Hypnotherapy offers a rapid and effective pathway to personal change and growth. Through the use of trance states, together with specific protocols, anyone can quickly realize the roots of behaviors and feelings. Simply put, hypnosis is a very relaxed state where your mind is focused and very receptive to suggestions that allow you to achieve positive and lasting transformation.
As with all techniques focused on personal growth, this process is as short- or long-term as you want to invest. Hypnotherapy is not a magic bullet that brings about large-scale changes overnight. It is an investment in your development, and your practitioner is merely facilitating the process. You have all of the answers inside you; hypnosis helps you to uncover them.
Is Hypnotherapy Effective?
Yes, hypnosis is incredibly effective in many areas, including:
- Reducing stress, anxiety, and anger
- Personal development
- Increasing self-esteem and confidence
- Pain management
- Learning to relax and let go
- Overcoming fears
- Improving relationships
- Smoking and tobacco cessation
- Memory improvement
- Weight loss
- Increasing motivation and ability to concentrate
- Improving career, sales, or athletic performance
What is Hypnosis?
Hypnosis is a very pleasant state of deep relaxation. When you are hypnotized, you are not asleep or unconscious. You are aware of everything that is taking place. In fact, this trance state is very natural to everyone. We go in and out of trance numerous times per day. If you have ever daydreamed or completely spaced out and missed your exit while driving, then you have experienced being in a trance. You are aware of your surroundings yet your attention is focused somewhere else. In both cases, the conscious part of your mind is distracted or extremely focused, allowing the subconscious part of the mind to take over.
Hypnosis occurs when the trance state is guided and utilized for the purpose of changing thoughts or behaviors. By bypassing the conscious mind that holds all current awareness and beliefs, you allow yourself to set aside negative or critical thinking. This enables you to believe whatever you want to believe, and your unconscious mind responds to create the desired change.
What is the difference between Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy?
Hypnosis is a trance state of heightened focus and deep relaxation. Hypnotherapy is a type of treatment that employs the state of hypnosis as a means to facilitate healing and support clients in reaching their goals.
Can I be hypnotized?
Most likely YES! If you possess normal cognitive function, you can experience hypnosis. It is something that you have been experiencing your entire life. It occurs just before you fall asleep, when you are waking up, and when you become fixated on something like the flame of a candle or the sound of water dripping from a faucet.
Some of our clients find it very easy to achieve a trance state, and others need a little more guidance while acclimating to the process. In fact, it’s similar to meditation in that you have the opportunity to experience deeper and deeper levels of consciousness the more you practice. Your degree of success depends on your willingness to be hypnotized, the degree of your desire and motivations for change, and your ability to follow directions. Most of the time, when a person believes they can’t be hypnotized, it’s because they have a false expectation of what they will experience. They may anticipate a loss of control, the experience of being unconscious or “going under,” or maybe they have had a previous experience that was unsuccessful due to lack of rapport with the practitioner.
Are there people who just aren’t “hypnotizeable”?
Hypnosis or being in a trance is something that most people do on their own throughout the day. Have you have ever let your mind wander to a place where you become unaware of what is happening in your immediate environment (e.g., spacing out during a conversation or missing your exit on the freeway because your mind was elsewhere)? Then you have been in a trance or hypnotic state. Remember, you are completely in control during a hypnosis session. If someone is unable to be hypnotized, it’s usually because a part of the person does not want to be hypnotized. The majority of clients are able to be hypnotized.
Does it really work?
Yes, this type of healing therapy certainly does work, and it can work for you! Many scientific studies demonstrate its effectiveness for such issues as smoking cessation, weight reduction, stress management, and so much more. Hypnotherapy helps you gain control of your subconscious mind and become aware of the old programs that are influencing your behavior so that you can shift them.
Will hypnosis help me lose weight?
You know what to eat and that the body needs to move to be healthy. You have read all of the books, tried every fad diet, or even taken drastic measures like surgery. You would do anything to get off the crazy train of shame and self-loathing but for some reason, nothing works. And if it does work, it’s not for very long. Sound familiar? You are definitely not alone. Are you ready to get off this insane hamster wheel of struggle and suffering?
Hypnotherapy allows you to walk through the door of your dysfunctional relationship with food and see what is behind it. There is an undeniable link between weight gain and the desire to avoid processing uncomfortable emotions. People that have trouble losing weight or keeping it off have often developed habits of eating that are based on emotional needs rather than physical hunger. By uncovering the reason that you are overeating and processing emotions that lead to making unhealthy choices, we can start to shift unwanted behaviors.
Calories and nutrition do count. Exercise is important. There is no magic wand that will make your body metabolize French fries as if they were celery sticks. However, when you connect with your motivations for losing weight and identify the obstacles that have been holding you back, you might find that you no longer crave French fries or even have the ability to stop after one or two.
Compulsive eating is an attempt to avoid emptiness. When we resist that emptiness or try to fill it with food, the weight persists, even if a crash diet can hold it at bay for a time. Hypnotherapy is a process that allows us to safely welcome in what we most want to avoid so that we can acknowledge it and release it. Also, it helps you to identify old programs that your subconscious mind has been running. Suggestions that you may have picked up in childhood, such as clean your plate or that ice cream with get you through your break-up, could be influencing your choices unconsciously. By utilizing the hypnotic trance state, we can speak directly to the subconscious and begin to tell a new story. We can let go of the past and the out-of-date image of ourselves by imagining who we are becoming. The subconscious mind does not differentiate between what is real and what is imagined. As you release those old hurts and fears, you release the desire to avoid them with food. You will create space to visualize and believe in that healthy, happy, and fit version of you. The body can only achieve what the mind believes is possible. Once you believe in your ability to heal your relationship with your body and food, anything is possible.
If I’m hypnotized, do I give up control?
Absolutely not. You are always in control. All hypnosis is self-hypnosis. The trance is a natural state that you allow yourself to experience. You have the power to emerge from that state if you wish at any time.
When you realize that you are the one in control and feel comfortable, you can then decide how deeply you wish to go. The practitioner is your guide and helps lead you through the process, but the change can only be made by you.
Often, the realization that you are in control and that you can make change yourself, is very empowering. You might find yourself experiencing deep trance states the more you experience hypnosis; however, you will always be aware of what you are doing and feel secure in the knowledge that you can always stop a session if you feel uncomfortable.
Will I get “stuck” in a hypnotic state?
No. Hypnosis is a trance state that is very natural. Just like you will not get stuck in a daydream and lose touch with reality, you will not get stuck in a hypnotic or trance state. You are in complete control during a hypnotherapy session. You can go into whatever level of trance that you are comfortable with and bring yourself out of it at will.
What should I do to prepare for hypnosis?
We recommend not drinking caffeine or taking anything that will make it difficult for you to relax during the session. Other than that, no preparation is required.
What will happen during my session?
At Richer Healing, Laura Richer, CHt, will take a detailed history and discuss in-depth what your challenges have been and what you would like to accomplish. Then, you’ll discuss your goals and desired outcome for your sessions. Using a range of different techniques, Laura will relax you with guided visualization, make you feel comfortable, and work with you toward achieving your goal. After a session, you might feel uplifted, lighter, and very relaxed. Often, change is very subtle; we will be working with your subconscious mind, and you might notice a very positive shift in how you are feeling.
I don’t live in Seattle; can I still work with you for hypnosis?
Yes! All of Coach Laura’s unique healing programs are available around the globe via Skype or Zoom.
How quickly will I see results from hypnotherapy?
Results vary significantly depending on the client and his or her specific goals. Some clients notice a significant shift after one session, and others need more time to work through the blocks they would like to address. We recommend three to five sessions to start seeing results. Remember, hypnotherapy is not a magic bullet. Your commitment to the process and achieving your goals will significantly impact the results that you achieve.