Q: What is hypnotherapy?
A: Hypnotherapy is the practice of promoting healing or positive development. It is a powerful and highly successful form of complimentary therapy that enables the client, whilst in a perfectly natural state of relaxation (similar to that of daydreaming), to receive suggestions that are aimed at re-programming patterns of behaviour within the mind. This re-programming enables irrational fears, phobias, negative thoughts and suppressed emotions to be overcome. As the body is released from the conscious control during the relaxed trance-like state of hypnosis you will notice that your breathing becomes slower and deeper; your pulse rate and metabolic rate drops, similar changes occur along nerve pathways and hormonal channels which can enable the sensation of pain to become less acute.
Q: Is hypnotherapy safe?
A: Hypnotherapy is both perfectly natural and completely safe. Everybody in the world enters into a natural hypnotic state, at least 25 times a day, without even being aware of it. Have you ever been watching a film and someone speaks to you and you don’t even notice that they have spoken or ever driven a familiar route, and suddenly thought “I don’t remember passing a certain place”. Both of these examples are of a light hypnotic state, this trance-like state will be recreated via gentle relaxation by the hypnotherapist.
Q: How does hypnotherapy work?
A: Hypnosis is thought to work by altering our state of consciousness in such a way that the analytical left-hand side of the brain is turned off, while the non-analytical right-hand side is made more alert. The conscious control of the mind is inhibited, and the subconscious mind awoken. Since the subconscious mind is a deeper-seated more instinctive force than the conscious mind, this is the part which has to change. For example, if you are afraid of spiders and want to overcome your fear you may try everything you can consciously do to overcome this; however it will still fail as long as your subconscious mind retains the terror, and thus prevents you from succeeding. Progress can only be made by re-programming the subconscious so that any deep-stated instincts and beliefs can be abolished or altered.
Q: Will I be awake and will I lose control?
A: Any hypnotic technique used does not involve you being put into a deep sleep, and you cannot be made to do anything that you would not ordinarily do. You remain fully aware of your surroundings and the situation and you are not vulnerable to every given command the therapist makes. In a hypnotherapy session you are always in control. It is generally accepted that all hypnosis is ultimately self-hypnosis and that a hypnotherapist merely helps to facilitate your experience – hypnotherapy is not about being made to do things, in fact it is the opposite; it is about empowerment.
Q: What if I don’t wake up?
A: Hypnosis is a completely ordinary and regular state and it cannot hold you against your will. If you were to go so deep as to enter a truly deep trance state, you would basically go into a natural sleep and wake up when you were ready to do so. It is not possible for anyone to be ‘left or stuck’ in hypnosis. During the session if an emergency or something came up that needed your attention, you would easily awaken.
Q: What will it feel like?
A: Hypnosis is a natural state that is comparable to that feeling you get prior to falling asleep at night. When you wake up, you feel invigorated and rejuvenated as though you have had a long sleep. You just feel as if you are relaxing in a very contented space with your eyes closed. You can pay attention to everything, the sounds outside the building, a car going down the street outside, whatever. You have full awareness the whole time, conscious of everything going on around you.
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