Hypnotherapy

Hypnotherapy is a safe and gentle process that relaxes your mind as well as your body.

No drugs are used, there are no unwanted or unpleasant side effects.

It is simply an opportunity for you, with the guidance of a hypnotherapist, to influence your subconscious mind while ‘in trance’. We all experience trance every day. We describe it as ‘daydreaming’ or ‘being on auto pilot’. It’s a very pleasant state when our concentration and creativity are at their peak or we are wonderfully relaxed and nearly ready for sleep.

While in trance, your hypnotherapist makes suggestions to your subconscious that bring about the changes in your behaviour that you have discussed and agreed in advance.

The fears, myths and mystery surrounding hypnosis are totally undeserved. Hypnotherapists undergo vigorous training and have become recognised for their work by the medical profession. There is absolutely no question of being controlled or manipulated by a hypnotist. No one can wave a magic wand over you and get you to do things you don’t want to do. Stage hypnotists can employ all manner of tricks but this is not what clinical hypnosis is about at all.

Clinical hypnosis can help you to deal with illness, and to eradicate bad habits or to strengthen your resolve to pass exams, a driving test or have the confidence to pass that interview, and so on.

What does being in trance feel like?

The hypnotherapist guides you into a trance state, usually by asking you to simply close your eyes and concentrate on your breathing. As you become more and more relaxed you may be aware of sinking deeper into the chair. You may feel distant but you continue to hear everything that is going on around you as you pay more and more attention to the sound of the therapist’s voice. The therapist then gently guides you into an increasingly deeper state of relaxation when your subconscious mind will be most receptive to positive, beneficial suggestions. After treatment you awake feeling refreshed and positive.

In itself the hypnotic state is a very pleasant and relaxed state but nothing more than that. In this state carefully worded and appropriate suggestions can reach your subconscious mind while your conscious mind remains relaxed. You will be aware of what is being said at all times.

Hypnotherapy brings about an altered state of consciousness, but one we are all familiar with, something similar to day dreaming.

The left hemisphere of the brain is largely concerned with logic, language, reading, writing, mathematics, analysis and reason. The right hemisphere is largely concerned with rhythm, music, creativity, intuitive insight and images. Thoughts pass between the two hemispheres by way of the corpus collosum.

If you were having a conversation with someone your attention would be largely focused outward and you would be mostly employing the left side of the brain, analysing what was being said to you and formulating a reply. If, on the other hand, you were just resting, you would probably start daydreaming, that is your attention would become inward and mostly operating on the right side of the brain. Appropriate suggestions to deal with your problem while in this relaxed, daydreaming state are very effective.

The brain operates in four general states:

  • Full Conscious Awareness,
  • the Hypnotic State,
  • the Dream State,
  • and the Sleep State.

These four states correspond to patterns of electrical activity in the brain and are defined by frequency ranges on an EEG.  Full Conscious Awareness occurs when the majority of the electrical activity in the brain is in the beta range (14-35 Hz).  The Hypnotic State occurs when brain activity is in the alpha range (8-13 Hz).  The Dream State occurs when brain activity is in the theta range (4-7 Hz), and the Sleep State occurs when brain activity is in the delta range (.5-3 Hz).

Full Conscious Awareness is where which we spend most of our waking hours.  In this state, our mind is attentive and uses logic to reason, evaluate, assess, judge, and make decisions.  Unfortunately, when making life changes, the conscious mind may hinder how we cope.

In the Hypnotic State, the doorway between the conscious and the subconscious is opened, memories become easily accessible, and new information is stored.  In the Hypnotic State, you are not really thinking in the traditional sense.  You are experiencing without questioning, without critical judgment or analysis, like when you watch a movie, and the hypnotherapist can make suggestions that are very likely to stick – because your conscious mind is not getting in the way.  You are not “judging” or being “critical” of the suggestions.

We pass through all four bands sequentially as the electrical activity decreases on our way to sleep and as it increases up on our way to total wakefulness.  Regardless of whether we are on our way to sleep or to wakefulness, when we pass through the upper theta/lower alpha range we go into hypnosis automatically.  Nothing can stop it from happening but no person can force you into it; you must want to go into hypnosis and follow the hypnotist’s direction to the letter.

The will located in the conscious way of functioning is always present and always working. If for some reason you will yourself not to allow the suggestions to be accepted, they won’t be. The smoker who comes in to stop but is not committed to the goal, cannot be forced to do so.

A hypnotherapist is a skilled and trained professional who helps you use your own powerful mind to increase motivation or change behaviour patterns by inducing a trance state.  When hypnotized, your mind is operating in its subconscious mode.

Prior to hypnotizing the client, the therapist discusses the goal the client wants to achieve or the problem to be resolved in detail.  The more the hypnotherapist can share in the experience of the client as s/he experiences it, the more individualized the therapy can be and the greater its effectiveness.  The hypnotist also prepares the client to enter hypnosis by explaining just what hypnosis is, how it works and what s/he will experience.

  • A hypnotherapist induces an hypnotic state in a client to increase motivation or alter behaviour pattern through hypnosis.
  • The hypnotherapist prepares the client to enter hypnotic states by explaining how hypnosis works and what the client will experience.
  • The subject is tested to determine the degree of physical and emotional suggestibility.
  • The hypnotic state is induced in the client using individualized methods and techniques of hypnosis based on interpretation of test results and analysis of the client’s problem.
  • The client may be trained in self-hypnosis.

Everyone is susceptible to suggestion.  Your hypnotherapist will guide you through some exercises that will help determine your degree of suggestibility.

Finally, your hypnotherapist will induce a hypnotic state using individualized methods and techniques based on the results of your suggestibility and the nature of your goal or problem.

Hypnosis means that the reasoning, evaluating, judgmental part of your mind is bypassed.  While we wonder how this could possibly happen, we are subject to it all the time.  The advertising industry, for example, is dedicated to bypassing our critical judgment all the time in order to influence our buying behaviour.

Children suspend their critical judgment frequently in games of “let’s pretend”.  Actors do it in playing a part;  they have to suspend their critical faculty, and they ask the audience to suspend theirs to accept them as being someone else. With the critical faculty bypassed, specific thoughts/suggestions can be lodged in the subconscious where they can propel the client toward a desired goal or change behaviour in a positive and permanent way.  Any such suggestions must be acceptable to the client.  They would otherwise be ineffective.

Hypnotherapy can help you to:-

  • end anxiety and reduce stress
  • improve sleep patterns
  • build confidence and self esteem
  • overcome speech problems
  • improve skin problems
  • control weight
  • control pain
  • prepare for childbirth
  • eliminate unwanted habits such as nailbiting and smoking
  • eliminate phobias
  • overcome shyness
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