Hypnosis is an altered state of consciousness or focus, sometimes also called a ‘trance state’. Whilst in this focussed state, a person is more ‘suggestible’ to any messages or ideas that are acceptable to their beliefs, morals and goals.
Hypnotherapy is the use of hypnosis for the treatment of a problem that is dealt with in the course of therapy. Hypnosis is therefore not a therapy in itself, but rather a state in which a person can benefit from positive therapeutic ideas and suggestions.
A hypnotic state can be experienced as a pleasant state of relaxation. One may also feel quite alert, awake (with eyes open) and ‘unchanged’ and still be in a state of hypnosis. The hypnotic state can be achieved when an individual is open to allowing themselves to enter an ‘inner focussed’ state. During this time, positive and helpful messages or suggestions are given by the therapist and can be accepted by the inner mind – i.e. ‘unconsciously’. This process can help people connect or re-connect with abilities, skills, knowledge and resources that are deep within and not fully expressed.
Hypnosis can help people reach their full potential in situations of performance and to overcome specific problems such as anxiety, poor self esteem and unhelpful habits.
Hypnotic or trance states are natural every day phenomena. Other examples of trance states include times of meditation, daydreaming or being absorbed in an activity such as driving a car or reading a book and losing track of time and the details of the experience.
When I use hypnosis, I can only invite you to connect with and build upon existing abilities, skills and resources within you. I cannot implant any ideas or behaviours that are not compatible with your beliefs. In fact, if I were to say anything that you did not agree with, your conscious mind would override the focussed hypnotic state and reject any inappropriate words and suggestions.
Hypnosis is not necessarily used for every problem that people present with. When I see that there is an opportunity to use hypnosis in a constructive way, and when I understand that the person is open to the experience, I will suggest this as a tool for therapy.
A full understanding of the problem and goals is required before hypnosis can be offered. I need to ensure that the client has a full understanding of hypnosis and the reason for using it. Therefore, it is not common for me to conduct a hypnosis session during the first meeting with a client.
The most useful approach is to make an appointment with me to discuss your problem or concern and to ask me if hypnosis could be a useful part of the therapy. If we both agree that it could be helpful, I will ask the relevant questions to prepare for the next session to include a process of hypnosis. I also conduct sessions in such a way that people will be informed and prepared to practice this natural art of focussed relaxation at convenient times at home.
Remember that I can only help a person reach a focussed state of relaxation (hypnotic state) when they want this for themselves. I can’t ‘hypnotise’ someone unknowingly or against their will. A person is in fact in complete control of the suggestions they accept and the restoration of the ‘problem free’ selves they are wanting to re-connect with.
If you are not interested in hypnosis, I am with you 100%. I respect your knowledge and feelings about what is right for you.
Please feel free to ask me if hypnosis can be helpful for your situation when you meet with me.