The popularity of complementary therapies to treat ailments such as addiction, phobias, weight problems and various health conditions has soared in recent years. However, a large number of people are still sceptical about hypnotherapy as an effective alternative form of therapy.
Aaron Surtees, Clinical Hypnotherapist and Director at City Hypnosis, has worked with a vast range of patients over 15 years to help cure them of their phobias, anxieties and bad habits. Here, Aaron helps to dispel the common myths from the facts surrounding hypnotherapy and its effectiveness.
MYTH – The hypnotherapist will use a pendulum
One of the most common preconceptions about hypnotherapy is that the hypnotherapist will swing a pendulum in front of the patient to send them into a trance-like state, and then click their fingers when they want to wake them up. Hypnotherapy is more like guiding people through to a very relaxed state of mind, like a daydream, to access the altered state of consciousness. When with a patient, I talk to them and encourage them to enter a deep tranquil state, it is very gradual.
FACT – Hypnotherapy is similar to meditation
The deep state of relaxation you experience during hypnotherapy has often been compared to the state of being that is achieved from meditation. This is because you are quietening the conscious part of your mind, allowing the subconscious to take over.
MYTH – Only gullible people can be hypnotised
This definitely isn’t true. Anyone can be hypnotised, however treatment is usually more effective for patients who really desire a change and cure. For example, if a smoker really wants to quit the habit and is choosing to seek therapy for it, this will be more beneficial than if say, they still enjoy smoking but their partner wants to make them quit. On the whole hypnosis is very successful however it relies on the patient being open to change.
FACT – Hypnotherapy is safe
Much like meditation, hypnotherapy is 100 per cent safe and patients can open their eyes and come out of their relaxed state at any point during the process. It’s a completely natural practice; therefore there are no health and safety risks for the patient.
MYTH – You can be made to do anything whilst under hypnosis
Unfortunately "stage hypnosis", where a person is hypnotised in front of an audience, has encouraged people to have skeptical views on hypnotherapy as a valid form of treatment for people suffering with life-debilitating habits, phobias and anxieties. This type of hypnosis is very much about entertaining the audience and the person undergoing the hypnosis will be going along with it all to add to the entertainment factor.
FACT – A person has total control when they are hypnotised
You will always be 100 per cent in control throughout hypnotherapy. Unless you’re taking part in "stage hypnosis", then you won’t be made to run around doing silly things and making a fool of yourself! Hypnosis is the process of re-wiring your subconscious mind in order to make you think differently, not act differently.
MYTH – You will reveal your deepest darkest secrets under hypnosis
By reaching an alternate state of consciousness during hypnosis, your unconscious is more receptive to the suggestions made by your hypnotherapist. This cannot make you say or do anything under hypnosis that you don’t want to do. You are completely in control and empowered throughout the process.
FACT – A person in hypnotic state is still aware of their surroundings
Clients have reported different experiences following treatment, however during the process the patient will always be aware of their surroundings, and able to hear sounds. It’s also worth noting that the depth of your hypnotic "trance" doesn’t always correspond to your results.
City Hypnosis is the leading London hypnotherapy clinic which offers complementary therapies to treat a wide range of phobias, anxieties and habits. For more information contact City Hypnosis.