How does hypnotherapy work?

Unlike talking therapies like counselling and CBT (which have an emphasis on changing your thought processes) hypnotherapy aims to change things on a deeper, ‘feeling’ level.

This is because the brain processes emotions before thoughts. If we can change the way your brain processes emotions (many of which are linked to your past) you will naturally think differently.

So, hypnotherapy uses the state of hypnosis – that naturally occurring focused state – to stimulate changes on a deeper, subconscious level. This, in turn, produce changes also on a conscious level, changing the way you feel, think and behave.

By using hypnosis we access the REM state – our optimal learning state. (We all enter REM during sleep but we now know that REM occurs also whilst we’re awake when the brain switches over to right hemisphere dominance). And that’s what hypnotherapy taps into.

But it isn’t simply being in hypnosis that creates changes. Hypnosis is not a therapy in itself. It is the suggestions and ideas absorbed whilst in the hypnotic state (the REM state) that produces the changes.

When these are accepted by your subconscious mind it’s almost as if you operate on updated software, no longer controlled by old memory patterns from the past.

RELATED CONTENT: Read about what’s wrong with CBT: why you can’t just think yourself better 

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