Becoming an excellent subject follows the same general rules for becoming proficient in any other endeavor. It depends upon your motivation, persistence and willingness to devote time and study to the subject. Let us agree that most individuals can learn to play a musical instrument to some degree. This degree is usually sufficient for their own needs. To become a virtuoso, however, it is necessary to study the instrument and devote a great deal of energy and time to practice. The same example could be given for most undertakings. Anyone can learn to hit a golf ball, but being able to control the direction and distance and become a skilled golfer is quite another matter.
If you have been successful in accomplishing the first five tests, you can consider yourself a good hypnotic subject. Becoming an excellent subject entails following the same procedure used in accomplishing the first five tests. Some may proceed very easily into the somnambulistic state, and others may have a difficult time reaching this deepest stage.
Understanding some of the psychology involved and assuming the right psychological frame of mind for the attainment of the somnambulistic state is more important than just working blindly in an attempt to get the somnambulistic tests to work. Being irritable, disgusted and despondent because of your inability to go further into hypnosis is not the answer and will only lead to frustration and failure. The reader is not to assume he will be a difficult subject. If you have come this far, you'll be able to continue in the same manner. The topic under discussion now is brought up to prepare readers for any contingency that may arise. It's like having a life preserver on a boat. You hope you never need it, but you should be prepared to use it in case of an emergency.
It is natural to assume that if you are willing and trying to go into the lethargic, cataleptic or somnambulistic state, you will be able to do so in a relatively short period of time. Unfortunately, this is by no means the case. Many of the principles of learning and conditioning can be applied to hypnosis, but with many subjects these laws do not seem applicable. Let us assume you wanted to learn to become an excellent typist. This is a reasonable goal and all that is necessary is to continue practicing until you have reached the proficiency you set out to achieve. This proficiency would, as a rule, follow application of the laws of learning and conditioning.