Most people I have spoken to believe that being placed under hypnosis will be frightening and that they will end up losing control of their mind and thoughts. Their impression of a hypnotic state is what they see on stage shows, in films or on TV. I must admit before I studied hypnosis that was my belief, once I researched and found out more about hypnosis I realised that it is a very powerful technique that can be used to help people deal with their emotional and physiological issues more effectively, and hypnotherapy is not about messing with people’s minds.
Although performers such as Paul McKenna and Derren Brown have increased people’s awareness of hypnosis through their TV appearances there is still a mystery about it. This because on TV you never see the whole process, due to broadcasting guidelines and time restraints on the shows. Stage shows need to be snappy and entertaining (sometimes with an X rated entertainment value) so you will only see a particular type of hypnosis at those events. Films give a purely fictional portrayal, often of a completely helpless person who will do evil things without being aware of anything so you can’t really get any accurate ideas from those.
I have a great interest on how our minds work, when I attended an hypnosis introductory weekend I applied to join the course immediately and began my journey on discovering the wonderful world of hypnosis. Several years later I take great satisfaction in helping a wide range of clients overcome their fears, phobias, addictions, anxiety, lack of confidence etc.
I have found that the main reason why a lot of people don’t use hypnotherapy is because they are frightened of losing control. Some hypnotherapists will say that you are always in control, others will say that if you are really hypnotised then you won’t be in control. There have been lots of experiments in this field and conclusions vary depending on the type of experiment.
I see being in control whilst under hypnosis as being similar to the type of control that you would give someone who is lost whilst driving. Once you have the directions you will go where they tell you because why would you question them as they know the route. However, if you suddenly find yourself on the edge of a cliff you’re not going to keep following their instructions. That’s why trust is very important between a hypnotherapist and client.
I provide all my clients a free consultation session; during which I explain what hypnotherapy is, the benefits and what is expected of them. This allows me to build rapport and trust with the client, and manage their expectations in a safe and comfortable environment, ultimately leading to a higher client success rate.
If you have ever tried hypnotherapy before and it didn’t feel as thought it worked for you, or you didn’t feel comfortable then please do give it another go. Different hypnotherapists use different techniques when performing hypnosis. There are long relaxation techniques, guided imagery and methods that involve additional interactivity. One of the things that I know is important is that my clients address the underlying issue. Just giving suggestions for behaving or thinking in a different way is very unlikely to work unless you address the reasons behind that behaviour, or, those thoughts that affect that behaviour.
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