What is the reason we use hypnosis in therapy?

Hypnosis in itself is not the answer

Hypnosis, itself, is not a therapy, it will not provide any answers. It is not a simple case of putting someone into a state of hypnosis and saying, “Now you will not be scared or spiders!”.

Hypnosis does not provide a suggestible state of mind which will accept any direct suggestion.

Subconscious issues need to be addressed at the subconscious level?

Many problems can originate at a  subconscious level – the person did not deliberately (consciously) create the problem.

For example, someone who is phobic of spiders did not consciously decide to react to spiders with such anxiety. The phobic responses happens automatically at a subconscious level.

When trying to resolve the problem you try to resolve it using your conscious mind, you naturally try to analyse the situation, and consciously find a solution. But the behaviour is at a subconscious level.

Break the pattern learnt limitations

The conscious mind is limited, we get caught up in our own limited beliefs and ideas. These limitations stop us from exploring the potential we have to resolve problems. Many people have experienced trying to persuade someone to do something differently, try something new. However if the person is stuck in their own belief that they know best then it’s difficult to reason with them.

Hypnosis enables you to reduce the conscious analytical thinking and activates your subconscious processes. So hypnosis enables you to break free of any limited beliefs and explore the resources you have.

Activate subconscious 

If you’re issues come from a subconscious level, if you have no conscious control over them (you can’t just feel calm by saying; ‘don’t be anxious when you see a spider’). Then you need to address the issue at a subconscious level. Hypnosis activates your subconscious processes, so you can facilitate experimental learning and change the subconscious processes.

Experimental Learning

Hypnosis facilitates experimental learning at a subconscious level. You can experience seeing a spider, feeling the anxiety response and explore your response potentials whilst in the safety of your armchair free from all spiders, disassociated from the reality of it.

Escaping the limitations of reality

Without the limitations of reality, new experiences and associations can be formed. People can learn through their own direct experience, their associations and then guided by therapist can explore new learning, try new outcomes.

For example, depression caused by the death of loved one can be aided by experiences of hallucinating the loved one, conversations, experiences, feelings are available to work through – subjective experience that was not possible objectively. No longer bound by reality.

Dissassociation

When people experience trauma the subconscious mind can well repress the experience so the person has no conscious recollection. It’s a natural process to protect a person from traumatic experiences. The repressed experience can manifest in any number of ways leaving the person clueless as to the origins of the manifest behaviour. Hypnosis provides a disassociation from the traumatic reality of the experience, in which to safely work through problem and find solutions. Repressed latent issues become available to therapy.

Somatic symptoms

Most people are clueless why they experience symptoms, anxiety can be felt but it’s harder to understand why you have anxiety and where it came from. Many such somatic symptoms manifest from subconscious needs. Through hypnosis we can explore the symptom, analyse the root cause and affect change.

Focus of attention

Many disorders are characterized, in part, by impairment of attentional focus. Extreme anxiety, physical pain and depression make it difficult for the person to focus. Hypnosis increases focus of attention allowing a temporary break from the disorder. The experience itself of a breaking free can bring with it the realisation the the condition is malleable and that the person can take control.

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