What is hypnosis?
First and foremost hypnosis is about relaxation and taking time out from the normal buzz of daily thinking. When we allow ourselves to slow down we can think freely and more clearly.
Even the most brilliant human minds have a finite amount of information they can process at any one time and hypnosis works in part by using up a lot of this processing power, so less attention is diverted to external distractions.
We enter hypnotic states every day: when we are immersed in a hobby, a good film or book or wonder how we lost two hours on Facebook! Whenever we find our minds wondering and imagining (perhaps while we are busy doing other things like the familiar commute to work) this can have a trance-like feel. People who practice martial arts, yoga and other sports make the most of this altered state and the beauty of visiting a hypnotherapist is that you just have someone to guide you.
What is hypnotherapy?
Hypnotherapy is the use of hypnosis to deliver therapy, usually quicker, with longer lasting results and more individually tailored. It can be anything from a one session stop smoking, to more in depth resolution of deep psychological difficulties. There are a number of techniques and approaches that a hypnotherapist may use and these vary greatly depending on the condition to be treated and the experience of the therapist.
Stage hypnosis gives the impression that you can be made to do things you don’t want to do. Clinical hypnotherapy is quite different! It is about helping to break down any barriers that hold you back from making the changes you want. Surprising results can be achieved with just a very light trance. Even if you and your therapist feel a deeper trance may be achievable (and beneficial), your unconscious mind won’t accept suggestions that aren’t right for you or would cause you any harm. Trust and communication are key, as is making sure that you select a therapist who is properly qualified, registered and insured.
Who can benefit from hypnotherapy?
Strong willed? Difficulty relaxing? Sceptical? Find it hard to express your thoughts and emotions? Great stuff! Hypnotherapy really is for everyone. It’s just a case of finding the approach that works best for you. While it is true that some people are extremely susceptible to hypnotic trance and others find it more challenging, there are no characteristics or personality traits that predetermine this.
What can I expect from my first visit?
I will come down and meet you at reception. You will be offered refreshments and invited to make yourself comfortable and just chat a little. You can tell me in more detail what your expectations are and what you would like help with. You’re welcome to talk as much or as little about this as you feel comfortable. I will take a medical history for safety and ask for permission to contact your GP if this is appropriate. We will use this first session to get an understanding of the unique way your brain processes information, how to proceed with treatment. I will be taking notes while we talk (this sensitive information will be stored carefully in a locked filing cabinet in my office). Assuming you are completely happy with everything you will be guided into a light pleasant relaxation for around 20 minutes, which you can practice at home if you wish. Allow up to 2 hours for your first appointment.