It honestly took me over a year reaching it, and even now it takes a lot of focus. I just listened to a ton of different “guided hypnosis”. At the end I learned the sensations and that a “guiding voice” didn’t necessarily help me anymore. It was what eventually taught me, so I would recommend it.
Now, there are a few things I needed for it to work in the past. First of all, darkness. Like, complete darkness – so I can’t do it with the sun up – curtains isn’t enough. Secondly, lay down. Thirdly, I can’t have clothes on. Okay, I realize this starts to sound creepy, but just let me explain! When I want to empty my mind completely it is like a vacuum. If anything comes near it will try to fill out the vacuum. Having clothes on touches my skin and I become hyperaware of that sensation, which in turn sparks thoughts. I start to think about the sensation. It is not much of an active thought, but it ruins the “emptiness”. I can’t have a draft either, and I can’t really be too cold, same effect with sensations. It is like those sensory deprivation chambers, you want to remove all your senses. This also means no sounds (well, aside from the hypnosis if you listen to that).
Okay, so laying in complete darkness, nothing that touches you and then you need to learn to relax your body. This is where guided hypnosis can help, as they often start by helping you relax your body and different hypnotists will do it differently. Try many so you learn all kinds of ways and find what you prefer. Now, this is important, as it is not just the same as relaxing your body. It is a whole new level of not using your muscles. Once I learned it I realized I never actually had my muscles fully relax in my life while being awake. Even your scalp skin feels relaxed. You kind of learn to do it when focusing on a given muscle and the trick is to keep that muscle relaxed when you move on to a different muscle. It almost feels like your muscles becomes weightless and kind of meld into the bed. Like your bodily shape is a bit more blurred out. Hard do describe. Should be noted, breathing exercises really help with this.
This is the state that helps me empty my head. Once all above is done I start to push out any thought or image or sound in my mind. They keep coming, often bombarding my brain, but I keep “cancelling” them all. At some point you learn to become better at this and less and less thoughts bombard you. In the end you learn to shove them away and they just kind of stay away. It feels kind of like holding your balance on a rope – you know that you are in a fragile state, a little off balance will bring more thoughts. The weird thing is, in this state you can still do some “thinking”, but the thinking is different than normal. No visuals, the inner voice is different, you feel like you are in nothingness in some way. Even overusing your inner voice might break your balance.
Okay, so after years I’ve eventually learned to do it without all of above. I can now do it with clothes on, just curtains and quite fast. This is kind of like a light version still, I don’t feel that amazing relaxation nor that weird “nothingness”, it just stops my brain from being bombarded by thoughts. I need all the tricks to feel this “nothingness” even now. A last note, I always have headphones on – even without hypnosis. I feel more “enclosed” and cut off from the world with them on my head, which helps.