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#731: Dr. David Spiegel, Stanford U. — Practical Hypnosis, Meditation vs. Hypnosis, Pain Management Without Drugs, The Neurobiology of Trance, and More

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Podcast by Tim Ferriss: Bestselling Author, Human Guinea Pig

Dr. David Spiegel is Willson Professor and Associate Chair of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Director of the Center on Stress and Health, and Medical Director of the Center for Integrative Medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine, where he has been a member of the academic faculty since 1975. He is the founder of Reveri, the world’s first interactive self-hypnosis app.

Timestamps for this episode are available below. Links to everything discussed:


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[07:00] How Herbert Spiegel was exposed to hypnosis.

[10:14] Using hypnosis to cure non-epileptic seizures.

[11:53] What is a forensic psychiatrist?

[14:43] How hypnosis works.

[17:54] Hypnosis and the flow state.

[21:03] How hypnosis differs from meditation.

[22:38] Determining one’s susceptibility to hypnosis.

[27:21] I take the eye-roll test.

[29:33] Thoughts on EMDR.

[36:29] Therapeutic psychedelics and ego dissolution.

[41:05] Potential adverse effects of hypnosis?

[42:34] Accelerated TMS improves response to hypnosis.

[44:25] Hypnosis as a tool for stress and pain relief.

[48:56] David treats my back pain with hypnosis.

[57:09] Replicating this effect with self-hypnosis.

[57:57] Understanding the science of pain relief.

[1:03:18] Filtering the hurt from the pain.

[1:06:37] For us, not against us.

[1:09:12] Hypnosis vs. other addiction interventions.

[1:11:41] A mesmerizing tale of hypnotic history.

[1:16:10] Most surprising patient outcomes.

[1:24:53] Finding connection to treat the agitated.

[1:28:40] Who is Reveri designed for?

[1:31:15] Hypnosis as a first rather than last resort.

[1:35:02] Further resources and final thoughts.


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