Let’s take a deep dive into this alternative school of psychotherapy, known as hypnotherapy or guided hypnosis.
Hypnotherapy is when a trained hypnotherapist guides your mind into a deep trance (or altered state).
When you reach hypnosis, you are fully relaxed and open to absorbing incoming information, kind of like a sponge.
The purpose of hypnotherapy is to tap into your mind (when it’s in a free and unburdened state) to alleviate phobias, addiction, sleep disorders, depression, anxiety, trauma, and a myriad of other mental health issues.
It’s almost as if your hypnotherapist is uploading codes into your brain when it’s in a state of slumber.
And when you awaken, you have a newfound awareness and tools that you never had before.
Pretty cool, right?
Hypnosis is also incredibly helpful in gathering information that’s stored in your unconscious mind.
Maybe it’s a past trauma that happened to you when you were a young child, or even a more recent event that was so distressing your brain physically “blacked out” (a.k.a. dissociative amnesia).
Your hypnotherapist will be able to work with your unconscious and cull out the memories that are playing an active role in your struggles today.
How exactly will your hypnotherapist create effective change during hypnosis?
There are two main methods known as suggestion therapy and analysis.
Suggestion therapy relies on your ability to react to suggestions while you’re in an altered state.
Hypnotherapists often utilize this method to help patients that are struggling with addiction or harmful behaviors like binge eating, smoking, gambling—or even innocuous habits like nail biting!
New research also indicates that this method can be helpful in promoting self confidence and resolving physical illnesses that may not respond to mainstream medications.
The second method is analysis, which is also referred to as regression therapy.
This method is a hypnotherapists’ go-to for uncovering memories and trauma that are stored deep in your unconscious mind.
When you’re in an awakened state, your brain often doesn’t have access to these memories because they either happened so long ago, or you are unconsciously suppressing them in order to avoid them.
But make no mistake, they are still there wreaking havoc on your day to day.
If you struggle with PTSD, anxiety, or a host of other mental disorders, regression therapy can go right to the root of the issue.
Bringing your memories to light and identifying the source of your issues not only provides some resolution, but it also allows your therapist to better support you during your work together.
Regardless of which method your hypnotherapist implements, these are the common effects that you will notice after session:
Although you’re in a trance, many people remain fully aware during their sessions and can recall everything that transpires.
A lot of patients even have full-on conversations with their therapist!
If you don’t reach this level of awareness, not to worry.
That just means your mind is in a deep state of relaxation, taking everything in.
Hypnosis is a unique time for your mind to focus on itself.
Most of the time in our awakened state, we are being bombarded with external stimuli from our kids, bosses, and the world around us.
Or we are consumed with our laundry list of to-dos, like paying the bills or taking our car in for an oil change.
Your hypnotherapy session is intended to be a respite for your mind so you can truly show up for the issues at hand.
Because you’re so calm under hypnosis, you are able to address fears or memories that would normally normally be caged away under lock and key.
A quiet mind is also better equipped to get to the root of issues thanks to the lack of chaos that normally keeps us so distracted.
Another factor that plays a role in your success with hypnotherapy is choosing the right hypnotherapist.
How do you find the right one?
Our trained specialists are experienced, approachable and are ready to work with you at whatever pace that feels comfortable to you.
When selecting a hypnotherapist, you want to find someone who makes you feel relaxed and at ease.
That means choosing a therapist that meshes well with your personality and temperament.
Although hypnotherapy is still burdened by stereotypes and often misrepresented in the media as being mystical and hippie-dippie, there’s a strong foundation of science that backs it up.
And over the past decade, it’s begun to work its way into the mainstream as an effective form of psychotherapy.