Questions & Answers
Clearing up common misconceptions
Do I need Hypnotherapy? Will it work for me?
Hypnosis is alternative or complimentary to other methods of treatment for change. If you have undesired behaviors, habits, or traits, anxieties, , or other nervous symptoms such as tension, fears, phobias, chronic fatigue & certain physical complaints for which your Dr. finds no physical basis; if you find it difficult to get along in your work or relationships with others; if you have school or marital problems; or if you feel irritable, unhappy, believe you are not getting the most out of life, feel lost or stuck in any way, or need motivation, then hypnotherapy might help you. Maybe you just want to learn relaxation or stress management techniques, hypnotherapy could teach you how to let go & relax or learn to dwell in moments of comfort.
I refer to other professionals when necessary and a Dr's recommendation is required when working with certain medical conditions such as pain related issues or diagnoses.
How does Hypnotherapy work?
Hypnotherapy has been shown to create new neural pathways in the brain. Hypnosis is the state of being in a heightened state of absorption. (as stated by Bruce Eimer). Until the age of 7, we are in a hypnagogic developmental stage, characterized by a low alpha & theta brainwave state. We enter the same brainwave state during hypnosis. The hypnogogic developmental stage is the rapid learning stage when children are like sponges soaking up information from their observations and interactions in their environment. This is why a child can learn multiple languages simultaneously. In this rapid learning stage, information is directly downloaded into the subconscious & programs are created that become the foundation on which our perceptions are based. Current beliefs, habits, mannerisms & thought patterns, are often the result of past subconscious programming from a variety of sources. Our programming, which is depicted by emotions, thoughts, beliefs & behaviors, comes from parents, teachers, peers, television, movies, books, observing & interacting with the environment.
Subconscious programs are simply things you once learned & now carry-out mostly automatically. Some are positive programs & some aren't. Imagination is the language of the subconscious mind & hypnotherapy could teach you to use the power of your creative imagination to make positive changes, transitions & transformations.
With Hypnotherapy, you get to rewrite or replace outdated programs, customizing them to meet the needs & desires of your current chosen way of living.
Hypnosis is one of the 5 gateways directly accessing the subconscious mind making it possible to make positive changes to its programs & to the perceptions that dictate the way someone experiences him/herself, others, the environment & circumstances. Subconscious programs may be keeping you from success or helping you to succeed.
Emotions fuel the imagination & therefore your thoughts, actions & reactions.
Hypnotherapy can teach how to heal & transform emotions by correcting misperceptions & wrong beliefs at their source.
What hypnosis techniques might be used?
One or more techniques may be used.
Guided Imagery: As the client you are free to & very encouraged to modify what you hear me say or suggest to what you need to see hear or experience. You have the creative license to modify my suggestions to fit your needs. Please always inform any hypnotherapist who works with you if you have any fears or phobias. However, if someone were to suggested a client visualize a vast ocean but the client has a phobia of water, that client would most likely open their eyes, & bring themselves out of hypnosis. This is one of the reasons why I ask about phobias and fears before inducing hypnosis or using guided imagery. Maybe the client has no fear of water but finds imaging a field of grass more relaxing. When using guided imagery, I usually ask the client to create their own imagery or use imagery that I have confirmed feels relaxing to them. I frequently guide clients in creating an inner sanctuary or safe peaceful place within. A place with soothing, happy, relaxed, safe, peaceful & serene feelings. You can learn to activate the feelings felt in your inner sanctuary instantly , whenever you need to feel calm & centered.
Progressive Relaxation: Be guided to relax every nerve and muscle in your body. Guided imagery is often woven into progressive relaxation and used with positive suggestions to deepen the relaxation experience.
Positive Suggestions: Based on your individual needs & goals, positive suggestions are woven into every session & customized to your specific requests & expresed desires for positive change.
Regression: Womb, Current Life & Past Life. Regression may include regressing to the original cause of a problem in order to heal the emotions connected to the event & all subsequent similar experiences & feelings. Or one can also regress to happy memories & relive joyful moments, building a positive foundation on positive internal resources. Womb regression is often used to connect to past lives or the spiritual self. Regression to the womb can be a session on it's own because while in the womb we are often still aware of our spiritual memories & have an awareness of why we have come into this life, our goals & our purpose here in this lifetime.
Gestalt In Trance: Be guided to seek an inner resolution to conflicts with others. Sometimes it isn't possible to resolve a conflict with someone else because maybe they are no longer living or they are unable or unwilling to communicate or come to a resolution with you. When it isn't posible to resolve a conflict directly with someone, it's impirtant to reslove the internal conflict from within, to release or forgive yourself & the other person, freeing yourself to move forward untethered, to grow & learn from the expereience.
Parts Therapy & Inner Child Work: It's important to understand that everyone has Parts. A part of you may want to stay in tonight & another part of you may want to go out tonight. A part of you may want to change a habit but a part of you maybe created it for a good reason & wants to keep it because of the valuable coping strategy it has been. Problems become much more easily solvable when they are understood as being once creative solutions or ingenious coping strategies. Use hypnotherapy to gain valuable insights allowing you to become aware of creative solutions or coping strategies that are more beneficial to you. Let go of old outdated strategies that no longer serve you. People speak openly about their parts.
Start listening for the phrase "part of me__________...". in conversations.
Parts therapy helps resolve inner conflicts with the different aspects of your self.
Spiritual Hypnosis: Have the opportunity to create a deeper connection to your
Spiritual Self, Wise Self, Inner Guide, Higher Power, Spiritual Family, Guides, Angels or God.
What is Client-Centered Hypnosis?
All hypnosis is self-hypnosis, I act as a guide, helping my clients enter the hypnotic state & navigate their subconscious. Control remains with the client. I work within your comfort & requests for the session & help you unlock the power of your own mind. I customize my techniques to meet your needs instead of using the same approach with everyone. The client is the explorer, I act as the guide who employs the proper technique & asks the appropriate non-leading questions to help each client discover the causes & solutions to their own problems.
Can physical symptoms be caused by emotions?
Many physical symptoms are psychosomatic in nature. This means they have an emotional or nervous basis. When you think about it, it isn't so strange that emotional strain or worry would lead to physical symptoms being expressed. After all, every organ in your body is connected with your brain by nerve channels; & it's logical that when you are upset emotionally by some crisis or conflict, you feel the effects in various organs of the body including muscles.
When in a Hypnotic state, am I asleep or unconscious?
A person never loses their full sense of awareness while in hypnosis. That said, if a person is tired, they may fall asleep during the session, since a deep state of relaxation is often experienced. It is possible for some people to experience a dreamy feeling, or to feel as if they are drifting between a deep sleep and being awake during hypnosis. It is normal for the conscious mind to wander or move to other thoughts while the subconscious hears and responds to every word the hypnotherapist says. The conscious mind tends to return to focus on the breath or the sound of the hypnotherapist's voice.
James Braid, coined the term "hypnosis" after the Greek word "Hypnos" which means sleep. Later he attempted to change that to "monoideism" to express that hypnosis is a state of concentrated focus on one idea, but the term "Hypnos" was already established.
Although we may speak of the feeling of hypnosis, it's important to understand that everyone experiences hypnosis in their own way, it's different for everyone. With that in mind, it is common for most people to enjoy a feeling of deep relaxation and calmness. Falling asleep is unlikely.
Will I forget what happens while I'm in Hypnosis?
You will be aware of everything while hypnotized & most people remember everything afterward as well. After hypnotherapy, some people find they have a fading memory of their session, much like emerging from a deep daydream or waking up from a dream. However, the subconscious mind is like a hard drive, it is the storehouse of your mind, & information can always be retrieved because everything you have ever witnessed or experienced through any of your senses is stored there. Most people have good session recall. Suggestions for memory retention can be given if needed/desired. Talking or journaling about the experience soon after helps memory retention.
Can I be Hypnotized against my will? Once under Hypnosis, am I under the control of the Hypnotherapist?
Some people enjoy the deep relaxation associated with hypnosis so much that they are excited about the idea of experiencing it again. However, that doesn't mean they cannot resist hypnosis. Professional stage hypnotists are great at creating the illusion that they have a mysterious power over their subjects. The fact is that there is no control at all. Entering into hypnosis requires consent and cooperation by the client, so it is impossible to hypnotize someone against their will. If someone strongly believes they can't be hypnotized then they're correct.
At all times the client is capable of making normal decisions during the hypnosis experience. People will not do anything that goes against their morals or values while hypnotized. In fact you may become more aware of your morals & values, & of the different & better ways to live by & express them. You are always in control.
Can I get stuck in Hypnosis?
This is impossible. No-one has ever been stuck in a hypnotic trance, except in the movies. Hypnosis is a safe & natural state. If a client is not ready to come back yet, they may exercise control & decide to stay in hypnosis a little longer, rather than follow the instruction given to open their eyes. Rarely people fall asleep & can be easily awakened.
Is Hypnosis like a truth serum? Will I reveal my deep dark secrets?
Since you are in control, you decide what you say & do not say while in hypnosis. You won't reveal personal secrets unless you decide to for therapeutic purposes.While in hypnosis you are most often invited to speak answers to questions outloud & are also free to answer with established finger responses. If at any time you with to answer "Yes", "No", "I don't know", or "I don't want to answer" you may do so outloud or by raising the finger you have chosen to coresponds to that answer. Often, it is the thing you are most opposed to sharing that needs to be shared in order to release yourself from it & heal & forgive yourself or others. Free yourself from the past so you are free to learn from your experiences. It takes bravery & shows integrity to face one's demons & seek to change from within.
What does forgiving mean?
Forgiving means releasing. Forgiving doesn't mean you need to forget or pardon. You can forgive someone & also hold them accountable. You may choose to forgive someone & either continue or discontinue interaction depending on the circumstance. Forgiveness isn't a pass allowing bad behavior to continue. While the forgiving process can lead to understanding, it doesn't mean condoning. While understanding isn't the same as justifying, it leads to feeling higher levels of compassion which increase your alpha brain wave states, filling you with a sense of inner calm & harmony. You may need to forgive yourself, another person, an object, an event or an act. Forgiving means letting go of negative charges or transforming them into positive charges. When you forgive it makes you feel instantly more peaceful within & puts you in control of your life. From the state of Hypnosis (High Alpha brain wave state) forgiving frequently causes radically positive & quick transformations from within. Forgiving is an essential part of fully healing. Hurt people tend to hurt people, so free yourself from the hurts of the past & experience more Love & Joy. Forgiving is for the express purpose of freeing yourself to move forward. Free yourself to learn from & grow from experiences, recognize the value in all of your experiences & benefit from them. Anything can be forgiven when you understand there are exponential benefits for the health of your mind, body & spirit. Forgiving makes you stronger, less reactive & more clear headed in difficult circumstances.
Can everyone be Hypnotized?
Anyone who wants to be can be hypnotized. The better question is, will you allow yourself to be guided into hypnosis? The majority of people enter hypnosis quite easily once they understand that they remain aware & never surrender their willpower. When a person has trouble going into hypnosis, it might be because the hypnotherapist failed to explain the misconceptions about hypnosis & didn't visit with them long enough before the session to create rapport & a sense of trust between the client & the hypnotherapist. Extremely analytical peopl can also have some difficulty entering the trance state, & may need more sessions to practice letting go into the experience. There are many techniques that specifically bypass the critical mind factor, allowing the analytical resister to more easily enter into deep hypnosis. The main reason a person may be unable to enter into hypnosis if the fear of losing control, which is merely a myth. You are as capable of lying, withholding information or rejecting a suggestion under hypnosis as when you are completely conscious. When a person is comfortable with the hypnotic process & with the hypnotherapist, understands the misconceptions & is aware of what to expect, it's surprisingly easy to enter the hypnotic state.
Hypnosis is a natural state that each of us passes through at least twice a day as we wake up and fall asleep. Daydreaming, meditation, driving on autopilot, watching a movie or reading a book are all times people experience a hypnotic trance state. A hypnotherapist is able to help you enter this receptive state, & then can employ the proper techniques in order to facilitate the desired changes that brought you to their office. While some people achieve extremely deep levels of hypnosis easier than others, everyone can achieve the appropriate trance depth to allow them to accomplish their therapeutic goals. Experiencing hypnosis multiple times (practicing) can help you learn to go deeper into hypnosis each time.
Is deep relaxation required to be in a state of Hypnosis?
Deep relaxation is a typical characteristic of hypnosis, & by following the suggestions & guidance of a hypnotherapist most people are able to achieve some level of relaxation. However, this is not a requirement, deep hypnosis & deep relaxation are not one in the same. The level of relaxation is not related to the effectiveness of the session. There are a variety of techniques that don't require physical relaxation to be successful. Many emotions can be experienced during a hypnotherapy session, many of which may be unpleasant before release & letting go happen & it does happen. Sometimes a client may feel more relaxed & at peace after a session, after the RnR within has occurred.
If I cannot solve my personal problems without help, does that mean that I have a "weak will" or that I'm on the way to a mental breakdown?
NO. Even if you have no serious symptoms, it is difficult to work out emotional problems, change patterns & habits by yourself often because you are too close to the problem & cannot see clearly. Also, our subconscious programming is over 90% more powerful than our willpower. Exerting willpower alone to make changes requires extreme dedication to mindfulness, self-awareness & repeated reframing of your thoughts,and behaviors over a long period of time. More and more people, even those with a great deal of psychological knowledge, are seeking help these days because they realize this. The fact that you desire help is a compliment to your judgment & is not an indication that you are approaching mental breakdown. In reality, the opposite is true. Seeking professional help is a sign of mental soundness, awareness, inner strength & confidence.
Is Hypnosis contrary to religion or my religious beliefs?
Most religious objections to hypnotherapy are based on an outdated view of hypnosis & the misconception that it deprives people of their will & freedom of choice. Hypnotherapy can, in reality, increase the strength of your will & teach you to more strongly exercise your freedom of choice. I work within the frame of your religious beliefs. Since my work is client-centered, I never impose beliefs into your subconscious. In fact, it's possible that your spiritual beliefs may become enhanced. During hypnosis, some people have spiritual insights or revelations & they come to possess a deeper understanding or feeling of spiritual knowing or awareness that comes from deep within themselves.
What happens to the information about me?
All case records are confidential. Professional Hypnotherapists are listed in the Federal Register as a non-medical occupation. Since hypnotherapy is outside of the medical communities scrutiny, unless your insurance is paying for your treatment, your files are secret & never become part of the National Medical Information Network database.
No one (doctors, family, etc.) has access to your personal records unless you have given your written permission.