Students get hypnotized by Zach Pincince

Hypnotist Zach Pincince introduces himself. Vanguard Photo | Brooke Elward

TikTok sensation Zach Pincince shared the power of hypnosis with students and staff Jan. 24.

Pincince is a professional hypnotist who lives in Los Angeles and performs for audiences across the country. He also works with private clients using hypnosis as a therapeutic tool.

Pincince became an overnight TikTok star in August 2019. He has gained a large social media presence and has intrigued people from across the world.

Hannah Hale, a senior events coordinator for Program Board, helped make the show happen. She said that even those who did not believe in hypnosis still enjoyed the event.

“There is still a comedy element to it that just makes for a fun night of laughs with friends and family,” Hale said.

Jeremy Flood, the coordinator of programming and service in the Office of Student Life, said the event was part of the Winter Welcome Back entertainment for students. Event planning began in November.

“It’s great to be able to provide an opportunity to relieve some of the stress that comes with a new semester,” he said.

His well-attended, interactive event included hypnosis with the entire audience. Volunteers then came up onto the stage and were hypnotized as well.

Exercise science junior Tayah Bell volunteered to be hypnotized on stage. Her recollection of the experience was full of amazement, and she said that she felt a disconnect between her mind, like she was sleepwalking.

Bell said she had never been to a hypnosis show before and had never been hypnotized prior to the event. At one point, the hypnotist convinced everyone on stage that he was their favorite celebrity, and Bell was convinced that she had gotten to meet Demi Lovato.

“The hypnotist walked over to me, shook my hand, and I (thought), ‘Oh my gosh, you’re not my celebrity, but you are,’” Bell said. “He still looked like himself, but my mind perceived him to be Demi Lovato.”

Bell said she went to the show hoping hypnotism would work on her.

Pincince said that the conviction in your mind that something is what you think it is, is an essential element of hypnosis. He said that if we can control our minds, then we can control how we perceive our reality.

“The older we get, the more rational and analytical we get,” Pincince said. “As a kid, if you’re pretending to be Batman, you’re not pretending. You are Batman. (You) can’t come into dinner because (you) have to save the city, and you’re not just pretending. But as an adult, (you think),‘Oh, I couldn’t really be Batman – that doesn’t make any sense.’”

Pincince said he believes our rational thinking is human nature and that we need an element of reality to survive as a species.

However, he said humans can hypnotize ourselves to feel good and happy, just like we can hypnotize ourselves to feed into our own doubts, fears and anxieties.

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