Hypnosis for Kids

Hypnosis for your children...what a concept!

Not only can you easily hypnotize your children, they love the experience.

Kids have vivid imaginations and once they know how to combine relaxation with their imagination, they will have a valuable tool for life.

I meet many adults in my work who tell me about how they trained themselves to get to sleep as a child. Or, cope with school pressure. Or excel with sports. The possibilities are infinite.

Here are a few tips:

Children move more easily into hypnosis than do adults.

Children will generally not keep their eyes closed while in hypnosis, nor do they stay still. This is normal. Do not demand that your child stay still or be completely quiet.

When a child makes a comment or squirms, it does not mean your child is resistant to hypnosis, or relaxing...it usually means that the child is very absorbed in the process...this is a very good thing!

A simple approach of eye fixation can be useful. Have the child stare at a spot on the wall, or at something interesting. Older children can decide to go on a journey (i.e. Disneyland, vacation, etc). Give them a choice.

Many children may not know the concept of “relaxation”, but they do know what “sleep” is. They also understand the idea of “heavy” muscles/limbs. A rag doll or stuffed animal can help illustrate this – pick up the leg of the object and let it drop and comment on how heavy and relaxed the leg is… “just like your leg is sometimes”, etc.

Most children under 12 years old do not need to be taken "deeper" into hypnosis. But if you want, you could have the child imagine a staircase and go down (or up) while getting heavier and sleepier with each step. Counting (1-10 or 10-1) can also be effective, especially if the child understands the concept of numbers.

The following script is good for very young children prior to sleep at night, or before a nap. Have the child in bed in a comfortable sleep position first.

Once you and your child are familiar with this script, record it so that your child can use it whenever he or she wants. It can feel reassuring to have mom's voice or dad's voice available anytime.

The italics are the parts you read to your child.

Many parents find that it helps to play a pleasant and relaxing music in the background. Ocean or nature sounds can play all night with the digital machines available. I like The Silent Path by Robert Haig Coxon, a Canadian musician, and this piece is fairly available in music stores.

Sleepy Body Script

Now do you remember what it feels like to go to sleep?

Wait for response.

Yes, that's right. And it can feel very good to drift off to sleep, doesn't it? And your body really likes to go to sleep because it feels so good.

So, let’s think about your toes. Your toes can go to sleep. Your toes know how to go to sleep. Let them go to sleep now and tell me when your toes have gone to sleep.

Usually the child giggles and there may be lots of squirming - this is ok. Most children will tell you the body part is asleep within one to two minutes. They may speak, murmur or nod the head. Continue your hypnosis script (above) until the toes are asleep.


Now your feet…let me know when your feet have gone to sleep.

I often touch the body part, and sometimes pick it up and gently shake it and then let it drop into the bed. Wait for the response that the feet are “asleep”.

Very good. You are doing so well!

Now let me know when your calves/lower part of your legs are asleep.

Your child might prefer to do one side of the body first and then another. Some children can do both legs/arms at the same time.

Now let your upper legs go to sleep. Sleepy, sleepy legs. Let me know when your upper legs are asleep.

Pause for response.

Now your whole legs are asleep. Very sleepy legs. Nice and heavy…just sinking into the bed now.

Now let your bum (bottom) go to sleep. Sleepy, sleepy bum (bottom). Let me know when your bum (bottom) has gone to sleep.

Pause for response.

And your tummy…sleepy, sleepy tummy.

Yawn to encourage your child to feel sleep...but make sure you stay awake!

Take the time you need and let me know when your tummy has gone to sleep.

Pause for response.

Now your chest. Let your chest go to sleep. Sleepy, sleepy chest. Very comfortable. Breathing easy. Let me know when your chest has gone to sleep.

Pause for response.

Now let your shoulders go to sleep. Heavy, sleepy shoulders. Let me know when your shoulders have gone to sleep.

Pause for response.

And your arms. Now let your arms, all the way down to your hands and fingers go very deeply asleep. Sleepy, sleepy arms. Let me know when your arms are asleep.

Pause for response and pick up a wrist and gently shake the arm.

See how heavy and sleepy your arm is now!

And your neck. The neck needs to have a very nice sleep now. Sleepy, sleepy neck. Tell your neck to go to sleep and when it is asleep, let me know.

Pause for response.

And your head. Your face…your cheeks…your forehead…your eyebrows…your mouth and jaw. Your mouth has been busy all day and now needs a nice rest, so let your mouth go to sleep and as it gets sleepier and sleepier it slows right down…right down (i.e. if the child is chatting) so tell your mouth it is time to sleep. Do that in your mind now.

And your eyes. Sleepy, sleepy eyes.

Yawn for effect.

Heavy, sleepy eyes. When they are very sleepy they can’t even open…just let them get heavy and sleepy now.

Repeat until the eyes close – if they are slow to close, tell the child directly to close the eyes... just close your eyes now .

Or tell your child to keep the eyelids open as long as he or she can keep your eyes open as long as you can...your heavy, heavy eyelids, just keep them open, just try really hard to keep them open, and the harder you try, the heavier they get, just try to keep them open, and at some point you can't keep them open any longer and they they will need to close and just let them close, but for now, just keep them open as long as you can.... Keep going until the eyelids close.

Let me know when your eyes are asleep.

Pause for response.

And your ears. Sleepy, sleepy ears. You can hear my voice but your ears get sleepier as your whole body gets so, so sleepy now...so...so sleepy. So as you go sleepier now you have pleasant dreams...pretty dreams in your head...you can tell yourself in your mind “I have happy dreams…I have happy dreams…I have happy dreams…”

Add appropriate suggestions at this point – for example: “you have a dry pull-up in the morning”, or “you make new friends at school” or “you have a great day tomorrow!” or “you are so calm for tomorrow’s spelling test” or “mummy and daddy love you so feel that love in your heart all day tomorrow”, etc.

Please include the following information when you share this with others:

Copyright, Midwifery Consulting Services 2008

Use of this script is freely available for personal use.


I used to end this script with the eyes, but when my daughter was five, she told me to end with the ears. Do what your child prefers. When the eyes relax, they are supposed to close, so tell your child this at the time. Then the whole body goes to sleep.

I find the child is not usually asleep at the time, but has wound down and much more ready to go to sleep. Some gentle stroking for a few more minutes is appreciated by some children (others get more wound up).If you are stroking, you are creating a powerful mind-body connection to this relaxation that hypnotists call an "anchor". If you have another anchor that connects your child to relaxation, you may wish to do this instead. Make sure you refrain from using any energizing anchors.

This relaxation is about 5-10 minutes but works like magic to get children to sleep a lot faster and easier than the usual process of telling them to go to sleep.

If you record this script, eliminate the “tell me when ___ is asleep". It may be easiest to record this while doing it if your child can be quiet for the process.


Hi Shawn,

I have been doing the hypnosis for kids script from the website and my daughter Julia LOVES it!

She does not let me forget to read it and it seems to really prep her for a good sleep.

When I don’t read it, it can take her 30 – 40 minutes to unwind by reading books, brushing her dolls hair, etc before getting comfy and drifting to sleep.

When the script is read, she is asleep within 15 minutes of me leaving the room.

The message I add at the end is to assist her in concentration at school.

I tell her the louder it gets around her, the easier she will find it to focus on her work. I also tell her she will find it easier to complete her work and love the feeling it gives her when she does, encouraging her to work hard at completing all her daily work at school.

Thanks again for your help.


February 2010


Looking for excellent practitioners? Check out the specialists in hypnosis for children:

Click on links below for:

C. Sarla Mills

Barb Keshen

C. Sarla Mills and Francesca Gigliotti Chari

Barb Keshen

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