Frequently Asked Questions
What is hypnosis and how effective is it in dealing with issues arising from cancer treatment?
Hypnosis is defined as a state of consciousness where you become highly responsive to suggestion, and can be used to help to modify certain habits and behaviours you want to change. The conscious and subconscious parts of the mind begin to work on the same concept without conflict.
Hypnosis is a natural state of mind that all of us encounter several times a day. It can best be described as “relaxed focussed awareness” and occurs just as we wake up, just before we fall asleep and several times throughout the day. If you have ever experienced the feeling of driving a long distance and going into “auto-pilot”, you were in a state of relaxed focussed awareness or hypnosis. You may have arrived at your destination and were unable to remember your journey. This happens when your mind is totally focussed on one thing – the road ahead. Similarly, hypnosis occurs when you allow your mind to focus on relaxation, either with a hypnotherapist or by yourself when using self-hypnosis techniques.
As you will be the one allowing the relaxation, all hypnosis is really self-hypnosis.
According to Cancer Research UK, most cancer patients say that they’ve had a positive experience with hypnosis/hypnotherapy. It is used to help overcome fears and phobias of a variety of types of hospital treatment and emotional issues that arise as a result of cancer treatment.
What is hypnotherapy?
The initial consultation is used to identify underlying factors which cause unwanted behaviour or the problem(s) you seek help with. After you enter into an hypnotic state, the therapist then uses suggestions designed to alter and improve your behaviour and thinking patterns. The techniques used to adjust your perception of those issues is the therapy part of the hypnotherapy. Suggestions given during hypnotherapy have been shown to create long-lasting changes to habitual behaviours.
How will I know when I’m hypnotised?
Everyone experiences hypnosis differently and there is no such thing as a standard “hypnotised feeling”. The likelihood is that you’ll simply feel relaxed and comfortable whilst remaining conscious, alert and aware of your surroundings at all times. You may become so relaxed that you fall naturally into a restful sleep. Your subconscious mind, however, never sleeps and will continue to listen to everything I say.
What can it help me with?
Hypnotherapy and hypno-analysis have been shown to be effective in smoking cessation, overcoming fears and phobias, stress management, weight problems, self-esteem, confidence issues and all mind-related matters that adversely affect a person’s life.
There are many issues that can arise as a result of cancer treatment. If you have any questions or concerns about whether it would be a suitable therapy for you, please call me.
Will you be able to “control” me?
Absolutely not! Even if you drift into sleep during your session, your subconscious mind never sleeps and hears everything. You stay in control and your free will remains intact.
Will you make me do anything embarrassing when I’m hypnotised?
Of course not! Hypnotherapy is nothing like the stage hypnosis that you have probably seen on TV. That is entertainment, not therapy. The people who volunteer understand that and therefore don’t do anything against their will. The purpose of hypnotherapy is to help you to overcome your issues to improve your life.
What if I were to get “stuck” in hypnosis?
It isn’t possible to get stuck in a hypnotised state. You would naturally come out of the trance state when you no longer heard my voice, or drift off to sleep and wake up shortly afterwards.
What if I can’t be hypnotised?
Everyone can enter into an hypnotic state; the depth of that state can vary depending on the person. There may be psychological reasons that someone is resistant to being hypnotised which might make it very difficult for that person to relax enough to enter a true hypnotic state. Often people who are certain that they can’t be hypnotised have a deep seated need for control. They think that if they allow themselves to be hypnotised they will be giving up control so they will never allow themselves to relax enough to get to the hypnotic state. The process works better if you let go and trust the therapist.
I’ve got a really strong mind, can you still hypnotise me?
It’s a bit of a myth that strong-willed people can’t be hypnotised. You may not be as susceptible as other people, but your therapist can use a variety of techniques to help you to enter into an hypnotic state.
How many sessions will I need?
This will depend on your individual circumstances. During our initial consultation I will determine how many sessions are needed to overcome your particular issues. Some issues can be dealt with in a few sessions, others will need a longer term approach with regular weekly sessions.
What if I have a secret that is too embarrassing or shameful to tell anyone about?
As you still have free-will when you are under hypnosis, you won’t reveal any information that you are not comfortable sharing. If you are really worried about this, it is possible to work “content-free” with Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) or BWRT (Brain Working Recursive Therapy). This means that we can work on the issue indirectly without you having to tell me about it; you would simply focus on the emotion that the problem has created within you. Working with this technique is an excellent way to eradicate guilt, shame and other uncomfortable and embarrassing emotions.
What is Emotional Freedom Technique?
Emotional Freedom Technique is a healing technique that works on the same principles as acupuncture, but without the needles. It is effective for most emotional, health and performance issues. By tapping on energy points throughout the body energy blockages can be released that cause negative emotions. During a typical session, you will be guided to focus on a specific issue whilst tapping on energy/acupuncture points.
What is Brain Working Recursive Therapy?
Brain Working Recursive Therapy (BWRT) is a relatively new therapy that can effect permanent change in a very short space of time. It is also carried out content free, which means that you do not need to talk about particular problems if you don’t want to. We work on changing the way you think about the problem. It does not use hypnosis or hypnotherapy. It is effective for many issues such as stress and anxiety, social phobia, fears, post traumatic stress disorder and depression.
Who are you and how can you help me?
I am an integrative therapist with a BSc (Hons) degree in Complementary Medicine. I am also an Advanced Clinical Hypnotherapist, Hypno Analyst, Life Coach and Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP) practitioner. I am a Reiki practitioner (Master/Teacher) and am also trained in Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) and Brain Working Recursive Therapy (BWRT®).
I am fully insured and registered with:
- The Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC)
- The Complementary Therapists’ Association (CThA)
- The Association for Professional Hypnosis and Psychotherapy (APHP)
- The National Register of Psychotherapists and Counsellors (NRPC)
- Association for the Advancement of Meridian Energy Techniques (AAMET)
- A member of the Institute of Brain Working Recursive Therapy (BWRT®)
- I hold an enhanced DBS certificate
I am also an Anxiety UK Approved Therapist providing therapeutic support to the charity’s members and partner beneficiaries. I am subject to Anxiety UK’s regular monitoring of my professional qualifications, supervision, continual professional development, insurance and professional body membership in addition to complying with the ethical framework and professional standards set down by my registered governing body. Full details of the Anxiety UK Approved Therapist scheme can be found here – www.anxietyuk.org.uk/getinvolved/therapists-at-anxiety-uk. Details about becoming a member of Anxiety UK to be able to access hypnotherapy via the charity can be found at www.anxietyuk.org.uk/membership.