Here are some things you may want to ask - if your question isn't here then drop me a line
Is hypnosis the same as sleep or being unconscious?
No. At all times you're awake, although your focus narrows. You can still hear sounds like traffic or birds singing outside although they will seem unimportant. You are still able to respond to anything that may need your immediate attention, such as an alarm going off, so you can relax knowing that you are able to function as usual if necessary.
Isn't it the same as meditation?
There are similarities in that you achieve a deeply relaxed state however in meditation the aim is often to clear your mind of unwanted thoughts whereas in hypnosis you concentrate your focus and attention to work on a specific issue.
What does it feel like?
There's no right or wrong - everyone has a slightly different experience of what hypnosis feel like and for some, it's simply feeling very relaxed. For others it's a slightly 'detached' feeling and for others still it can be quite a profound shift in state. In almost all cases a state of light hypnosis is enough for therapeutic work.
But surely it's a form of mind control?
Only in that you are learning to control and strengthen your own mind, amending your own thoughts and behaviours to find more helpful ways of thinking and being. A hypnotherapist cannot 'make' you do anything that goes against your core beliefs and values. It's generally thought that all hypnosis is self-hypnosis so in order for it to work you have to permit it i.e. you are an active participant and a hypnotherapist simply guides you through the process.
What if I can't be hypnotised?
It's thought that around 85% of the population can enter hypnosis. The main exceptions to this are if you've been drinking alcohol or taking drugs. Then it's unlikely to work and in some cases where someone's mental capacity is diminished it might not work either.
It should be straightforward for nearly everyone to access a state of hypnosis. If, for example, you have ever become so engrossed in a book or film that you cried or felt scared, or have driven home from work thinking about dinner only to realise you can't remember much of the journey then you can be hypnotised. In both situations mentioned above you've narrowed your focus in a similar way to hypnosis.
Surely only weak-minded people can be hypnotised?
Generally, the brighter and more creative you are the easier it is to enter hypnosis. It's a way of training your brain to work for you, and just as you learn anything else it sometimes takes a little bit of practice to become very good at it.
What if I get stuck in hypnosis?
That's not going to happen. You're in control at all times and are awake so should you need to respond to something, such as an alarm you'll be able to deal with it as normal. Sometimes people enjoy the feelings of relaxation that accompany hypnosis so much that they resist being brought back to their usual awareness at the end of the session but they find that if they're reminded that they're going into a second hour's payment this focuses their attention to end hypnosis!
Can we get results if I don't want to tell you details of my issue?
We may be able to work on some aspects of the issue without details however, depending on what you want to work on, BWRT might be a better technique to use as you don't have to disclose anything other than the subject matter. The rest is kept to yourself.
What if I don't want to be hypnotised?
Put simply, if you decide that you definitely do not want to be hypnotised then it won't happen. You are the person that allows hypnosis to take place and the hypnotherapist is guiding the session, using their skills to bring the benefits to you.
As mentioned above, you have to actively decide to join in and you can think of your hypnosis session as a temporary partnership between you and your hypnotherapist.
Isn't hypnosis a bit 'woo woo' or 'new age'?
It’s been used for centuries and the list of applications is long. Nowadays it is used by the medical profession around the world for such things as anaesthesia, pain relief (both acute and chronic), dentistry and is a recognised form of antenatal treatment worldwide e.g.. Hypnobirthing. fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging) brain scans show that different parts of the brain are engaged during hypnosis than when not in hypnosis so all we're doing is focusing attention on things we want to improve and supporting our efforts in a natural way.
What happens after the sessions end?
If you want to continue using hypnosis for other issues you can either come back to address them and we can decide which technique will be the most appropriate, or I can teach you some simple self hypnosis techniques that can be effective in a variety of situations. It all depends on what we've been working with and which is the most appropriate approach for you.
Can hypnosis work with groups?
Yes. It's useful when a group of people are working towards the same goal e.g. stopping smoking or improving a golf swing. Self-hypnosis techniques can easily be taught to groups so that individuals can continue practicing in their own time after the group session or workshop.