When we experience something traumatic or distressing, we often need to seek help to help us deal with the thoughts that don’t feel under our control. There are various types of therapy available for all mental health issues, and one of the most popular choices is hypnotherapy.
Hypnotherapy aims to access the unconscious and change the negative thoughts that can harm us or hold us back. Through the power of suggestion, hypnotherapy can promote positive change, and these suggestions depend on each individual’s needs and symptoms. A hypnotherapist should tailor techniques to their client, help them recognize potential triggers, manage the symptoms of these triggers, and change how the client reacts towards them.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a relatively common anxiety disorder. It often occurs when someone is exposed to a traumatic event that critically traumatizes or injures them. PTSD can take the form of disturbing, intrusive thoughts, thoughts, flashbacks and reactions that arise when you are put in a similar situation, and even suicidal thoughts and high anxiety levels. It can be difficult to live with, but hypnotherapy can make a difference to those who live with PTSD.
Hypnotherapy coupled with other forms of therapy has proven an effective treatment for PTSD for many. Hypnotherapy can start to help you recover your sense of safety in non-threatening situations which trigger your internal alarm bells. It will help access your subconscious that causes the extreme response and helps to tackle how you react to those triggers. Hypnotherapy won’t fix your PTSD overnight (no therapy can), but it can help you gain back control to achieve positive change in your life.
It’s normal to feel some level of anger, frustration or irritability in our daily lives. But if it turns to anger and lingers for an extended period, or if you react in extreme ways, it can become a serious problem. As with most forms of hypnotherapy, the treatment for anger involves “rewiring” the brain to respond differently to anger triggers. Anger management problems usually come from past experiences, which can shape our entire belief system. For example, while a client may believe someone is causing their anger, it likely comes from within.
To remedy this, a hypnotherapist works consciously and unconsciously to help change the client’s negative thought processes through relaxation techniques. It can help you manage your anger response when other, more long-term solutions cannot work. For example, a long-term habit of mindfulness and meditation can help you manage your anger significantly over time, but in the heat of the moment, you can’t sit down to meditate. That’s where hypnotherapy can be so beneficial – it can help start to break down the strong links in your subconscious that lead you from healthy anger to something uncontrollable, so you can start to be in control of your emotions.
Anxiety and panic attacks are unfortunately common in our modern-day. Our brains, despite all their power, are still surprisingly primitive. We still have a lot of our old fight-or-flight instincts left over. While this is a good thing in a real emergency, those are (fortunately) few and far between. That means that, often, we start to react severely to non-life-threatening situations.
Anxiety and panic attacks severely damage our quality of life, often leading us to avoid certain situations at all costs. Our minds send signals to our bodies that tell us we need to get out of a certain situation as soon as possible, and overcoming those responses is incredibly difficult. That’s why hypnotherapy can be so beneficial for anxiety sufferers.
A hypnotherapist treating someone with an anxiety or panic disorder may help them cope with specific symptoms and overcome limiting behaviours. For instance, once the client is relaxed, the hypnotherapist may ask them to think about their panic attacks. They’ll bring awareness to any physical sensations, emotional feelings and cognitions they associate with attacks, like shaking, chest pain, shortness of breath and a general feeling of fear.
The hypnotherapist will encourage the client, telling them they can control their anxiety and feel safe despite their anxiety. The session may also entail working on coping with these feelings, like taking deep breaths or using body scans to stay calm during a panic attack. Once they understand how and when anxiety and panic come up for you, they’ll work with the power of suggestion to reduce your reaction to those initial triggers that happens subconsciously when you’re in an anxiety or panic-inducing situation.
Childhood trauma is often the cause of anger, generalized anxiety disorder and PTSD in adults. It can be particularly helpful for abuse survivors to restructure their genuine memories of abuse since many abusers often “plant” false memories in their victims’ minds. This restructuring can provide a greater feeling of control and can reduce the pain of self-blame.
Many therapists (in hypnotherapy and other areas) believe that many of our problems are deep-rooted in childhood trauma, and so even if you aren’t entirely aware of what is causing you stress and anxiety, you may find hypnotherapy helps you to deal with past trauma.
As children, we are particularly delicate – we’re wired to trust those around us, and we often take things at face value. That can mean that we make conclusions from seemingly innocuous circumstances that hurt us in later life. It also means we’re more susceptible and vulnerable to abuse. As adults, it’s important to address this trauma so you can live a healthy, happy life making choices based on your happiness, not long-held beliefs from childhood trauma.
Hypnosis can help you gain sympathy and separate yourself from who you were as a child, so you can look at situations objectively and see how they are impacting your current adult life. It can help you address long-held pain and rewire how your subconscious mind (the part that wishes to protect you at all times) reacts to situations so you can make better, pain-free choices.
Phobias are surprisingly common, and many people turn to hypnotherapy to access the subconscious that causes their phobias. Irrational fear (otherwise known as a phobia) is believed to affect around 11% of the population and can lead us to react strongly to otherwise safe situations. For example, someone with a fear of spiders may break down and cry, feel anxiety and panic, and feel unable to enter a room where a spider is standing on the wall. While that spider cannot easily do that person harm, they cannot overcome that fear, despite the situation's reality.
Hypnotherapy can help you access your subconscious mind and start to control that fear response. When dealing with phobias, a hypnotherapist will put their client into a relaxed state of hypnosis while continuously talking to them. If a client isn’t sure where their phobia came from, they’ll need to work on getting to the root and remembering what triggered it.
Hypnotherapy for phobias generally entails gently and gradually confronting the phobia until it no longer holds power over the client.
As there’s often an overlap between several mental health issues, hypnotherapy and other therapy methods can help someone experiencing a range of issues. The general idea behind hypnotherapy is to change the way we feel about our experiences and how we deal with them. It can give us a greater sense of control and reduce fear and apprehension whenever we encounter an emotional trigger. If you feel as though your fear, anxiety, or past trauma is affecting your quality of life, hypnotherapy may be the best way for you to gain control and start living life to the fullest.
What hypnotherapy does that other therapies often don’t do is allow the conscious to connect with the unconscious mind. Once we have done this it allows us to deal with 3 elements that drive unconsciously our thoughts, decisions and actions.
Element 1 is the psychological element. The memory or the visual
Element 2 is the emotion – sadness, anger, fear etc
Element 3 is the physiological – shaking, sweating, crying, rush of uncontrollable energy. Through hypnosis we can reach each element and release what has been stuck there and then we can begin to re-frame each element with the new pattern that will then become our new unconscious driver of our thoughts, decisions and actions in a way that is just right for you.
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