The Conscious and Unconscious Mind
Our mind can be thought of as having two parts – the conscious and the unconscious. We use our conscious mind when we think. It is rational and we are aware of ourselves and our thoughts. It controls our feelings of willpower and our short term memory.
The unconscious mind is hidden beyond our awareness and is the reservoir that holds all of our experiences and (sometimes inappropriate) patterns of behaviour that we have gained through life. What we believe to be true about ourselves, our emotional responses, our sense of identity – these are all areas that are in the domain of the unconscious.
In most forms of therapy suggestions are made by the therapist at a conscious level, but our conscious mind can be flooded by negative self-limiting thoughts. Very often when you are experiencing a problem whether it is psychological, emotional or psychosomatic (which actually produces physical symptoms), it is only the surface effect of a deeper underlying emotional or mental problem.
What Happens in Hypnosis?
Hypnosis is a totally natural state of mind. We move in and out of hypnosis many times during the day – when we are driving, watching a movie or absorbed in our favourite activity. It feels a bit like day dreaming and is enjoyable and refreshing. You can hear everything that is being said – your mind may wander for a time and that is fine – and are in complete control throughout.
Whilst in hypnosis, your conscious mind (the mind you are reading and thinking with now) is temporarily bypassed and your unconscious mind is directly accessed. With hypnotherapy, your unconscious mind becomes very responsive to all highly positive and beneficial ideas and suggestions, essentially becoming re-educated at a deep level. It is important to note that you will only accept suggestions that are appropriate for you, whether mentally, physically or emotionally.
The Initial Consultation
Prior to the therapy sessions we can arrange to have a free initial consultation. This is an opportunity to discuss why you have chosen to explore hypnotherapy and what your goals and expectations are. We will discuss what you would like to achieve, how you would like your life to be different and set a path for positive change.
Next I will take some background information to find out more about you, such as your work habits, any fears or phobias, your sleep patterns, your hobbies, what you do to relax; information which helps me to understand you better and to see if hypnotherapy will be suitable fit for you. (It’s rare that it won’t be suitable, but it does happen – and I’ll be honest and let you know.)
From there I will explain how the mind works and how our thoughts and negative associations are formed and why we feel and act in the way we do. I will explain the hypnotherapy process and how it can help you in relation to what you are hoping to achieve.
No hypnosis treatment takes place during this appointment. I will be able to assess the number of sessions you may need and you are under no obligation to continue with therapy if you decide it isn’t for you. You will be given a free relaxation audio which you are encouraged to listen to as part of therapy and to get you off to a great start.
Subsequent Hypnotherapy Sessions
These are more than just hypnotherapy. The first part is a discussion on the positive moments and progress of the previous week, encouraging you to express yourself looking forward in a positive way. You will probably be surprised how far you have come in a short space of time.
The process of hypnotherapy is very pleasant and calming – it uses relaxation and visualisation methods (don’t be put off if you think you can’t visualise) which helps to reduce your anxiety and allows you to focus on the positive aspects of your life, helps to identify and see potential goals, helps you to change your perspective and give you confidence with your own abilities and resources. After a relaxing and rejuvenating session, we think about some ideas for change for the next one.
After only a few sessions, you will feel much clearer about your personal issue, be able to handle problems in a more relaxed way and have a positive mindset to help you cope. Provided you are willing to make these changes to the way you think, you will find yourself concentrating on what you want in life, and no longer focused on the worries of the past. As your confidence and self-esteem grows, progress becomes much easier.
Contact me today to arrange an initial consultation to discuss whether hypnotherapy is the right solution for you.