Hypnosis & Hypnotherapy

WHAT IS HYPNOSIS?
Hypnotic trance is a natural everyday occurrence and most of us dip in and out of trance throughout the day. For instance, remember a time when you were so entranced by a book or a film that you totally ignored a question that was asked? Or concentrated so deeply on writing your work document that you ‘blocked’ your surroundings out of your conscious awareness? Or drove to someplace and when you reached your destination had no memory of the journey itself? These are examples of naturally occurring everyday trances, usually known as hypnoidal states that are so commonly experienced by all of us.

The term trance therefore refers to a dreamlike, but highly focused, state of mind experienced by people in everyday situations, or when they undergo a hypnotic induction. It is best described like a state just before falling asleep or just before you fully wake up. The only difference between these various trance states is the method of the induction. Whether a trance has been elicited by a hypnotherapist or induced by being entranced by a book or a film or a long stretch of road while driving a car, trance is still a trance.
In other words, trance is a state of focused inner awareness during which restrictions of conscious mind are bypassed allowing information from unconscious to surface.
WHAT IS HYPNOTHERAPY?
Hypnotherapy is an effective way to chance unwanted behaviour and to achieve goals using the power of the subconscious mind to reinforce the conscious mind’s resolve to overcome negative habits and reactions. People in hypnotic trance are able to pay closer attention to their inner subconscious sources of potential information and resources. After the client develops a trance in a session, the hypnotherapist will direct the client’s attention in ways which are therapeutically productive and beneficial.
Hypnotherapy is a safe way to modify unwanted habits and can help with vast range of problems and conditions. It can help eating disorders, dermatological disorders, insomnia, depression, anxiety, phobias, panic attacks etc, and it can be used for pain control.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HYPNOSIS AND MEDITATION?

Many people who have experienced meditation before hypnosis are initially surprised how similar they both seem. Both disciplines share many almost identical techniques for relaxing the body.
Meditation is commonly described as the absence of all thought. Practitioners aim to have a still mind free from conscious thoughts. Mantras, images and breathing are used to make conscious thoughts or words disappear. In a meditation session the benefit is received purely from relaxation and the stillness of the mind.
Both hypnosis and meditation session will lead you to a guided relaxed state, however once the chattering of the conscious mind has paused, hypnosis uses this state of mind to direct the attention in ways that are therapeutically beneficial.

WHAT IS THE RELATIONSHIP between the Subconscious and the Conscious Mind?

Our imagination, permanent memory, emotion, habits and self-preservation impulses are held in the subconscious mind. In fact, the number of activities our subconscious mind carries out is astounding!

Without realising it, we rely upon our subconscious mind to master the complex skills we need to cope with everyday life. Walking, talking, driving a car or suddenly remembering something important, these all depend upon subconscious activities.

Our conscious mind, on the other hand, is responsible for the rational and analytical thinking, willpower and temporary memory. Majority of the information our brain receives is filtered, deleted and generalised based on individual criteria, these are the rules, values, beliefs about how things should be in our schema, the model of our world, so that any 7+- 2 pieces of information is held at any time in our conscious mind.

The relationship between the subconscious and conscious mind could be described as a relationship between a captain of a ship and the crew. The captain (conscious mind) develops plans and maps (schemas) that describe the way that the world should look, and uses these charts to tell the crew (subconscious) where to go to.

The captain also decides what skills the crew must learn in order to operate the ship. This arrangement works reasonably well as long as the plans and maps are accurate, the crew has learned right skills and  a close co-operation is maintained between the captain and the crew. It also works as long as the crew does not upset the captain by pointing out the things that the captain does not want to see, such as a new harbour or an island that are not on his map.

However, as the ship cruses along the river of life, the many harbours, islands and icebergs are noted by the crew whether they are on the captain’s map or not. The navigational errors or even disasters occur if the captain constantly refuses to use the crew’s skills or accept the new information in order to change charts to meet the reality.

In the simplest terms, the goal orientated coaching and hypnotherapy work in that it helps the captain to utilise the skills and knowledge held by the crew so that the plans and maps can be updated. This enables for the ship to stay on course so it will get to the desired destination or enables a new and more appropriate destination to be established.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Can I be hypnotised?

Anyone can be hypnotised if they want to be. There are, however, conditions that are unsuitable for hypnosis such as schizophrenia, epilepsy and psychosis.

If you are suffering from an illness, you should still visit your GP and continue to take any prescribed medication. 

Can the Hypnotherapist control my mind?

No. You cannot be made to do anything that you would consider morally or legally wrong and any suggestions that violate your values and beliefs are rejected. Hypnotherapist will work in co-operation with you so that the beneficial agreed goals of the therapy are achieved.

What if something was to happen to the Hypnotherapist, would I be able to come out of trance?

Yes. If anything unlikely was to happen to the hypnotherapist,  you would either after a while emerge spontaneously out of the trance or simply fall asleep waking up naturally. Trance is after all a very natural and comfortable state!

What is Self-hypnosis?

The hypnotherapist may teach you a simple process which allows you to go into a light hypnotic trance on your own. This is useful for instance in learning to relax and managing stress and for learning and maintaining skills you have learned until they become new habits.