© Ablemind Hypnotherapy 2012. All rights reserved
DipH, DipNLP&HC, HPD, Bsc OT
Hypnotherapy is a therapeutic treatment which uses hypnosis as a tool to access the part of the mind that can help overcome the issues which people are bothered by, such as lack of confidence, smoking or fear of flying. Therapy may happen both in and out of a hypnotic trance. The tools that could be of use to you may be hypnosis or additional ones drawn from a variety of psychological therapies and techniques such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
What is the unconscious
Our minds have three parts to them: the conscious, subconscious and the unconscious. The conscious mind is concerned with what we are working on in the present moment and what we think and feel about it.
The subconscious is information we can bring into the conscious mind when it is required like remembering what we had for breakfast.
The unconscious mind is the largest part of our mind and holds information about our memories, experiences and what we have learned about in our life journey to date. We cannot directly access it but our mind works on this information to make sense of what is happening in our lives. This can be in our dreams or totally beyond our awareness.
Although the unconscious mind has many useful hidden resources, it can also misinterpret information in unhelpful ways. This can account for how we develop anxiety, a phobia or frequent low mood. For example - If in the past someone had a very bad experience giving a speech the unconscious mind may think it is not something that would be good to do again. So the next time they are in a similar situation the person may become anxious, nervous and want to avoid the situation. By the use of a tool like hypnosis the unconscious mind can helpfully be accessed to find the right keys, sow seeds of ideas or make links to help overcome these unhelpful feelings.
What is a trance
A trance is a normal state that any human being can slip into. Most people have experienced a trance in everyday life, that feeling of deep relaxation and focus when engrossed in a particular piece of music or a book. The hypnotherapist uses it in a more formal way employing a variety of different techniques to induce a trance in order to carry out therapy to overcome presenting issues.
In a trance people can be deeply relaxed and their attention is focused on their thoughts and feelings rather than what is happening in the world around them. Instead of the mind working with its conscious side it is working with the unconscious side. This does not mean though that a trance is a state of unconsciousness or sleep. The person is very much aware and in full control. While in a trance a person can have easier access to memories, experience things more fully and be more responsive to helpful suggestions. These helpful elements of being in a trance are what the therapist can use to explore and work on the issues someone brings, helping them to make changes and reducing the distress caused by them. You should always be asked to give your consent for hypnosis to be carried out.