Even though hypnotherapy has been established for well over a hundred years as a safe and effective method, for addressing a wide range of difficulties, many people are still unaware of just how useful it is. We think that the film and entertainment industries are probably responsible for confusing the general public and obscuring the value of hypnosis within therapeutic and coaching situations. So here's a short Q & A to address some of those points.
What is hypnotherapy?
Hypnotherapy is a powerful, safe and effective way of quickly and easily achieving a deep state of relaxation called “hypnosis”. In this state, your mind remains aware whilst your body becomes completely relaxed. You experience a tremendous sense of well-being and peace of mind. In hypnosis, the mind is more susceptible to positive suggestions and you find that you are able to access areas of your mind beyond the normal level of conscious awareness i.e. the “subconscious”.
How can this help me to stop smoking or overcome other problems?
If something isn’t working in your life, or you find it difficult to resolve a problem or give up a bad habit, it’s likely to be the result of your habitual way of thinking, feeling or behaving and the effect of past experiences. Some experiences, often from early childhood, continue to have a negative influence in adult life.
These negative thoughts, feelings, behaviour, habits and traumas are deeply ingrained and this is the reason why people often find it so hard to change. You may have made a conscious decision to resolve a problem or change a habit, but your subconscious programming may make this very difficult.
The job of a specialist in hypnotherapy is to help you to access and reprogramme your subconscious mind. In this way, you are able to redefine your thoughts, feelings and actions, enabling you to bring about the changes necessary to achieve your goals.
Can anyone be hypnotised?
Anyone who wants to experience hypnosis and is willing to follow some simple instructions will go into hypnosis. You can’t be hypnotised if you don’t want to be!
Are there any harmful side effects?
No, none, although it is recommended that you ensure that your therapist is properly qualified, insured, and belongs to an appropriate professional body. When in hypnosis your mind responds to beneficial suggestions but will not accept any that would be harmful to you. Hypnotherapy can be safely combined with other forms of therapy or medical treatment. You can always discuss this with your doctor or other specialist.
Are there different kinds of hypnotherapy?
Yes. There are a wide variety of different techniques and approaches. Many hypnotherapists rely mainly on suggestion therapy. This approach tends to have a lower success rate (30-60%) with more deeply ingrained problems and habits. Advanced structured hypnotherapy uses a range of specialist techniques and has a much higher success rate (up to 95-98%).