Inside a hypnotherapy session: Engaging subconscious mind to create transformation

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A hypnotic state is a state of trance in which the body relaxes, and the mind becomes hyperfocused. This allows the conscious mind to be put at peace so that the subconscious mind is accessed. A hypnotic state is a safe way of creating transformation and a natural way of being. We go in and out of trance naturally multiple times a day, the two most common instances being when we fall asleep and when we wake up.

Hypnotherapy is a form of therapy that uses hypnosis in order to bypass conscious thinking and go directly to the root of behaviors, which is usually hidden from our awareness. It is a non-invasive and safe way of creating positive changes and life’s transformations. 

In this article, we’ll look at a typical hypnotherapy session and review different therapeutic techniques and benefits of hypnotherapy. 

A hypnotherapy session

The session begins with the client and hypnotherapist discussing the desired outcomes and reviewing any relevant history. Then a trance state is induced for the client so that the hypnotherapist can work directly with the subconscious part of the client’s mind, where all the long-held beliefs and reasons for behavior reside.

The state of comfort and relaxation allows to put the person’s conscious mind at ease, thus opening the door to the deeper part of the psyche. The hypnotherapist allows the client to release limiting beliefs, let go of stifling emotions, shift perspective, expand awareness, and experience uplifting emotions or even practice new helpful behaviors.

 This work can be done in a “paternal” way – with direct commands (for example, “Every time you experience X, you will do Y”) or in a “maternal” way – with gentle suggestions (for example, “Every time you experience X, you may feel the desire to do Y”). Most hypnotherapists use a combination of both approaches. 

At the end of hypnosis, the client is brought back to a fully conscious state. Regardless of the issues being addressed, at this point, people generally feel more relaxed and at peace.

Issues that can be addressed with hypnosis

Hypnosis can help with a variety of issues, from improving mental and emotional state (dealing with negative thoughts and emotions ) to changing addictive behaviors (stopping smoking) to finding oneself (improving self-esteem, finding joy, etc.) to improving one’s physical well-being (managing pain, improving performance, etc.). With the help of an experienced hypnotherapist,  hypnosis can make a great difference in dealing with many issues. Here are just a few of them: 

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Sleep problems
  • Sexual problems
  • Smoking
  • Fears and phobias
  • Chronic pain
  • Physical recovery
  • Thumb sucking
  • Panic attacks
  • Obesity

Benefits of hypnotherapy

Below are some of the ways in which hypnotherapy can be beneficial:

  1. Reduce Stress and Anxiety: Hypnotherapy can reduce anxiety and stress by helping clients see things in a new light and develop effective ways of releasing tension and staying focused in the present moment.  
  2. Increase Self-Confidence: Hypnotherapy can help people connect with their inner strength and wisdom and become more confident in their abilities. Clients can develop more empowered and assertive behaviors.  
  3. Improve Self-Esteem: Hypnotherapy can allow people to develop a more positive self-image, leading to improved self-esteem and greater self-acceptance.
  4. Overcome Habits: Hypnotherapy can be very helpful in changing behaviors and habits that no longer serve the person.  These include smoking, drinking, unhealthy eating, nail-biting, etc. Through hypnotherapy, clients are helped to reduce triggers that cause them to engage in these habits and find positive replacement behaviors.  
  5. Enhance Sports Performance: Many athletes use hypnotherapy to improve their performance and achieve their goals. Hypnotherapy allows clients to “practice” their target performance in their minds. Hypnotherapy can also help clients increase focus, reduce distractions, and build mental resilience.  
  6. Relieve Pain: Hypnotherapy can be effective at reducing pain by shifting the mind’s focus and helping the body relax and become desensitized to the discomfort. Hypnosis is helpful not only for reducing pain experienced during recovery but also for chronic pain. 
  7. Improve Sleep Quality: Hypnotherapy is an effective way to improve sleep quality. It helps individuals relax and let go of any negative thoughts or worries that may prevent them from sleeping. 

Techniques Used for Hypnotherapy

Here are some of the techniques used in hypnotherapy:

  • Relaxation: Hypnotherapists use relaxation techniques to help clients go into a trance or when helping them deal with stress.  
  • Visualization: Visualization is used to help clients experience the release and clearing of outdated beliefs, emotions, and behaviors, as well as to practice and try on new helpful experiences.  
  • Suggestion: Hypnotic suggestions are instructions delivered to the subconscious mind, which, once accepted by the client, can begin to align subconscious thinking with the client’s conscious wishes and help to bring about the desired outcomes.  
  • Storytelling: During hypnosis, the hypnotherapist may tell a story to the client instead of providing direct suggestions. Storytelling and the use of metaphors allow the hypnotherapist to shift the client’s perspective in a non-threatening way, increasing the likelihood that the subconscious mind will accept the suggestions.
  • Age regression: During a session, the client may be taken to a younger age to gain a greater understanding of the events, shift emotions at that time, and help comfort and protect the younger self that was going through a traumatic event.
  • Reframing: Hypnotherapists help clients shift their perspectives and find more effective ways of thinking. Reframing allows clients to “frame” old issues in a new way.
  • Post-hypnotic suggestion: These suggestions are given by the hypnotherapist before bringing the client out of hypnosis. They are meant to be carried out after the session has ended, such as not engaging in a particular behavior or feeling a certain positive emotion.
  • Guided Imagery: Guided imagery is used by hypnotherapists for a variety of purposes. It is especially useful in helping clients explore options when they feel stuck, test out alternative solutions, connect with internal wisdom, and let go of things they are ready to release. 

While hypnosis is often misunderstood, and the process of hypnotherapy is often thought to be a mystery, its potential for unlocking powerful insights and creating powerful transformations has been demonstrated time and time again. For people who are ready to create positive change, hypnotherapy can open new doors to self-discovery and well-being.


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