What is Hypnotherapy?
Hypnotherapy is generally defined as an altered state of consciousness. It is a state of mind connected to deep relaxation, narrowed focus and increased suggestibility. In this state of mind, which can be a very pleasant and calming experience, the mind can become more receptive and responsive to postive suggestions and imagery.
The conscious control of the mind is inhibited, and the unconscious mind accessed. Since the unconscious mind is a deeper-seated, more instinctive force than the conscious mind, this is the part which has to change for the persons behaviour and physical state to alter.
In the actual therapy the client is enabled to reach a deep state of relaxation. Once in hypnosis, the therapist makes the relevant suggestions. It is a safe and natural process which aims to re-program thoughts, feelings and behaviours than no longer serve us.
Some people are concerned that they will lose control in hypnosis and be unaware of what is happening. This isn't the case. In Clinical Hypnotherapy the client is always fully in control. However deeply relaxed you become you will choose what you wish to happen.
There is always consent between the client and therapist as to the way in which the therapy will progress. Hypnosis is a natural state of consciousness in which we are open to positive suggestions. It is similar to 'zoning out' while watching television or being absorbed in a novel, or just daydreaming. Our bodies are relaxed and our conscious 'mind chatter' is quieted. In hypnosis a person is neither fully awake nor asleep.
It can sometimes be like the dreamy state just before falling asleep.
An Holistic Approach
Hypnotherapy can also be used to explore beyond the personality and access intuition or inner wisdom. This is often known as Transpersonal Hypnotherapy and can be used to deepen our understanding of ourselves beyond the five senses.
In this context hypnotherapy is a holistic therapy which encompasses the mind, body and spirit. Recognising the whole person on a physical, emotional, mental, intuitive and spiritual level.