Hypnosis has been used for thousands of years and hypnotherapy has worked successfully to bring about amazing changes in people's lives, in a relatively short space of time. There are stories in history of healing temples in Ancient Egypt, and Ancient Greece, where sick people flocked to be healed. It is said that on arrival they were given substances like poppy seeds and led into the temple to relax, listen to soothing music and healing incantations containing suggestions thought to be magic spells. The sick person would then be advised go to sleep and “Hypnos” the God of sleep, was believed to visit the sleeper in the night to bring about a mystical healing.
It’s a bit different nowadays. Hypnosis is considered to be a totally natural phenomenon often described as a deep state of relaxation, concentration and focussed attention. In hypnosis, the conscious mind can become detached from everyday worries and concerns and you can experience an altered state of awareness which is different to being asleep or being unconscious. This is often referred to as a 'hypnotic trance’. During hypnosis, the logical, analytical part of the mind is safely bypassed allowing more direct access to the unconscious part of your mind. In this way, you can respond easily to positive suggestions and allow yourself to accept those suggestions which are purposefully designed to help you to reach your goals.
As an analogy, the human mind could be compared to an iceberg, the tip of the iceberg that we can see is the conscious mind and the larger invisible part beneath the sea is the unconscious mind. The conscious mind is that part of your mind which is actively thinking all day long - the logical, analytical part. It is that part of your mind that you direct to think about whatever you are thinking about right now.
The unconscious mind is everything else! The unconscious mind directs nearly all your behaviour. It is a vast storehouse of all your memories, knowledge and wisdom. Accessing the unconscious mind through hypnosis can prove extremely useful – especially in therapy. Purposeful communication with the unconscious mind is most effective when you are in a trance like state, this is where hypnotherapy comes in.
Hypnosis is experienced differently by everyone. It can be described as an altered state of awareness or a heightened state of awareness. The individual is always in complete control, but totally absorbed and focussed on their internal experience.
Hypnotherapy uses hypnosis to bring about positive, progressive and beneficial change. Changes can be made in ways of thinking and in behaviour, overcoming certain fears or phobias, conquering stress and anxiety, losing weight, establishing new habits and breaking old ones.
These are just some of the benefits of hypnotherapy. Limiting thoughts and beliefs can be seen for what they are – obstacles in the way of you becoming the person you want to be.
Positive thought seeds positive action which brings about positive results. Hypnotherapy instills new feelings of well-being and positivity by accessing the creative unconscious part of the mind.
The Hypnotic Experience
The Hypnotic experience is created by you, in the privacy of your own mind. Everyone is unique so it is impossible to describe exactly what hypnosis is like or what you will experience but most people say it is very pleasant and relaxing and time seems to go very quickly. Often, the sensations will be similar to those you may have just before you go to sleep or wake up. We all go in and out of hypnosis on a regular basis, for example, when driving a car on auto-pilot or when day dreaming. In hypnotherapy we harness this natural experience and plant the seeds of change in a fertile environment.
Whilst in a hypnotic trance you cannot be made to do anything against your will. Your unconscious mind will always protect you and will not allow you to violate your own values. You are always in complete control and you can come out of trance whenever you wish although there would not be much point in that if you are there to make positive and progressive changes.
The Seeds of Suggestion
Once you have achieved this hypnotic state the hypnotherapist can then communicate directly with your subconscious mind without the critical, argumentative conscious mind getting in the way. The therapist is then able to ask the subconscious mind whether it is prepared to make the necessary changes to your behaviour, symptoms, feelings or beliefs. Your unconscious mind will only complete these changes if it is happy and ready to do so. The seeds of suggestion are then planted in the deepest part of your mind. You may be very surprised when certain things the hypnotherapist said during the session come into your mind at other times when you need some guidance because there is a ripple effect when positive suggestions are incorporated into your life. The seeds of suggestion become the changes you want to make. BACK TO TOP
Definition of a Hypnotherapist
Dr. John Kappas, Founder of the Hypnosis Motivation Institute, wrote and defined the profession of a hypnotherapist as someone who: