How to Hypnotize Someone With a Pocket Watch


Hamilton Railway Special pocket watch

Back in the day, I hypnotized thousands of people. I rarely used a pocket watch – opting for more rapid and dramatic hypnotic induction techniques. But when I swung a watch, it worked a treat. To use a pocket watch to hypnotize someone start with a simple question . . .

Is your subject hypnotic?

Not everyone can be hypnotized

Some people are genetically predisposed to hypnosis, some aren’t. If you swing a pocket watch in front of someone who isn’t hypnotic, nothing will happen and, well, that’s awkward.

Metal > < Magnet Test

Before you start swinging your watch, test to see if your potential subject is hypnotic. If they pass, go for it. If not, forget it.

Stand directly in front of your subject. Hold your arms straight out, palm facing each other, about a foot apart. Tell the subject to do the same and then close their eyes. Put your hands down and read/memorize this script.

Imagine that your right hand is a powerful magnet. And your left hand is a piece of metal. There’s a strong force flowing between them, pulling them together. Metal and magnet moving closer. The closer they get, the stronger the force. The stronger the force, the closer they get. Metal and magnet moving closer. Closer and closer. Closer. Closer and closer. [Repeat]

Try using a stern and commanding “father voice” and a soft and soothing “mother voice.” (I know that sounds sexist but there it is.) Mentally note which voice works best – assuming either does.

Howard pocket watch

IF their hands move closer, before they touch say “when they touch, leave them there.” (You can also stop saying the word closer.) When their hands touch, tell them to open their eyes and look at their hands. Tell them to put their hands down and have a seat.

[NOTE: if their hands come together in one single smooth motion, that’s following orders, not hypnosis. Bail.]

If their hands don’t move after 30 seconds, give up. Tell them to keep their eyes closed (so they don’t see the failure) and put down their hands. Once they do, then tell them to open their eyes, say nope, ain’t gonna happen. Fuhgeddaboutit.

Hands touched? Prepare!

Practice swinging you pocket watch on a chain before you do the hypnosis. The trick is to have a slow and steady rhythm, creating an arc of around six to eight inches.

Prepare you subject by telling them to get comfortable. Give them time to do so. Get out your pocket watch – slowly. Hold the watch up at your chest level. Run your free hand down the chain to steady it until it’s stock still.

Why swing a pocket watch?

  1. Swinging a pocket watch is weird. Weirdness increases anxiety. That’s a good thing, not a bad thing.
  2. People have an internal “script” for hypnosis: swinging pocket watch = hypnosis. You’re exploiting their expectations.
  3. A swinging pocket watch is a “point of eye fixation.” People pay closer attention to your words when they’re staring at something.
  4. A swinging pocket watch tires out their eyes. So when you say “your eyes are getting tired” you darn tootin’ they are.

Swinging pocket watch

Swing the pocket watch, read this script

Read the following script using whatever voice worked best for the test – “father” or “mother.” Feel free to switch between them. Relax and take your time.

Follow the watch with your eyes. Back and forth. Back and forth. That’s good. Just follow the watch with your eyes and listen to the sound of my voice. Breathe easy and let yourself begin to feel sleepy. Heavy. As you follow the watch, your eyes are getting heavier and heavier. Heavier and heavier. Your eyelids are heavy, like lead weights. So heavy and tired they just want to close. So you can drift off into a deep relaxing sleep. Let go of your eyes. Let them do what they want to do. Let your eyes close. Sleep now. Sleep.

If that doesn’t work, say “Go on, close your eyes. No seriously. Close your eyes.” That’s following a command – not hypnosis per se – but we don’t want one of those awkward moments do we?

If it works, they’re in hypnosis. The clearest indication: rapid eye movement under their eyelids. Don’t worry if you don’t see it, but if you do, good for you! And them, I hope.

Farago book

With great hypnosis comes great responsibility. For my sake, theirs and yours, use a pocket watch-induced trance state to improve your subject’s life. A little trance deepening and then . . .”From this moment on, you will stop smoking/eat healthy/wash that man right out of your hair.”

[If you want to know if your subject is actually hypnotized, and if so how deeply, check out the Stanford University scale of hypnotizability.]

The pocket watch is a hypnotist’s friend. But you don’t have to be a hypnotist to appreciate or own one. In fact, a pocket watch can have an extremely soothing maybe even hypnotic effect on its owner. Ask me how I know.


  1. I know a bit about hypnosis, and this should work. As long as you get them to relax and focus on one specific thing(as hypnosis they a state of deep concentration), you should be able to hypnotize them.

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