Janna Colaco Certified Hypnotherapist Blog

Everything listed under: Self hypnosis

  • Stuck in the Binge-Watching Loop?

    In this interview, Janna helps shed light on an overlooked cause of low energy, and how hypnosis helps overcome it.

    Could you describe the kind of low energy correctable by hypnotherapy?

    Sure.  It’s like when you run around all day and can’t wait to get home. But suddenly you’re exhausted.  There’s nothing good on TV, but you search frantically for anything, to watch.  There’s a vague, unsatisfied procrastination-like feeling.  You fall asleep, but tell yourself you’ll get up in a minute.  

    Eventually, the soul-nurturing projects you were looking forward to don’t sound like fun.  The beautiful walk you were going to take with the dog doesn’t sound good either.  Everything feels like work.  The dishes and laundry pile up.  The fridge is empty because every day is the same.  

    You blame yourself for always losing your momentum just when it’s time to really enjoy your downtime.

    So why does this happen?  Is it low blood sugar?

    You should check with your doctor, but mostly chronic, low-grade anxiety is the culprit.  Anxiety is the root of boredom and procrastination.  

    Think of it this way: boredom is restlessness and dissatisfaction with the present moment. Do you have a strong urge to escape, to be entertained, or avoid?  Usually, the need to ‘check out’ is strong, like an alcoholic’s need for a drink or an addict’s craving for heroin.  Avoidance is pleasure.  People stuck in this loop usually think they’re tired, not anxious.  They’ve tried will-power, but it’s subconscious.  That’s why I am able to help them.

    How do you help them?

    First, I ask them, “If you knew your future was secure, how would you be spending your time?”  Each person is unique, so I would use a variety of processes based on their situations.  All subconscious minds are highly adaptable when it comes to something we want, like having more energy, confidence, security or inspiration.  

    People want to be healthier.  Low grade anxiety makes you fat because you just sit and eat junk food and sleep.  So we transform their inner feelings to ones of happy inspiration so life becomes a ‘get to’ rather than a ‘have to.’  

    Most of us remember the desired feelings from childhood.  We couldn’t wait to finish our homework so we could go outside and play!  There was always enough energy to play with our friends, ride bikes, roller skate, or do art, no matter how tired or hungry we were when we walked through the door!  In hypnosis, we reclaim those feelings of motivation and inspiration, and energy returns full force.

    What can people expect from working with you?

    Oh, lots of things.  A cleaner house, a skinner body, a happier dog… the list goes on and on.  Enjoying the present moment, making it your friend, rather than your enemy, is available through this work.

    Janna Colaco, C.Ht., is a Transformational Hypnotherapist and Master Therapeutic Imagery Facilitator with an office in Downtown Fullerton.  She also offers FaceTime, Skype and phone sessions for distance clients.  You can reach Janna at (714)269-6908, or visit her website:  mechanicsofgrace.com. 

  • The Inner Alchemy of Spring

    Discarding outdated thinking habits can clear our inner closet and make space for compassion and love.

    Last week I found myself spontaneously buying paint for the living room.  The cashier complemented my color choice, and remarked on how many people were spring-painting their walls!

    Spring is our time to remove stale clutter and shed what is no longer needed.  A gentle breeze through an open window, soft sunlight, or the scent of fresh flowers can move us forward with enthusiasm toward a clean new perspective.

    While we clear the garden, pantry or closet, springtime offers us an opportunity to release ineffective beliefs and outdated thinking habits.  

    Some of my favorite habits to discard this Spring include:

    Questioning others’ motives.  It’s inevitable we will encounter difficult people again and again.   The proverb, “Never judge a person until you’ve walked a mile in their moccasins” reminds us we are all here for different experiences, and we shall never truly understand the path of another.

    We can never know for sure “why” someone behaves as they do.  Perhaps they have suffered.  Or maybe they took a vow to forget their own divinity in this lifetime, playing the role of villain so that we might overcome a fear or strengthen a gift. 

    Questioning others’ motives never provides the relief or closure we seek.  If we count up all the hours spent analyzing, labeling or attempting to make sense of others, we notice an increase, rather than a decrease, in our own confusion, frustration or hurt.  

    When possible, assume good intentions.   Hold them accountable by questioning only their judgement.  Their actions are under your scrutiny, not their motives.  This shift in perspective leaves their soul’s dignity and goodness intact.  This practice allows us to move toward compassion and understanding with even the most difficult souls.

    Perfectionism.  When we release perfectionism in favor of excellence, we choose self-love and worthiness.  The perfectionist who hides under baggy clothing at the beach, waiting to lose that last ten pounds, misses out on the joy of swimming and playing in the sand.  Better to shed the cover-up and participate!  Excellence implies living life to the fullest… even when we aren’t perfect.  Foregoing perfectionism takes courage.  Releasing self-consciousness is a powerful choice that frees us to create memories that last a lifetime.

    Being right.  Insistence on being right can derail personal growth.  Being right by definition automatically implies others are wrong.  The heightened energy we feel as we argue, upon closer inspection, derives its fervor and urgency from our deepest fears.

    Letting go requires courage and trust in the universe.  We release the need for things to go our way.  We can calmly offer our opinion while allowing others to do the same.  

    Outdated feelings of urgency, threat and fear are revealed as smoke and mirrors. ‘Let it go!’ becomes our mantra.  Internal windows open, cleansing mind and body, and we move forward with renewed enthusiasm for life.

  • Weight Loss and Hypnosis: A Love Infusion

    Janna, how does hypnosis and weight loss work? On the conscious and subconscious levels simultaneously. It heals and comforts. It creates courage and motivation. Feeling secure and relaxed is a huge part of achieving ideal weight.

    What kind of a diet plan do you use? Each client is unique, but in a nutshell, quality over quantity. You eat the freshest foods in season, using all the senses simultaneously. In hypnosis, we can train your subconscious to become satisfied from the look, smell, texture and flavor of the food. Very little is eaten to feel incredibly full… yet the food is delicious! I don’t let my clients eliminate entire food groups or spend three hours at the gym. That’s not love, it’s punishment.

    Can you hypnotize me to stop craving junk food? Yes, we certainly want to eliminate processed foods! But we still keep the indulgences in moderation.

    That sounds great, but doesn’t indulgence sometimes bring thoughts of binging?Binging feels terrible! There’s nothing indulgent about feeling stuffed, fat and sick. In hypnosis, we can make a little of the good stuff go a very long way. Do we eliminate chocolate? Absolutely not! Two bites of high quality chocolate is immensely satisfying.  You will feel full with less.

    Explain what you mean by “love-infused eating.” About twenty years ago, my kids and I were talking about my aunt’s cookies. They weren’t much to look at and the recipes were simple. But Aunty cooked with love, and you could taste the difference. We were on vacation and my son said, “Mommy, the cook put love in my hamburger!” It became a game to identify the love in food.

    How does this “love-infused eating” work with hypnosis? Not only do we energetically infuse our own food with love as we prepare and eat it, we also hypnotize the subconscious to receive love and self-care. We treat meal time as sacred… never eating standing up, in front of the TV, or in the car. When we feel loved and valued, we would never over-stuff ourselves or eat from boredom.

    It sounds like I have to cook and eat on plates! To be perfectly honest, yes. Loving yourself implies investing energy into yourself. So, for instance, I could hypnotize you to love cooking, because that’s good for you. I could hypnotize you to make meal preparation the best part of your day. My favorite thing is to collect beautiful antique china and grow my own roses to set on the table. I’ve used self-hypnosis to receive love from the dishes, flowers and food.

    Do you coach your clients about exercise or just diet? Yes, I use the same indulgent strategy. I don’t advocate spending three hours at the gym or marathon training. Ouch! But they are encouraged to take mindful nature walks and absorb the beauty around them. Twenty minutes of walking on the beach or playing in the pool is all that’s needed.

    Janna Colaco, C.Ht., is a Clinical Hypnotherapist and Master Therapeutic Imagery Facilitator practicing in downtown Fullerton. She has coached motivational transformation since 1986. Janna is a Healing Minister, NLP Practitioner, Reiki Practitioner and Yoga Teacher. You can reach her at 714-269-6908 or at jannacolaco@mac.com, and mechanicsofgrace.com.

  • How to Make a Holiday Hypnosis Vision Board

    When I became a Certified Hypnotherapist, I finally learned how to stop struggling with my weight over the holidays.

    I wanted the skinny body AND the cookies too, the coziness, the satisfaction, the clean house, the peace, the holiday spirit.  Once I figured out the secret to having it all, I've been helping clients do the same.  Wouldn't it be great to have the treats AND be thin?

    There following tips are designed to give you your excellent body and your cookies too, without the deprivation. 

    For your vision board, you will need:

    1.  An over-sized piece of card stock or poster board

    2.  A glue stick

    3.  A few of your favorite holiday magazines

    Cut or tear out the pictures that appeal to you the most.  Don't edit this!  Is it that aromatic home-made bread image?  The beautiful turkey?  The clean house?  The cute cookies? The Size 2 woman with the beautiful outfit?  Or maybe you love the images  of crafts, decorations or crackling fireplaces. Again, DON'T EDIT!  You want the most delicious goodies, the most amazing bodies the most well-behaved children, happiest families you can find.  The trick is to only grab what you are drawn to the most.

    Next, how do you want to feel?  cut out positive words... some examples are: 















    These are positive statements of how you want to feel, how you wish you could feel, or how you'd like to feel instead.  

    Paste everything collage-style on the board, both words and images, and put the vision board near your bed, where you will see it before you fall asleep, and particularly when you wake up in the morning.  

    There is a 30-minute window just prior to falling asleep, and a morning time after hitting 'snooze' but before getting up when we are in a natural state of hypnosis.  

    So, before you fall asleep and before you get up, focus on the Vision Board.  Think about the feelings you want.  

    You will do this every night, and every morning for reinforcement.

    If weight control is an issue, reflect on the fact that those who are naturally slender eat everything they want in moderation.  They know that the first few bites taste the best.  The women in your magazine images don't binge. They don't worry or wallow, they don't stress.  They don't deprive themselves.    They feel full of love and satisfaction... and that's where these images pull that cozy feeling into the subconscious mind.  

    Remember, the QUANTITY of food doesn't satisfy you, it's the quality.  The quantity is only there to numb the ache, the hurt, the emptiness.

    So, we use the vision board to put the Christmas spirit into the subconscious.  There's a belly full of joy, a satisfied feeling.  Treats can be eaten, yet you can feel satisfied after two bites of cookie.  This is the meditation you do as you gaze sleepily at your vision board, especially in the morning.  Become committed to the experience.  Allow the comfort in, and dissolve the deprivation.

    You can have your cookies, and eat them too!

    Hypnotically Yours,


  • Are Past Life Regressions Real???

    I can't believe I'm actually opening up this whole 'past-life' can of worms.  Oh well.

    As a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, every once in a while, I'll get a phone call asking me to conduct a past life regression.  The requestor is usually convinced their current-life problem stemmed from some old, unresolved issue in a past life.   I have been trained in this area, and I've facilitated numerous past life regressions (PLR's), for both individuals and groups.  I found out early just how passionate and downright angry people get regarding this fascinating topic.  They are either passionately angry for it, or passionately angry against it.

    The Believers in Past Lives (henceforth referred to as BIPLs) are certain, beyond all doubt, that past lives are REAL, dammit, and anybody who doesn't believe as they do are a bunch of old-fashioned, fundamentalist, right-wing, meat-eating whacko's who "just aren't evolved."  (They usually declare this with a Yogier-Than-Thou arch to one of their eyebrows.)   BIPLs want to be right about their own enlightenment.  Many BIPLs are vegan and gluten-free.  I generalize, but you get the picture.

    On the flip side, we have the Disbelievers in Past Lives (henceforth referred to as DIPLs).  DIPLs are just as convinced they are right, and, with God on their side, they are poised for Holy Battle.  DIPLs wonder why this hooey wasn't stamped out once and for all back in Salem, Massachusetts years ago.  To a dyed-in-the-wool DIPL, the topic of Past Life Regression is closed for discussion. Period, end of sentence.

    What BIPLs and DIPLs don't get is that they are mirror images of each other... both are narrow-minded, stuck and positioned.  Many BIPLs have given up their childhood religions to embrace their "spirituality" but have turned that spirituality into a rigid belief system reminiscent of the one they left behind.

    Inevitably, I'm asked by both camps about MY OWN personal beliefs on the topic.  The BIPLs assume I'm on their side.  

    The truth is, I don't know.  The truth is, none of us knows, not really.  We suspect, we hope, but we don't know.  Past lives fall under the heading of "Mystery."  Mysteries are frustrating!  Human beings want answers, not mysteries!  We want to be right about our beliefs!  We want to be seen as enlightened, saved, or both!  But we just don't know.  Not for sure, anyhow.  

    Luckily  NOT knowing is the most positive, most powerful, place to stand.  As a Healer, I must stand in the mystery... the twilight... the in-between... avoid temptation to try to put the fullness and richness of a client's experience into a box with a label.  I must avoid categorizing, conjecturing and pigeon-holeing ideas, experiences, research and beliefs.  Too much "knowing" and not enough "mystery" flattens and robs an experience of it's magic, it's love, it's most profound essence.

    Every major religion in the world believes in "the Mysteries" in some form or other.  Catholics are familiar with the Creed, "We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty... the Maker of Heaven and Earth...of all that is seen and Unseen."   That "Unseen" part refers to the Mysteries.   Mysteries are prevalent in other branches of Christianity, too.  Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam and other religions all contain references to the Mysteries.  

    In all faiths, the word "Mystery" is a good thing.  In metaphysics, it is representative of the unseen dimension.  "Faith" is another signpost that comprises mystery.  Faith must come first before evidence is experienced.  From the Latin comes the phrase popularized by the Holy Order of Servite:  "Credo ut Intelligam" which means  "I believe, so that I might understand."

    In the study of metaphysics, suspension of rigid right/wrong beliefs and experiencing the expansion of presence is what reveals the fourth dimension and allows deep peace to manifest. 

    Take the magic of Santa Claus!  The wonderment about Santa made our Christmases sparkle... there was almost an electrical charge to the atmosphere when we were children.  The richness of it, the openness to possibility... that's what was important.  Remember when we found out Mom and Dad put the presents under the tree?  Remember the flatness?  It wasnt that there were fewer presents.  It wasn't that Santa was gone, we'd never seen or met the guy anyway!  We were asleep!  lt was the magic of mystery and wonderment that left.  Our childlike unbridled openness to the mystery... that's what mattered and created joy!

    I'm asked, "Hey Janna, don't you need to believe in past lives to facilitate a past life regression?"  

    And the answer is this:  to make my client's experience effective and fruitful, I must do two things:  one, supply the love and unconditional positive regard for their transformation, for what they want, without muddying their waters with my own belief system; and two, neither believe nor disbelieve... I must stand, firmly, in the mystery.  If I were to burden you with stories of why I believe in past lives, spelling out evidence, citing research, clinical studies and accounts, it would actually flatten your experience and ruin it -- it would be dimensionally reduced for you somehow.  So how can PLR help people?  You decide.  Here are a couple examples.

    Years ago, a man came to one of my teachers and told her he wanted to visit his past lives to rid himself of his fear of spiders.  In hypnosis, he recalled one particular life where he was "murdered" by a large number of spiders.  (Think Ron Weasley in the Forbidden Forrest with Aragog and family.)  Was it real?  Who knows?  The point is, that man was able to move forward without being afraid of spiders anymore... in his own way, he figured out his personal "why" and, with his question answered, was able to deal with spiders easily after that.  Was the PLR simply a subconscious fantasy? Was it a bona fide past life? Does it matter?  NO!  What matters is the poor guy can let go of his fear of spiders now!  That's all that really counts!

    Another client (different case-history) was one of those good-looking, non-committal type of men.  Mid-40's, he'd never married.  He'd had a plethora of steady girlfriends, but always dumped them at the last minute when things got serious.  He went to his hypnotherapist for months.  No matter what hypnotic techniques she used, she couldn't get rid of his fear of commitment.  The guy was convinced a past life was to blame for his non-committal, womanizing ways.  His hypnotherapist (incredulous) figured he was just a womanizer who wanted to stay that way, but she humored him and did the past life regression figuring heck!  Why not?  Nothing else had worked!

    So she hypnotizes him, facilitated the regression, and he remembered a past life in which he'd lived in ancient Rome.  A hit-man for the Caesar, he killed many enemies of the government.  He retired to a farm outside of Rome with his wife and children.  One day, his identity was uncovered and some enemies came to avenge the deaths of their friends.  They tied him up, raped his wife in front of him, and systematically cut up his children, then his wife, into teeny tiny little pieces while he watched.  

    He came out of hypnosis, suddenly "realizing" why he'd been afraid to commit... he subconsciously thought, or 'remembered',  the people he loved would be in danger by being close to him!  Once he decided his fear of commitment must have come from a past-life fear of hurting those close to him, he let his fear of commitment go and, miraculously, got married to his current-life girlfriend six months later.  Nobody was more flabbergasted than his hypnotherapist!

    Was his past life in Rome real?  Was it imagined? Who cares!  He got what he wanted! He got answers!  His girlfriend got what she wanted... a ring! He married her, had a few kids, and is now extremely happy.  

    In other news, every once in a while, something new and unexpected happens in my hypnotherapy office that makes me tingle in wonderment.  Last week, I conducted a past life regression with a young man who suddenly began speaking in a foreign language he did not know.  The session was recorded, and the foreign language was real, and it was fluent. There was no way this young person could have learned that language in this lifetime.  

    This is a phenomenon known as xenoglossy.  I had studied xenoglossy in college but hadn't encountered it personally until last week.  Do I believe in past lives?  After the xenoglossy experience, I lean toward yes, but then I remember... staying in the "Mystery" is the most powerful place to stand.  So my commitment is to embrace the wonder, the unknown, and to hold positive intention for all others to overcome their fears, their obstacles, and to realize their dreams... because that's all that really matters.



  • Self-Hypnosis: The Thrill of Victory or the Agony of Defeat?

    Determining the best times to practice self-hypnosis

    Have you ever considered self-hypnosis?  As a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, I advise my clients there are situations where self-hypnosis can work wonders!  It all depends on the emotional situation.  It's important they know when to use it, when not to use it, and why.  Hopefully, this story will help you decide when, and when not, to self-hypnotize.

    My first foray into self hypnosis was back in 1978, and it was a complete disaster.  

    I was seventeen.  My then-boyfriend and I had been to see the Pat Collins' show up in Hollywood.  Pat was famous back then as "Pat Collins, The Hip Hypnotist."  Her shows were sell-outs, every time.  I was mesmerized.  I was hooked!  This was fascinating!  As an audience member, I had been astounded that I was so easily hypnotized.  "I wonder if I could hypnotize myself just the way Pat Collins did?" I pondered.  Wow, I bet I could hypnotize myself to love running!  I wanted to like it.  I wanted to love it.  I wanted to be normal!

    Previously, my daily runs played out in my head something like this (decidedly NOT normal):

    "I hate running!  Why can't I go past a mile?  This sucks!"  I would tell myself, gasping for air.     

    "There must be something wrong with me," my inner voice would continue.  "Other people get used to running.  Why can't I? I've been at this for months.  I'm so weak and nauseous.  My legs hurt.  My stomach hurts.  My neck hurts. I think I'm going to die.   Please, God, let me die right now!  I'm slow.  What if somebody I know sees me... I can't even shuffle one foot in front of the other.  This is so boring!  Do I look fat from the side?  This bra hurts.  What am I doing wrong?  When will it feel better?  Where are the so-called endorphins everybody talks about?  I'm fat!  I should be able to do this.  Maybe I have exercised-induced asthma.  There must be something really wrong with me.  Maybe I have MS or MD.  Lymphoma?  That would explain this weakness.   I can't, I can't, I can't!" 

    Back in 1978, running had taken over as the exercise of salvation throughout Southern California.  James Fixx (who later fell dead of a heart attack while running) had just written a book about this new fitness craze.  Running was what everybody was doing.   It was the in-thing.  Even my once out-of-shape, gray-haired mother was running 10K's.  She would run them with my little brother Jonny, who was only about seven years old at the time.  Jonny loved running.  Mom loved running.  The whole world loved running but me!

    "That was great!" Mom and Jonny would pant, as they returned from their latest beach run, sweaty and elated, tanned and toned, claiming they'd experienced massive rushes of endorphins.  "You should join us, Janna... you'd really like it.  It's such a beautiful day!  We ran clear to the beach, we saw some dolphins!  You should come with us... we could all have so much fun!"  

    "But I hate running! I can't do it!" I cried.

    Shame bubbled up as I remembered the voice of my seventh grade English teacher, Miss LaValle.  "We do not hate!  Hate is not a good word!  We may dislike intensely, but we never hate!"  Sorry, Miss LaValle.  I don't dislike running intensely.  I freaking HATE it!

    That's when the idea hit.  I'd use hypnosis!  I'd be just like Pat Collins!  Obviously, it was my mindset, that was the problem.  I needed to hypnotize myself to love running!  Then I could be skinny and normal, part of the in-crowd!  

    I charged straight over to the spare bedroom.  I tried to remember what Pat Collins had done to put us all into the hypnotic state.  Oddly enough, as I repeated her induction suggestions to myself, I found I went easily, fully and deeply into hypnosis.  I was kind of surprised.

      "I'm doing it!"  I thought.  I was excited.  Naturally, I started to visualize and imagine myself running.  I imagined the pain, the agony.  I told myself to stop feeling bad RIGHT NOW, I was to enjoy running.  I told myself I wouldn't feel nauseated anymore.  I told myself I wouldn't feel so terrible.  I told myself I wouldn't be such a fat pig.  I told myself I could make it up that horrible, steep hill.  Problem was, I was imagining the exact opposite of positive imagery and emotions.  I was imagining my usual horror, and trying to make it go away.

    I didn't know any better.  I wasn't a hypnotherapist back then, just a simple teenage girl.  So what I did, quite by accident, was focus on what I DIDN'T want.  The subconscious can't understand "not nauseated."  It has no language.  It simply internalized the physical feeling of "nauseated."  The deeper mind can't interpret the word "NOT."  "NOT a fat pig" simply means "fat pig" to the subconscious mind.  As I imagined myself running, I couldn't help but pull in my own personal negative experience of running. Negativity had been my only known association to running.   So what happened?  I went for a run later, and I felt even worse.  I had inadvertently hypnotized myself to feel worse!

    Don't get me wrong, self-hypnosis can be a great tool when used properly.  However, when attempting to feel better when you feel bad, self-hypnosis can backfire on you, like it did with me.  The following is a partial list of times NEVER, EVER to use self-hypnosis.


    1.  When you're depressed.  You'll pull that depression deeper into the subconscious mind.

    2.  When you're in pain.  You'll pull that pain in even deeper.  You can't focus on a negative in order to turn it into a positive (even though three lefts do make a right).  

    3.  Never use self-hypnosis if somebody just broke up with you.  

    4.  When somebody you love died.

    5.  Anytime there's a negative emotion or negative situation that you want to eliminate.

    In all of the above cases, hetero-hypnosis, not self-hypnosis works far better.  Hetero-hypnosis means you get the help of a Certified Hypnotherapist, who can change your state of mind to the positive.

    A good analogy is this:  Imagine a patient ready for open-heart surgery.  The highly trained surgical team shaves and carefully disinfects the chest area.  The operating room is clean, controlled and well-lit.  The surgeons and nurses are scrubbed, with hair nets on their heads, sterile clothing, gloves and cute little blue booties over their shoes.  The instruments have been carefully sanitized.  Why?  Because when the human body is open, it is vulnerable.  Nobody wants to contaminate the open heart with germs, loose hairs, dandruff, bad breath or sneeze juice (which is why they wear masks).

    Hypnosis creates access to your subconscious mind, which is no different than the surgeon preparing for surgery.  No negative emotions or suggestions should be introduced to the open subconscious mind.  Only positive suggestions AND EMOTIONS should be present.  If you see a hypnotherapist because you are in emotional or physical pain, he or she will help you create a positive feeling in-state BEFORE that positive feeling is anchored deeper.  When changing a negative emotion to a positive one, you need the help of a trained professional.  Otherwise, you're pulling in your negative mood.  You'd never allow a dirty surgeon to touch your open heart; therefore you mustn't bring bad feelings to your open mind.  There are times, however, when self-hypnosis can be quite effective:


    1.  When you are feeling very confident.  You can anchor that confidence deeper in self-hypnosis;

    2.  When you are at peace and relaxed, for the same reason;

    3.  When you have been given self-hypnosis homework by a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist.  In that case, there has been a post-suggestion and/or blocks placed to keep you away from the negative path;

    4.  Anytime you want to reinforce a pre-existing positive feeling, like winning a race (provided you've won a race and felt great while doing it).  If you focus on the positive, more positive will come.

    As I write this, I am not seventeen anymore.  At fifty-five, I am in far better shape than I was at seventeen.  But the best part is I love physical activity.  Don't get me wrong, that old negative mind-set emerged occasionally from time to time, but with the help of my mentor, I have overcome self-consciousness and negativity when it comes to physical exercise.  I have taught yoga and competed in open-water ocean swims.  I have made peace with my body and I enjoy life now more than I ever did.  As Snoopy used to say, "Youth is wasted on the young!"

    To learn more about how hypnotherapy can help you, please don't hesitate to call or schedule an appointment.

    Hypnotically yours,


    Janna Colaco, C.Ht., is a Clinical Hypnotherapist and Master Therapeutic Imagery Facilitator in private practice in Downtown Fullerton.  She is also a Licensed NLP Practitioner, Reiki Master, Ordained Healing Minister, and Yoga Teacher.  An honors graduate of the Hypnosis Motivation Institute, Janna has received numerous awards for achievement in transformational hypnotherapy, and has coached both individuals and groups in motivational transformation since 1986.  

  • I Fell in a Vat of Chocolate. A story of survival by hypnosis!

    The Birth of the Best and the Worst Recipe Ever:

    It was 1975, and my Aunt Helen (also known as The Greatest Cook in The World) concocted a new addition to her Christmas cookie selection: Chocolate Peanut Butter Crunch Balls.

    If you were to eat them, you would understand immediately the name doesn’t do them justice. They should be called something like, “Sex Dipped in Chocolate” or, “Relationship Replacement Nuggets.” My cousin and I declared them our “last meal on death row” food. To say they were good would be the understatement of the century. We would gleefully gorge on them until, like, February.

    Long about March, I would curse my reflection in the mirror, work up enough disgust and self-loathing, and launch into some starvation/exer-kill regimen that would temporarily rid me of my chocolate tonnage until the next holiday season, when the vicious cycle would kick back up again.

    in 2001, Aunty died of heart failure, surrounded by Hershey’s Kiss wrappers. We miss her greatly, but her Crunch Ball recipe lives on. I’d make them for my family, eating about half the batch myself in the process. Little did I know, my 12% willpower was not enough to stand up to my 88% “Chocolate/Peanut Butter Monster” below.

    Doomed to Make Them Forever! How Could This Happen?!

    The only way to stay thin was to forget them, leave the recipe in the box, or better yet burn it. Maybe shoot some silver bullets through it’s heart. Or was it a wooden stake? I couldn’t remember. I could imagine that recipe screeching and disintegrating like a Horcrux straight out of Harry Potter. The solution? Just don’t do any baking, right? Wrong.

    The Devil Balls are in my divorce settlement. That’s right. Laugh! But in 2010, Mike decided to settle our divorce based on the agreement that I would continue to make him that infernal recipe as part of the friggin’ divorce settlement! I’m certain those cookies were the reason he’d married me in the first place, and he wasn’t about to go down without a fight. Exhausted and broke, I caved in.

    Cut to December, 2013

    I was a new hypnotherapist with tools. I’d practiced self-hypnosis zealously for weight loss. Tackle the most important issues first, that’s my motto! I was proud and smug. I was thin and toned. It was the first holiday season I actually felt good about my physical body. I felt great! Then, of course, the phone rang.
    “Hey Jan, it’s me, Mike… I just wanted to remind you about my balls…?”

    “Goddammit!” I muttered. How would I make them without eating them? The only way is with your hands. You squish together the ingredients. It’s impossible with a mixer or spoon. Aunty said so, and she knew everything. Besides, I’ve tried. Plus, you gotta dip them in, like, eight pounds of melted chocolate from Trader Joes. Trader Joe’s wasn’t around in Aunty’s day, but my friend Judy says its the best. (Next to Aunty, Judy knows everything there is to know about chocolate.) It’s impossible for me not to test some of the chocolate to make sure it’s not poisoned. I’m a good person, it’s my duty. I felt my new thin body slipping away…

    Hold the Phone! I’m a Hypnotist!

    A normal hypnotist would have given herself the suggestion that she wouldn’t be tempted. Not me. That’s no fun! That’s just more of that deprivation nonsense. No, I wanted to eat them. It was Christmas. But I wanted to be skinny too. Eat them AND be skinny? Would it work? What would I do?

    And then, just like the Grinch, I got a wonderful, awful idea! “What if,” I thought to myself, “I was able to hypnotize myself to feel as though I’d eaten them, only not really?”

    “But I don’t want to feel bloated and sick,” the more reasonable side of my personality argued.

    “Then why don’t we compromise?” And with that, I concocted a plan. I walked to the couch. I went into hypnosis, and told myself something like this:

    Self-Hypnotic Brilliance

    I put myself into a medium hypnoidal state. I told myself, “Visualize, imagine, pretend, it’s Sunday morning. You walk into the kitchen. You light some cozy candles, look at your beautiful restored 1947 Wedgewood stove, and make coffee.” You are in your pink pig slippers, and you are by yourself. It’s a cozy day, a perfect day for baking, and you are excited and filled with holiday spirit. See yourself putting on Christmas music.

    “You make yourself a healthy breakfast. You sit down with a candle and enjoy eating. When you are finished, you carry your coffee and dirty dishes back to the kitchen and put the plate in the dishwasher. Feel how full and satisfied you are, as you begin to assemble the Chocolate Peanut Butter Crunch Ball ingredients…

    “You measure out the ingredients into the big blue bowl. As you watch the ingredients coming together, you inhale deeply, enjoying the aromas. The aromas are extra strong today, and each time you see, feel and smell the ingredients, it will be as though you have fully absorbed their essences and eaten them. The smells, fragrances and sounds will be so satisfying that there will be no need to eat any of it. Smelling, touching and seeing are so much more important and satisfying. In fact, the more you smell, feel and enjoy the process, the more satisfied you become.

    “From time to time, you might try to put your fingers in your mouth and taste something, but the harder you try to remember that old habit, the more difficult it becomes. You understand the taste wouldn’t be anywhere near as good as the satisfaction you already feel with the smells.

    “Your sense of satisfaction grows stronger and stronger, and the more you cook, the more satisfied you feel. And now, it’s time to melt the chocolate.

    “As you unwrap the chocolate bars, the smell of chocolate overwhelms you, and you will feel as though you have already eaten all the chocolate you could possibly want. The smell of chocolate is so strong now, that you are completely satisfied and there will be no desire whatsoever to eat anything.

    Each time you look at your finished recipe, it will be as though you’ve already eaten it, and you will be so satisfied, but still feel thin and slender.”

    And that’s what I did. It was one of the best days of my life. I’ve never enjoyed a process more, and I never once took a bite, and never once licked a finger, and never once felt deprived. In fact, it felt better than had I actually eaten anything! “I’m a genius!” I said to myself, and meant it.
    Of course, I didn’t gain weight.

    Cut to Later Sunday Evening, Unable to Sleep:

    I’m usually a good sleeper. But that night, I kept waking up. “What’s wrong?” said my significant other. “I can’t sleep. That chocolate smell is too strong. It’s in my nose and it won’t go away.”

    “What chocolate smell?”

    “My God, can’t you smell it? I melted chocolate earlier and the stench is overpowering! I can’t sleep! It’s up my nose! I CAN’T SLEEP!!!!”

    “What stench?” He said. “Did you make those chocolate things? I can’t smell them.”

    “Crap!” I thought. I overdid the hypnosis again. Better not exaggerate so much next time.

    Before I knew what was happening, he lurched toward the bedroom door, and I heard him stomp through the living room toward the kitchen, and I could hear the refrigerator door open. Then, I heard him making a cup of tea. After a long, long time, he returned, positively reeking of chocolate.

    Here’s the recipe:

    Chocolate Peanut Butter Crunch Balls
    by Helen Hopper

    2C Chunky Peanut Butter
    2C Powdered Sugar
    4C Rice Krispies
    1C Chopped nuts and/or Coconut
    1 cube (1/2C) melted butter

    German’s Sweet or semi-sweet chocolate for dipping. Tons. You can’t buy enough. This recipe fills your entire refrigerator and every pan and cookie sheet you own, plus all of your neighbors’.

    Mix all ingredients in a large bowl with hands thoroughly & shape into 1″ balls. Refrigerate 1 hour on greased cookie sheets or greased parchment paper. Melt chocolate and dip using a fork and a spoon. Refrigerate.

    Be careful. It could wind up in your divorce settlement.