In order to learn self-hypnosis it is useful to understand the relationship between the mind brain and body. Although there are no proven explanations for the state of hypnosis, there are a few good models that will help in understanding how it works.
The reason there are not any real proofs, is that there is no proof for the concept of mind. However, when one accepts the existence of mind, things seem to fall into place in our understanding of how hypnosis may work.
The model that I believe serves best to understand the mind brain body relationship is that of the computer and the operator. A computer is a device that stores information and has programs called software that makes use of the information, or data to use its technical name.
The operator is a person who knows which software program is to be used. The operator does not need to understand how the data is stored or retrieved, that is the domain of the programmer.
If the computer is analogous to the brain, we know the brain stores data or information. There are several theories to explain how the three and a half pound brain can store as much information as it does, but the amazing thing is that the computer can juggle information in a way no digital computer can do. It can recognize the face of an old school friend who you have not seen for many years.
It is useful to consider the mind being in two components; a conscious part which tells you what you need to do under certain circumstances, like drink when you feel thirsty, and an unconscious part which does everything else. Like an iceberg floating in the ocean, the level of the ocean represents the level of awareness, anything above you are aware of, and anything below you are not aware of, the smaller part above represents the conscious part of the mind, the larger submerged part is below your level of awareness.
It seems that the unconscious part, that which is below the level of awareness, is the operator that runs the brain's software programs. I believe the unconscious is a software junkie, as it runs programs 24/7. For a very small amount of the time it runs the software that the conscious willful mind orders it to, but in the background it is running all the systems in our body.
Hypnosis is nothing more than a tool for instructing the unconscious to run a particular program or sries of programs without interference from the conscious mind. This is important because the conscious mind often does not believe the chosen programs can be run, and so may negate the effects of the unconscious mind.
Hypnosis is a natural phenomenon. Based on the theories I have just presented, when we are not actively directing the unconscious to run a particular program, it will run programs randomly, such as our dreams.
When driving from point A to point B, if you are stopped by traffic lights, do you remember the trip you have made so far? Probably not, you were listening to your car radio, talking to your passenger, thinking about the rest of your day, yet you were able to drive safely and smoothly. It was not always like this. When you were learning to drive, you were very conscious of the pedals and the steering wheel, but you taught yourself to drive and now you do not think about the actual mechanics of driving. This set of circumstances is analogous to being in a hypnotic trance. You were not sleep, nor had you been hit on the head unconscious, but you were narrowly focused on something other than the route you were taking.
So hypnosis is a mind state in which the conscious mind is distracted and focused on something other than what the unconscious is being told to do. The most effective way to accomplish this is to be trained by a hypnotist. Self-hypnosis can then be achieved by re-experiencing the hypnotic trance merely by remembering going into the trance state.
To utilize self-hypnosis, it is best to consciously instruct your unconscious mind that you are going into a hypnotic trance, and during that time, it is to perform certain things that you want to accomplish. You are then ready for the trance. I said you need to be patient. You will need practice at doing this so do not be disappointed if it does not work at first. Perseverance will definitely bring results.