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What is Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy?
First of all, I think it is best that we clarify what we will be doing and what will happen during your hypnotherapy sessions. The most important thing to remember is the sessions that you have with me are nothing like what you see on stage shows or TV – this is entertainment, not clinical hypnotherapy – don’t get the 2 confused!!!
- Hypnosis is a completely natural state of mind.
- Hypnosis cannot make you do anything you do not want to do.
- You cannot get “stuck” in a hypnotic trance.
- You are completely in control at all times. If you want to speak, or move during a hypnotherapy session, you are fully able to.
- Anyone can enter a hypnotic trance – it is a totally natural state of mind. As with anything in life, some people will enter trance more readily than others, but I will work with you to achieve this through relaxation.
- When in a hypnotic trance, most people in will feel deeply relaxed and calm. It is a very pleasant, relaxing experience. Each individual experiences different feelings which can include sensations of floating, heaviness, tingling, or numbness. Also common are visuals of abstract shapes and colours, but it’s different for everyone.
- ‘Hypnotherapy‘ is the therapeutic suggestions made to you whilst you are in a state of hypnosis to enable you to make the changes that you want. When in a hypnotic trance, your mind is quiet – the conscious is not in control – this enables your subconscious to be more receptive and to absorb the suggestions being made to you, We will have discussed and agreed any suggestions being made before undertaking the hypnotherapy session so there really is nothing to fear.
- You cannot be made to tell me anything about yourself that you do not want me to know. We will be working together to help you get to your goals, so honesty is important. Anything that we discuss will be kept confidential.
How does Hypnotherapy Work?
There is a range of consciousness levels of your mind ranging from ‘fully alert’ through to ‘asleep’. We all experience these various levels throughout each day of our lives and they are perfectly natural.
Each consciousness level is associated with a state of mind:
• Fully Alert - Functioning normally, mentally engaged and concentrating on a task – receptive to surroundings. The conscious mind is in total control
• Light Trance – Daydream - Slightly more relaxed, mind drifting away from the task in hand -may appear ‘far away’, slightly detached from surroundings and more focussed oneself. The conscious mind is losing some control, the sub conscious mind is beginning to open.
• Moderate Trance - Relaxed even further – awareness of surroundings is lost. Awareness of internal natural actions, such as breathing and heartbeat is heightened. Able to respond to a focus point, for example a therapist’s instruction or suggestion. The conscious mind is switching off further and the subconscious mind is starting to take over
• Deep Trance - Further detachment from the outside influences – may be unable to respond, extremely open to suggestion. Sub conscious mind is almost completely in control, but there is still some activity of the conscious mind
• Deep Sleep - Shut off from reality – in a dream state. The sub conscious mind is fully open and in control
The levels of consciousness between mild trance (daydreaming) and a deep trance are varying degrees of a hypnotic state. I would describe a hypnotic state as feeling different than you would during normal everyday alertness, almost a feeling of dreaming yet still being awake. Generally, you may have slower, deeper breathing and reduced heart rate and pulse. During normal everyday activities, you can naturally fall into a state of hypnosis, for example, not remembering the specific details of a car journey even though you have travelled from A to B. Hypnotic states can also be induced by using relaxation techniques.
The subconscious mind is where a person’s learned behaviours sit – basically like our programming. These learned behaviours stored in the subconscious are the reason why we react as we do to given situations, even when we know that rationally, these behaviours are not how we would like to behave. So in order to change any of the programming in the subconscious, we need to access it. When we are in an alert state the sub conscious cannot be accessed. This has to be the case, otherwise our alert mind would be overcome with thoughts from the subconscious as well as the conscious and pre-conscious mind – We would never get anything done!!!
As we drift into trance states, the subconscious mind becomes more accessible. This is the point at which suggestions can be introduced which can result in a change in behaviour – reprogramming of the subconscious mind – This is how Hypnotherapy works!
How effective will hypnotherapy be?
Hypnotherapy is a recognised complimentary therapy which has been successfully used in many clients. The process of hypnotherapy is about the therapist and the client working together, both committed to the process and most importantly, the client needs to be motivated to make the changes that they discuss with the therapist. Results can vary from person to person. As such the number of sessions undertaken can also vary from person to person.
Results cannot be guaranteed or promised in advance of treatment, but as long as you are committed to the changes that you want and are motivated to make them, I as your therapist will be able to support you in making those changes through hypnotherapy.