I am often asked, what is hypnotherapy? Is it a kind of magic or mind control? There are different types of hypnotherapy or hypnosis. Most people bring the image of a Hollywood style stage show to mind when you mention Hypnotherapy. The mysterious Hypnotist turning normal people into human washing machines for the entertainment of the audience. However, they are skilled and know how to choose a highly suggestible, extroverted person, who is willing and wants to be part of the show. Stage Hypnosis is very different to Hypnotherapy. Most Hypnotherapists like myself, belong to a professional association which has ethical guidelines that need to be followed to belong, and that includes confidentiality and a code of ethics. The desired outcome is completely different, entertainment vs confidential therapy. Having said that some Stage Hypnotists can also be good therapists, you just need to check out their cred.
Hypnosis is a state of mind. It feels like you are in a kind of day dream and you are relaxed. Similar to how you feel when you are engrossed in a good book or when you are driving along and you are zoned out, and then find yourself at your destination wondering how you got there. You are not asleep, and technically you are in an alpha state which is in between a light sleep and awake. In this state of mind, you are highly suggestible. You are aware and in control, and can’t do anything against your will or values. For example, if someone asked you to give them all your money while you were relaxed and into a good book, would you? Or even if you were half asleep, would you?
So how do you get to this highly suggestible state of mind? The very simple version is that it starts with becoming deeply relaxed. Once you are, the hypnotherapist suggests healthier perspectives and direct suggestions are made, which your sub-conscious mind can accept or not. The suggestions are what you consciously want, like to stop smoking and have been previously discussed in a pre-talk together. The results can be truly amazing in a short space of time, like making change easier, breaking bad habits or just being more relaxed and confident.
No magic or mind control needed.