Chickens, Elvis and Other Worries
(Or ... The Mind Control Question)
Can hypnosis make me stop smoking?
Can hypnotherapy make me lose weight? (or dislike chocolate, or whatever!)
These are questions I get asked all the time. But hypnotherapy is not ‘mind control’. If it was, hypnotherapists - or at least hypnotists - would rule the world! [imagine a "Bond villain" chuckle here J ]
Plus all I'd have to do is click my fingers and say 'stop' and all your problems would instantly disappear! That may sound good, but does it sound likely?
No, of course not.
Hypnotherapy is about control, but it's about you being in control, not me. Your hypnotherapy will be designed to give you back control over your own actions and feelings, so that you can deal with - or get rid of - your problems.
Worries about mind control often come from what people have seen or read in fictional accounts of hypnosis, or in stage shows. But in fiction moving the plot along is usually more important than accuracy. On stage, hypnosis may be combined with slight of hand, magic tricks, and misdirection. And, of course, no one volunteers for a hypnosis act if they're not prepared to go along with a few daft suggestions.
Hypnotherapy is not entertainment or fiction. It is a well established therapeutic procedure intended to work for your benefit, to help you deal with the things that have been worrying you.
Therapy can sometimes be challenging because you are dealing with important issues and emotions. But a reputable Hypnotherapist will never ask you to do anything that makes you feel silly or ridiculous, or that is against your moral, ethical or religious values.
Hypnosis is a very safe procedure if properly and responsibly used. Like many other things in life (including cars, fire, the Internet and medicinal drugs) if used inappropriately it may cause problems. A few basic safeguards will help you avoid this.
- Do not undergo hypnosis when you are under the influence of alcohol or 'recreational drugs'.
- If you take medication, have any on-going physical or emotional health problems, or you have been treated for mental health issues in the past, make sure your Hypnotherapist knows about it.
- Always see a member of a recognised hypnotherapy association. They should be trained not only in the techniques of hypnosis, but also in the practical and ethical implications of its use in therapy.
- Check that your therapist's certificates and insurance documents are up to date.
- Most hypnotherapists are not doctors or psychologists. Make sure your therapist would be willing to refer you on to someone more appropriate if the occasion arises.
- Hypnosis can be an excellent way to reduce pain and
control other long-term symptoms without side effects.
However, as pain is the body's warning system, it is very
important to have the underlying problem properly diagnosed.
You should be asked to obtain your doctor's permission before starting hypnotherapy for pain relief or other medical problems, and you should continue with medication unless your doctor tells you otherwise.
- Make sure your therapist abides by a clearly stated code of ethics, and that there is a complaints procedure you can use if you feel the code has been breached.
As a member of the General Hypnotherapy Register, I am fully
insured and follow the code of conduct set out on their website.
You can read it by following this link.