What is Hypnotherapy?
Hypnotherapy is an empowering combination of hypnosis and therapy that is becoming widely recognized as an effective holistic treatment for a range of different needs.
The human mind is comprised of two parts – the conscious and the subconscious. The conscious mind is the part that we are constantly aware of. It records all our new experiences and sends them back to our subconscious where they are permanently stored. The conscious mind also acts as a filter for subconscious thoughts and ideas, either allowing them back through to the conscious or keeping them at bay. The subconscious mind is not only our memory hard-drive, but it also regulates some of our bodily functions including breathing, digestion, etc. It is because they are controlled by the subconscious that our body can do them naturally without us being aware of them happening.
Therapy no longer has such stigma attached to it. It is increasingly appreciated as a situation within which you can talk confidentially and without judgment, allowing you to discuss various aspects of your life, your thoughts, your feelings, and any related behavior. You are free to examine any area of your life and release your emotions in a healthy and secure way. This will help you achieve a greater understanding of yourself and assist you in overcoming any issues you may have.
History of Hypnosis
Hypnosis is one of the oldest practises on the planet with records of it being used as far back as 3000 B.C. Hieroglyphics found on Ancient Egyptian tombs suggests that they had used hypnotism in association with healing and religion. There is also evidence linking hypnotism to Ancient Greeks, South American Mayas, Persian Magi, Celtic Druids, Hindu Fakirs and African Witch Doctors who all used the practise either ritually or medicinally.
In the 1700s, hypnotism was widely referred to as mesmerism, named for the most famous early practitioner of the time, Franz Anton Mesmer. Mesmer is regularly referred to as ‘the father of hypnosis’, but began demonstrating the practise as a showman, using music and lighting to create a theatrical performance. Mesmer had no idea that his talent lie in his ability to induce a guided self-hypnosis, but his ‘cures’ were treated with scepticism by King Louis XVI and he insisted on their investigation.
This investigation was headed by Benjamin Franklin who concluded that Mesmer’s cures and subsequent miraculous results were in fact the product of the imagination of the people he had hypnotized.
It was not until the 1780s that the Marquis de Puységur, a student and avid follower of Mesmer, discovered hypnotism. He managed to induce his subject into a trance like state under which he showed intelligence and supposed clairvoyant skills. De Puységur has since been credited with discovering and naming the sleep-like trance state know as somnambulism, a term which is still used today.
The pharmacist Emile Coué has been referred to as the father of autosuggestion after he stated that all hypnosis is guided self-suggestion or self-hypnosis rather than being affected by the hypnotist.
Dr James Braid is infamous for his work in the hypnotism field. He believed that the success of induction depended greatly on the subject’s willingness to accept suggestion. Further research and experimentation caused him to discover how to influence and enhance the trance with additional emphasis on the vocal suggestions by the hypnotist. This method is still known as the ‘suggestions method’ and is still practised today.
In 1843 he published the first book referring to hypnotism by that name and in 1848 he discovered ‘waking hypnosis’. His work in understanding the science behind hypnotism has also given him the title of the ‘father of hypnotism’, despite finding very little respect amongst his peers for his research.
Therapeutic hypnosis defined
Therapeutic hypnosis is a series of progressively deepening relaxations, where your conscious mind is sent to sleep and your subconscious mind takes over. It is a basic disabling of conscious decision and thought, allowing your subconscious to access the information stored there. You are still able to talk freely, and you will be able to remember everything that has taken place. I will facilitate the process, guiding your subconscious to yield information about the subject or area that we have chosen to explore. If I give you a suggestion that you are unhappy with, your subconscious will be able to either ignore it, or you will be able to bring yourself out of the hypnotized state.
Your thoughts are the catalyst for changes in behavior. When you change the thought you will be able to alter the action linked to it. By gaining access to your subconscious mind, you can harness its power to concentrate on new positive habits, attitudes, and behavior that are chosen by you as acceptable and where you want your life to lead. If effectively done, these new thoughts will then override the old subconscious ones, enabling the changes that you want to take place.
This is just a small part of what we can teach you about in our hypnotherapy courses. To learn more take a look at our packaged courses which will explore this concept and many more in further detail.