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The Dream Pilot Hypnotherapy

Richard Olley

What is Hypnosis, and what is it like to be hypnotised?

Hypnosis is defined as a deep state of relaxation enabling effortless selective thinking. What this means is that the client becomes so relaxed that they naturally lose awareness of their surroundings and concentrate 100% on the concepts the therapist is talking about. It is actually a completely natural state which most people achieve for themselves on a very regular basis. If you daydream, you have hypnotised yourself. If you are engrossed in a film or a book, you are in a state of hypnosis. If you drive somewhere, and don’t remember parts of the journey, you were hypnotised. Every time you go to sleep or wake up, you transition through a hypnotic state.

It is because the client usually hears every word that the therapist says that clients often claim that ‘it didn’t work’. However, there are clear signs that clients are in hypnosis, so the therapist is much better placed to make that judgement. Clients will hear what the therapist says whether they are hypnotised or not. Hypnotised people are generally unaware of their surroundings, so they appear to the uninitiated to be asleep, but they are actually in a heightened state of awareness. It is because people confuse hypnosis with a sleep-like state that they think that hearing the therapist signifies that they weren’t hypnotised.

It is possible, and not uncommon, for a client to transition from hypnosis to sleep during a therapy session, but it is only the conscious mind that sleeps – the sub-conscious is still listening, and the therapy still works.

The significance of the hypnotic state is that the Conscious Critical Faculty is suspended, and this has two hugely important implications. Firstly, it allows new programs to be installed in the Sub-conscious, such as ‘I deserve to be treated with love and respect’, or ‘I only eat and drink what my body truly needs’. Secondly, it allows access to memories and emotions that have been deeply buried – once expressed they can be released, and they lose their toxic effect on us.

Given that it is pretty much impossible to get to adulthood without picking up a few (or a lot of!) unhelpful core beliefs, there are very few people who would not benefit from Hypnotherapy, and quite a few whose lives could be absolutely transformed.

What is Hypno-analysis, and who would most benefit from it?

Hypno-analysis is a process which guides a client back into their childhood under hypnosis, allowing them to re-visit events which continue to adversely affect their adult life. These events are not always traumatic, but for one reason or another they continue trigger unwanted thoughts or behaviours. During analysis, the client is able to re-experience the event, but also view it from an adult perspective. This can be an extremely cathartic experience, and allows the event to be completely de-toxified from an emotional point of view.

On a practical level, the therapist invites the client to think back to their childhood, and describe whatever comes into their head. As this ‘free association’ occurs, the subconscious mind is drawn to the events which have unresolved emotional content, and they become much more real to the client than if they just remembered the event out of hypnosis. It is the re-experiencing of the emotions felt at the time that allows them to be discharged, and they then lose the ability to affect the behaviour of the adult.

The process is usually undertaken in hourly sessions at weekly intervals, and after 6 – 12 weeks the client usually feels ‘happier in their own skin’ than they ever felt possible, and the effect should be permanent. Far quicker and more effective than psycho-analysis, it is regarded by many exponents as the ‘cream of therapies’.

Are there people who cannot be hypnotised?

There are possibly a few, but it is much more likely that they are consciously or unconsciously resisting being hypnotised because they are unwilling to ‘give up control’. Being hypnotised does not involve giving up control, but this is some people’s perception of it, and so sometimes people are very wary.

To be truly ‘unhypnotisable’, you would have to have no imagination whatever, and this is extremely rare. It would mean that you never recognised anyone, or anywhere, because the only way you can tell whether you have seen a person or a place before is to compare what you are seeing with a mental picture (using your imagination) of what you have previously seen. So it is much more likely that people who claim they cannot be hypnotised are actually saying that they cannot allow themselves to be hypnotised.

I have had clients who have made this claim, and once I established what was making them resist hypnosis, the problem has been solved. In fact, very often they hypnotise easily, and their fear was based on the fact that they knew they couldn’t resist it.