Hypnosis is a mysterious subject for many people. While this phenomenon conjures up images of a man holding a timepiece, waving it in front of a hazy-eyed blonde, this is simply not the case. In fact, hypnosis is used in many areas of expertise such as criminology and psychology.
One of the first myths about hypnosis is that someone can be hypnotised to do whatever the hypnotist wants. This is far from the truth. In fact, no one can hypnotise you to make you do anything that you don't want to do. What you see in stage hypnosis is typically a person that is open to the idea of acting silly in front of others and that person expects to perform; therefore, they are open to the idea. However, that same stage hypnotist could not successfully hypnotise that same person into giving him all of their money or robbing a bank.
What hypnosis does do in the professional world is help people remember things and this can be used to aid police in a crime, aid psychologists into helping a person remember a painful or joyful experience, and to help people stop doing things that are bad for them such as smoking or overeating. While hypnosis isn't a cure-all, it does help if the person wants it with all of their being. The hypnosis allows them to open up to the idea of doing what is suggested to them.
Some people are more susceptible to hypnosis than others, but usually most people can by hypnotised to some degree. Just don't think that you can be made to do whatever the hypnotist wants you to do; you have to want to do it as well.