Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Hypnosis and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

by Maurice Kouguell, Ph.D., BCETS 

This article is in response to one of our readers, a hypnotherapist, from Australia who is requesting help in finding scripts for helping sufferers of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.   

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a debilitating fatigue described as exhaustion, poor stamina (if any) and flu-like symptoms. The symptoms include extreme fatigue, general pain, mental fogginess and at times gastro-intestinal problems. It is also referred to as chronic fatigue immune dysfunction syndrome (CFIDS). In the past the syndrome has been known as chronic Epstein-Barr virus(CEBV).  

The treatment of the syndrome is primarily in the province of the medical field and must remain in the good hands of an internist or endocrinologist. However, hypnosis or other forms of altered states such as meditation or guided imagery are a welcome addition to the welfare of the patient.  

Perhaps one of the better sources for the understanding of CFS is a book by William Collinge, Ph.D. Recovering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. It is published by Putnam/Perigee in the US and by Souvenir Press in the UK and Commonwealth. This is an excellent source of insight and  is recommended to patients as well as therapists.  


In cooperation and consultation with the physician, patients can benefit from one or all the approaches discussed below:  


Patients with CFS may also have one or more of the following issues: depression, self-directed anger, poor self-esteem, loss of self-confidence, stress. All these can be approached by using standard protocols or inductions. Ego-strengthening and stress reduction and confidence building can all be approached with standard scripts.  

(Although I appreciate that some hypnotists like to use other people’s scripts  
or inductions, I choose to approach my clients with the idea that each person is unique and the reaction to each symptom is unique.)


Listen to the patient’s verbal and non-verbal communication. The patient will reveal consciously what needs to be done in order to alleviate his discomfort and proceed towards health. Always access the patient’s unconscious, for there lies the key to the problem. If you are a psychologist you can of course use projective techniques.

Before hypnosis or guided imagery is initiated, 3 questions need to be considered:

hypnosis safe in this instance?

it indicated?

do we know about the unconscious of our client? 

One technique which can offer answers to the above  is based on the house-tree-person test, the DAPTH.


Start by making the client comfortable and then you can use all or part or any   
adaptation you wish from the following induction. Some modifications are left to your good judgment in order to incorporate the client’s symptoms.  

“…Suspend  your accepting… I would like for you to take as much time as you need    your own  place, your own yourself comfortable  you enter an altered state of awareness, it is fine if you decide to move to make yourself more and more comfortable and only you know when you reach that state of comfort which is…. necessary… for start your journey toward achieving  peace, relaxation, quietness.  

Let your mind go wherever it wants to go…. Let your feelings go wherever they want to go, let your sensations go wherever they want to would like for you to accept yourself… whatever your mind, body, spirit are doing. Should you be standing on top of the mountain, you may choose to imagine a soft gentle glow of a rainbow. And… for a   feel that the rainbow contains all the answers  you the secrets of life… Giving yourself permission to take another deep comfortable breath, you find yourself drifting deeper and deeper…  into a profound  hypnotic sleep. feel drawn towards the rainbow. In just a moment or so you feel you will finally fulfill your wishes of touching the rainbow, of accessing it, of enveloping yourself with its colors… and something very special will happen to you as I guide you through this wonderful healing now imagining, picturing yourself so full of energy as you enter the first color you enter  is the red beautiful red  it all around you enveloping the redness against in the redness and begin to notice how good you are beginning to IS STRENGTH…. PHYSICAL STRENGTH… EMOTIONAL strength you call upon to replenish your strength,  to achieve your goals of “______”(To hypnotist: fill in the blank as per the needs of the individual patient)….and now on,  anytime you need to replenish your strength all you need to do… is close your eyes and surround yourself, visualize yourself surrounded, enveloped by the color red of the , allowing yourself to go into a deeper level of mental relaxation, see yourself the red band and entering the orange the color against your you breathe  it, fill your lungs with it see it entering your blood stream….

ORANGE REPRESENTS healing, mental healing and emotional a matter of fact, the healing process is taking place within you right and feel the orange molecules as millions of microscopic  “Scrub Brushes” cleaning you of any impurities… stress… … worry…. and can heal you from any assaults that you may encounter in your life’s simply closing your eyes and breathing deeply into the color one final breath of the color orange and allow yourself to float into the yellow you enter the yellow band feel how warm the yellow how energetic you this energy circulating through your yellow the power …and now combine the power of the yellow with the strength of the red and the healing of the let it fill it rejuvenate how much better you are beginning to feel… now… whenever you feel “run-down”…or you need your “battery” recharged… just close your eyes and breathe yourself into the power of the in the strength of the the healing of the your needs will be met.   

…Begin to let yourself drift from the yellow into the green you enter the green band let yourself drift deeper and deeper feel the green on your feels cool and in the the coolness in  your represents time you find your temper and anger heating your personal in your work need only to close your eyes and breathe yourself into the you will feel your anger and temper cool with every breath you take.  

…Take one final breath of the cooling color let yourself float into the blue you enter the blue you feel safe and blue represents are all exposed to times of of of times of sometimes we need to order to  protect ourselves for short periods of now, you have the ability to close  your time alone or with breathe yourself into the protective embrace of the color will discover that blue will protect you and aid you continue to achieve your goals.  

…I want you to prepare yourself for the most interesting of the colors of the let yourself now drift from the blue into the purple represents will allow you to make the transition from your conscious mind’s your deeper purple opens up a whole new world to realizations in your you are in the purple band… your conscious mind is at your unconscious mind is free to achieve insights very now, any time you wish to achieve insight into a close your eyes and breathe yourself into the color purple.

The induction may be terminated here. Then say, “… At your own rate, allow yourself to leave the rainbow with all the wisdom… power and new knowledge… you have gathered… and take few moments of total tranquillity before you reopen your eyes.  

If the hypnotist chooses to go on  and reinforce the above, continue with…  
“…allow your eyes to fall on the next mountain… and go beyond it towards on the highest peak so that nothing obstructs your vision and begin to feel whatever you feel. Maybe you are becoming aware of slight changes within yourself, for there is nothing at this time between your vision, hearing, and sensations that requires your conscious participation  and maybe you would like to choose to look at yourself experiencing this sensation. That’s right… letting go for a moment of those feelings… those experiences of being in communion with the universe you may wish to choose to imagine;  visualize yourself the way you would like to be, the way you would like to feel when everything is comfortably getting  together and offering a well deserved sense of balance. I will be quiet now for a period of 3 minutes of clock time… a good time for you to take all the time you need… slowly… comfortably.. for yourself… 

And after you have created and found your peace the way you would like it to be… spiritually,  physically, psychologically, take that imprint inside you… look at the the fields of flowers or ….the horizon of the ocean, and in that journey which will begin in a few yourself, allow your deeper mind, allow your intuition… to connect you to what you need to know. Now I will be quiet for the next 3 ’s may wish to allow  yourself, your being …your soul… your guide to dance a comfortable dance for you… you may find yourself  smiling inside and out… feeling liberated and free and feeling comfortable  and dancing and running and feeling free and liberated… feeling free and liberated mentally and physically and letting go of pain and hurt and feeling that you  are allowing yourself to feel to just be you…. you may wish to take some more time to dismiss…. to slow down to turn your back to all the issues that are not necessary for you…. 

..with each out breath you may welcome releasing the pressures and taking as much time as you need allowing yourself to come back… free.. when your mind and body are reconnected once again you will feel a sense of well being… again I will stop talking and you may reopen your eyes knowing that you can always return to that  journey…..  

The following is based on HEALING IMAGERY from Dr. Friedberg’s book COPING WITH CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME:

Your healing can now begin,  healing begins from within yourself… an  inner radiance that begins as a mere speck of ‘s right, an inner point of light and strength and ’s right…  warm and strength,  physical strength. Feel it, experience ,  thoroughly… growing stronger… and now directing it to yourself, directing the healing towards your weakened system  and watch it surely gaining stronger and stronger,  re-experiencing the vitality,  the enthusiasm an the spark in every cell of your body…

Feel that inner sense of strength beginning, working within your body.  Feeling revitalized, as your inner radiance strengthens and energizes.  Feel the warm, intense energy doing its work; reactivating, restoring your , restoring your body. Experience that strengthening fully, thoroughly, that inner boosting, growing even stronger now, stronger, more powerful than before.  As you feel that strength, you believe in yourself and your ability to succeed in your goal of rebuilding your body. Yes, believing in the strength of your thoughts, images and the totality of your internal powers.  You believe so strongly, feeling that boost even now, yes, yet remaining tolerant, letting time pass, knowing that any worthwhile goal takes time, any worthwhile goal.  And you have resolved to accomplish your goal, believing that you , boosting your system. You hold firmly to that belief; yes, so less this message remains with you, far beyond these words, far beyond these words.  Now, slowly bringing yourself back to wakefulness, eyes opening gradually, feeling relaxed and refreshed.