I was recently invited onto Mind Body Radio for a phone interview. I talk about how hypnotherapy works, what to expect from working with me, and how to ensure you are protected when choosing a hypnotherapist. Hope you find it interesting!
Mental health issues are finally gaining wider awareness and understanding generally. But just because the conversation is expanding, there is still a long way to go – and many people still suffering in silence. Anxiety and depression are two of the most common conditions, and while the link between them might not be obvious at first, they are different sides of the same coin.
What’s the difference?
Depression tends to focus on ruminating on the past, frequently accompanied by an inability to find meaning in the present; whilst anxiety tends to manifest as worrying about the future. Both conditions can be exhausting to the extent that they impact upon the most vital elements of a healthy life – such as sleep, diet, and interpersonal relationships.
People suffering with depression need to be taught to accept and work with ambiguous circumstances, as well as to search for and focus on meaning in their life. Learning to relax with uncertainty also benefits those with anxiety; as does learning ways to dial down the hyper-vigilance that if left unchecked, can result in extreme manifestations such as panic attacks, agoraphobia, or obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Unhealthy coping mechanisms such as smoking or excessive alcohol consumption can also arise as a consequence.
What do they have in common?
Both conditions have stress at their root. This is a state we experience when there is a mismatch between perceived demands and our perceived ability to cope. Stress can also be defined as an adaptive physical response to change in the environment. The stress response evolved to protect us, enabling humans to deal with life threatening dangers such as being confronted with a wild animal. Such situations required action – hence the activation of the stress response to fight, flight, or freeze.
Our brains have not evolved as swiftly as our modern lives have, therefore this stress response to demanding situations is still with us. We all experience stress in different ways depending upon our personality type and past conditioning. Exercise can help flush out stress hormones, but it is better to deal with the cause rather than the symptom, and learn better coping strategies. Likewise, learning to recognise depressive thinking styles (such as all-or-nothing thinking, and catastrophising) can empower us to challenge them when they arise.
So how does hypnotherapy help?
Hypnotherapy is different from any other form of therapy because of the way in which the therapy part happens while one is in hypnosis – itself a natural focused state of absorption. It is a very effective combination of a trance-like altered state of mind with deep relaxation, which allows the chosen therapy to be even more effective. Therapies can include cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), suggestion therapy, regression, ego states therapy, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, or hypnoanalysis to name just some examples.
Hypnosis allows you to enter a state of deep relaxation, which in itself is a very useful therapy for managing stress. It also allows one to become calm and focused, as all parts of the mind work together and concentrate on solving the problem at hand; and therefore make the most effective use of the chosen therapy as it is applied. All parts of the mind work in harmony for the good of the whole being.
Are there any other benefits?
Hypnotherapy is a proven method for overcoming both anxiety and depression; as well as being positive, rewarding, safe, and gentle. Someone who has undergone hypnosis will not only learn to manage their symptoms but will have more confidence, increased self esteem, and a clearer and more positive perspective on life. Hypnosis calms the nerves, the mind, and the whole body; while alleviating the stress and anxiety that an individual may experience. It is a fascinating process that explores the resources of the subconscious mind – and the beliefs, behaviours, and thinking patterns of the individual become more positive and empowered as a consequence.
Under hypnosis, an individual can both visualise and feel themselves free from anxiety or depression. Hypnotherapy will allow you to live a richer and more rewarding life without these conditions stopping you from reaching your goals. You can try it out right now with these downloads for anxiety or these downloads for depression. However, if you prefer therapy focused on your individual personality and circumstances, I am a fully qualified hypnotherapist who has undertaken specialist training in both anxiety and depression, and have helped many of my clients overcome these conditions (see my success stories). I am based in Canterbury, Kent and Peckham, London SE15; and also offer online sessions, wherever in the world you may be. Please feel welcome to call me on 07947 475721 for a free no-obligation 15 minute phone consultation – you don’t need to suffer in silence.
Anger is a natural emotion. It alerts us to threats and unwanted feelings, and can motivate us to regain control of the situation which is causing them. However, it is frequently destructive when expressed. You risk being consumed by it, and losing the ability to think clearly. It is also physically toxic – recent scientific studies have found that frequent anger contributes to numerous serious illnesses, including heart disease and hypertension. It can also damage our relationships with family, friends, and colleagues. How can you respond more effectively before the red mist descends, and you lose control?
There are a number of ways of managing anger in the short term. These include relocating to a different environment (preferably outdoors), deep breathing, and stress relieving toys. Talking to someone sympathetic, writing it all down, and flushing out the stress hormones with exercise are also beneficial. But these may not always be practical in the heat of the moment, and you may find yourself wishing that you could get to the root of the issue – and nip the anger in the bud. After all, we know that prevention is better than cure – and hypnotherapy does exactly that.
By working with your subconscious, hypnotherapy manages the triggers which cause anger. It teaches you to be calmer and more relaxed, intercepting situations which might have caused you to flare up in the past. You can see things in a different light, with perspective on situations which caused you anger previously.
Working with trance states
Hypnotherapy actually works in the same underlying way as anger – as when you are in a rage, you are in a trance. No amount of logical reasoning can snap you out of it – you stop listening to the other person, and only believe in what you have to say. Attempts to control such intense feelings consciously are rarely effective, and do not deal with the real source of the issue. This is because they do not access the subconscious mind – the reservoir of feelings, thoughts, memories, and impulses outside of our conscious awareness; influencing all of our behaviours and experiences. Hypnotherapy accesses these resources, while using a similar kind of trance-like state – the difference being that your focus is positive and resourceful.
The five dimensions of anger – cognition, emotion, affect, communication and behaviour – can be broken down, and the pattern of escalation interrupted. Through hypnosis we can access the subconscious mind, harnessing its power to reprogramme this process.
Our body already has natural mechanisms to cope with stress and regulate emotions, but occasionally they need assistance. Hypnosis does just that, enlisting the help of your subconscious mind to make the necessary long-term changes – allowing you to be more relaxed and in control in situations in which you were previously quick to anger.
During the state of deep relaxation that hypnosis brings, the subconscious mind is most open to new ideas, perspectives, and positive suggestions. These include motivation and encouragement, confidence building, and a plan to control anger based on your personal triggers and reactions. If you want to give it a try, this download might help. Otherwise you might find sessions tailored to your personal circumstances more beneficial – and as a qualified hypnotherapist, I am experienced in supporting clients to make the changes they want in their lives (see my success stories). I am based in Canterbury, Kent and Peckham, London SE15; and also offer online sessions, wherever in the world you may be. Please feel welcome to call me on 07947 475721 for a free no-obligation 15 minute phone consultation to see how I can help.
Those who have undergone hypnotherapy experience new thinking and behaviour patterns. These are what allow a person to finally control their anger, and move forward with their lives.
Do you long for a decent night’s sleep? Do you lie awake each night with your brain going round in circles? Do you nod off in the day because you are not sleeping enough? If so, you may be suffering with insomnia. This condition is becoming increasingly common in our modern lives, as we work and play ever harder. So if insomnia is affecting you, what can you do to resolve it?
The physical and mental benefits of sleep
Sleep is more valuable than many people realise. Not only does it help to recharge our physical energy, but allows the body – and mind – to heal from the previous day. Without proper sleep, our bodies do not function so efficiently. Over a period, this can lead to significant mental, physical, and emotional problems. Sleep problems are something that many people feel that they have no control over. However, it is possible to break the cycle, and regain a proper sleeping pattern again.
So how would life be different if you could get back into a sensible sleeping routine? How much healthier and happier would you feel, knowing that you are sleeping properly? What would it feel like to manage the stress that keeps you awake at night?
Returning to sleep naturally
Hypnosis can help, as it is connected with the part of your mind that holds your beliefs, habits and behaviours around your sleep problems. It essentially reprogrammes this part of your brain, in order to allow you to achieve the results that you both need and desire.
During hypnotherapy, you will feel comfortable and relaxed as you start to make the necessary changes to let go of your insomnia. The natural benefits that accompany the feeling of hypnosis will also help you to manage any stress, and feel more confident and in control.
You can try improving your sleep using hypnosis with this download. However, if you would like one-to-one support which takes your individual circumstances into account, I am a qualified hypnotherapist who has resolved insomnia for many of my clients (see my success stories). I also educate insomniacs on sleep hygiene, in order to help you take control on a practical level and enhance your success. I am based in Canterbury, Kent and Peckham, London SE15; and also offer online sessions, wherever in the world you may be. Please feel welcome to call me on 07947 475721 for a free no-obligation 15 minute phone consultation to see how I can help.
Just imagine how you will feel once you can awaken fit and ready to make the most of each day – and the rest of your life.
Nowadays, eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia are becoming increasingly common. If someone deliberately starves themselves yet believes they are overweight, they could be suffering from anorexia nervosa – a serious emotional disorder which requires intervention. This is characterised by a dramatically restricted diet, often accompanied by excessive exercise. The outcome is dangerous weight loss that can cause severe damage to the body – or in more extreme cases, death.
Both body and mind need help
Bulimia is a form of anorexia, in which the individual can misuse laxatives or diuretics; they may also use enemas and/or vomiting to rid the body of food consumed whilst binge eating. Such actions place the body at significant medical risk – and both anorexia and bulimia are not only serious, but difficult to treat. As well as the need for physical intervention, the mind also needs treatment – since the individual with the eating disorder sees themselves as fat, despite in some cases being as little as 50% of their usual weight.
These eating disorders often begin around the time of puberty. However, although more unusual, eating disorders can also affect people later in life – and at any age, females are at highest risk. If your child begins to show symptoms such as an infrequent or halted menstrual cycle, hair thinning, dry skin, swollen and/or cold feet, or bloating – at the same time as drastic weight loss – then you need to investigate.
The psychological symptoms can include problems with memory and/or concentration, poor judgment, denial, a distorted perception of the body, depression, and obsessive compulsive behaviour. Treating eating disorders is usually a longer process that addresses both the psychological and physical sides. The traditional treatment options include Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), and antidepressants. However, because of the significance of the mind in these disorders, hypnosis has also been proven very beneficial for a number of sufferers. Cognitive Behavioural hypnotherapy – combining CBT with hypnotherapy – is an excellent intervention as it often gets to the root of the issue, empowering the sufferer both physically and mentally.
A means of control
The precise cause of bulimia and anorexia is as yet not known, but the majority of experts believe it is a way whereby the individual tries to gain control over their life. Therefore young girls trying to fit in at school, struggling with dating, or living in a difficult home environment can turn to an eating disorder to feel some semblance of control. Using hypnosis, the subconscious can be taught to alter this maladapted pattern of thinking – and can be open to positive suggestions to find healthier ways of fulfilling the perceived needs behind the eating disorder.
The underlying issues that resulted in the eating disorder are also addressed. The individual learns healthy control, self confidence, and other positive tools that can be used to overcome bulimia or anorexia. Remember that along with hypnotherapy, the individual will need love and support by family and friends – within a positive environment, recovery can take place. The individual is also likely to need physical treatment and medication.
These factors altogether will provide the best likelihood of success – and a number of medical doctors are adding hypnotherapy to their practice for this reason. For those in need of immediate intervention on the mindset level, this download may provide help. Otherwise, if you or anyone you know is suffering from an eating disorder, I am a qualified hypnotherapist experienced in supporting clients with these issues (see my success stories). I am based in Canterbury, Kent and Peckham, London SE15; and also offer online sessions, wherever in the world you may be. Please feel welcome to call me on 07947 475721 for a free no-obligation 15 minute phone consultation to see how I can help.
There’s no getting away from the fact that winter can have a negative effect on us physically and mentally…
…but did you know that by using a few mental tools, you can not only survive but thrive to beat the winter blues?
Research shows that there is a general increase in stress levels amongst the western population as the year draws to a close, and during the first couple of months of the new year. This time of year is also associated with financial instability, increases in domestic disputes, and mental health problems.
There are many factors involved in this – including the burden on time and money throughout the festive season; dark, cold winter months; and it being the time of year that people generally re-evaluate their lives.
However, there are several ways a few simple ‘mind tools’ can help to ease this burden.
The issue of stress is a complex one, and I don’t intend this to be a complete answer all for the issues. I do know however that taking a few minutes a day to allow the tension to subside can have a significant impact on stress levels. A simple self hypnosis session, taking 20 minutes or so every day, will significantly help – and there’s a fantastic selection of high quality downloads to get you started right here. If you’d like something specifically for winter blues, try this.
The overall result of taking time out to care for yourself in this way will mean more focus, and more energy and drive to get everything you need done.
We are significantly impacted by sunlight and shorter daylight hours, along with spending more time indoors. Again issues such as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and medical conditions are beyond the scope of this article; but by using creative visualisation techniques, you can have an impact on how you feel. A simple idea like visualising yourself relaxing on a warm beach somewhere can take a lot of tension out of the day, and bring you back to something like normality…but there are some things we can do to increase the benefits still further.
One issue that seems to come up regularly at the end of a year is that people re-evaluate what they have achieved, and formulate their goals for the coming year. The impact of this can be dissatisfaction with the previous year, and a feeling of nothing changing for the year ahead. Here self hypnosis and NLP techniques can really help.
Your unconscious mind is the store house for all of your memories, emotions and habitual behavior.
It is also where you keep your beliefs, values and identity. Using self hypnosis and NLP techniques, you can draw a lot of these things into your conscious awareness and potentially change them. The implications of this can be life changing, for example:
- Changing habits such as nail biting, smoking, or comfort eating.
- Letting go of negative emotions like social anxiety, fear of failure, and depressive states.
- Installing empowering ideas, beliefs and values such as self confidence, abundance thinking, or the ability to grow your business and improve your relationships.
By being able to let go of negative emotions around what you don’t want – and increasing your motivation for what you do want – you are creating a self propelling unconscious guided missile that is always driving you towards a better life.
Imagine being able to do this in twenty minutes a day, and it taking as much effort as a nap. However, as with everything else, achieving this level of proficiency takes practice – but you get back what you put in. Think for a moment about all the stress and strain of life generally; and consider the implications of not only surviving but thriving, growing and developing a better future just through a daily twenty minute rest. This powerful form of self care can see you through the winter blues – and beyond.
If you feel as though you have deeper issues you may need help with, I am a qualified hypnotherapist, experienced in supporting clients to make the changes they want in their lives (see my success stories). I am based in Canterbury, Kent and Peckham, London SE15; and also offer online sessions, wherever in the world you may be. Please feel welcome to call me on 07947 475721 for a free no-obligation 15 minute phone consultation to see how I can help.
Why life coaching? Well, if you’re thinking about making progress in life with a clear strategy, the answer may already be obvious. Basically, it’s not easy to simultaneously hold a vision, map out a path, walk that path and measure your own progress all by yourself.
Clarity out of confusion
If you’ve ever embarked on a major project of any kind will recognise the sense of overwhelm that can sometimes take some of the excitement away from proceeding with your vision. I experienced this myself when I began as a musician. As I thought about the kinds of problems I faced, I came to understand and accept that it would always be difficult to have both an overarching view of my long-term goals, a cogent understanding of my near-term strategies, and a confident and simple approach to walking my daily path. The reason was clear: each of these activities requires that I adopt a different perspective. And it’s hard to be in more than one place at a time. Often I would be conducting one activity from the perspective of another. So no wonder I occasionally felt confused and overwhelmed.
Life coaching offers a solution by providing objective recognition, validation and reinforcement. A life coach helps you to clarify your goals, test your plans against your resources and your intentions, and measure your progress. A coach also asks you to live up to standards you set together. I think of the kind of business coaching and life coaching that I practice as motivating. It’s about advising, focusing, and encouraging my clients to find solutions to their problems. From there, they can achieve personal growth and a way of being in the world that flows organically and authentically from who they really are.
Becoming your true self
Life coaching can introduce you to the self you were meant to be. The time you invest in the coaching process will be amply repaid by your greater ability to recognise, nurture and evoke that self. Discovering your passion and purpose is vital to your joy and well-being. In our society, we tend to ignore our special talents, and choose a career hoping for a sense of security. But too often, what makes us feel safe does not fulfil us at a deeper level.
It may not always be possible to change your work immediately to something you love. But if you follow your passion, it will often lead you there. And even when you have to earn money in ways that might not utilise your talents, you can seek volunteer opportunities and hobbies to express who you are. And these can lead to the work that you will eventually do. There is a deep desire within you to express yourself in ways that give you joy. It is your job to discover what that is and to bring it about.
I am a qualified life coach and hypnotherapist, experienced in coaching clients to help them make the changes they want in their lives (see my success stories). And I can help you move forward too, whether you seek career coaching or support in a new venture altogether. I am based in Canterbury, Kent and Peckham, London SE15; and also offer online sessions, wherever in the world you may be. Please feel welcome to call me on 07947 475721 for a free no-obligation 15 minute phone consultation to see how I can help.
Alcohol dependence is a killer. It’s now officially estimated that 5% of all deaths worldwide are attributable to alcohol. That’s 1 in every 20 people – enough to sober anyone up.
If you feel that you’d like to have greater control over your drinking, good news. It’s currently Go Sober for October, where you can raise money for MacMillan Cancer Support as well as giving your body a significant health boost.
But what if you know that you’ll just go straight back to your old ways with a large one once midnight strikes on November 1st?
Alcohol dependence: the physical and mental toll
A number of my clients admit that they drink more than they should, usually in response to stressful life conditions. Alcohol becomes indelibly associated with relaxing after work, and eventually the habit turns into a dependency. That this is a socially accepted norm doesn’t help.
However, excess alcohol can lead to problems which not only affect you physically, but mentally too. For example, did you know the impact that drinking has on your sleep? Many think that alcohol helps them drop off more quickly. While this may seem to be the case, the actual quality of sleep is poor. Alcohol affects the REM sleep cycle – when we most commonly dream – which in turn affects learning, memory, and mood. More serious problems such as depression can ensue, compounded by alcohol being a depressant to begin with.
Like most other addictions, alcohol dependence can create a warped reality where those affected no longer have any control. Alcohol can rip apart families, end careers – and as the stats now show, increasingly end lives. There are many medical downsides associated with alcohol, and the social implications can be equally serious. Without help, alcohol dependence can run rampant to the point where someone loses everything that is precious to them. They drink in response to their problems – but as drinking causes more problems, they have to drink more to keep reality at bay. It really is a vicious cycle, leaving people feeling that a way out is impossible.
Finding a permanent solution through hypnotherapy
However, this is an illusion, which a change of mindset can reveal. And this is where hypnotherapy can help. Having worked with people with different addictions, I’ve found that what they often needed was simply someone to help them overhaul their thinking. From there, we worked on learning healthier coping mechanisms and resolving unmet needs. In this way, hypnotherapy can offer a permanent solution.
If you feel as though you might never be free of the urge to reach for the bottle, whether to celebrate a good day or console yourself after a bad one, consider hypnotherapy. You really have nothing to lose, and everything to gain – and you can even make a start right now with this download. I am a qualified hypnotherapist, experienced in supporting clients to make the changes they want in their lives (see my success stories). I am based in Canterbury, Kent and Peckham, London SE15; and also offer online sessions, wherever in the world you may be. Please feel welcome to call me on 07947 475721 for a free no-obligation 15 minute phone consultation to see how I can help.
You’re probably aware of the uses of hypnotherapy in areas like stopping smoking, treating phobias, or for weight loss. But there are some things that hypnosis can help with do that might surprise you…
7 unusual uses of hypnotherapy
- Learn a new skill, or enhance an existing one. It all starts in the mind. Athletes and performers know the power of mental practice to help with motivation, self-confidence, and reducing competitive anxiety. What the mind can believe, the mind can achieve. So visualising yourself employing your chosen skill can forge a strong subconscious path to start you on your way.
- Enjoy different foods. So you know that greens are healthy, and wholegrain bread is better for you – but what if you just don’t like the taste? A little hypnosis could change this, and change your eating habits for the better.
- End cravings or addictions. Conversely, hypnotherapy can help you turn down the brownies, stop drinking so much, or even say goodbye to unhealthy relationships.
- Enjoy public speaking. Being an effective speaker can boost your career in your company, your industry, and beyond. Once-shy clients are surprised at the changes in themselves – and the benefits they reap. As quitting smoking stops you draining money, becoming a good speaker puts money in the bank.
- Exercise longer, stronger, and more efficiently. Hypnosis can help turn your lack of enthusiasm for working out into get up and go. Ask yourself: ‘What would exercising give me? What would it make possible in my life?’ A powerful motivational story for your subconscious can make it so desirable that you can’t wait to shop for running shoes.
- Attract a partner. You think finding the person of your dreams is about mesmerising him or her? Not at all: it’s about starting with yourself. Hypnosis for confidence gives you a powerful feeling, and that confident sense of self can be very appealing to others.
- Get more done in less time. It’s not all about organising your files or upgrading your technology. Productivity, effectiveness, and enjoying what you do all start in the mind. And specifically, in your subconscious mind.
Breaking old habits and creating better new ones
One of the most common uses of hypnotherapy is creating or breaking habits. These might be habits of action, or habits of thought. Grabbing a biscuit, and another, and another – perhaps without really noticing – is a habit of action. But that action may have been due to a habit of thought. Perhaps you were dwelling on a painful, sad, or angry thought, or an unfulfilled desire and wanted to distract yourself. And you found that eating did that for you temporarily. You may not realise why you’re reaching for the biscuits again. You might think ‘I’m just peckish’. But it’s often connected with an unconscious habit of mind.
Hypnosis is ideal for working for working with the subconscious mind. The process of hypnosis is pleasant, relaxing, and empowering. Clients often say they feel deeply refreshed, more alive, and committed to their lives after a session. They are amazed at feeling so rested and optimistic after just an hour.
Why not see how hypnotherapy can help you? Whether you want to break old habits, create new ones, gain confidence, or be more productive, it might just be the answer. I am a qualified hypnotherapist, experienced in supporting clients to help them make the changes they want in their lives (see my success stories). I am based in Canterbury, Kent and Peckham, London SE15; and also undertake online sessions, wherever in the world you may be. I offer a free no-obligation 15 minute phone consultation, so call me on 07947 475721 and prepare to be surprised at what hypnotherapy can do for you!
The Premiership football season started this weekend (I am an Arsenal supporter, for my sins) – and whether you follow it or not, chances are you’ll be hearing about its ups and downs over the next 9 months. Humans have always been fascinated by competitive sports, and sportsmen and women can become legendary figures and icons for future generations. But what is it that makes these individuals so unbeatable? How do they turn in one winning performance after another? And is it possible for anyone to get the same winning streak? Actually yes: the average human being can still develop sporting prowess through hypnotherapy for sports performance.
Hypnotherapy for sports performance: training the mind
While professional sportspeople undertake continual rigorous physical training of course, it’s less well-known that hypnotherapy is a much-favoured coaching technique. Hypnotherapy mentally helps a player to winning performances in several ways. Firstly, it can improve concentration. Hypnotherapy for sports performance is all about increasing a player’s ability to focus. Through methods such as autosuggestion, visualisation, and Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP), hypnotherapy works on a subconscious level to help a player be calm in the face of tension, and give 100% concentration to their game.
Secondly, hypnotherapy relieves stress through helping players to relax. When a person is calm their mind is clear, and they are able to focus more effectively. This allows the player to concentrate on the ultimate goal of winning.
Also, hypnotherapy also uses the technique of visualisation to help players improve their strategy. In this way, they can break down their best techniques to the smallest parts and replay them in their minds over and over again. For example, a cricket player can go over a shot repeatedly to memorise every move in his body while he makes it. And this will enable him to perform the same shot to perfection in the future. Hypnotherapy for sports performance also helps players to anticipate an opponent’s moves, and to plan strategies to counter them.
Want to up your game?
Hypnotherapy for sports performance is useful in a variety of fields, from teams sports to individual competition. It has the potential to hone your technique and performance effectively, by harnessing the power of the mind. I have dealt with a number of clients looking to improve their focus and sporting performance in my career, and the effects of hypnotherapy are striking. Gone are the mental blocks that held them back, once they become more confident in themselves. And nothing supplies the winning quality more than self-belief! Why not test it out right now, with this hypnosis download?
I am a qualified life coach and hypnotherapist, experienced in coaching clients to help them make the changes they want in their lives (see my success stories). And I can help you move forward too. I am based in Canterbury, Kent and Peckham, London SE15; and also offer online sessions, wherever in the world you may be. Please feel welcome to call me on 07947 475721 for a free no-obligation 15 minute phone consultation to see how I can help.