was that I started crying. I couldn’t understand why I started crying because, as my best friend had said, I am like Spock: I don’t do ‘getting emotional’. The only way I can describe my experience of this is like a computer suddenly crashing. It took me by surprise, as if my brain had just fried.

This is one of the biggest changes my wife has helped me with. When we met in 2001, I was cold – although I tried to meet her needs for hugs and affection. But as the years went on, I started crying at happy and sad films, and now find I cry really easily at these films – yet real things still don’t often cause me to cry or get upset. My wife encourages me to socialise – to not be a hermit – although at the same time, she isn’t overly social, so we don’t go out often. She talks to me about me and teaches me to not just focus on me, but also to focus on her. I believe that, for anyone with Asperger’s, being in a healthy relationship can help you make changes to those parts of you that you need to work on, because you put effort into learning to put someone else first, and to see how you can meet their needs. It isn’t easy to transfer these skills to the real world, to being the same with others, but you are taking the first step. I definitely feel I probably come across better with others now because of my relationship with my wife.

My wife has given me the strength to believe in myself as a person; she accepts me for who I am and helps me to accept myself. Some aspects of me may be areas I would like to change and wish were different – and they may change, as I continue to develop – but I accept myself for who I am now, and I know I have at least one person on my side. She may get frustrated with aspects of me from time to time, but she accepts me for who I am. I think everyone else in my life also accepts me, but my wife understands me the most, and is willing to do things like make me a den when I need it; she will also pull me up on behaviours I need to stop.

My best friend has also helped me develop. He will challenge me and drag me out to be sociable – and he defined the roles of our relationship as ‘Kirk and Spock’, which is a very accurate description of us. He also shares in many of my interests, and is curious about learning more and making discoveries. He has also somehow managed to remain a friend for over half of my life, through many life transitions.

Look Into My Eyes: Asperger’s, Hypnosis, & Me by Dan Jones, is available in Paperback and for Amazon Kindle: http://apn.to/prod/1542551196

The Value of Autism & My Views on a ‘Cure’ – Extract from ‘Look Into My Eyes’

I think I am like most others with Asperger’s, in that I see it as something that is a part of me, not as something to be cured. It doesn’t mean I don’t wish I could change some aspects of myself, and I am aware that parents of children with low functioning autism often say they wish there was a cure. As autism is a spectrum, there are some people who have limitations but wouldn’t want to be cured of their autism, and others who have significant limitations or debilitating behaviours or traits; they or their carers would like them to be cured.

I have thoughts of concern if there was a pre-birth cure, so that people were no longer born with autism spectrum disorder. My view is that anything which persists in nature is either something that isn’t detrimental to the survival of that being, and so it isn’t screened out by evolution, or it has advantages to survival. From my studies and my experiences, I feel autism has evolutionary advantages – but to have those advantages, the genes have to be passed on. Some people will be high functioning, and others will be low functioning, but all those who survive will pass on genes linked with a propensity to have ‘autism’, which – for future generations – could be high or low functioning. Those with high functioning autism, I believe play a role in human progress. It doesn’t mean non-autistic people don’t advance humanity; it is just that people with high functioning autism are good at focusing on a task and obsessing about it, and so they make discoveries that others wouldn’t have made, because they wouldn’t have obsessed about that topic in the same way.

Most people who have advanced science have done so through obsessing about a topic and focusing on tasks. They don’t seem to get bored of the task or topic and they can keep at it for years. Non-autistic people could obsess and focus on a topic like this, but most people fill their days with many different elements. I can focus on hypnosis for the whole day; I can miss eating and drinking and sleeping for quite some time without being aware of it. I can also comfortably spend each day not interacting with others. Most people want to take breaks; they get bored or tired of what they are doing, and they start talking about it not being stimulating enough. They want to socialise, whether it be having meals with a loved one or with friends, or going to a party. Many people want to progress in a job or role, rather than to do the exact same job for 30 or 40 years. For many with high functioning autism, behaving in this way comes more naturally.

If there was a stone age society and everyone was doing their role – gathering wood or fruits or vegetables, or out hunting – there could be someone with Asperger’s who isn’t out hunting, is seen as a bit odd and a bit of an outsider, but they have an obsession with how arrows travel through the air, and what makes the arrow go further. This obsession doesn’t get anywhere to start with; no-one is really interested. But then, after years of experimenting and learning and trying different things, the Asperger’s person suddenly finds a combination of wood for the arrow and a way to shape the flint to make it sharp and streamlined; he perhaps adds the idea of a throwing device, able to propel the arrow. Suddenly, this can give the stone age tribe a survival edge. As society has progressed into the digital age, there are more jobs suited best to those with high functioning autism, which is probably why there is an above average number of people with high functioning autism working within the science and maths professions.

Look Into My Eyes: Asperger’s, Hypnosis, & Me by Dan Jones, is available in Paperback and for Amazon Kindle: http://apn.to/prod/1542551196

Primary School Years: Developing Influence Skills – Extract from ‘Look Into My Eyes’

Although during my primary years, I had poor emotional connection. I didn’t really notice it. From my perspective, I was living in my own world. My dad had written about my poor emotional connection, and mum has mentioned my difficulties with emotional connection, but to me, I was more interested in doing things on my own. Human nature is a wonderful thing, although I didn’t approach others to try to befriend them. Others would sometimes approach me; I liked familiarity and certainty, and I disliked engaging with people. I think I was lucky in some of my early ‘a-ha’ moments!

One such moment was realising that if I had a friend or two, I felt more comfortable speaking with them than with people I didn’t know. I was able to learn how they would respond, and if they walked away and stopped spending time with me, it wasn’t important – but while they were there, I could use them to make my life more comfortable. Writing this down here with my ‘adult head’ on, I feel like it sounds bad. It was, and still is, one of my ways of coping with the world.

If I wanted something, all I had to do was find a way of getting the person I was friends with to be the one to sort it out. So, if I wanted to have something to drink I would try to think about how I could encourage my friend to go to a teacher and ask for me. I would do things like encouraging them – saying that it would be good if we could both have a drink – or I would appear to be helpful and if we were doing something together, like making something, I would offer to do a task I thought they would least like to do. I’d say, “I’ll do this if you want”, and while they are pleased with me doing something they didn’t want to do, I would say something like, “This is quite difficult, would you be able to grab me a drink?” I would try to make it look like I didn’t want to stop then, because I was so focused on getting it done – I’d get the message across that what would really help me to get things done was having a drink…

As an adult, I now know that I was playing into a theory from social psychology about how people like to reciprocate – if you do something for someone, they are more likely to do something in return. Between about eight and ten years old, I learnt a number of these techniques to influence situations and to make them more comfortable for me. Then, in later life, when I discovered hypnosis, I realised that many of these techniques are in fact hypnosis techniques. Another technique I used to use was one for influencing groups of people. When I was in the playground and would want to play manhunt, for example, and everyone else was thinking about playing football, I would suggest the idea of manhunt loudly enough for the children either side of me to hear the idea, I wouldn’t make a big deal out of it. After a moment or two, if those children quite liked the idea, they would suggest it, and gradually the idea would spread through the group, until the children who actually made the decisions picked up on the idea. Then, one of them would suggest it, and everyone would agree with the person who suggested the idea. No-one would realise that I had suggested the idea first, and I didn’t care whether I got credit for the idea or not – as long as we were doing as I wanted.

I saw this happen to other children, where they would suggest ideas, seemingly get ignored, then eventually someone else would suggest the same idea and everyone would agree with that person; the child who originally suggested the idea would get stroppy about how they had come up with the idea first. It confused me as to why they got stroppy when they were doing exactly what they wanted to be doing. Did it really matter who took the credit for the idea?

This idea didn’t always work – not all my ideas were things that everyone wanted to do – but if I was expected to play with other children, I would rather do something I see as having educational value than just, say, playing football. I liked manhunt because I got to practice evading capture, I developed skills for sneaking around and having patience. I could see that these skills could have value. I couldn’t see how chasing a ball and hitting it into a net had value. You also don’t have to work with others when playing manhunt. You may share a team, but you still work on your own, whereas with football you are expected to work together.

I have never been particularly competitive, but I do like to do the best I can – and I stick to rules. I don’t have a very good emotional connection with others and struggle to understand their perspectives on many emotional issues. Mum and dad have both described how I seemed to have poor emotional connection. I have learnt over the years how I am supposed to respond in some situations. I still make mistakes, but I do much better than I did when I was young.

Look Into My Eyes: Asperger’s, Hypnosis, & Me by Dan Jones, is available in Paperback and for Amazon Kindle: http://apn.to/prod/1542551196

Primary School Years: Friendships – Extract from ‘Look Into My Eyes’

Many of my earliest memories are from my primary years. I don’t really remember much before that, and what I think I remember, I can’t be confident about – are they my memories, or just memories based on photographs I have seen? In this chapter, I will share my experience of my primary school years from about five years old up to ten or so. During this time, I began to recognise that I was different and started to learn about how to cope with the world around me.

Mum always described me as having a lot of common sense. I would describe myself as having common sense that sometimes isn’t common, and other times doesn’t make sense… From a very young age, mum trusted me to look after my younger siblings. She had tried babysitters, but often I was still the person with the most common sense in the room. I had good observation skills for safety, and because I couldn’t care less about most things that others seemed to really care about, I was often very calm. If there was an incident that needed to be handled I was likely to be the one who could work out what to do, and then calmly do it. This trait has helped immensely throughout my life.

Mum was a riding instructor, so growing up, she had to work when everyone else was off. My stepdad was a landscape gardener, so he worked long hours whenever the weather was suitable. Because mum taught people to ride horses, I spent most of my time around horses as a child. From the age of about eight, when mum was teaching, I would often be looking after my brothers. We would be at the riding centre, so mum wasn’t far away if we needed her – she couldn’t afford to have anyone else look after us, but she trusted me and felt I was responsible enough to look after my brothers. I knew that if there was a problem, I could either find mum, or seek out any of the other adults who ran the stables.

I remember some of my first experiences attending my first primary school. It was a small school with a cold outdoor swimming pool. I have certain memories that stand out about the pool. I remember flies floating in the pool. I remember the smell of the water. It smelt like water – I mean, it didn’t have an odd smell – but I remember the fresh watery smell from the pool. I also remember the feeling of being in the water, and remember times when my nan would come along and help out during swimming lessons. I didn’t like the swimming cap I had to wear. It used to hurt my head when I put it on and took it off. The cap would stick to my hair and felt like it pulled hair out of my head whenever I took it off. I did enjoy swimming though. My favourite thing about swimming was being underwater. I loved putting my head underwater, and as I got more confident, I would hold myself fully underwater at the steps. I loved how the sound changed underwater – it was quiet and peaceful, not as chaotic and overwhelming as the world above the water. I remember believing I could almost breathe underwater. I was aware that I couldn’t, but I felt that I was able to stay underwater longer by relaxing and imagining I was breathing, so I would make all the actions of breathing without actually breathing in. I would almost cycle air round, as if I was somehow breathing within myself.

I didn’t really have many friends in primary school. I was polite, so if someone engaged with me, I would be polite and do my best to try to engage with them back, but I didn’t really have much interest in interacting with other people. I would much rather have spent a break time at the hedges around the outside of the school grounds searching for snails and looking at other creatures. I didn’t feel like I was missing anything. I would take an ice cream tub around with me which I would fill with leaves, twigs, snails, caterpillars or grasshoppers. I wasn’t necessarily very good at socialising, and didn’t particularly care about others. That isn’t to say I wanted bad things to happen to others – I have always wanted everyone to be alright – but I was far more caring of animals. One day, when I was out with mum while she was teaching horse riding, I found an injured grasshopper. I took it home and tried to nurse it back to health by creating an environment for it and giving it some food.

Unfortunately, it didn’t survive. I didn’t get upset about it not surviving. I wanted it to live and get better, but my attitude was: once it had died, it had died. I did all I could think of to try to save it, and to my knowledge I couldn’t have done more. I remember burying it in the garden, because I thought that was what was supposed to happen to dead things, then I got on with my life. I didn’t get upset about not being able to save it, because I had done everything I felt I was able to do.

At one time, mum tried to arrange a birthday party for me at home. She invited many children I knew, and on the day of my party, no-one turned up. I think this was a telling sign of my relationships with others. I was polite to people but never really invested in my relationships with the other children in school. I was pretty much the same at home. I would prefer to spend time alone doing my own thing, but was generally polite. I don’t recall too much play with my brothers. When we did play, it was usually something active like hide and seek or manhunt, or it was making dens or climbing trees. It wasn’t really things where I was having to play with my brothers, but more things where I played alongside my brothers, or could feel like I was doing my own thing or engaging in a project – making something for some purpose.

I was far better at getting on with adults. I would ask questions all the time about things I was interested in, wanting to know more. At school, I would take my time getting ready to leave lessons so that the other children would leave and I could then ask the teacher any questions I had. If the lesson didn’t interest me, then I would get out as quickly as I could to try to avoid being stuck in the middle of a crowd of children all leaving at once. If I had to choose between spending time with children or adults I would usually choose to stand around the adults, and would normally latch on to one adult whom I would sit next to and talk to. That adult was normally chosen because they’d first approached me and started talking to me, but they would then be stuck with me until they walked away. If they walked off and left me, I wouldn’t seek anyone else out; I would rather sit on my own and keep myself to myself. Sometimes, another adult would come and talk to me and I would then talk to them about topics I enjoyed until they walked off too.

Look Into My Eyes: Asperger’s, Hypnosis, & Me by Dan Jones, is available in Paperback and for Amazon Kindle: http://apn.to/prod/1542551196

Primary School Years: Meditation, Animals & Developing Interests – Extract from ‘Look Into My Eyes’

At about eight years of age, I found a book that had a profound influence on me – The Magic of Thinking Big. This was a book I found lying around the house one day, and as a small child who loved magic, seeing a book with ‘Big’ and ‘Magic’ both written in the title was enough to make me want to know what it was about. The book taught me that you can achieve almost anything; you just have to plan and put in effort.

I learnt an incredible amount between the age of eight and ten – it has helped me immensely. The next significant learning wasn’t until I was 13, when I discovered hypnosis. As well as discovering The Magic of Thinking Big, I also lived in an environment that allowed me to spend a lot of time in the woods – or at least outside, with nature. I used to spend much of my time sitting in trees. I found life at home often stressful and noisy, and I wanted to escape, so I would go into the woods. I would find a tree, climb up high, and sit on a branch with my eyes closed, just listening.

In the tree I would focus my attention on the sounds of birds. I would try to locate where they were by focusing on individual sounds. I would focus on the sounds of the rustling leaves and try to notice each individual one, trying to break the sound down and see how it was formed. As an eight-year-old, I had never heard of meditation, but I had discovered meditation for myself. Sitting in a tree doing this helped me to feel calm; it helped to shut out the ’noise’. I think I was lucky having the opportunity to grow up in the countryside rather than in a town during this period of my life. Warningcamp became a place I would call home as a child – and still think of as home now.

Having a mum who was a riding instructor also gave me the opportunity to be around horses for all of my childhood. Mum has always told me I seemed to have a natural talent for horse-riding. I think I just feel a closer connection to animals than I do to people. Animals don’t expect me to try to communicate with them verbally – they don’t communicate with multiple messages, like people do. Most animals communicate very simply. People can say one thing and mean something else, and then when you don’t understand that they meant something else, they get annoyed or they tell you that you are stupid for not realising or understanding. On the other hand, an animal will just communicate one message at a time.

I used to have no problem getting on to any horse and riding it – horses seemed to trust me, as I did them. That doesn’t mean I thought they would never hurt me, but what I trusted was that they would be clear with their messages, and that I would understand them. Most wild animals, and many other animals, don’t demand my attention. I like being in nature, just observing, rather than needing to play with the animals. I love observing and learning, and it was this mindset which helped me to discover meditation sitting in the trees. All I was trying to do was to observe and learn. In the same way that someone parking a car may turn the music down to help them park, I closed my eyes to help me hear and focus.

During these early years, I started to become aware of patterns. I don’t know whether I had always liked patterns, but I was becoming more self-aware and so becoming more aware of what I liked and didn’t like. I seemed to have an ability to guess well with competitions like ‘how many coins are in the jar’. At a country fair, when I was about eight, I guessed the number of coins in a jar and got it correct. During the summer holidays when I was nine or ten, myself – along with many other children from the two primary schools in Arundel – painted a mural of different animals. On the last day, we were told to guess how many animals were on the mural, and the person who guessed closest would win a prize to be presented by the Mayor of Arundel. I guessed closest – just one number out.

Many of my lifelong interests started between the ages of five and ten. I have always been confused by people changing tastes and interests as they grow up. My view is that if you like something, why would you one day not like it? Between five and ten, I developed an interest in the music of Elvis Presley; I discovered books that taught me things, rather than just being stories; and I started meditating, although I didn’t know it was meditation at the time. I also became aware of some of my habits which would sometimes get me in trouble.

If I heard tunes or sounds, I would make the same sound myself, usually whistling it. I would copy words or phrases that people said which, for some reason, resonated in my mind when I heard them. What’s more, I would often copy them in a replication of the person’s voice. I didn’t realise that mimicking people could offend them – it would just happen automatically. I didn’t even realise I was mimicking them. And when I became aware I was saying or doing something, like whistling or saying a phrase in a specific way, I didn’t normally know where it came from or why I was saying it – it would just happen.

I would find myself mimicking accents and speech patterns that seemed to resonate with me. The best way to avoid offending people was to avoid people, to try and keep my mouth shut, and to keep what went through my head in my head. This was never easy, as most of what I would do would just happen. Often others would point out to me what I was doing, and I found it very difficult to stop something when I didn’t notice myself doing it.

Look Into My Eyes: Asperger’s, Hypnosis, & Me by Dan Jones, is available in Paperback and for Amazon Kindle: http://apn.to/prod/1542551196